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“I Can’t Ask for Things. I Shouldn’t Have Needs, Desires, or Emotions” – by Radiant

 

From a very dear friend and sister in Christ whom God has radically healed physically and spiritually in the past year and a half. For decades, Radiant could not receive love from God, herself or from anyone and was imprisoned physically, spiritually, and emotionally. How I praise God for what He is doing in her life! This sister’s issues were often the opposite of my issues – and help to provide a much needed different perspective from my own.

———-

About the post, “Being Vulnerable and Direct Feels Wrong!” – I totally thought like the wife who had objections to speaking in direct, vulnerable ways my whole life.

SOME RANDOM THOUGHTS:

This way of thinking makes us a victim and voiceless, then we freak out  on someone when they put that teeny straw on top of our huge anger that we aren’t allowed to admit, or have, or own, or do anything about. And it makes us jealous of wives who “have because they ask,” annoyed that they are so unapologetically “demanding” as we see it. My old way of thinking was about “righteously” refusing to have needs, emotions, demands.

It makes you really sick! Emotionally, physically and spiritually. To receive nothing good and only receive bad truly makes us toxic.

Why can’t we receive good? I think it’s this false humility stronghold that simultaneously says we don’t deserve anything good, while somehow at the same time being proud at how humble and un-needy we are. Then it’s about being a victim because no one understands how hard our life is. I felt I should have enough faith to be above struggles and emotions myself, even though I would never say anyone else should be. I was always the first one to comfort hurting people because I knew the pain of trying to go through things alone, and felt no one should ever have to do that (except me!). Part of it is the idea that “everyone else is more important than you, it’s in the Bible.” So being humble is not needing or asking or demanding. That’s for others.

If someone said good things about us, they are obviously lying or have a distorted perception or are just being nice, since the only thing that can be true is self-attack. That has been the only voice I have ever really believed – and I saw so much evidence to verify it – that it had to be true. And I was so used to that voice. I always thought that maybe if I criticized myself enough, then hopefully no one else would need to. While I was at it, I could feel extra guilty and not enjoy anything, and help God out with the punishments I knew I deserved. If someone did criticize me, I was a complete failure and had nowhere to stand, and collapsed inconsolably. There was no grace. No hope. Only trying again as hard as I could, knowing I would fail again.

People’s approval seems to be the only gauge of hope, but then we don’t receive it either. Nothing is ever enough.

So all time is spent trying not to need, trying to meet all others needs, trying not to mess up, attacking self with every mistake, guilt fear and failure. Trying to find life in dead works, which puts you under a curse. All this rule following and no joy or good results. Baseline – it is unbelief. Hebrew 4. No one can enter His rest if we hear the truth, but it is not mixed with faith.

My old way of thinking:

  • It’s saying Jesus saved me so I should be able to obey all of His commandments in my own strength.
  • It’s trying to please God without faith. Hebrew 11:6 says you can’t do that.
  • It’s trying to please God by obeying without believing anything He says, receiving anything but the most anemic salvation, (and believing Jesus did it reluctantly – that he had to), not receiving His love, grace, forgiveness, power, mercy. Having no idea all of the good qualities mentioned about Him could somehow be directed to include you, too. Imagining being on the very fringe of heaven, not included.
  • It’s also being totally blocked by anyone who disagrees or says, “no,” to you, but not ever being allowed to say, “no,” or your dislikes to them.
  • It’s remembering what caused someone to be upset at all, and making an inner vow to never mess up or cause a problem again. (These inner vows curse us, trying to save ourselves in our own strength).
  • It’s not believing anyone could ever enjoy your company or love you because you don’t feel it, so it can’t be true.
  • The biggest fears are being a burden, a failure, and demanding.
  • The only “truth” you hear are these accusing lies and and it somehow intertwines itself into the gospel to make it a non-gospel. You buy into it completely.

Idols, or strongholds, in this mindset are false humility and martyrdom.

