His Presence is With You

When I (Judi) was a little girl, I sucked my finger. Not my thumb, but my forefinger. It was my preferred, go-to self-soothing practice. 

My mother tried everything to get me to stop sucking my finger. She reprimanded me, she said it made me look like a baby, she applied very yucky, bitter-tasting liquid to deter me, she explained to me why it wasn’t good for me to continue sucking my finger as it could interfere with my speech development, cause orthodontic issues, and even lead to me being made fun of/bullied by my peers. All to no avail. I was entering the fourth grade still sucking my finger. 

One night, I remember my mother tucking me into bed. I was older now so it wasn’t her norm to sit and chat with me before bed, but this night she did. I can still remember the feeling of being loved by her. Rather than focusing on the negatives of how I was still sucking my finger, she simply spoke to me about what was good about me, how proud she was of me and how much she loved me. I genuinely felt a sense of being “full” that evening,  so full that I did not need to suck my finger. I did not need to self-soothe, because my mother had soothed me with her presence, her attention and her love. I was shocked that I fell asleep that night and woke up the next morning without feeling the need to suck my finger at all.

Sometimes I think we tend to self-soothe with habits and behaviors that aren’t in our best interests, rather than experiencing what truly fills our hearts. If you are feeling the tendency to self-sabotage or bring solace in ways that don’t bring life, take a moment to recognize that God is here present with you and offering His heart to you. It is a heart of pure love.

He is proud of you, even when you stumble and fall short. He loves you, even as you learn and grow and mature. He does not use shame, as He knows how lethal it can be. It destroys the very fabric of our hearts. God is our true Source. We were never meant to engage in this life alone, soothing ourselves. When we do, we tend to retreat and suck our fingers, rather than embrace life and bring solace to others. 

Today, let’s acknowledge the presence of God, sitting with us, enjoying us where we are at. Yes, we have room to grow, but we grow best in an atmosphere of love, acceptance and belonging. 

Have a great day, Friend, we believe in you!

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