Friday, February 4, 2011

Journey of Faith Friday: My Ugly...Exposed


My Ugly...Exposed

I storm up the stairs, open the door and say, "Why are you still crying?"  It has been a rough  week of no naps or short naps, cries in the middle of the night, and waking unhappy.  It wears on me.  

I can feel it.  My impatience, my being EXPOSED. My struggle to be tender, to be sensitive to others rears its ugly head and I break.  
Sam meets me at the door.  Before a word is off his tongue, I speak.  He speaks.  I say, "Yes."  My baby, our baby is in his arms, as I go searching for my shoes.  

The anger, the frustration, the ugly is about to explode.  I just need to make it to the door.  Air will help.  My foot hits the first step.  I take a deep breath and clarity slowly begins to creep in.  I can hear my feet hitting the pavement while walking around the block.  My pulse slows and I begin conversing with my Savior.  I ask Him to save me........again.  Save me from the ugly places of me.  Save my husband, my son, my......everyone.  
I continue.  I can now feel the sun beating down on my skin.  I ask, "LORD, there are others who have this ugly, right?  There are others who long to follow and serve You wholeheartedly, yet fall so hard, so secret?  I feel like the ugly takes over and I can barely breathe.  Crash in on me, LORD Jesus.  Keep changing the ugly.  Don't let it change me.......or them, for worse."  

At this point, I have found my way to the back porch.  Lying on a blanket I begin writing these words.  Words I don't want to forget.  Words I want the world to read, because I know I am not alone.  God is reminding me.  Remember Paul, "[In] order to keep from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me" (2 Cor. 12:7).  Remember Moses' lack of trust (Num. 20:2-13)?  And I still considered him a man of great faith (Heb. 11:24-29).  What about David, the one after My own heart (1 Sam. 13:14)?  His ugly included adultery and murder (2 Sam. 11).  David, he confessed (2 Sam. 12:13).  I forgave.  He still bore consequences (2 Sam. 12), but he is still a man after My own heart.  Don't forget, [To] be strong in the Lord [in Me] and in [My] mighty power.  Put on the full armor [I offer], so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.  For [y]our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Eph. 6:10-12).  Remember, "The thief [Satan] comes only to kill, steal and destroy; I have come that [you] may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10).  Remember, there was a time when you were futile in your thinking.  There was a time when you were separated from me and your heart was hardened, but that time is no more.  "When you heard about Christ and were taught in Him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.  You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like [Me] in true righteousness and holiness" (Eph. 4:17-24).  I have searched you.  I know you (Psalm 139:1).  I know your good, your bad, your ugly, your heart, your hope, and your desires.  I know the road is not easy, but keep pressing on.
I am calm again.  I walk into the family room.  Sam is sitting on the couch.  I say I am sorry and begin to talk about the ugly that has now gone back into hiding.  We discuss areas I desire to change.  We discuss my heart's deep desire to serve the Lord.  We discuss the frustrations that go along with the ugly in me.  We hug.  Tears flow.  

I wish I could say the ugly has remained in hiding, but I have been battling it every day since I stormed into my baby's room.  God is purging it from me.  I know it.  It hurts, but deep down I am glad.  I don't want it there.  My prayer is that the purging doesn't come at a cost to my husband or my it has many people in my life. 

Again, God speaks through His word, "Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isa. 40: 30-32)  
You can read previous Journey of Faith posts HERE.

Every Friday, I post about the work God is doing or has done in my life, as I journey on this road of faith.

How is God working in your life as you journey with Him?

Would you consider sharing it with us today?

If you decide to share...enter the URL to your exact post below.  If you join, please help us find one another by sharing the "Journey of Faith" graphic within your post.   

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Heather McKenzie said...

Amber, I can't express to you how much your words are cherished by I am sure everyone who reads. You are a blessing and an encouragement. Thank you!

Sarah Coats said...

Thanks for sharing Amber. I have been encouraged, and am thankful for your friendship and honesty.

katy said...

Oh girl! I can so relate to you on this one! The last two weeks have been brutal on me, and about two nights ago my body and brain began to shut down. The crying (Bailey) and whining (Kendra) and the weight of working through marital issues has beaten me down and I have lost my temper with EVERYONE mroe than I care to admit in the last two weeks!
Fortunately, a friend of mine spoke truth into my heart and reminded me that one of the best things that I can do when raising my girls is show them that I am a sinner and I need Christ, which I had plenty of opportunities to have this conversation with K this week as she took the brunt of my frustration.
Thanks for being real, as always, on your blog and for the encouragement that you are to all of us who are in the trenches with you.

Carolina said...

Thank you for the honesty of your post today. I am glad to walk through this season of raising little boys along with you as you are always an encouragement.

Hope this week will be better with Bennett! Jack has his really great weeks and then his difficult weeks- maybe the Lord knows we need a break :)

Nate and Molly said...

Thanks for sharing, Amber. I am thinking about these baby days that lie ahead and also of all the stories my new mom friends have told me and I am AFRAID of what is going to come out in me. I don't even know how to prepare myself except for staying in the Word and close to the Father in the coming months. But other than that, I'm still afraid of the ugly that will come out. I know it's something that we WANT God to purge from us, but the process definitely isn't pretty.

Janell said...

Thank you soo much for sharing and being real. I totally feel you; I've been going through a lot of frustrations lately and been taking it out on the family. Reading this made me feel sooo much better. I must admit, I'm not much of a religious person, but I like to come read your blog for inspiration and encouragement.

Unknown said...

No temptation has overtaken you, but such as is common to man. And God is faithful, he will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.
1 Corinthians 10:13

Mama Smors said...

So encouraging to this Mommy that has the ugly come out too. I know your feelings and am comforted by your words. Thank you!

Rebecca B said...

When I got married, I started realizing how selfish I can be and started seeing so many ugly things arise.

Now that I'm a mom, I see the ugly arise in different ways. No, you're not the only one. Everyone has the ugly (aka: sin). It's what we decide to do with it that is important. Do we push it down and act like it's not there, or do we pray to ask God to purge it from us, as you're doing.

Thank you for your honesty. It's so important to share that we are all real and human and make mistakes. It's refreshing and genuine. I think I would feel as if I were suffocating if I didn't know that others also dealt with the ugly.

Praise God for His grace, right?!

Kindra said...

The verse that often comes to my mind when my ugly comes out is Romans 7:15 when Paul says "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate to do." I've often cried out to Jesus, asking Him to please, PLEASE change me - and very, very slowly I believe He is.

I thank God for true friends (like you) who have seen some of my ugly and love me anyway.
Isaiah 40:28-31 is my current Siesta memory verse :)
Thanks for sharing your heart as always.

Buckeroomama said...

I have the uglies, too, more often than I'd care to think. Your prayers are my prayers. Thank you for your words of encouragement.

heidi @ wonder woman wannabe said...

oh, sweet amber - I completely understand your struggles. I'm walking the same path you're currently on my friend. Thanks for your honest, genuine and authentic account. You are a great mama!

Being a mother to babies and toddlers is seriously the hardest job/task I've ever had. It tests you and challenges you in so many ways ALL day EVERY day. It's not like you can clock out.

Your confession was just beautiful, now accept a boatload of GRACE and lift up your head for a new beginning because you know His mercies are NEW!

And...remember, our 'ugly' is covered by HIS beauty.