Faith is scarce in this way of thinking. We believe Jesus did die to save us, and that we can be saved, but we don’t see His grace or promises or healing or forgiveness or that He truly desires us. And even then, we can grow in faith, be set free from quite a few things, and fall right back into this prison. Behind the false humility is immense pride – pride, saving ourselves, and being wise in our own eyes. Pride that we are following rules, astonishment when we can’t follow rules; that we weren’t successful since we should be. We are Christians! How can we fail God like this? So we attack and punish ourselves trying to help God with His disappointment in us. We try harder. Until we can’t try literally. Then we sink into depression and can’t be pulled out.
Faith is the ability to receive from God. So we cry out and try to serve and love Him and repent and feel guilty, but we don’t actually exchange that guilt for forgiveness.

  • We cry to him that we feel alone and unloved and abandoned but we don’t receive that He really is here with us and will never leave us.
  • We complain to him that we can’t do what he asks us to, and basically say He is mean and cruel for not helping us, but we won’t receive His help.
  • We don’t believe he will help so we don’t ask.
  • And when we do ask we are full of doubt and therefore don’t receive, and validate to ourselves that He doesn’t care.
  • We are proud that we don’t burden God or others.
  • We aren’t rude and don’t ask for stuff.
  • We are busy getting things done for God and praying for people and trying hard to follow our rules.

Until we fall apart. Then we are angry at God, ourselves and everyone around us except we can’t be angry, so this awful feeling stays general, unknowable and unfixable  and is more evidence of how God has abandoned us.

The mindset of false humility and not receiving and Jesus’ response:

He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.” Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean. And you are clean, but not every one of you.”
John 13:6-10 ESV

RELATED:

Being Vulnerable and Direct Feels Wrong!

I Must Avoid Conflict at All Costs. That Is the Godly Thing to Do.

What Does God Say about Me?

My Identity and Security Are in Christ Alone!

Trying to Find Security in All the Wrong Places

Being a Trophy Wife is Not the Goal, My Dear Sisters! – by Radiant

34 thoughts on ““I Can’t Ask for Things. I Shouldn’t Have Needs, Desires, or Emotions” – by Radiant

  1. I see so much of myself in what Radiant says. I recently read the book “Surrendered Wife” by Laura Doyle and realize how proud and unbelieving I have been, which is an odd thing because the book is secular. Being in that proud, unbelieving place is like knowing you are trapped but failing to see how you are trapped and feeling helpless to get out. As I was praying and asking Jesus to reveal to me my weakness the Bible verse Mathew 7:3 came to mind,, ” Why do you look at the spec in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?” I could see the faults of everyone around me so clearly, but failed to recognize my own. I prayed and prayed and Jesus answered my prayer, in part, with the book “Surrenedered Wife”. Not only did I see how I need to surrender to husband, to become vulnerable and state my needs. I realized this is exactly how Jesus wants us to be with him. It’s a scary place sometimes because it is living life in a way that I have never lived but there is such relief and rest in living a surrendered life; to being vulnerable and open to those around me and ultimately to Jesus.

    1. Julie,

      The Surrendered Wife by Laura Doyle is what God used to convict me of my pride, too! God also brought that same verse to mind with me, as well. But I felt like I had a whole forrest of trees in my eye, not just a plank!

      Isn’t it awesome the way we can learn more about marriage and relating to our husbands and more about our relationship with Christ and relating to Him at the same time? Love that! God showed me that I was treating Him almost exactly the same way I was treating Greg.

      It was terrifying at first – for me – to learn to be vulnerable and to give up my perception of control. But what healing and blessing God has brought to me because I was willing to take that leap!

      Thank you so much for sharing, precious sister!

    2. Surrendered Wife sounds like a good book. The martyrdom and pride I see daily, but also comparing husband with other men, as well as control and secrecy…I’m just going to manage everything myself. Why doesn’t my husband fall into line? Why doesn’t he want to talk to me anymore? Loser. Do I have that husband receipt for a return? He can’t love me….oh, but he does/we do. I hope you see how much some day.

