Monthly Archives: March 2014

Fight or flight?

fight or flight

When faced with painful situations, what do you do?

You can stay and fight. That means sticking with the pain, having the messy conversations, absorbing someone’s anger, staying with conflict.

Or you can run: change the subject, avoid the big talk, fake our feelings, kill that relationship, move house, even move country.

Fighting for what you need is mentally, physically and spiritually draining. Usually, it’s just easier to pick up and run. But some of us keep running all our lives till we run out of road.

One of my friends is in hiding to allow her wounds time to heal. Another is actively sparring with her husband in order to try and save their marriage.

Fight or flight? How do you deal with your problems?

 

Criticism should be gentle

The non-hostile takeover

The more we let God take us over, the more truly ourselves we become… He invented all the different people that you & I were intended to be.

– C.S. Lewis

So often the world cries out to “Be yourself!”, but how many of us know who we truly are? Are we more than just the sum of our opinions, thoughts, values and ideals?

As Christians, we believe that God created us. So it stands to reason that we cannot become fully authentic people simply by reading self-help books and keeping reflection journals.

While people try more and more to connect with their spiritual side through meditative journeys and communing with nature, this too falls short of what we need in order to be in tune with who we were created to be.

While guided contemplations and hours of therapy may certainly help us to realise hidden truths about ourselves, we cannot know our full identity unless we go back to the One who gave us our identity in the first place. (Click to tweet)

Our heavenly Father knows us intimately. And if we try to squeeze Him out of our quest to become authentic people we can only hope, at best, to become two-dimensional figures of who we’re truly meant to be.

The problem is we try to control who we would like to be, rather than trust God to reveal who we actually are. (Click to tweet) Why do we do this? Because we suspect that who we actually are isn’t pretty enough, handsome enough, clever enough or strong enough by the world’s standards. We want to elevate ourselves to headier heights, to shape ourselves into a shiny and enviable artifice for others to admire.

No wonder we Christians are frequently labelled as hypocrites. So many of us talk the talk but we rarely walk the walk. Deep down, we all know it isn’t enough to spout righteous-sounding sentiments or attend church every Sunday, yet we continue to do it and hope others are fooled by the outward veneer.

Spiritual authenticity is not just talking about God but being with God. It’s about letting Him in so that He can take over.

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.

– Revelation 3:20

It’s counter-intuitive in today’s individualistic world to take your foot off the pedal and let someone else do the steering. To give up control. To be vulnerable.

But it’s the only way that God can come in and help you be who you truly are, warts and all.

 

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