I got a text message today. It asked what I did when I felt like I was a failure. How tender and vulnerable to get something like that showing up in your phone. So I shared what I do when I feel like I’m failing. But not just failing, like I, myself, am a fraud. I, as a person, am a failure.
I feel like I become out of control. Things spin around me and I am caught in a tornado. The hard edges of emotions, circumstances, and relationships whip about nicking me, bleeding me out with a death of a thousand cuts. Past missteps and shortcomings push me around with heavy reminders of all the ways I am not good enough. I am paralyzed with the fear that everything will fall apart and nothing good is for me.
I feel like I’m floating away. There is nothing is holding me down. Nothing is grounding me. And when I feel myself begin to float away I think what do I know is true. What is true? And I start saying what is true out loud. To myself. So I can remember. To train my brain to do something other than dwell in terror.
I start with things I know. That God loves me. That he is working things out for my good. All the time. That in failure I can learn something. That shame is not from Him. And it is not for me. I am made to be an overcomer. God put me in this place, at this time, to be who I am. God is always making me new. He has prepared the work for me to do. I am loved.
Nothing I can do could make God love me more. Nothing I could do could make God love me less. I lack nothing. I am more than a conqueror – made to be victorious. I only need to do the work that is before me.
I begin thinking small. Even on the granular level. I think about how my family loves me. I think about how rich I am in relationships. I think about all of the beauty I have. I think about the hot cup of coffee I got to drink that day. I think about how the sun is shining and how it warms my skin.
And I begin to feel less like I’m floating away. I train my mind to put my feet upon a rock. I train to stand on the rock. I train to remember who and what The Rock is that I stand upon.
And that is how I combat feeling like a failure.