Growing Pains

September 30, 2011
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Do you ever remember waking up in the middle of the night when you were little and your joints just hurt? My knees and calves always did this and I remember I would wake up in tears and my mom would draw a bath and I would just soak and hold my body and rock. Good old growing pains. Man who knew they would occur in my life again, in a totally new way?

First, I have come to the point in my life that I just want to be real. Real, whether that is completely broken, put together or not. I crave authenticity. I crave transparency. I don’t know why, but every piece of me wants to share my struggles. Even when the other part of my brain says “Gina, clients are going to read that and thing you are crazy” or  “People will think I don’t have it together.”  To be completely honest, as much I am scared that I will be judged and and I will lose business. My heart feels like its more important to not to be one of those people that you look at and say “I wish my life was like them because they have it all together and are doing it.” I want you to have a window at the everyday and the walk that I am going through.

This is me and I don’t want to put on anything else besides who I really am and what my life really looks like right now.

So, Truth. The last 4-5 months have been a lot like this photo below. With my hands in my head….frustrated, contemplating, working through, holding on. Experiencing growing pains. Having trouble with easy things. Things that have been cake in my life before. Normally with my type A personality I would immediately jump on my shortcomings and analyze and fix or try to fix. A new diet, a new to-do list or system. Now while these thoughts automatically come into my mind, I don’t want a short term human fix.

I currently am on a mission of rebuilding my heart and soul. I want God to take every piece of my human thinking and carve it out to be like HIS.

I want every part of my life to be stripped to its core and rebuilt. Yet the kicker for me, is that its hard work. Truly I think a piece of me felt like it would be easy. Now, that I know Jesus and this world won’t be hard anymore, but I am just learning the true meaning of walking as a Christian. I feel like I am a rookie at life. It takes conscious thought to turn off or away from your past coping mechanisms, your old habits, even some of your favorite things that get in the way of Jesus. I had no idea how hard the devil would fight me to stay put and to not grow. How things in your past that were so fun are not so fun anymore. My awareness has been heightened to a whole new level of what keeps me on the right path, or brings me back down the old. Now I am fallen like all of us and will make mistakes, and sometimes the hardest part for me is to forgive myself and accept God’s gift of grace.

Thinking. Thoughts. That is what usually gets me into my tough times. My negative self-talk, my body image and my heart telling me I am not good enough. While I know that these are negative and are usually built up fear, they still show up. Over and over again, even when I tell them to go away or take a hike. I personally have come to a point in my walk where I have learned I am helpless with out my heavenly father. That without him and resting in His promises I am completely at a loss. And while I might have success or some great days, the long term state of my heart will never be fulfilled.  I have tried to put everything in this gaping hole that is meant for only Christ.  Work, food, attention, facebook, friendships, tv, everything. Nothing can fill it like He can. This especially shows up in my thoughts. I am working really hard at a baby step level to change my thought closet of dirty laundry and replace it with God’s truth and promises. This takes work, active, attentive hard work and sometimes I don’t give myself credit. I just assume that I should have it already.

So today instead of comparing my shortcomings to how I used to be, what I used to get done or what I used to accomplish. I am going to focus on my growing pains, and know that I am working toward growing up and in Christ. I will stop punishing myself for taking the time to grow. To hurt, to feel, to be pruned. I will rejoice in my weaknesses, because when I am weak he is strong 2 Corinthians 2: 9-10**

Ginaism :: Gina how true is the title growing pains, you had the title as something else and it hit you like a ton of bricks. This is exactly what you are going through.  SO please remember…….You are NOT your struggles. They do not define you. They are just proof that God is working in you, at a cellular level to rebuild your thinking patterns, your life patterns. It’s like you are in preschool again. Of course you wouldn’t be able to know Algebra in preschool. Give your self some love and time. You can’t be superwoman right now and that is ok. Take time with the time you have in your daily life to continually lean into him. Start loving yourself through respecting your temple and your body. Continue to be aware at the devil coming at you and trying to take control of your thoughts like he always has.

Exchange your human thought closet with God’s. His truth. His promises. These things will put your mind in the right place. Know that when you are struggling he is STRONG **2nd Corinthians 2:9-10 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong Gina know that you were knitted in your mothers womb by GOD. The creator of the universe knit you together, he sent his son to die for you. YOU. You mean so much to him and that is all that matters. Continue to ask God to broaden your understanding and physically recieve his extravagant love. Listen to this song when you doubt it. Gina you can do this but only by walking with him and the narrow path. So draw yourself a bath and relax into the word during your growing pains, they are a good thing. 

