Today I am excited to give you the first guest post on my blog. This article is from a new friend of mine, Cherrelle who is the author of a Christian blog Grit & Grace. Check out her work and connect with her here. She is continuing our current series, God Meets Us Right Where We Are. I really love her perspective and message about God meeting her during a tough time in her life.
Have you ever felt like God completely dropped the ball and let you down? I once experienced a very dark time in my life, which I refer to as a “silent battle” season. During that silent season I felt like all God did was disappoint me, I experienced so much pain and disappointment. My prayers were going unanswered, my joy was pretty much non-existent, I was a complete mess. I looked fine to everyone else but on the inside I was a wreck. There were plenty of nights I would just yell at God and ask Him “What is it God, why am I experiencing such a dark time in my life?”
I was struggling really bad with my faith because I felt like God wasn’t coming through for me, so why should I continue to put my trust in Him? It crossed my mind so many times to give up on Him completely, but there was something deep inside of me that wouldn’t allow me to. It was bad guys, I was literally combating depression silently. I knew that there was no way in this world that my own strength was getting me through each day. I knew that even though I couldn’t see my prayers being answered, He still had His hand on my life because I was able to press on.
One day I was sitting at my desk listening to a sermon by Sarah Jakes Roberts (Pastor TD Jakes’ daughter). She said “God can’t bless who you pretend to be or who you compare yourself to, He can only bless you in the lane that was created for you!” That statement was like the match that started the fire. Shortly after finishing the sermon, God just started speaking to me. I kept hearing a soft voice say to me “Stop pretending and start really seeking.” At first I didn’t get it… OK, maybe I did get it, but I just didn’t want to be real with myself. Yes, I had an OK relationship with God. I wrote my feelings in my journal, I prayed daily, I was going to church sometimes, and I colored in my bible faithfully. I felt like I was seeking Him, I thought God and I were BFF’s.
“God meets us where we are, not where we pretend to be.”
“What do you mean really seek You?” I asked Him. He didn’t answer me, or so I thought. Later that night I was scrolling on Pinterest (I loveee Pinterest) and there was a meme that caught my attention. It was just a basic black and white meme with a bible verse on it.
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
I read it about three or four times and I could hear the soft whisper, “Stop pretending and really seek me.” At that moment I realized that I wasn’t ALL IN with God. I was pretending like my life was OK when it really wasn’t. I wasn’t living right, I was putting up with things that I had no business putting up with, and on top of that I was playing with God. I was praying, but selfishly. I was writing in my journal but mainly all complaints. I was going to church and using it as a temporary fix. I was coloring in my bible but wasn’t really studying The Word. God had been trying to get my attention for the longest time and I was being so self-centered that I was missing it. I thought He was ignoring me and had forgotten about me, but He was really waiting for ME to show up. He wanted to meet me where I was right at that point of my life (A HOT MESS), that’s where He needed me. In order for Him to bless me where I was, He needed me to be real with myself and to seek Him with my whole heart.
From that day forward I started digging in my bible. I was no longer just coloring pretty pictures, I was reading and meditating on His words. My prayers changed from “I need/want” to “lead me and purify my heart”. I stopped writing complaints in my journal and started expressing gratitude for the good and the bad days. Church went from being a temporary fix for the moment to medication that I needed to live.
Everything changed for me once I finally realized that God didn’t need me to pretend to have this amazing relationship with Him. He wanted me to be REAL, so that He could meet me exactly where I was. He wanted to teach me to seek Him so that we could build a genuine relationship. I am so thankful for that dark season of my life because had it not been for that time, I would’ve never began to really seek Him. That season of my life produced so much pain that I birthed my purpose and finally had enough courage to launch my blog shortly after.
For the person that’s going through a tough time right now just know that God hasn’t forgotten about you and you don’t have to pretend with Him. He loves you for who you are and will meet you exactly where you are!
Cherrelle is the author of Grit & Grace, a blog that creates a happy place for women from all walks of life. Her goal is to love, inspire and encourage women to live life on purpose. She writes about faith, fashion and all things that come with being a woman. Check out her work here.
If you missed other posts in the series, check them out here.
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See you next Wednesday!