Wallowing in the mire

It wasn’t planned. It never is. Feelings take over and a flood pours out.Isn’t that always the way? These things sneak up on us unawares.

All of a sudden we spew forth dirty words. Falling fast as raindrops and just as impossible to stem the flow. 
I grow impatient and irritable when fatigue and frustration reach simmering point. It’s hard being dependent with M.E and chronic illness sometimes.
My ultra keen observer eye still notices everything, including all those “I wouldn’t do it like that” instances.
Watching while others are doing things I am unable to do doesn’t prevent me from having a point of view about it.
Today was one of those days when carping and criticism replaced kindness and concern. A hasty harangue spilled forth before I knew what was happening.
Ignoring my beloved’s crestfallen face, weary resignation, and attempts to placate me, I continued in my spiel.
Getting all self-righteous and defensive. Feeling justified, even if words spoken in haste tend to be repented at leisure.
Scalded by the heat of words rising to burn us both and sear the air around. Though this wasn’t exactly a rare, isolated incident. Anger, upset, frustration and impatience sit close to the surface.

I withdrew. A weighty stone of shame sat heavy on my chest, refusing to be swallowed.
Gnawing at the edges of my nails as if I could bite the bad away.
Tasting grit as guilt ate at the core of me.
Only sooner than usual, my mind reminded me of Grace Revealed In Trials and how to dig deep into the soil of His word instead of digging over the past few shameful moments. 
Here lies rich, fertile soil to run through the soul. Embed in the empty spaces. Good ground to turn over, till and test.
Plant some faith seeds and watch them grow. Sow a crop of righteousness instead of sowing to destruction. 
Here lies water. A cool refreshing stream of cleansing. Purification to renew heart and mind.
I was having a bad day and it showed. But I was also having trouble showing myself grace and mercy.
If a friend were suffering likewise I would take her hand and offer reassurance.Listen to her words and those left unsaid.

Look into her eyes and tell her things weren’t as bad as they seemed and God has forgiveness enough to cover it all.

His love for her will never fail. His mercies are new every morning. His grace is sufficient for all our needs. 
Remind her we’re no longer soil dwellers ~ rooted to earth as we are ~ but seated in heavenly places with Christ. And as such we have all the resources of heaven at our disposal. Wallowing in the mire is a passing place where we find grace to lift us out of any pit we may have fallen into.
Dig gently to try to unearth the root behind the bad fruit so that she can proceed with greater awareness and wisdom in future.
Suggest she has some TLC to recover her equilibrium ~ a hot bath, massage, reading a great book, eating chocolate/ice-cream curled up in PJs, or whatever it takes.
Let her know she’s going to be Okay and reading this book will help her to know that better. 
So why do we have such a hard job forgiving and being kind to ourselves?
We so often fail to show mercy toward our own faults and failings and can be our own worst enemy. Especially if our past is far from pristine and our current circumstances are far from Pinterest perfect.
Perhaps it’s time to stop digging the dirt on ourselves and let the light of God’s presence in.

For darkness cannot abide in its purity. Truth will out. And the truth is we are radically and outrageously loved by God Himself.  

He has paved the way to remove all the dirt from our souls and muddied speech from our mouths ~ one golden grace drop at a time ~ to renew and restore all that is sullied and broken.

What do you think? Is it hard for you to be kind to yourself?
Do join the discussion in the comments below.

Linking here with Nacole, Holley and Jennifer

18 thoughts on “Wallowing in the mire”

  1. Joy, you are so right that forgiving ourselves is the hardest. Hearing God tells us that he forgives and believing it is a great start and makes forgiving ourselves easier. Thanks for sharing.

