When I am insecure around new social settings--
This has been a big struggle for me. Last year, I joined a social group full of new people and quickly noticed the kind of insecurities that paralyzed me like I was in junior high all over again. I had to wrestle with God. Who am I in Christ? How do I walk in confidently to this group in you and not in a false pride trying to feel good about myself?
When I am torn open by hurtful conflict--
Lord, how does the good news of all I have in Christ and all He has saved me from equip me to love those who have hurt me so badly? What have you done for me on the cross? What can I count on You to do for me now to equip me to do something I can't possibly do on my own (like forgive someone who has hurt me)?
When I fail at the things at which I long to succeed--
Lord, how does all I have in Christ equip me to deal with my failures today? I long to obey consistently. I don't want to yell at my children. I hate the anger and frustration I display. But I know I am not condemned in You. How does your grace and forgiveness equip me to deal with my sin?
What is your struggle today? Are you insecure? Hurt? Wary? Do you feel self-condemnation? Guilt? Inadequacy? All of the above? If so, there is good news. Even if you long ago came to see your need for Christ, the good news of the gospel still meets you today exactly where you struggle. Before you lecture yourself with 3 steps for healthy child rearing or 5 steps for resolving conflict, lecture yourself with the gospel. Read Ephesians 1 and 2 and cry out with Paul
"that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, 18 having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might 20that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places."
Please don't look at anything else for help or a solution UNTIL you have first looked to all God says you have in Christ. This good news works. It is the most powerful answer I have ever seen. Wrestle with God over it today and may He open your eyes to all that you have in Him.