Checking Your Baggage

Once upon a time in my life I actually had time to knit. Hard to imagine in today’s fast-paced world, but I did. I remember there were times when I discovered I had dropped a stitch or I changed my mind about what I was making and I would take the yarn off the needles and begin to unravel it, wrapping it once again into a ball. It was a slow process and would vary in time depending on how much yarn I had to unravel.

The past few months have felt very much like that in my life. When I first began this journey of seeking to break loose from co-dependent strongholds, I had no idea that God was beginning to unravel things in my life in much the same way I had done with my knitting. It has been a slow but steady process and I have yet to discover where this journey ends.

I had no idea in the beginning how many others would be affected by what God is doing. It is one of the reasons I have been silent in this blog for so long. It is hard to share all that is happening without exposing what God is doing in other lives. Silence seemed wiser.

One thing has become crystal clear to me. If we are serious about getting healed, there is no doubt He will do everything necessary to see that happen.

Sometimes we think we want healing, but the journey seems longer or more painful than we had anticipated. It is then that we must decide if we are willing to go the distance. I am committed to do just that! I hope you are too.

Along the way from time to time, I have been able to encourage others. i believe the Lord wants us to do that no matter where we are in our journey. It is never just about us. it is always about reaching out to others in His name. And He always wants us to reach out from where we are, not from where we are going. If we wait until we get there, we begin to focus only on ourselves.

The truth is, we never really “arrive”. The goal line is always moving. He wants so much more for us than we ever realize. If He let us be satisfied with just what we want to achieve, we would never realize the fullness of His love and power in our lives.

Betrayal, rejection, abandonment…these are all sources of tremendous pain. A wonderful woman that God has placed in my life during this season said to me the first day she met me, “I sense you have experienced anguish.” Yes, anguish. You know exactly what that is.

Sometimes people do spectacular things when their adrenaline kicks in. People have lifted cars or hurled giant rocks, accomplishing feats they could never do under ordinary circumstances. Sometimes when we are standing, we too can do extraordinary feats. Sometimes they are under the power of the Holy Spirit and other times we just grit our teeth and make it happen. What I am discovering on this journey is we must take time for God to heal us. That means admitting weakness, acknowledging pain, facing failure. Standers are not super women or men. You are simply people who have determined to remain faithful no matter what. That being settled, take time to give yourself a bit of attention and love.

Take a moment and ask yourself these questions. If all that has happened with your marriage and family were not happening, who would you be? Where would you be focused? If you were not facing what you are right now, what would your life look like?

Too often we allow circumstances to define us. Your circumstances do not determine who you are. Your life’s goal should not be to react to everything that is happening to you or around you. Too often the Church recommends that you change circumstances to find healing. Get over it. Find a new spouse. That is the ultimate reaction to circumstances!

I’m challenging you today to find out who you are in Christ in the middle of your circumstances. God created you uniquely and with His purpose. He does not intend for you to be shaped by what others say or do. He intends for you to be strong in Him, walking in the freedom and life He purchased for you. The more we realize that, the less baggage we have to carry on the journey. ~ Marilyn

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3

“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38

Author: Marilyn Phillipps

Married 49 years, we have three children and six grandchildren. My initial career of nursing prepared me to work with marriages that are wounded and in need of healing. For 35 my husband and I have led 2=1 International, a ministry to marriages and families around the world. We have seen miracle after miracle when many had given up hope.

6 thoughts on “Checking Your Baggage”

  1. Marilyn,
    Appreciated the 4th paragraph from the end about our identity not being defined by our circumstances. For us not to receive the advice most churches deliver about "going on with life by finding a new mate."
    God bless you and Mike and your ministry.
    JPruitt

  2. Amen! Our Identity is in CHRIST! "I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances…I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."

  3. Please, I am so tired of hearing about growing through challenges and God heals, blah, blah, blah. I was saved 17 years ago, I lost my job, got cancer, and my wife left me as I was too disfigured after the surgery. She left me for antoher guy she knew from H.S., met him on Classmates.com Just came home one day to boxes and a note on where to ship them! Yup, just wanna die. God seems to be nowhere. So please don't tell me about how He is there for us and draws us near. If anything this experience has pushed me away.

  4. Thanks for your wonderful words of encouragement.When we stop looking at the circumstances and start forcusing on Jesus the aurthor and perfector of our faith,that's when we experience victory.

  5. Today I found myself asking the question "In all I have been through, could I really put in words what I have been learning." So far I think the answer is no. I can't put in words all the life lessons I have been learning. I am so grateful to be learning them, yes, grateful in the midst of pain.

    I hope to one day be able to put into words what I have learned and come to understand. For now I am blessed that God has given you words to share about how you have learned.

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