The biggest battle I’ve faced in any role I’ve taken on is rejection and isolation. I’ve joked that I’m the misfit toy, the one left in the corner while everyone has fun. I’ve watched even as an adult that I’ve been forgotten, passed over, added on when others said no, and all the other things that crush.
In the encouragement I give to others, I know I’m not alone. That’s why I am stepping out in faith to start a group on Facebook where we can meet weekly to discuss Lysa TerKeurst’s latest release, UNINVITED.
I am doing this under the umbrella of Praise and Coffee, a ministry that simply loves to have women connect so they can encourage and inspire. Groups can be as few as two people and can meet anywhere. Kitchens. Church rooms. Living rooms. Cafes.
And that’s what I’m doing. You purchase the book and read the assigned chapters for the week, and once a week for an hour we’ll discuss it. No membership, no commitment, just know that you are invited.
All discussions will be through this closed group page. The group can be found by anyone, but only members can read the posts. Our discussions will be confidential.
To request the group, click HERE.
It isn’t every day I want to walk away from being me, but there are days. And my whine to heaven is one I could record and just press play because it’s almost always the same vent.
I prayed for that person.
I did what You asked.
I spent so much time encouraging them.
And they are exactly where they were when they asked for my help/time/prayers.
Or, even worse off.
I’m someone that needs to see progress. I joke that it’s the reason I love steam cleaning. I see the dirt getting sucked up, and that makes it worth my time. But being a surrendered vessel open for Him to use? It’s like steamcleaning only to have the person dump the dirty contents back on the floor.
And it’s heartbreaking.
Part of being that vessel is rejection. I believe there are also times I was used. Cozy up to good ole Julie and see if she can do the God work for them and they’ll be transformed by osmosis. I’ve felt on call. I wondered if I was misunderstood to be a personal genie or crystal ball, which I assure you, I’m not.
What I am is willing, and that’s what most people miss. That’s all God’s asking of us. Be willing, and He’ll do the rest. But I suspect the people who call on me think He wants an entire change done in an evening. So once I pray and direct them to seek Him, they don’t.
I learned that a stronghold is a demonic lie that has been around so long it feels like a safe place. It’s like an embassy to run to. There will always be an open door there. But greater freedom lies outside those walls and very few want to leave. And I can’t make anyone. Oh, I used to try.
I wish I could tell you I dust the proverbial dirt off me and keep going, but…not so. Not at first.
There are times I’ve been absolutely shattered by the rejection. When I walked through doors ready to encourage and was met with the Lucy hitting Charlie Brown with a football up against the side of my head reaction. Some of it has been public and it was all I could do to keep the tears from falling on the spot. I’ve kept praying when I know the people who came to me in the past were now mocking me. Ignoring me when I know they saw me. Lying about things we both knew weren’t the truth. Crying doesn’t even begin to describe my response. Weeping isn’t even accurate. Broken is more like it. Undone. Devastated. Because I can see the potential, and they choose to stay right where they are. It’s heartbreaking.
What does one do when they want to quit? Well, here is what I shared on FB this week:
Another one of those updates that’s my journey, but perhaps someone out there needs the encouragement, too.
I have to keep before me at all times that the battle is the Lord’s. As “justice Julie,” I’d love to be the problem solver, but it isn’t my job. Years ago I’d lose sleep and make myself sick wondering what perfect thing can I say to change that marriage or have that person turn it around for Him. I got no where. It wasn’t my place.
What is my job is to be obedient. When I’m supposed to pray for someone, I do. Whatever guidance I’ve been given to point people back to Him, I do it. And for the person reading, the success track record doesn’t look worth the time. Most people aren’t willing to dive deeper. As Beth Moore says, “the ocean’s right there but they’d rather stay in the puddle.” That still breaks my heart and feels like rejection, but it isn’t. I did my job. My dad used to say “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink.” And applying that to my life helps, even though I see such potential in each person I come in contact with, and rarely am I able to see that potential come to pass. It’s hard. I’m human.
Why keep being a vessel God can use during those late night emergency calls, the times I miss dinner to hear a hurting person out, etc…when most of the people don’t receive the hope and encouragement they have waiting for them? I guess a friend shared it best a few years ago. I’m not doing this to leave a Burger King crown at His feet. My heartbreak and hard days on earth will be forgotten in eternity. So, I press on.
Do I want to quit? More than you know. But this Surrendered Scribe presses on.
I hope you do, too.