My favorite thing about Sundays is getting to gather with fellow believers to celebrate Jesus. However, this wasn’t always the case.
I went through a period recently where this gathering produced some tough emotions and it was such a struggle for me. Frankly I found myself not wanting to attend, and dealing with panic attacks and extreme anxiety walking in the doors of a church. (Spoiler alert: anxiety has become a thorn in my side. I’d like to share more of that story another day).
When I was there, I couldn’t sing.
It was no mistake that we found ourselves sitting under teaching from Scripture discussing the church (and not sugar coating the good, bad, and ugly). It was no mistake we were singing songs reminding us of God’s faithfulness and goodness. I’m grateful for the role that Brainerd Baptist, Micah Fries, and the rest of their Pastoral team played in my story. They love Jesus, they love His Word, and they love people.
One of the new songs I heard during this time was one from Austin Stone Worship called “Jesus is Better.” Here are a couple of lines from the lyrics:
In all my sorrows, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
In all my victories, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
Than any comfort, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
More than all riches, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
Our souls declaring, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
Our song eternal, Jesus is better – make my heart believe
This was my prayer: Jesus you are better, make my heart believe.
And. He. Did.
Not even going to lie: this time wasn’t easy. It wasn’t pretty. But it also wasn’t meaningless. God allowed this season, this suffering for a purpose. He was using it to produce something in us, in me.
Brandi is the bestest person in the whole entire world. She carried an immense load for our family. There’s no doubt that she is God’s good gift to our family, and to me.
This morning I find myself anxious again: but it’s an anxious excitement to have the chance to gather again with the church. We’ll celebrate Jesus together, and then the church will scatter until we are able to gather again.
Maybe it’s your story that church doesn’t bring this level of excitement for you. Maybe for you it brings dread, or anxiety, or maybe it doesn’t produce any emotions at all.
There’s grace in abundance for that.
Because of that grace, today you’ll find me gathering with my family (most of which I don’t share any blood relation) to worship.
My song eternal: Jesus is Better,
Here’s the entirety of the song in case you want to listen: