The response to this mini series has been very encouraging. It has been an honest privilege to host these vulnerable and honest ‘Sacred scared’ guest posts. I have loved watching how each of the writers (and yes before you try and dismiss this idea – you are a writer) cheered each other on and have become virtual friends. If you have been following along and still have a post burning in you unwritten or half-written, take courage and send it to me please.
May I introduce my friend, fellow pastor and avid blog reader; Chantel.
I was so excited about this blog, because I love reading them! Reading blogs and articles is something I have discovered in the last few years. I love the way I can be inspired, challenged and moved by another’s person’s stories, thoughts and experiences, and I love sharing them in case someone else might be inspired, challenged and moved too. I love that sense of connection.
Sometimes when I read too much, it makes my head spin. Because I start to hear that voice that says, “you don’t know enough, you haven’t read enough, you haven’t studied enough.” Sounds like a contradiction, but the more I read, at times the more in awe I am of these people who know so much, are so articulate, and must have read and studied so much to express themselves so eloquently.
And so this spills over too in to other areas of my life. I am a daughter, wife, mummy, sister, pastor, counsellor, I call myself jack of all trades, master of none! And I worry that is what I do is not enough, not only do I not read enough or know enough, but I don’t share my faith with my kids enough, I don’t know enough to teach and lead other people, I am not brave enough to be bold in speaking to others about the God I love, and I haven’t read enough counseling books on every conceivable subject to do that well either. Even now I am thinking this won’t be interesting enough, I can’t write it well enough!
So this is my sacred scared. That what I do is “not enough”. Thankfully this doesn’t control me completely. I feel I still step up, I still try to do all the things I am meant to do, and do them the best I can. I don’t feel the “not enough” drives me to extreme behaviour, to striving, to perfectionism. But it is that unsatisfied, unfulfilled, uncomfortable, can’t quite shake it, niggly feeling. Even now I want to articulate this better and my words don’t feel enough. Not enough.
That’s why I am grateful that Jesus is enough. He says to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor 12:9) (This verse has come up before in Sacred Scared!) I know He loves me, rejoices over me and He is proud of me, and that is where I must rest. Listen to the voice of God, not the voice of “not enough.” And I love that as we bring our Sacred Scared to Him, in to the Light, as we ponder it in our hearts and confess it to one another, that something is broken, it power over us diminished, and the truth of how God sees us and the words of affirmation from our sisters set us free. Even as I ponder and prepare to share this, I know this to be true.
My favourite verse in the Bible is Philippians 1:6, “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” The Message says a “flourishing finish!” God has begun a good work in my life and it is through His grace that it will be completed. I once read a quote that has stayed with me ever since, can’t remember where it was from so apologies to the author! “That is why it is possible to be grateful and desperate at the same time; I am grateful for what He has done, and desperate for what He can do.” Jesus is enough, and I am grateful for what He has done and desperate for more!
Chantel and her husband Paul are pastors at Carrickfergus Vineyard Church and proud parents to Sam, Owen & Hope!