      1. Only by the grace of God have I begun to see how my husband loves me. Not at all what I had in my control freak mind :), but oh so much sweeter, and masculine, and attractive than I could have imagined and only because God gave me the grace to humbly surrender. It took nine years and all I can say is someone or many must have been/are praying for me and God in his tender mercy opened my eyes to the beauty of the marriage relationship the way he designed it, and in a very short time. It was quite literally a Christmas miracle for me.

      2. Living2love,

        I have some posts that may be helpful with these issues, as well, my dear sister. 🙂

        You may want to search my home page for a few terms:

        – control
        – disrespect
        – passive husband
        – unplugged husband
        – space
        – martyr
        – healthy vs. unhealthy relationships
        – godly femininity

        Much love to you!

  2. compliment of the season.pls this is my 2yrs in marriage.Am really not myself for this two yrs.Sometin is bothering me for long about my husband likes and aspiration in life..our differences is much.I abhor travelling to the village but he is obssesd about it and his always there leaving me nd baby in town evnthough he calls me evrryday.He is pursing a position politically,his obsessed with politics but i dnt like politics at all,i even told him when were courting.His now having chieftaincy title meaning a traditional title even though his a beliver,ammong all these i listed,this title own is the worst thing i hate in this life.Pls my dear,am a believg wife and am really not myself.
    I hav been trying to know if i can cope with all this our differences but i cant anymore..Whatvdo i do?Hw will i handle these differences.They are not making me happy at all.I wish you can see my heart the way i hav been feeling bad about all these things.Waiting earnestly for your reply

    1. How is your walk with Jesus these past few years, dear Angel? How is your time in the Word and your prayer time? What is God saying to you specifically? Does He seem silent? Condemning? or loving? I believe He has good things He wants to fill you with from Himself no matter what your circumstances are. In fact – He often uses the very things we are so desperate to get away from, to break us of our pride and of our own desires and trying to save ourselves, and to do a powerful work in our hurt and broken hearts. Lift your hurts and scars to Him today and ask what is on His heart for you. Ask Him to use all of this for good in you and your marriage and family. Know that God is the Great Circumstance of your life, as Hudson Taylor learned so well. Lean into Him and trust His good heart for you.

  3. Off topic – but when I am getting your emails they come in duplicate. Not sure if there is anything I can do on my end to fix it. Thanks for your help……

  4. Dear Becca,

    This perspective is later after a lot of healing and God bringing the lies I was believing out into the Light where they could be exposed for the poison that they are. I definitely did not think I was angry at God, or anyone except myself. The only person I would allow myself to be angry at was me. I couldn’t even bring myself to say I was angry at most people even if I really was. I did not have words or a way to voice my beliefs or pain. I was a voiceless victim.

    But – every negative thought, fear, depression, self-loathing, self-attack, and anxiety that I allowed to fester in my heart and mind – was really saying “God is not good. God made everyone else capable of being fixed by Him or even loved by Him, but not me. God made me so horribly that all I deserve is bad. I don’t deserve to eat or live or breathe.”

    This is obviously from the Enemy. Only the Enemy wants to steal, kill and destroy. To keep us so paralyzed in our self-hatred that we can’t receive any good thing, lest we start to see our true position in Christ – Warriors, Princesses, Priests, and Ambassadors of the Most High with the authority of Christ on our side and God Himself fighting for us! I, in my pride, put myself as judge over me and even God – saying God did a bad thing when He made me.

    My self-righteousness and self-condemnation was saying I was more righteous than God in His ability and power to redeem and forgive me through the Blood. It was saying my sin and problems and weaknesses are so infinite, that God and Jesus and the Cross and the Blood are not powerful enough to work in my particular case. I could only see the holes, darkness, and what was missing. My unbelief and hardened heart could not see that God was for me, that there was a way out of my prison or that God was good and would truly work for good in my life.

