There is so many false expectation for women to try and live up to that it can make women feel guilty inside of their hearts. You can really get confused listening to what others say your life should look like. I read this article by Bonnie Ware who wrote a book titled 5 Regrets of a Dying Person, the most common regrets are:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I’d stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I’d let myself be happier.
I would add a sixth one for myself to that list,
6. I wished I would have built a true, genuine and intimate relationship with the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit. Not a Religious one based in what others thought my relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ should look like!
After doing some heart felt evaluation, I asked myself am I really living in my truth? Am I really expressing my true feelings? Am I really writing authentically? Am I really stating what I truly believe to the world? What truth am I suppressing inside of my heart for sake for peace? I have battled with this all of my life.
Today I want to be honest with my readers, only when I can come clean in my heart, will I truly live in freedom. So let me inhale and exhale.
I often ask God are you pleased with me? I know my attitude might not always be stellar but I try to do my best to clear out my heart of all falsity.
I often apologize to my kids if I were to harsh with them or yelled at them. I’m always asking them to forgive me for loosing my patience.
If I said things to my husband that might have offended him, I ask him to forgive me.
Before I go to bed at night, I ask God for forgiviness after checking over my heart. I check my heart for unforgivness, offenses, if I offended anyone and if I have anything in my life that is not lining up with the life God has purposed for me to live.
Do I read my Bible everyday? No, I do not but I read the word of God often. I make sure I am filing myself up with listening to the word of God through way of music, sermons or researching the word of God to write for my blog.
Now with all that being said, I’m sounding like I am operating out of works and fear making sure I am a good Christian. We are such a works oriented society. We like to cross our t’s and dot our i’s to make sure we are measuring up to what others think our life should look like and what we feel like our life should look like both spiritually and naturally.
I do not have to prove to anyone that I do works that entails I am a good Christian, but for some reason I felt the need to list what I am during to you. When you truly have a conversion in the Lord Jesus Christ, it is about relationship and not works, but we are taught works first. So our relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ becomes works, fear, love and maybe grace.
When I entered into relationships with the people in my life who showed me the greatest love, it was probably to win their approval at first but when our relationship went beyond approval, to them loving me rather I performed for them or not, I felt I’d entered into a true relationship with them and real fellowship began.
I want to respect those covenants with all of my heart. I want to make sure that I am not hurting them in anyway. But I’m human and at times I might hurt them, it is never intentionally. I quickly try to restore that love and fellowship with the people in my life because I genuinely love and care about our relationship. I know they feel the same towards me. Their love towards me never changes because I don’t do everything right. It is effortless for me to talk about the people in my life with others, because I have a true intimate relationship with them.
Take a look in your own life. Look at how you can so effortlessly talk about your parents, husband, your children and your besties with the world.
I am able to talk about the people that are in my life because I have a genuine relationship with them and it provokes me to share that relationship with others. The whole world knows about Gale, because Oprah talked about her so much that you would’ve thought it was the Gale and Oprah show.
That is how our relationship should be with the Heavenly Father. He loves us unconditionally. His love for us provokes us to love Him back and provoke us to love others. Why is that? Because He loved us unconditionally. He did not love us because we had to earned His love. Read what the scripture says about the love of God towards us.
For at just the right time, while we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. It is rare indeed for anyone to die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God proves His love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
The Bible said while we were still sinners Jesus died for us. He didn’t say I am not going to the cross for those people who have to show me that they can be good by reading their Bible and praying for one hour or coming to the church every Sunday, Wed. Friday and Sat. There is nothing wrong with doing all those things but Jesus isn’t going to love you less or more for doing so.
His love for us is not a forced love. It is not a love based on works and performance. Our relationship with God is not based in fear. It is a natural out pouring of his love. His love for us is organic. When you love someone you don’t hide your relationship with them. Just like you want to tell the world about all of your other intimate close relationships, you should want to tell others about your relationship with God.
