It's an honor to introduce you to my dear friend, Sherrie Smitley. Sherrie is a wonderful teacher of God's Word with a heart for touching lives through her writing and speaking. My respect runs deep for this courageous sister in Christ. She has experienced her fair share of hardships. but CRUSHES IT, by faith, daily!
Read On, Friends!
The first time I heard the phrase, “crushing it,” in a different context than I was familiar with was from one of my daughter’s friends, she was telling her cute little's, “you’re crushing it,” as they polished off their lunch. Up until that moment I had exclusively associated “crushing it” as a negative. Being crushed, was not a sought-after verb, in fact I wished to escape that description entirely. You crush grapes to produce wine, during that process the original state of the grape is destroyed. I prefer not to be crushed, even if during the transformation the result is an improved form of me. I wanted to stay round, firm and able to roll wherever I desired.
Now, as I focus on crushing it, finishing well the race I am running, my desire has been altered. I know I must allow the Father to squeeze me into the shape he desires. Allowing change to press me into new forms of myself can be extremely daunting, requiring courage to push forward. Gaining courage necessitates being crushed, and in turn being able to crush it! I cannot become courageous staying in the safety of comfortable. I can learn how from people in the Bible. Benaiah, courageously chased the lion into the pit, Joshua marched around the walls seven times, Jochebed launched her baby in a basket on the Nile, and the widow gave all, even relinquishing her only security. As each of them took that first step, courage was not the initial emotion that emerged in their souls. Moving in obedience assures strength will grow. Courage is built over time and through heartache, hardships, trials and tribulations. You cannot purchase courage with any amount of money, it is earned through experiences as we exercise it. Often “we are pressed in on every side” by debilitating circumstances, before we ever reach the sudden realization in the midst of it all, that we are crushing it.
Fear, the opposite of courage, was my relentless pursuer for more years than I wish to confess. He would curl up beside me in bed, purring like a cat, masquerading as my close companion. He would cause heart palpitations and restless nights of little sleep. After the long night he would rise with me, whispering why this bright new day would be the same as the dark night. Fear, doesn’t like to do his undercover work alone, he brings friends who are equally skilled at convincing us that their lies are actually truth. Their job is to connive, trick and hopefully defeat us as they speak hopelessness into our ears and mind. Fear’s platform is making me and you believe that our worst nightmare, will most definitely become reality.
For me personally, a son who has struggled with addiction for 26 years is the biggest seed fear has planted deep within the tissue of my life blood. He cultivated it with lies until my view was so clouded by death and despair, I could not see any light. Each ring of the phone, sent a numbing cold chill running down my spine deep into my very core, solidly freezing any hope. Exhaustion, another constant kept my mind running like a hamster on an endless wheel going nowhere. The harder I fought to control the chaos, the quicker the next avalanche would roll in seeking to bury me alive. I felt like an olive being pressed deeply by steel rollers I could not escape, crushing my very existence. Soon, all that was left was a river of bloody oil running down my face dripping onto my bent, battered body.
Mysteriously, passionately, and quietly my Father was gathering the oil and changing its composition and gently pouring a healing balm over my wounded soul. He was building courage and creating a new heart in me. It began to soothe and slowly heal me, even though it often felt much like a band-aid being repeatedly ripped off, as new growth was needed.
When you live with an addict in your family, fear is only a second away at any given time. However, acquiring courage allows you to capture the lies of fear and uproot them, before they can infiltrate deeply. Feeling anxious as I write these words and claim this freedom, fear seeks to diminish it to only wishful thinking. At that very moment I am starting to be filled with trepidation, a tender, timely message pops up on my phone. I receive a text from World Market, informing me I can come claim my free sample of olive oil. I am not prone to believing every open parking spot or check out lane is predestined from God just for me, but I know with certainty this message was straight from God’s heart to mine. He reassured me with a tiny bottle of olive oil, that he is still collecting my tears and will pour them out on the deep scars created by fear, that courage wishes to heal.
Whatever strategy the enemy is using to convince you that you are not courageous, call it out. Reject the lies, reach for help through wise friends, the Word, great books, whatever it takes. Pick up the sword with courage and fight back, you are worthy. You are crushing it!
More About Sherrie:
I love writing, reading, cooking, baking and hanging out with family and friends. I love people and will find a warm body to share coffee with on a regular basis.
I recently began a new church blog along with my personal blog. My blog is about everything from strollers to wheelchairs. My experiences include: home-schooling 5 kids (while taking care of my 90 year old Mom), volunteering for every job at church (while working full-time). I have experienced the highs and exceptional lows life encompasses. Some of the lower points include a child with addictions, losing my dad in my twenties, financial difficulties, marriage struggles and an eating disorder.
Life is a surprise every morning, some beautifully gift wrapped, while others come tattered with no return address. Throughout every step God has been faithful and present, even when I couldn’t feel His presence. He is the one constant who makes me courageous enough to continue this journey.
Visit me here: https://sherriesue.wordpress.com