Stifled…

It had been coming for months, years.  I was on the inside, knew the struggles, and could foresee the eventuality.  And yet, I stifled the reality.

Life altered significantly on Sunday morning.  It was coming a long time.  My church closed it’s doors.  As a former ministry leader, lending my organizational theory background to the pastoral staff, and sitting for “Story time” in the office with the pastoral staff, those things ended Sunday morning.

I could see it coming, but refused to feel it.  As my friends around me had been grieving the loss as it came, I refused–though I did not realize it.  And while we worshipped for the last time as a congregation, I was an emotional mess.

Stifling endangers our ability to function.

“casting all your cares on Him, for He cares for you.” –I Peter 5:7

He cares.  And He knows our emotional and physical needs so much better than we do.  He calls us to an anxious-free life, a life of confession and casting our cares on Him because He knows that stifling will kill.

It will kill us physically.
It will kill us emotionally.
And it will kill us spiritually.

“But what does it say? ‘The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made until salvation.” –Romans 10:8-10

Stifling one set of emotions stifles them all.

To stifle the confession that something is hurting also stifles the confession that Jesus is Lord.  For if I am unwilling to admit vulnerability, I am unable to ask for help from my Lord.

Take it from me: stifling gets you nowhere.

“A man who has friends must himself be friendly, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” –Proverbs 18:24

Be vulnerable.  Feel the heartache, but feel it in the protection of your Friend and Savior.

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photo by Ashley Peavler

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