I originally wrote this post May 2016. I still hadn't gotten my life all the way together but I was trying my best to be a better me. Fast forward to now, a 29 year old new creation in Christ, living on purpose for a higher purpose and no longer a slave to sin, shame a defeat. Although I'm starting fresh with new content in 2017, more than anything in the world, I'm extremely thankful that God completely shook my life upside down four short weeks after I posted this last year and that my life, through Him has not and will never be the same! As I continue to grow in His unfailing grace, I hope that my continuous journey with Him leads you to a life of full surrender and total subjection to the creation in Him He's calling you to be. It's NEVER too late give God your everything, especially your broken or sin stained peices, and watch Him love you back to life like only He can!
Adjusted Crown, May 26, 2016
My 20's have been mostly a huge unbearable facade of happiness to cover up all the emptiness that I found myself constantly drowning in. On the outside I was the "good girl" that had her life together but in reality, I could've literally won numerous Oscars for being the leading actress in my own modern day rendition of "The Young and the Restless". Life didn't happen for me how and when I wanted it to so I spent year after year in an never ending revolving door of restlessness, hurt, disappointment, anxiousness, and anxiety. I literally took everything good I dreamed of doing and being in life after high school and single-handedly turned it into a huge mess of confusion that God couldn't use because He was never the center of anything I was trying to produce.
No one knew how empty and full of holes my life was because I didn't dare let them. I wore so many masks, and honey, I wore them well. I found every way possible to put band-aids on all the gaping voids I was so desperately trying to fill. I took trips. I wore nice clothes. I had fun friends. I partied and drank socially. I had a "significant other". I blew money because I had it to blow. I became a stylist. I had good client base. I was working full time and back in school. Everyone on the outside looking in thought I was on top of the world. What they didn't know was that I was only allowing them to see what I wanted them to see. I didn't want anyone to know the ugly stuff that Jessica did out of character. I didn't want them to know that I was in love with the wrong person. Guy's didn't know that I fornicated with them because it felt good at those moments, but I always felt extremely shame, convicted and far away from God afterwards. My friends didn't know that I took trips and partied with the best of them because it made me feel good in the moment but I would cry myself to sleep at night because I was lonely. People didn't know I drank "socially" to quiet my thoughts of disappointment in who I'd become or to numb the pain of my latest blow up with the guy I was so blindly in love with. Strangers didn't know I got dressed up and went to VIP events that I never really enjoyed because I always felt too naked or out of place. I was simply a pretty girl doing pretty girl things who in essence was just a mess, trying to cover up all her mess with a pretty smile and a fun lifestyle.
I took a screenshot of the quote "God can't bless who you pretend to be" about 8 months ago and never posted it because although it was my reality it was a hard pill that I still wasn't ready to swallow yet. I was still partying. I was still having sex outside of marriage. I was still posting pretty pictures and flexing for the gram. I was still a liar. I still was manipulating my way through a lot of situations. I was still drinking. I was still dressing half naked. I was still a Wednesday night and Sunday morning christian. I was still cussing. I was still looking for love in all the wrong people and places. I was still broken. I was still not praying or reading my bible because I felt too unclean to. I was still not the "Good Girl" I was trying to paint my outside shell to be. I was still running from being the souled out, on fire for Christ, woman of God that he was upsetting my life time and time again to be.
Even though I've made so much progress, I still am growing daily in the things of Christ as I continue to trust and rest on His promise in 2 Corinthians 12:9 that His grace is all I need. Every day I have to remind myself that even though I'm striving to be a better me, the only way I can win in life is by surrendering all my junk, sincerely, every single day I'm blessed to open these brown eyes of mine. What I failed terribly to realize in my early 20s is that GOD IS ENOUGH. That one truth alone was all I needed to avoid so much of the heartache and disappointment I brought upon myself as I desperately tried to find myself in everything but Him. Because of that, I had absolutely no resistance when the devil would come for me. None. Not even the slightest fight in me to say, "Not today Satan!". He knew once I fell into sin after sin he would be able to make me doubt who I was in Christ. Once I started doubting who I was in Christ sin became easier and easier to justify and I began operating outside of who I was created and called to be. The moment we start operating outside of who we are called to be, we loose the power that God put in us. Once that power is gone, the enemy wins EVERY TIME!
I'm so overwhelmed with thankfulness that I'm not the same Jessica that I was the past 10 years of my life. I've learned that our walk with Christ isn't always easy and it sure isn't always glamorous but that is okay because Jesus' wasn't easy and He's the only person we should want to be more and more like each day. I've hit a few character and heart check bumps in the road already this year but God has to weed through some ugly places in our hearts and lives in order for us to cover new ground in Him. God doesn't care where we've been. He does however require for us to LET THE DEAD THINGS OF OUR PAST GO and not look back once He's washed our dirty scarlet sins white as snow! Is that easy? Nah. Not at all. But it's all about priorities. I literally have pep talks with myself throughout my day to stay focused. I literally have to PRAY throughout my day to keep myself from reacting to certain things and situations the same way I used to. Will temptation come? Yes. But guess what....I'm no longer a slave to sin! My Heavenly Father came for me, in the midst of all my brokenness, guilt, and sin stained chaos to make me once again a NEW creation in HIM! Despite my ugly past, His beautiful grace has redeemed lost time and left me with the best days of my life still ahead of me. So now when you see me smiling, you'll know it's because I've adjusted my crown and from 28 and beyond I'm giving less of me so that there can be more of Him in my life. When you see me lit, I'll be lit for Christ. When you hear me laugh, it's because I'm a woman with purpose, on purpose, because I finally know who and whose I am. When you see me queening, it's because I'm waiting, in modesty and humility, for Him to introduce me to a man so in love with Him, my past and flaws won't matter because our future together will be covered by the love and blood of Christ. When you see me spreading these positive vibes, you'll know I'm simply trying to love others with the same love and grace that Jesus is showing me daily.
Wishing you all a blessed, productive and overcoming week ahead! No matter what you're faced with, stay mindful that GOD IS ENOUGH! He wants you to win and be victorious in Him so give Him everything that's weighing your life down today and watch Him turn your mess into your message. May grace and peace reign supreme!