It’s early on Saturday morning. I’m sitting with myÂ Jesus Calling and open Bible. I left my journal upstairs, so I’ve decided to share with you what I’d write there…because that is what SDG is all about: sharing our hearts.
Since yesterday, my stomach has been in knots. In a few hours, Craig and I are heading to our church where our dear friend, Lara, is going to video us doing an “interview” of sorts…it’s a promotional video for our book coming out in October.
This is not a high stress situation, at least on the surface. We don’t have to memorize anything. We’ve already gone through all the questions and formulated answers. If we make a mistake, we can re-film. We aren’t responsible for any of the editing or movie-magic making — our publishing house is taking care of all that. Â All we are doing is talking about something we know very well: how porn can infiltrate a marriage, try to destroy it, but how God is bigger than all the porn industry, all the heartbreak, all the despair.
So, no stress…except.
Except, I feel it. It’s not because of the camera or the lines or the story. It’s because this whole book thing is real and new and this takes a another level of trust. A trust in God and a trust in the community He has graciously built up around us.
“When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?” Psalm 56: 3-4
I think David repeats himself in these two verses not because he’s trying to be emphatic, but because he’s trying to remind himself of who God is when he’s confronted by who he is not.
He has an enemy after him who he cannot overpower without the very strength of God. David’s power alone is not enough.
To be honest, I’m not sure of what I’m afraid. I don’t view the porn industry as my enemy. I have genuine compassion for porn stars. Am I afraid of the spiritual warfare that surrounds anyone who takes what Satan has tried to keep cloaked in darkness and brings it to light? On bad days, yes, but on most days, I’m confident in my God and in the mission He has given us.
“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
To be honest, I think what sends me in a tailspin is just this: change. Sometimes I view change as my enemy because it takes me so quickly out of my comfort zone. Â When I don’t know what to expect, when I don’t know if I’m going to meet expectations, when I can’t foresee how it’s all going to end up or even come up with some sort of adequate prediction, fear grips me.
It’s that control side of Â me that sweeps me off my foundation and takes me on the roller coaster of anxiety. Perhaps I am my own worst enemy.
“The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.” Roman 7:14-16
But the good news? God can redeem my fear, my anxiety, my control-seeking nature. And He does this by pressing me deeper into prayer with Him and deeper into my community with you. Â In a haste before walking out the door yesterday, I asked our SDG Facebook community, my Facebook friends, my Bible study girls, and my closest friend to pray for us as we made the video. Â In a few hours, over 50 people let me know they were in this with us.
Often my fears and anxiety can make me feel isolated and uncovered, but as I push out of darkness into light, He shows me how diligent He has been to raise up a community around us that cares for us, no matter what our circumstance, no matter what my feelings, no matter how skewed my perception.
I wonder how many of you struggle with change. Anxiety? Fear? And I wonder how we might rally around you so that you don’t feel isolated and uncovered? I’d like to invite you to lay your fears down here, letting us know in the comments how we can walk with you, sit with you, cover you in prayer. Satan wants us to feel as though we are the only ones who…, but as a community of sisters in Christ, I tell you…you are not alone. May we grow together in empathy and love, compassion and grace, understanding and prayer.
SDG Gathering Important Information
Lisa SmithÂ is helping me facilitate our gatherings each week. She is visiting those of you who link up on “even” numbers and I am visiting the “odd” (don’t worry, I’m not calling YOU odd). Â She will also be sharing on Mondays with you from time to time, opening up her heart and life to you, as you faithful do with us each week you link up. Â We do have some importantÂ housekeeping itemsÂ about this gathering, so if you have not read them, please come here to catch up. The condensed version: Link up ONE post that shares your heart authentically and be sure to check in with some of your sisters who have linked up with you. Leave a heartfelt word of encouragement for them after you visit their space. This is a community where we actively seek to get to know each other.