    1. It's an area I struggle in a lot. Guilt and shame were my clinging companions for years and it's a continual act of grace to be able to leave them behind. Yet if we fail to forgive ourselves we're effectively saying we are better than God ~ ouch! Thanks for visiting and joining in the conversation. 🙂 x

  2. Don't you love how grace comes in … sometimes gently like falling snow, other times loud and clear and strong. May you feel His lovely grace today, Joy. Me, too. God knows we need it so …

  3. Love this Joy- we're no longer soil dwellers ~ rooted to earth as we are ~ but seated in heavenly places with Christ. And as such we have all the resources of heaven at our disposal. – I want to keep that treasured truth per-eminant in my mind and heart! thank you for always sharing your heart and insights!

    1. Hi Cindy. Lovely to see you here! Thank you for taking time to leave an encouraging comment. I'm so glad you have found something useful to ponder on from this offering. Bless you, my friend. 🙂 x

  4. Excellent, Joy. Thank you for the reassurance that we can be renewed even after we have spewed out the unpleasant words that we wish had never come out of our mouths. Glory to God, who sent His only Son to be a sacrifice for us, the flawed followers of Him. Sending love and prayers your way, Deborah xxoo

    1. How thankful we are for the renewal of heart, mind and mouth! All thanks and glory be to God. Thank you for your encouraging support and prayers. All gratefully received and sent your way too, Debby! 🙂 xx

  5. Thank you Joy for an honest look inside your heart. Do I have trouble forgiving myself? Absolutely. Why? Because I expect more from me. Because I am proud and I can see others acting despicably, but me? Well, then God gently shows me what it is I need to acknowledge and He reminds me He has taken care of my offenses.

    I always love reminders that this is not our home. We put in such deep stakes. Thanks, Joy.

    1. Anne, I can relate to all the reasons you cite here for having trouble forgiving yourself. Humbling, isn't it? It's wonderful how gently God treats us and steers our way of thinking round to His own. And we certainly do "put in such deep stakes" here. We need all the reminders we can get "that this is not our home". Amen. Thank you, friend. 🙂 x

  6. So hard… CS Lewis said something about forgiving ourselves (I'm paraphrasing) – he said that not forgiving ourselves was like setting ourselves up as a higher authority than God, for in God's eyes we are forgiven. So hard to do when we know what's going on in our hearts; the mess and the hurt and the dark things.
    Thanks for this honest and raw piece, Joy. I know exactly the kind of thing you mean.

    1. Gulp! Hard truth here from C.S Lewis. Helen, I'm so pleased you could relate to this post. But I also hope and pray that forgiving yourself will get easier for you too. Blessings of peace, my friend. 🙂 x

  7. So thankful we have a holy place (and Person!) to turn to on days like the one you describe. I can relate to so much of this, as I can be a spew-er, too. God bless, Friend. Visiting from Nacole's.

    1. Hi Brandee. It's lovely to meet you! I am grateful beyond measure for those who walk this path with me and share the journey, because having travelling companions who can relate to the struggle helps us to feel less alone with our pain and problems. Thank you for visiting and leaving a lovely supportive comment. Feel free to return any time. You'll always be welcome! 🙂

  8. Oh, Joy, you shared this so perfectly! Why do we stay stuck? My personal experience is we give the Enemy WAY too much power while he keeps us stuck on ourselves and our awfulness. As long as he can keep our eyes off Jesus and out of God's word He wins. I've turned this habit around in the last five years and am learning to repent early and often. It brings somuch freedom!
    Your lines here are perfect:
    "…we're no longer soil dwellers ~ rooted to earth as we are ~ but seated in heavenly places with Christ. And as such we have all the resources of heaven at our disposal. "

    1. I totally agree with this, "we give the enemy WAY too much power while he keeps us stuck on ourselves and our awfulness". Oh yes, this is my experience too, Jody! I'm so pleased to hear you are turning this round and "learning to repent early and often". The peace it brings far outweighs our reluctance to deal with things. Living in the freedom Christ died to bring us is all about dying to self as well as living unto righteousness.
      Recognising what is holding us captive is part of moving forward by God's grace. I am aiming not to stay stuck here either. In sharing your own journey you have given me hope of seeing the changes I desire too. Thank you, friend! 🙂 x

Your words matter. I'd love to hear from you.