I do not want to go through unnecessary pain and emotional discomfort. Who does?!?? Like anyone else, I tend to avoid it. I’ll sweep it under the rug, tell myself a situation is not mine to deal with or put on rose colored glasses and try to accept it as something else. This always backfires on me. Eventually the situation I felt was unnecessary, keeps rearing its ugly head. Opposed to what I was telling myself, this is exactly what I need to deal with. My avoidance only makes it worse.
Definition: Avoid (verb) uh void 1. To keep away from; keep clear of: shun 2. To prevent from happening 3. Invalidate; to make void or of no effect 4. Obsolete; to empty, eject or expel.
It’s hard to say what the breaking point is that allows me to recognize it’s time to tackle a situation head on. Sometimes it’s a situation that wears you down like a river molding a canyon; I’ve allowed something to cut me so deep over such a long period of time that it creates a wound so vast I can no longer pretend it isn’t there. Other times, a new state of affairs pours light into an old situation that allows me to see it clearly. Or perhaps I’ve just entered into a quiet reflective moment and I hear from God “ADDRESS THIS”; that has happened once or twice as well!
Each time that light switch flips my first feeling is embarrassment. It is as if I lived in a messy room and I’m suddenly comprehending it’s a pig sty. I want to clean it up, but I don’t want anyone else to know the filth I’ve been living in. I’m ashamed that I didn’t have the courage earlier to take care of something before it got out of control.
What on earth is this chick talking about???
I’m keeping it general on purpose, but I think you can all think of some situation or another that fits this description. Maybe it was something significant like a dysfunctional relationship, or an addiction to shopping or gambling, perhaps it was an addiction to a harmful substance or physical, mental or emotional abuse.
Often times when we address the big things, we end up finding “little” things that follow. The pintsized signs that we are avoiding something could be extra weight, physical exhaustion or a frequently empty bank account. Most of us could easily brush those things off as something everyone deals with. But I invite you to look deeply and see if you allow the extra weight because you use food to comfort yourself from a deep wound. Maybe the exhaustion is a sign that you are constantly working through your insecurity in a relationship by making everything perfect at the price of your own physical well-being. Even the empty bank account exists to help you recognize that you are worth more than you realize and it’s time you lived a life that serves you and others more fully.
I believe God gives us these things so we can continue to grow into the child of light we were meant to be. It is often a trial by fire and it is NEVER easy. Discomfort can be a very good thing. I will tell you this: courage to face what you avoid and embrace pain and discomfort as a tool to learn from is another thing you will try to avoid (ironic right?). It takes a lot of mindful discipline. I also think in certain circumstances you need to have a professional therapist to work through some issues. In my opinion, this is the emotional equivalent to a precious metal being honed from impurities and molded into something beautiful; it gets pretty darn hot. I believe the end result is greater happiness and a more authentic life.
“For God gave us not a spirit of fearfulness; but of power, love and discipline.” 2Tim 1:7