April 15, 2015 by Jen Cudmore
I’ve been fighting a lot of anxiety over the past few days.
Since I started sharing my marriage trials publicly on my blog, doubts keep attacking me like crazy. And while I believe God wants me to share my experiences, and I know the enemy is just trying to discourage me, I’m still afraid.
I mentioned it to my husband the other day, how fear was making me sick to my stomach. While we’ve had trouble getting along lately, he knows me better than anyone else. He encouraged me to stay calm and pray, because God wants to use our struggles to inspire others.
I felt better after talking with Tim. At least for a little while.
Yesterday I told Tim I was still pretty worried what people were going to say about my new blog posts. I expressed my fears and asked if he thought it might be worth sharing them with all of you.
He said ‘yes’. Because all my insecurities are probably the same ones that have kept other couples from speaking up.
Finding courage to share our problems is not easy.
Can you relate to my anxiety? Do you find yourself…
~ Thinking about whether you really have anything to say that others will be interested in hearing?
~ Despairing that others will judge and condemn you because you haven’t been able to get it together?
~ Wondering if people will really see your heart, or just assume you only want attention and pity?
~ Fretting that this topic is too heavy, that people won’t want to discuss it because it’s too dark and depressing?
~ Worrying that no one will speak up about their own struggles, and you will be left hanging out there alone?
Yet God has not given us a spirit of fear or timidity (2 Tim 1:7).
God keeps reminding me to trust Him. To be anxious for nothing (Phil 4:6) because He’s got my back. People can say whatever they want to say about me and Tim, because ultimately He’s the One in charge of our reputation.
He told me again that I’m not alone – everyone struggles with something. Whether it’s addiction, complaining, legalism, arrogance, laziness, eating disorders, wasteful spending, negative entertainment, etc. We all have bad attitudes we need to surrender to God, and He’ll deal with us all in His time.
We must accept our weaknesses and embrace our brokenness, not hide them from the world for fear of rejection.
Have you ever heard a story where someone said they were healed by never sharing their problems, that their silence brought restoration? The enemy wants us to stay isolated from other people because he knows there is power in fellowship and community. Talking about struggles with people who really understand gives us the strength we need to endure our trials.
I’m not suggesting we all start a personal blog to chronicle our problems.
But I want to encourage you to talk with someone, whether it’s a godly friend, pastor, or counselor. And I hope you will eventually feel brave enough to comment on the topics I write about here as a way of encouraging others.
We can’t let fear keep us from talking with each other.
©Jen Cudmore 2015, All Rights Reserved
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