    I did not know the power of words – the words we say to ourselves and receive from others. It sounds like you received many words of death and curses over the years- I am so sorry! I did this plenty well enough myself without having others heap on untold piles to hurt me as well!

    I am so thankful to know now – we do not have to receive those words of death, from ourselves or others. When we hear someone say something negative over us, we can remember that we are in a Jesus bubble. He is always wrapped around us, and He is our protection. When someone spews unkindness or evil at us, we can let Him receive it and we don’t have to absorb those words. We can absorb His thoughts and words about us – and they are glorious, life-giving and they set us free way beyond what we can ever imagine!

    As soon as I notice myself stuck in guilt, anxiety, or self attack and even physical symptoms (which often manifest when we are believing lies or stuck in things like unforgiveness or fear) – I reject it. Often we need to reject it out loud in the Name of Jesus and receive out loud His love and protection and provision. If I can’t even think clearly enough to say all of that in the middle of attack, I think “Jesus” over and over in my head until I have the strength to say His Name out loud then say it out, say His praises out loud and say scripture out.

    I am so thankful for the living Bride of Christ – churches full of His grace and truth and glory that help bring us life and healing instead of sentencing us to the law and condemnation.
    Praising Jesus with you for what He is doing and I speak words of life, healing, peace, grace and freedom over you in the Name of Jesus!

    1. RadiantandRedeemed,

      THANK YOU so much for sharing! LOVE LOVE LOVE this! I pray God will use it to set many people free from bondage and the lies of the enemy!

  5. I heard a great suggestion for all of us. Petition is only one kind of prayer, and if we do it all the time, even we might start to think we sound like we’re begging and being a hassle. So, what do do?

    Maybe other kinds of prayer, like adoration. Perhaps you can spend time with the Lord contemplating the mysteries of the faith. The Trinity, His birth, the miracles, and so on. These types of prayer can help us take us out of ourselves.

    If you have children, ask yourself, “Do I ever get tired of hearing my children say ‘I love you’ to me?” I certainly don’t! God feels the same way too when you tell him that you love him and spend time in adoration.

    God bless!

  6. I so love everyone’s encouraging comments and the huge bravery it takes for hurting ones to post questions and struggles. You are placing yourself in a position of receiving hope and prayer and truth and freedom and deliverance, as well as providing a path for countless others who struggle with the exact same snares who would never risk asking or posting anything in real life or online. Thank you, Body of Christ. We are made to grow and be built up in love together. No one is a burden – we are all one body – and if one part of us hurts, the others hurt with it and come to care for and nourish it. We who were comforted through our hurts, struggles and pain, now have the huge blessing of offering the same comfort Jesus gave us to those who are hurting today. Others will comfort us in our hurts and sorrows another day, because we all have scars and hurts and needs and places we need freedom and truth and healing.

  7. This post (and the related comments) are SO right on.

    Radiant and Redeemed,

    if I knew you in real life I’d give you a very teary hug in praise of the Father who is able to do all things. Then, girl, I’d high-five you and say “Amen! THAT is what I’m talking about. My. God. is. GOOD. Yes, even when he made me.”

    Becca,

    Honey! Much of our early years sounds similar (in my family of origin character attacks were common place) and I’m angry for you – that this is STILL going on in your family. Let me be clear: I’m not angry at your mother or sister or any other person you has heaped these filthy lies on you and others.

    They are not the enemy. Let me repeat, they are not the enemy.

    But we do have an enemy. Know his tactics. Arm yourself with the armor and weapons the Lord has given you for this very real battle.

    I pray for you, sis. 🙂

    Please reconsider journaling.

    My time looks something (this is a brief skeleton of the time) like this, perhaps this will be a blessing to you?

    Pray. Lord, I give you every disgusting lie that is floating around in my head and ask for your cleansing power over it.

    Write. Don’t hold back – this is an offering of your most vulnerable self.

    Shred. Instantly. Don’t answer the phone or go to the bathroom or whatever until it is shredded.

