The same weekend that my catalyst struck, I attended my first Celebrate Recovery meeting. I cried through the entire service…I was literally overwhelmed by the emotions I was feeling at taking that first step to get myself healthy. I signed up for a Step Study and began my journey towards health. However, what I found out early was that once your catalyst has spurred you into action, the road gets tougher, not easier! I was tested and tried through many avenues before realizing that being oppressed was all part of God’s plan for my healing.
Here are three pressing things to remember about becoming fearlessly fulfilled:
- You will be hard pressed on every side, perplexed, persecuted, and struck down. Two months after I started my step study, I lost my job. In a horrible economy, the only work I could find was as a caregiver and aide to a little old man. One of my close Christian friends sent me an e-mail that can only be described as hateful and mean—our friendship never fully recovered. Most mornings, I would wake up feeling as if there was a 200-pound weight sitting on my chest. I did not know that doing something right—seeking better emotional health—would cause such terrible pain in so many ways. However, 2 Corinthians 4:8–9 says, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed” (emphasis mine). Losing my job did not crush me; God’s provisions of work helped me to not despair; my true friends did not abandon me; and the weighted feeling did not destroy me.
- You must press in to God and others who will support you. When you are making positive changes, some people will support you—but others will want you to stay the same and will try to keep you as you are (maybe because they don’t want to grow). I was lucky in this regard: Celebrate Recovery has a built-in support network with accountability partners, sponsors, and members who support and guide you as you journey towards better health. Most importantly, though, I pressed into the Lord. I sought Him, I cried out to Him, and I allowed Him to be my all in all. This time changed my entire relationship with the Lord. So press in to the Lord and He will press into you! (James 4:8a)
- You must press on towards your goal. Being hard pressed, perplexed, persecuted, and struck down may make finishing strong seem impossible. However, God asks us to do difficult things because something great awaits us on the other side. Becoming fearlessly fulfilled is painful—but it is worth it. There were times when I wanted to give up. In fact, I fled to Phoenix during my time in Celebrate Recovery because the pain was so unbearable. But being in the desert—my wilderness—was also a place of growth, and I continued to work my CR step study and eventually returned to finish the program. In the end, I know that everything that happened was part of Jesus’ plan to refine me through the fire. In the end, as Paul did, I pressed on towards the goal to win the prize (Philippians 3:14) of becoming fearlessly fulfilled.
Becoming fearlessly fulfilled is God’s plan for every person! But once we begin, we must not let oppression divert us from the course. Instead, we must press in and press on towards that goal for which God has called us heavenward in Christ Jesus.
What are some ways you have pressed in and pressed on when you’ve been hard pressed? Let me know in the comments or share using my Contact Me page!