Filled With Peace & Joy

I have been crucified with Christ and yet I am alive;
Yet it is no longer I, but Christ living in me. – Gal 2:20

I have always prayed to have a great capacity to love. But I never realized that a great capacity to love also means a great capacity to suffer. For loving others is a painful business! From as early as I can remember, I’ve always seemed to have a passion to reach out and try helping others I perceive to be in pain. Of course those overtures aren’t always welcome, and some have been outrightly rebuffed.

In Sec 4, a classmate and friend whom I had tried to reach out to wrote in my autograph book to be careful of people like her in my life… people whom I wish to help but who will end up hurting me instead. Because of the passion and depth with which I put myself into my relationships, I have been hurt many times over. And yet, for some reason, it has never jaded me completely.

Last year, I went further than I have ever done in my life in my efforts to help my friends. And in return, I experienced the greatest pain I have ever experienced in all my friendships. In all my thoughts and acts I was sincere, and I practically put my life on hold in order to continue a task I thought God had called me to do. In the end, I was apparently not only misunderstood, but also accused of having the worst intentions and motivations. But over the past year, I have come to understand why.

All along while I thought it was me helping others, God had intended for me to be helped. Through the pain and confusion I went through in the past year, I came to understand what God wants me to see. My compulsion to help others to such great extents is fuelled by a deep insecurity and need within me… I fear abandonment, that the people I love will leave me… and so unconsciously, I give every relationship my all in trying to love others, but really, it was compelled by my desire to be valued and loved.

This simple truth was so hard for me to acknowledge and admit at first. But God’s unconditional love for me helped me to look honestly at myself and to open myself up for healing. I am unafraid now!

My blindness to my deep insecurity and fear has been a heavily guarded door, preventing God’s grace from fully reaching me. Although I always sought to be His instrument, and have always been sincere in my desire to love, this psychological congestion prevented me from being true to myself and my intention. I have been playing God in my own life… hijacking His intentions to feed my own fears.

Since I accepted this realization sometime in May last year, one block after another has been removed in my life. I see the world with new eyes. I live with a newfound freedom. God has been with me every step of the way, and He has filled me with grace and joy. He has answered my prayer, for today I found that I could wholeheartedly bless the ones who have hurt me so deeply.

I have deeply learned an important lesson: It is not I who help others, but God who helps them through me. It is not I who decide or choose who or how to help, but God who will send to me those whom He wishes to help through me. And even more significantly, that I do not need to seek affirmation and validation through my relationships because I am loved completely by Him. There is nothing I need to prove or do to have His love. And it is His love that will set me free. These are things I always knew but never understood in my heart. Till now.

**************

You have filled my heart with joy everlasting!
You have filled my soul with a peace the world cannot give!
With all my being I sing praises to You my God,
For you have delivered me from sin!
You have turned my tears into dancing,
You have set me free!

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