I have something that has been burning on my heart for a few days now. I finally have time to sit down and write it out…so here we go.
Here’s the headline: MY LIFE REALLY IS AS GOOD AS IT APPEARS ON FACEBOOK.
Yep. Nothing to prove, nothing to hide. It’s all Jesus.
We’ve been living in Australia for 4 months now (wow, has it been THAT LONG?) and it has been the craziest, most amazing God journey probably of our almost 13 years of marriage. Really, I feel like I’ve been waiting to be here for forever.
The thing about being here 4 months now is that it’s just long enough to realize that we are, in fact, truly not returning. It’s not like being on vacation or a long trip where we come back 6 weeks later. We are 16 weeks in (to the day, as I write this) and that’s usually enough time for people in my situation to start struggling with feelings of being homesick, grief, stress, etc. That’s almost exactly how it looked when I first moved to Australia in 2004.
But this time, it’s SO different.
I’ve learned so much in the past 10 years since we’ve lived here. The growth has been exponential. My intimacy with the Father, Holy Spirit and Jesus has gone deeper as well…
…maybe that’s why it’s so much better.
This week I received four messages from very dear friends. Dear and yet concerned friends because of my Facebook posts. (If you’re my friend on Facebook, you’re probably currently scrolling through your mind-tank trying to work out what exactly I would have posted to make someone feel concerned). What has people concerned is this 4 month mark, and the fact that I have only posted positive things on social media. And y’all, I felt like such a dummy because I had no idea why one earth I kept getting this question! Until one friend jokingly reminded me, “Surely ain’t no one’s life is as good in reality as it appears on your Facebook!”
I say this with all the deep, overwhelming love in my heart…I respectfully disagree.
Before I go any further, I want to make it clear that I adore MY FRIENDS, my FAMILY, and everyone who has checked up on us! We love, respect and value each of our loved ones as much as they have loved us enough to reach out and ask. We appreciate the asking. And as anyone who knows us well would know, Carston and I have always kind of “marched to the beat of our own drummer” in some ways, and as a couple we know that we have a unique voice. We also know that we can sometimes be misunderstood, and that’s SO fine with us. No offense taken. We are a heavenly daughter and a heavenly son before anything else, and we’ve built our individual lives and marriage on this truth. We live and burn for Jesus – in Him we live, move and have our being (Acts 17:28).
But yeah, we can be a little weird at times 😊
So when someone says to us, “Your life can’t be as good as you show on Facebook,” we have to ask in response: “And why NOT?”
Don’t hear what I’m not saying – of course there are ups-and-downs. We live in a fallen world with a very real enemy who hates anything that resembles Jesus (according to 1 John 4:17, that’d be US). What I am saying is that as a child of the King, hardships have no POWER over my life. We daily choose to not allow the difficulties of life to have any influence over our mental state, emotions, actions, etc. We have the nature of Christ living within us (2 Peter 1:4), and we are filled with the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:11) and therefore filled with power to accomplish anything put in front of us.
I have been seriously convicted as of late to not share my struggles for the sake of being “relevant” and therefore giving people a “connection” to me. As my dear friend Mark Greenwood says, it is “righteousness that exalts a nation, not relevance (check out Proverbs 14:34).” I don’t want to be relevant as much as I want to remind people of WHO JESUS IS IN THEIR LIVES! Who Jesus can be for ANYONE who accepts Him. And when I DO have those times that feel a bit tougher than others, I have learned to confide in trusted friends who point me back to Jesus and to truth about my reality of victory in Christ. That means not telling everyone in front of me about it, even if they have compassion and empathy for it.
If it doesn’t point me back to JESUS, to VICTORY, and to the truth that I am not a mere human (because of Christ living inside of me), then why “vent” it? Most of the time, venting is only just the human way of finding someone to engage with whatever negative feelings you may be holding onto, hoping that you will feel more “normal” if you can get someone to agree with you. The truth is, if you have Jesus inside of you – I have to break the news to you – you are far from normal,and you are not a mere human.
Ultimately, I’m just a little me with a HUGE, SUPERNATURAL JESUS living inside of me, and I’ve learned not to engage with or give any special agreement to the enemy’s lies. I don’t deny issues, I just don’t own them and therefore treat them with the attention that the devil wants to trick me into thinking they need. I am not unaware of his schemes….2 Corinthians 2:11.
So having said all of this, please know….my life truly is as good as it appears on Facebook. I’ve learned to confess scriptural truths over myself daily to help myself remember this stuff. Feel free to steal these verses and use them for yourself. One of my daily confessions is from Psalm 23:6, “Surely goodness and mercy follow me all the days of my life.” Also from John 10:10, where Jesus Himself says that He has come to give us life ABUNDANTLY. John 8:36 says that whom the Son sets free is free INDEED. And one of my favorites ever, Ephesians 3:20 (The Passion Translation): Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you.
I'm asking God to reveal to each person reading this, dear ones, His overwhelming, never ending love and the supernatural reality that is yours in Christ Jesus. And that you would always remember that SURELY His goodness and mercy will follow you FOREVER.