My Faulty Belief System

“WHERE do you get that belief system Dana? “

A question I was asked by Pastor Mark fifteen years ago. Watching me crash and burn over and over again on seemingly insignificant things, he encouraged me to go to the root of where that belief started.

Beliefs such as:

·       I will never measure up.

·       I am not valued.

·       God loves others but doesn’t love me.

·       I am a poor example of a Christian.

·       I am not loved.

For over 40 years my reactions and responses were birthed out of a faulty belief system. I am saddened at the amount of people that were affected by my reaction to something that they said or did that had nothing to do with them. It was me. They simply triggered a fight or flight reaction in me from my own internal struggle.

For fifteen years, I had resisted going back as Mark encouraged – mostly because of fear. I’d been afraid of what I would find. Or I didn’t want to hurt anyone so maybe if it was left alone nobody would be hurt.

AND…….I didn’t know how.

Yet God in his goodness and mercy had other plans.

He orchestrated a divine appointment.

I won a book on a giveaway from a friend’s blog: Heart Change by Kathy Collard Miller  She emailed me to see if I wanted her to mail it to me or if I would like to meet for coffee. I had wanted to call her for months… but didn’t want to bother her. So the Lord cut right through the resistance and made it happen. Starbucks here we come!

Experiencing three deaths of close people in the last three months, and the fourth (my old man Bill) imminent, my emotions were on a rollercoaster. I anticipated her help to sort through them.

But no sorting was to be done.

God used Kathy in a powerful way. It was as if she took her arm and swept all of the emotions off the table and we began with a clean slate. She was the vessel to teach me how to go back to where my faulty belief system began.

Through a process of six steps she taught me how to take a wound, find the message it spoke to me, and inadvertently the belief I began accepting as truth.  But it wasn’t truth. As we wrote the steps down and worked through the chart, I was dumbfounded at the clarity to where it all began.

A statement said to me when I was a child, spoke the message, “I was not valued.” (Whether true or not, it was how my childlike mind interpreted it). I then adopted the belief, “It is true! I am not valued” thus I wanted to hide what I perceived as truth.

How did I hide it? By being a good girl…. therefore nobody will know.

I made a vow (leaving God out of it) that I would be good. I wouldn’t drink, smoke, do drugs, etc…. Then I found a strategy to protect myself …..performance. I was going to perform by doing the right things. Keeping the act up, I thought I was successful keeping everything under wraps.

UNTIL…… someone triggered a reaction.  

That is what Pastor Mark kept seeing….. AND many others.

My reactions/responses were not consistent with what God said or felt about me. I can only imagine how grieved he was to watch me wallow, stumble and stay stuck in the mire.

Not anymore……… I am climbing out of the quagmire.

Kathy encouraged me that it’s a process. It takes time and work. Laughingly, I told her I felt like a salmon spawning, having to work hard and struggle to get UP to the next step. Yet I know it’s so worth it, because I am valuable and God wants me to have a healed heart.

I have only scratched the surface of our conversation, but Kathy and her husband Larry have written this in a book they are waiting to have published. I can’t wait to get my hands on it.

Thank you, Kathy for being willing to share God’s truth. Thank you Pastor Mark for giving me a glimpse way back when, that God cared enough about me to work through the process of a restored heart. Thanks to my many friends and family that have stood by me and loved me through the numerous times of ugliness. Mostly, thanks to Don Rausch for LIVING WITH ME through the struggle.

 Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me….Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. Psalm 51:10,12 NLT