Fully trusting in God’s goodness can be a challenge at times, and often the largest obstacle in having confidence in God’s plan for your life are your own thoughts and self-doubt. So how do we change our thinking and set ourselves free to enjoy all that God has in store for us? This is just one of the areas that the new release, Wild and Free, sets out to address. Wild and Free by Jess Connolly and Hayley Morgan is a liberty hymn for the modern Christian woman, who is held captive by the belief that she is too much, that she is not enough, and sometimes both. Enjoy the following excerpt from this new ebook, now available on Vyrso.
A woman who is free is unchained from her past and unafraid of her future, [Click to tweet!] and because of this she can laugh at the days to come. She’s got an assured confidence; she doesn’t let circumstances shake her; she loves people but doesn’t live to please them. She is content with what she has, never striving to conjure up something more.
She is almost inexplicably light and unencumbered. Isn’t this the way we’d live if we really believed we were freed from our past, held in our present, and protected in our future?
So what does this free woman look like? We don’t have to look any further than Scripture to get an idea of God’s great hope for us.
She can laugh at the days to come; she is content; she abides; and she rests.
She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
I have always had this underlying fear of the other shoe dropping. Sometimes it feels like life is just too good. I have almost everything I’ve always hoped for, prayed for. Isn’t this about when God comes in and cuts down the heroine at the knees, forcing her to trust Him and obey Him even more? I started living in demented fear of God rather than a holy awe.
Right after the birth of our second son, I began feeling a weakness and heaviness in my right leg. At first, I passed it off as a random oddity, but I became more and more obsessed as the days went on. I started med school on WebMD and began a month-long process of hypervigilance and self-diagnosis.
It didn’t help that my symptoms mimicked some very real and scary maladies. I was convinced my symptoms were nefarious, and I began to imagine all the ways God would grow my faith in the suffering caused by these terrible diseases.
What I realized after going to many specialists was that God was allowing me to suffer severe anxiety rather than a life-threatening illness. When my brain latched on to an anxious thought, my body would be flushed with adrenaline. When that adrenaline stayed at high enough levels over an extended period of time, my body experienced real physical symptoms. Every symptom was eventually tied back to anxiety.
Somehow, over a period of months, I was able to learn to speak truth to my physical feelings. I started to believe the doctors over the lies in my head. And almost like magic, my symptoms began to fade. But just a couple years later, I felt the all-too-familiar revving up of symptoms and worries. I began to experience an onslaught of anxiety expressed as physical symptoms. Instead of being able to name the physical feelings as manifestations of my mental anxieties, I began again to believe they were tied to unfortunate, terrifying, and most of the time terminal diseases.
Things worsened considerably, and eventually I couldn’t leave the couch and could barely lift my head off the pillow. My anxiety was presenting itself like it always had, mimicking symptoms of serious illnesses. I was so weak and so terribly convinced that God was preparing to take me from this precious life I’d built.
But in His goodness, He provided a way out of that miry pit. It took a round of antidepressants and antianxiety medication, as well as months of therapy, but by the end of the summer, I began to feel the fog lifting.
I didn’t trust in God’s goodness because I had inadvertently bought into some terrible theology. You see, in simple terms, theology is what we believe to be true about God. Somehow I picked up the belief that God would cause terrible things to happen to me, and He’d do it to teach me a lesson. So in a momentary brave assertion that I believed God to be true, I went on a search for what the goodness of God really means. Now, I believe that God allows the brokenness of this diseased world to play out sometimes, leaving us with things like multiple sclerosis and cancer. He doesn’t cause these awful things, but He allows them. That was a big shift in my mentality. If something so sad would befall me, His child, He would have holy sorrow but not be surprised and would make sure to use it for my good and for His glory. That was infinitely comforting and has allowed me to walk forward in freedom from the excruciating anxiety I lived with for many years.
If you don’t believe God is good, you’ll never be able to walk in wild freedom, because you’ll always be afraid of God. You won’t have a holy fear (awe) of God’s power and goodness, but you’ll just be plain afraid that He’s a capricious bully who is out to teach you a lesson.
Look at your life and see if you can look at the days to come and laugh. Do you believe that God wants good for you? Do you believe He is good? If there isn’t fruit of that belief in your life, it’s time to root out the poison that keeps you from experiencing life to the full. Ask God to show you His goodness. Take a careful look at Scripture to see how He points you to it. And then expect it.
Don’t miss out on Wild and Free by Jess Connolly and Hayley Morgan, now on Vyrso.