I talk about and share my love for God not our of fear, I do it because of true intimate fellowship with him. My whole world has change since I discovered and was found by His love. If God’s love for you is based on your works then you are not truly born again. You have faith in your performance to win God’s favor. You are trying to be a good Christian without real intimate relationship. You are in fear of losing God’s love. Just like you fear losing the acceptance and approval of all of your performance based relationships that you are in.
Now do not get me wrong, I’ve learned from the scriptures that I am created for good works but it is not by my works that I can earn the love of God. He ordained our lives to do good before we showed up on this planet. God said this is just our way of life.
For it is by grace you have been saved through faith, and this not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance as our way of life.
There, I am free. I am free of all of my performance based relationships. In Him do I live and move and have my being.
I have a confession to make. I love Oprah! Have I ever meet her, no! But I know a lot of people make judgments about her. I will not hide the love I have for her for the sake of what other people think about her.
I love her magazines, her shows and her books. With that being said, if Oprah says something that I do not agree with or do not line up with my beliefs, I eat the meat and spit out the bones just like I do with my parents, my husband, my children and some of the things that our churches teaches. But that does not change my love for them, I still love them just the same.
I no longer fear being judged by others, I free my mind of what others think my relationship should be with the Lord Jesus Christ or what I should be doing in my life. This is one thing I know for sure like Oprah says: God loves Him some Angie and I love me some God and it ends right there!
Nothing can separate me from his love, no religion, no works no performance, no past, no guilt, no shame, nothing!
What then shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also, along with Him, freely give us all things? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is there to condemn us? For Christ Jesus, who died, and more than that was raised to life, is at the right hand of God—and He is interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or distress or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor principalities, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
What if all of your relationships you entered into were performance based? You always had to prove yourself to measure up in others eyes. Their are a lot of performance based relationships on earth. You will soon realize you can’t live up to all the demands of those relationships.
It will wear you out. You will always feel like you are not good enough because if you stop performing, you will lose the love, approval and your position in those relationships. You will eventually feel like giving up on those relationship with those people and places.
We look at others lives to judge if their living a life we think is worthy of the gospel.
This is how most Christians evaluate their life and the lives of other Christians. We ask the question are we during everything right to please the Lord. But really what we are during is living our lives to please others Christians and our hearts are screaming out and asking God, do you hear my heart God? Can you see I am during all I can to be a good Christian, mom, wife, domestic diva while working at my real job, volunteering, trying to build my business and walk in my purpose but I am constantly made to feel guilty for during things for myself.
In everything I’m doing, I still feel like I am not measuring up, just when I think I am on track there is something that is telling me I need to do more and I need to give more.
Well who is making you feel like this in your life? I need you to be honest, get out a piece of paper and write down all the areas where you are feeling stressed out and overwhelmed.
Where are the places you are frequenting that when you leave, you feel guilty? Who are you holding conversations with that makes you feel guilty? What are you listening to and looking at that makes you feel like you are not measuring up? Free yourself! Ladies it is time that we walk into our authentic power!
God does not put heavy burdens on us, man does. Sit back ladies because this is about to get real.
Do you feel guilty if you don’t show up for certain function? Can you give yourself permission to not show up at places without feeling guilty? You are not living in true freedom. Are you a people pleaser? A yes girl, that goes long with everything when you know in your heart, it is not the right thing for you to do?
I told God one day, I am not during anything that I feel convicted about so why am I still made to feel guilty about things?
Jesus talked about this in the scriptures when he was talking about the scribes and Pharisees. Please click the link to read the scriptures before you go any further because this is what men do to you on this Christian journey. They will try and put heavy burdens on you mixing the word of God with their own agenda and calling it God.
Accept Jesus’s grace today, accept his mercy and receive His unconditional love. Maybe the reason why you feel this way is because you are operating out of works. Relieve yourself from the heavy burdens that are put on yourself and others.
Live in the freedom of Christ. Do not allow guilt to no longer be part of your mantra.
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Authentically yours Coach Angie!