Erica. That’s my name. Since I was old enough to hear I have been told how beautiful my name is and how it suits me. And yes, I let it go to my head. Since I was 10 I knew exactly what I wanted to be- happy. I just hadn’t figured out how I was going to get there. I knew I wanted a life full of passion, adventure and well, life. *Giggles*
At first I wanted to be a princess. To be pretty, look perfect, be polished and marry Prince charming. But Everytime I thought I found Prince Charming he ended up being the opposite of my imaginations. The manipulations, the lies, the hurt, the tears. I felt like I was leaving a piece of me with each passing Prince.
Since that didn’t work I thought i would find it in popularity and fame. So in college I focused on that- being the girl that everyone knew, every guy knew about and every girl wished she were like. I was “with” some guy but i never really committed my heart. This life actually suited me. I loved the attention but a while after graduation it wasn’t the same. But I had noticed a good number of seemingly successful young women looking happy and put together and I liked the life they portrayed, so I decided that success was my key. I worked on my appearance- hair, makeup, wardrobe, and even harder on my social media. Honestly, it paid off. People would send me messages asking for advice on their lives and how I stay positive, happy and put together. I would reply giving the best advice I could but the truth is I had heavy issues of my own. I recently lost my mom and made a few semi-costly mistakes. I looked glamorous but I needed an escape. Depression knocked on my door and I let him in.
One Sunday evening i was sitting on the lush cream rug at the foot of my bed with my back against the frame. I was frustrated, but too tired to react so I just sat there and cried.
Usually when I feel this way I would get dressed up and hangout with my friends regardless of if I felt up to it or not. But not today. For sone reason I just wanted to stay. And I am glad I did. Something remarkable happened that night, I fell asleep on the rug and had a dream.
I saw 10 year old Erica crying and talking to a stranger. I had to strain to hear the conversation but little Erica looked comfortable with the man so I was not alarmed. He said “my dear you have searched for fulfilment far and wide but you have not found it. I come to you today because in me you will find life”.
Little Erica looked up at Him, her eyes wide and full of expectation and her cheeks stained with tears she said “do you really mean that sir? Because everywhere I looked they said I would find fulfilment there”. He said with His voice full of peace and assurance “come to me and find fulfilment”.
I woke up and didn’t know what to think, so I decided to make some changes. I already had a church so I tried attending services and functions as frequently as I could. I tried reading my Bible day and night, tried to pray one hour like he pastor preached, to be generous, to be good, to be nice and kind but it was so hard! Everytime I tried I was made aware of other things I hadn’t done. I felt like I was trying to keep my head above water but drowning despite my efforts.
I fell asleep on the rug again hoping to see little Erica but nothing happened. I woke up and knew depression was at the door so out of fear I cried without a sound, all I could utter was “help” and He did.
He helped me realize that He makes us to will and to do, and if we try to do it by ourselves we will be frustrated and always fall short. So if you are struggling like I was know that you can’t do it by your strength, instead find a quiet corner and say “Help!”
Erica is a fictional character of our imagination but like she we have weaknesses and we feel helplessness concerning the things of God. We feel like we can’t do what God wants us to do. It’s too hard. Like the Israelites before Goliath, we whine and complain.
We want to do God’s will, but we also think we can’t.
But the truth we should rather agree with is this: We’re not helpless. We’ve been given the spirit of power- the ability to do.
When you feel too weak to obey, too lazy, too afraid, remember, you’ve been set free from bondage to self. Look to Jesus. His power is at work in you.
When you want to take that cookie and you know you shouldn’t because you’ll feel bad afterwards, look to Jesus. His power to say no to things that are not good for you is at work in you.
When you know you shouldn’t watch that movie but it’s so interesting, you feel you can’t resist, look to Jesus. His power is at work in you.
When you know you should speak to someone about your faith but you’re too afraid to do so, look to Jesus. His power is at work in you.
And even when you fail, don’t be discouraged. Before God you are as innocent as a baby because of Jesus. Learn from your mistakes and move on! God wants us to move forward. Don’t stay stuck in your failures because they do not define you.
If it were based on us, nothing will be possible, but because it’s based on Jesus- everything is possible!
Live conscious of God’s grace available for you by the Spirit. Live fulfilled!
Love, Eddy and Uwana.
This post was brought to you with loads and loads of help from my amazing friend Uwana.
Isn’t she just adorkable!!!