    It is only between you and the Lord.

    Pray: Jesus, cover this with your blood.

    And let it go.

    How many times does God command us in His word to not be afraid?

    Don’t let the fear of being found out (Those things I think are so mean! What if I really am all those horrible things? What if they read them – I’ll never live through the things they would say to me then!)—don’t let the fear of being found out keep you from your post in the battle.

    Fight.

    With His Love,
    Amber

    PS. Please keep sharing here. I imagine the Lord using this site and your posts to free many, many women.

    April,

    Thank you for posting this. It’s going to be fun to meet you in heaven. You have quite a treasure waiting for you there, all glory to God.

    Your friend,

    Amber

    1. Amber,
      I LOVE THIS! Thank you so much for sharing!

      How I pray God might allow me to take store up all the treasure in heaven I possibly can – each of you! 🙂

  8. Dear Pearl, Prov 17:22 “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” It may be that your husband is crushed under guilt and shame, trying his very hardest to be good in God’s holy eyes. It is drying up his life and joy because that is what the law does. It is impossible for us to find life in the law – the burden is too heavy. If we break even one commandment we are under a curse.

    I think if he sees joy, light, life and grace in your eyes; sees that you have peace and a nearness to God that he is trying to have – God will use that more powerfully than words can ever convey. When we only receive negative from the Word, we are also only receiving negative from everything, including our spouse and environment, even food. (I started reacting to everything with increasing allergies and health problems too. I attacked myself, and that allowed the enemy and my body to attack me too). We are very toxic and find it impossible to get clean because we are trying to do it ourselves rather than receive what Jesus already did. When others point out “more faults” to us trying to help us be set free, we feel more angry and more guilty and fight back, since we are already drowning in failure and really think we know God and how to be close to Him if we just tried harder.

    Only God can open our eyes to His goodness and grace. He gets us to the end of ourselves and any kind of thinking that we have any ability to save ourselves or have any teeny source of good in ourselves at all.

    Two things that convicted me when I was so bitter and hurting and full of unbelief were
    1) people full of powerful faith for themselves and those around them today
    2) people who did not speak negatively at all, but rather scripture, thanksgiving and praise

    Jesus has given you huge authority to speak mighty things into being as a believer . Say “I speak freedom, life, for eyes to see and ears to hear and a soft heart that can turn and be healed for my husband. Speak to his unbelief and inability to receive grace and love to really decrease and his faith to increase. He needs deliverance from old sins, old habits, lies, attack, generational sins, generational curses. So get your Spiritual armor on each day for this battle, and with the sword of the Word cut those curses and lies and sins in the Name of Jesus that have a hold on your husband, you and your kids. Kick those demonic forces out of your house. “In the Name of Jesus I cut all demonic assignments against me, my husband, our children and our home. I bind them and send them to the Cross to be dealt with by Jesus.” “I loose His love and power and blessings and His Spirit to work in our hearts and our home and to reign with His peace over us and our marriage.” Or if that feels too strange to pray at first – find prayers like Ephesians 3:14-21 and Col 1:9-14 to pray over him.

    When you pray, thank God that He has already done these things instead of asking God for these things – because Jesus said “It is finished” on the Cross and that He has already blessed believers with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms (and many other verses and promises for believers). “Thank you God that my husband already has freedom in Jesus – for “if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” Thank you God for deliverance from lies and strongholds in my husbands heart and thinking, for Your arm is not too short to save, and You still set the captives free, and those who look to You are radiant and will never be filled with shame. Thank you that I am radiant because I am trusting in You. Thank you God that You are working in our hearts and our home. And then praise Him! He is worthy of it! He is Faithful and True. He is the object of your faith – and worthy of our trust. He is infinitely good and way more interested in us loving and growing in Him than we are. And He inhabits the praise of His people. And our praise is a weapon that opens new pathways and routes the enemy. Blessings!

