” YOUR FINGERS MIGHT BE CRAMPED FROM DRAGGING YOUR PAST WITH YOU, BUT LOOSEN YOUR GRIP AND GIVE YOUR BAGGAGE, ONCE AND FOR ALL, TO THE ONE WHO KNOWS YOU AND CHERISHES YOU. ” source unknown
Over this last 10 months, my life has been a journey of many new beginnings as well as endings in some areas.
I am not one who likes change… (Control Freak)
Yet, God has allowed me to walk into new in so many areas of my life, that a year ago I would not even have ventured out of my comfort zone to set out to accomplish.
I have always enjoyed writing and wrote a printed newsletter for about 4 years that I mailed out to friends, family and other ministries, yet about 2 years ago, I stepped out and began blogging about my journey with fear, anxiety and agoraphobia.(older blog is at joyfuljourneynewsletter.blogspot.com)
I then slowly ventured out and took small, baby steps as well, in telling my story of growing up in a abusive, fear based, controlled, neglected home as a child. None of this process has been easy at all because when I hit PUBLISH, it is all laid out bare for others to see and read for themsleves. I am not in their mind to see how they perceive my words or what they think of me after they read my words, yet I have decided I must give up worrying about what others think of me and tell MY STORY and allow others to tell their stories.
( I will have a guest blogger in a few weeks that will share her story)
We all fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23) and I know that as a child of very intimidating, controlling, angry parents, I have a tendency to struggle with people pleasing. Thankfully, much of that problem has been alievated by God’s help and His strength, but at times, I still wish EVERYONE liked me and EVERYONE wanted to be my friend. But that just isn’t reality. I may not be everyone’s cup of tea and I am okay with that now. Before it would have drove me absolutely crazy trying to figure out how to be like so and so or write like so and so..
All I can be is ME: ANGIE WEBB, a child of God first and foremost. A wife, a mom, a grandmother.
I can’t base my worth on what others think or feel about me. My worth does not depend on anyone but Jesus Christ and He says I am valuable, beautiful and worthy because He died on the cross so that I may have an abundant life, full of God’s blessings.
Over this last 10 months I have stepped out of my comfort zone by doing the following:
1. Went on our first family vacation in about 8 or more years due to my anxiety. We traveled about 12 hours away and had an awesome time seeing family; most important was my 96 year old grandmother, Johnnie.
2. I began a new job after leaving my job of 7 years. I first began subsitute teaching, which I didn’t think I would like because of going to a new building to teach, which often would cause me some anxiety. But I have really enjoyed this time of learning and growing.
3. I began and cordinated an online group for others that struggle with anxiety, agoraphobia or fear. We meet online through a FB group. If you are interested in joining, let me know.
4. I have begun driving more and more alone, even in areas that I am uncomfortable driving.
5. I have recently received a new job working in a clothing store and have had another job interview that would require me to work for Hallmark as a merchandiser two times a month. This would not interefere with my permanent job, but would be a great opportunity for this greeting card addict.
6. I have recently began teaching myself to acrylic paint. My grandmother that was murdered in 1996 was an awesome oil painter, but I never learned any techniques etc from her, so most of what I have done has been self taught. I am not that great yet, but I keep plugging along and trying to improve.
7. I have had the opportunity to meet some great authors/artists/bloggers through my writing and through Facebook. Many of these relationships have turned into some great friendships outside of Facebook. ( some here)
8. I am currently working on my memoir, “When Your Home Becomes Your Prison: Out of Fear, Anxiety and Agoraphobia.”
I am not mentioning any of the above to pat myself on the back or to draw attention to myself in any form or fashion. The reason I mention those items is to allow you to see that God can bring new into our lives if we LET THE PAST GO..
Easy to say; I know.. I have been there. I have been in a place where I physically and mentally did not think I could go one more day of carrying the pain and hurt of my past anymore.. Yet, once again I would get up in the morning and reach down to pick all of the junk up again. At night, I would try to lay it down so I could sleep, yet most often, I would lay awake trying to figure out why I was such a failure and why everyone else seemed to have their lives all together, when mine was such a mess. One day, about 10 months ago, I decided to let it GO…
I can’t change anything that has happened from the day in 1965 when I was born to today, but I can choose to make the second half of my life better than the first half. I am almost 50 years old and I certainly do not want to give the enemy anymore of my life.. I have so much more to accomplish and so much more love to enjoy…
Today I want to offer you a short statement to think about:
What do you gain in continuing to carry around the baggage of your past?
I believed I was doing the noble thing by carrying all of that junk around. Yet, the noble act came when I laid it down at the foot of the cross. It takes a bigger person to realize that the past is just that: The past.. Nothing can change what has happened, but the future is a blank canvas waiting for God to splash His plan and purpose upon.
Friend, today I hope you can find the courage to let it go. That doesn’t mean we don’t learn any lessons from the past or offer others wisdom we have gained from the journey we have been walking, but it does mean to realize that now is the day to be FREE.
Father, today I want to offer those reading this post the hope that the past can be left behind us. We only have to reach out to you and connect our hearts with you. You, Lord will carry the pain and junk from the past. We no longer have to carry that baggage with us. You have a bright future for us that only can be accomplished when we LET GO… Today, we are asking you to give us the strength and courage to move forward with YOU and to allow YOU to paint on the canvas of our lives in the way you so desire. We are open to new beginnings and new endings as well. Today is the day for a bright, new future.