Sunday, January 24, 2010

Lessons Learned In...

Recovery. That's where I've been hiding on Thursday nights. Since April 2009 I have been spending my Thursday nights in Celebrate Recovery, a 12-step recovery program designed to help those who struggle with hurts, habits, and hang-ups by showing them the love of Christ. What got me there? Mostly a broken heart and realizing that I didn't want to question God, myself, or man anymore... I wanted to live life as He intended for me, in freedom. Plus, I was tired of constantly sticking a band-aid on my life and walking around like everything was "okay." Why am I sharing this with you now? Lots of reasons, mostly through the recent realization that I'm not sure people truly know who I am. And the realization of the fact that we as humans are not one dimensional, but rather there are many dimensions to each of our lives. That last one I think I've always known in my head, but this week I'm finally seeing it with my eyes.

Now, I can't be upset that people don't know who I am... I don't think I really knew who I was until recently, or at least I'm beginning to. That's probably the number one thing I've learned in the recovery process. It's truly been a joy to process through everything and realize that I don't have to keep living life the way I have been and to realize that I'm a pretty cool person just the way God created me to be. It's taken me a while to get here and I have no doubts that God was already workin' on me in regards to finding confidence and contentment in who He created me to be long before I made the decision to work through my junk in Celebrate Recovery. It's been an amazing journey and sometimes I wish I could articulate it better.

Through it all I'm starting to hear more how people describe me, see more how I communicate and I realize that is not me... or at least that is not how I want to be known or heard. Our God is truly a gentle God, there was no hitting me over the head with a mallet on this one. He was patient and every now and then I felt His gentle nudge slowly opening my eyes and my heart. I am human, I make mistakes... I get loud when I'm nervous, I try to be funny when I meet new people because everyone loves to laugh, right? But more than all that, more than what others see (and what I see) on the surface is a gentle spirit... one with love, compassion, grace, pain for the lost, faith for the unexpected, and hope for the unseen. A lesson I've learned in recovery is that I, Cristyn Rohloff, am a girl of not one, but several dimensions. Depending on the season of life (or the situation at the moment) I might be sad, happy, angry, excited, frustrated, or whatever the case entails. One thing I've heard God tell me consistently over the last 2 1/2 years is I'm someone who loves with a BIG love... and I can see that now.

I don't share this because I think it's all about me, but rather to encourage you to stop and think about how you view yourself and others. I've been questioning myself on that one for a while now. I catch myself making judgment calls, I've lost relationships because of being too judgmental and trying to make someone into something they weren't. I wouldn't want that done to me, would you? We all fall short, that I know. But that doesn't mean we have to stay there. I'm 28 years old and I feel like I'm finally seeing life the way God wants me to. I don't know if any of this translates or makes sense, but it was heavy on my heart tonight and I felt it was about time to finally share. After all, this blog is about matters of the heart, right?

Step One: We admitted we were powerless over our addictions and compulsive behaviors, that our lives had become unmanageable.

"I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but cannot carry it out." ~ Romans 7:18

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