I recently spoke at the National Eating Disorders Association’s Cincinnati Walk. I was honored to be asked to share my recovery story, but found myself, after a couple weeks of setbacks, wondering if I am recovered enough to share my story. I often feel like I am still broken or damaged goods. The event coordinator and my therapist are of little help as they suggest that only I can make that decision. I take this to The Lord and ask him to lead me in this decision. I hear him speak to me that I am not only recovered enough, but that I am enough. I am not alone, I decide, because really we are all broken in one way or another because we are all human.
I read the scripture over and over again…. John 8:32 “And you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” (NLT) I take some time to meditate on these words, truth and free. I hear God speak (Yes, I really do hear him) “You will know the truth about who I say you are, then you will be set free to share your truth. This truth will lead others to me, but it will also lead you to yourself. Once you find where our truths intersect you will be free to believe the words you spoke to those at the walk; believe that recovery isn’t perfect, nor is it linear; believe that no, you aren’t perfect and be ok with that. I adore you and I am ok with the fact that you, my beloved, are not perfect. I sent my son to die for you and all humanity because perfection isn’t possible. All of you are broken. There is no Garden of Eden anymore, but I still walk with you, and make your body my dwelling place. Satan would have you believe that a setback is condemnation, but you know there is no condemnation from me. I may teach you a lesson from the setbacks, but I still love you! Yes, even those time when you chose to stick your fingers in your ears to tune me out.”
I love when I hear from the Lord and then he confirms it through his word, a bible study, or in this case a devotional written by Nicky Gumbel. “We must not be surprised by set backs. It does not necessarily mean that we are not being led by God” You see God will often use us to edify each other if we allow him to. So, I take my set backs back to God and ask him to lead me through them, and teach me through them.
I believe with there are vast lessons to be learned about God and about myself in these set backs. I learn to be humble. I learn that God’s mercy is new every morning and I am even learning to accept this. As I learn to receive his mercy and accept that I am perfectly imperfect, I learn to offer grace and mercy and to accept that we are all imperfect as we meander through our lives.