Are you tired of pretending to be okay when you aren’t? Maybe you’re worn out from pretending you are fine when all you really want to do is cry out to anyone for help.

Esther Fleece is all too familiar with pretending to be okay even when her internal life would indicate otherwise. She knows how exhausting it can be to fake your way through life.

“Sooner or later it does get exhausting. I came to realize I was settling for ‘fine’ in my Christianity, but God doesn’t call us to fine, He calls us to abundant living.”

On the outside, Esther was thriving, but on the inside, she was encountering a crisis of faith because she had stuffed her emotions for so long.

“Here I am, speaking internationally about the importance of marriage and family. I believe children are a blessing from God. I believe involved fathers make a difference in the life of a child. Yet, I’m being tormented day in and day out and I don’t even know how I’m physically going to make it through the season.”

Esther says that she never set out to live a fake life, but it happened anyway. She says the reason she was living a fake life was because she lacked the Biblical language of lament.

“I did not have this language that gave me permission to grieve. Scripture says that we can be sorrowful and yet rejoicing, but I didn’t know what that looked like. That’s why I had to step away, I didn’t want to pretend anymore. My life wasn’t easy, it wasn’t happy. It was very difficult to even get up in the morning some days. I had to step away in order for my faith to survive.”

Instead of always putting on the happy face, we must be willing to bear our souls to God and learn to express ourselves through the language of lament.

Esther Fleece is an international speaker and writer on millennials and faith, leadership and family, recognized among Christianity Today’s “Top 50 Women Shaping the Church and Culture” and CNN’s “Five Women in Religion to Watch.”

Key Scripture: Psalm 119:71

Featured Songs: Trust in You – Laurn Daigle; In Better Hands – Natalie Grant; Mended – Matthew West

Learning to lament

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