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January 24, 2016

Freedom Guide #11: Grace for the Journey

emotionalandspiritualhealing.com

The eleventh and final (for now!) item on the Freedom Guide, is to remember that this is a process, a journey, and to give yourself grace and mercy to not get it all right.  Don’t try to do everything at once, just begin somewhere and keep moving forward.  If you trip and fall, repent and move on.

This has been one of the most difficult things for me in my journey, but since I’ve adopted this as a strategy, the rewards have been remarkable.  One of the best ways I’ve found to do this, is to celebrate every little bit of progress, regardless of how small it seems.  I had a lifelong habit of being very hard on myself.  Perfectionism is a brutal master under whom to be enslaved.  It always focuses on what you haven’t done and how far you still have to go.

I first heard about this technique, or at least it first started to sink in, from Abi Stumvoll.  She taught at Bethel, Redding one evening, and I caught the live stream.  She celebrates all of her victories.  All of her successes.  Even the small ones.  She said that when ever she did something that she wanted to do, as opposed to not doing it, she was winning.  So, if I go for a walk, I’m winning!  If I only go twice this week, I’m winning!  It’s more than I would have done if I hadn’t gone.

Abi said that success was motivating, and I’m finding that to be true.  I mean, seriously, does castigating yourself ever make you want to do better next time?  It just makes me want to crawl into a hole and hide.  Because why should I bother?  I’m losing…

So, what does this look like for me?

I can get upset with myself because I bought another lie of the enemy.  I can get overwhelmed and discouraged that there is so much to get free from and it’s going so slowly.  Or, I can rejoice that I spoke the truth over myself.  I’m winning!  And, I read 5 verses in my Bible yesterday.  I’m winning!  Or maybe I went 10 minutes without a negative thought.

You will notice that I did not say that I always listen to the truth, or that I always read 5 chapters a day in my Bible.  What I haven’t done, isn’t the point.  The point is I have done something towards my goals.  I’m winning!

And, as I rejoice in the small accomplishments, do you know what happens?  They become bigger ones.  I begin to look for the small steps that I can do, and do them, instead of getting discouraged.  An example of that is taking one of the items of this freedom guide, or something that I heard from God and focus on doing that once.  If I do, I’m winning!  Maybe I’ll do it twice tomorrow, I’m winning!  If I do it three times next week, but twice the week after, I’m still winning!  That’s better than before I started when I didn’t ever do it. Do you see how fun this is?!

So, where are you winning?

If you would like more information on this and the rest of the items on the Freedom Guide, I expanded this content into a book and workbook that you can purchase from me in the office, or on Amazon here.

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