  9. Hi Becca 🙂

    Regarding your comment about you feeling like you don’t bring anything to the table or that you’re not an asset – many believing husbands do not have believing wives who pray for them, but yours does! My boyfriend and I are both believers and I love him a lot, but for whatever reason, I find it hard to pray for him or I forget. Praying for your family is a huge asset. <3

    Love,
    Flower

  10. Going through older posts, and I so relate to this one. As a matter of fact, this is all me! God showed me that I have unbelief in my heart, and that I do not recieve His love. It’s like I can’t. I know that the Bible says He loves me and it speaks of all His goodness, so it’s a head knowledge, but then I don’t allow anything to happen in my heart. Even worse, I don’t WANT to recieve it because I have been so let down in many different ways. Either rejected, slighted, treated disrespectfully in front of others. And this from the very brothers and sisters I serve with. It has just been a rough few years.

    My mom brought me up to know the Lord. So, as a little girl, I just knew God was there. I knew Him, I was aware of Him, and I was in awe of Him, especially when my mom would talk about Him. And when I first reconciled with Him (after having walked in the world many years) I FELT, in my HEART, His love for me. It took over me and I was so happy to be home in Him again, just like as a little girl.

    Now, after six years of walking with Him, I had let idols in my life (a guy I have been obsessed with, but continually rejected by). This along with the other things mentioned. So, I am at a point today where I can no longer recieve God’s love. I have even cried and cried because I come close to even believing that His love and goodness is all a lie, and that I can’t sense it anymore. I think I have made myself so afraid of more pain, that I don’t want to open my heart to anything. My circumstances to me are more real and more frightening than the Love of God is real and powerful.

    Yes, I am always wanting be the do-gooder, maybe to keep good relationships. Always wanting to be the nice one, not showing emotions or anger (I have been mocked when I have gotten angry in the past.) So, I just live with a wall up in my heart, unwilling to feel anything but numbness. It’s a sad state my heart is in, but I am happy because God showed me this. Now, my only hope is faith, believing God. I feel like i had an easier time believing every word of God as a child. Now that the trials of life have come upon me, it’s like I have become stubborn.

    Please pray for me 🙂

    1. Angela,

      Of course I will pray.

      Lord,
      We pray for Angela’s eyes to continue to be opened by Your Spirit. Give her heart fertile ground to receive Your truth and love. Let her see with new eyes and receive all the love, truth, and LIFE You have in store for her. Let her lay down all of her idols, sins, fears, and expectations for this world and yield completely to You alone as LORD of all!

      Amen!

      I would love for you to also read this other post by Radiant, I think it will be such a blessing.

    1. Krista,

      I pray that this may be a big step toward findin healing. This mindset that Radiant had was so toxic! I praise God that He delivered her from it, and I praise Him that He can and will deliver you, as well, my precious friend! ❤️❤️❤️

  11. April,

    I cannot tell you enough what a comfort it is to have you on my side and I am pretty sure I speak for all the sisters who visit your blog. I am eternally grateful that you heard God’s calling to speak His Word and share your journey with all of us. Your precious time, love, dedication and wisdom have forever changed my life. I pray that God will continue to bless you and your family and that you will forever remain filled with His Love.

    Many prayers and love,
    Krista

    1. Krista,

      You know what? I didn’t have anyone to share these critical truths with me for so long in our marriage. And I never really had a godly mentoring wife who met with me on a regular basis. I had to learn so much of this on my own – just God, me, my journal, and about 30 books. It was painful! And slow! BUT – what an honor and privilege it is for me that God allows me to share these things with my sisters in Christ in this place. Nothing brings me greater joy than to get to give the treasures of Jesus to others and to watch Him transform lives and do miracles in families. I cannot keep these blessings to myself!

      What an answer to prayer to me that God is blessing you and speaking to you here. WOOHOO!

      Much love, my precious sister! Thank you for the prayers. I pray that God will continue to speak and move in your heart for His greatest glory! I can’t wait to see all that He wants to show you and all that He plans to do in your life. 🙂

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