Negative Self Focus is Pride?

When I was walking through some of the darkest days of my depression the Lord continually was repeating to me this verse.

I didn't understand what He could possibly mean? How could someone who hated themselves need to work on considering others better than themselves?

It took me a long time to realize that even negative self focus was still all about me. That even in my self hatred there was a pride that said I should be able to do this, they should be able to save me. I could never take one ounce of responsibility if I demanded it was always someone else's fault.

It wasn't until the Lord would no longer let people come to my rescue that I started to understand. That at the bottom of my great anger and bitterness at people for not behaving the way I wished they would was my true need for Jesus to save me again.

That it was only through giving up my fight of self protection and pointing fingers that the Lord could then address my deepest need. It wasn't until I was out of the way, through this humbling, that the Lord could bring the great joy that comes through His love and the love that overflows for others because of it.

Let's trust Him to lay down the things that have helped us survive for so long but may be holding us captive and trust He is always for us, even when it hurts.

"Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion,then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves" Phil 2:1-3 (*sorry for the typo on the photo's verse☺️)

Ashley Jackson Comment
Push in the unfamiliar miles

I’ve trained for a marathon a couple times and although you run 26.2 miles race day, you generally never train past 20.

To be ready for that day you show up over and over and over again.

You run short runs, you add miles up, you run through good and bad weather, you run when you feel like it and when you don’t.

Your muscles and endurance build and it’s not easy to cover 14, 17, 20 miles in those training runs but you do it and then realize no matter how hard it got, you’ve done it, a sense of confidence is built in what you never knew you were capable of.

Then that day comes when you’ve been faithful and done your training but a new further push is required of you. You’ve listened to advice and read about others but all of that doesn’t matter now. In this moment it’s you and that road before you.

This is like life, like faith, like walking with God. Your consistency with Him has gotten you this far, you’ve let Him train you and discipline you and listened and put your feet to the pavement of faith but then one day He requires the miles you’ve never gone before.

And when you’re there in that race it gets hard, it hurts, you want to stop and sit down, but you’ve come too far for that. So one foot in front of the other you push, you rest and walk, and then you push again because there’s a finish line to get to.

Those miles you’ve never been will be hard, they will require faith and trust in a reality that screams at you otherwise, but they aren’t as impossible as they feel. Press on.

I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Phil 3:14

Ashley JacksonComment
I will walk by faith not feelings

What does feeling like doing something have to do with faith? If we wait till we feel like it we may say "we walk by faith", but what we actually mean is "we walk by feelings".

I love feelings, I believe the Lord made me extra feely, I love to feel all the things, deeply! I am highly sensitive, perceptive and have the gift of discernment, but the Lord has challenged me about trying to live by my feelings.

If I feel overwhelmed than I conclude God has abandoned me, leaving me to deal with the stress alone. If I feel left behind and no doors are opening for me than God must love others more. If I feel sad and down, I begin to fear that I will never conquer or overcome and God hasn't healed me like I had thought. I may not admit these things out loud but I live out of these beliefs.

But the truth is God isn't as fickle as our feelings, nothing about Him has changed simply because my feelings or mood has. Just because I'm seeing my life through a filter of my circumstances doesn't mean God's word has ceased to be true or I have the option to quit believing because it feels hard.

If we claim Jesus as our Lord than we need to fire our feelings. We have to stop letting them pull and push us around like a rag doll and instead say, "no matter how I feel, I know my God is good and He is for me and He will be faithful!" That is faith my friends! #myfeelingsarenotthebossofme #walkingreflections

Ashley JacksonComment