Thank you J, for taking a photo of where I am at.

24 thoughts on “Growing Pains

  1. Uau! I am amazed how another Gina 🙂 can put in such great words the growing pains I am felling. Truly amazing… as I cry in my last day of work, and as I fear the coming ahead future and wihtout knowing what to do for myself because I am in that precise moment and in those precise growing pains… You’ve just wrote about.
    It’s been a process since I’ve “met” Making Things Happen and I feel so lost, but I know I am not alone. Thank you for sharing your thoughts!
    The other Gina, across the Ocean.

  2. Gina, you are a force to be reckoned with, and a soul that knows Christ’s love fully and the truth that you can find within him as you grow. You have faced all of your fears head on this year, and I am so PROUD of you. Your authenticity, your love for friends, family and clients, is AMAZING and it truly shows through everything you do and will continue to do so as you grow. xoxo

  3. You are amazing. And this blog, your writing is such a testament. You thought people would read this and think you don’t have it together, quite the contrary. You are an example of Christianity and God love and fearing. Thank you for putting it all out there.. I needed this today.

  4. Gina…you are beautiful! I remember being in a very similar place a few years ago and He is so good to take us by the hand and gently bring us through the refining fire.

    “You are altogether beautiful, my love. There is no flaw in you” Song of Solomon 4:7

  5. WOW! Thank you for sharing this…. You have no idea how much this helps me 🙂 specially now where I am in my life… “You are NOT your struggles. They do not define you. They are just proof that God is working in you…”
    Thank you!

  6. G,
    I love that you wrote this. I just searched back to see if I could find any raw footage of my hardest season and nope… I never wrote it. I wrote about a million other things, but not the hardest thing. I may have journaled it, but I was convinced no one wanted to hear it, much less see it… it was too raw and too real… so I commend you for writing it! I get excited reading all of this because I know you won’t stop. I know you won’t pull back and decide to be ‘ok’ with it… but you’ll keep digging and letting God dig up every last ounce of the roots to rebuild that firm foundation in moving forward. You are courageous and brave my friend… not many will choose to do the same. So I’m behind you… praying for continued strength and courage AND for speedy victory! It was my prayer over and over in that season… and it’s biblical 😉 You will walk THROUGH this! Psalms 23 comes to mind.
    And for what it’s worth… i wrote this a few months ago about my ‘walking thru’ and so wish I’d wrote in the midst of it.
    Standing with you,

  7. I really love your posts, because you are so refreshingly real. Something that helps me is standing on a verse, one that speaks to me-and placing it on my bathroom mirror or my living room chalkboard-so I can see it through the days and mediate on it. Sounds like you have one above. 🙂
    Thank you for always sharing your heart with all of us. Hugs, Liz

  8. Gina,
    This is why I love you, this is why I brag about you to everyone who listens. You are so real You are so genuine, you are such a blessing to everybody who knows you and who WILL get to know you. God has you and is working in you in so many different ways, you are impacting so many people and are witnessing to so many people around the world. I love you for who you were, I love you for who you are, I love you for who God is forming you to be, and I will love you for who you will be. Thank you for always being real with me, and for being real with all of your friends. You are so amazingly special!! and beautiful!

  9. G: The only way God will heal us, is if we come before him completely broken. Rest in his promises. I’d take a real broken friend EVERY day of the week over one who has it all together, because honestly, we are ALL broken. Only those with REAL courage share it. You’ve GOT this G! I’m front row in the cheering section of your life. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE you.

  10. Gina, You were the one who made me stand TALL, with both feet planted before I speak. And all I could think of is, “Man, this woman is STRENGTH. This woman is the real deal. She has faced struggles, danger, trials head-to-head and smashed them.” I didn’t think, “She has it all together, her life is a fairytale.” I thought, “That is someone that I admire for stopping me in my tracks and making me stand tall and cry if I have to before I speak, when I speak, if I’m hurt, but stand tall and speak it.” You already do this. God is using you. I love what your husband wrote here, because all over the world, you are being a witness. It doesn’t get anymore beautiful than this. Love, kate

  11. This is so beautifully real, Gina. These last 5 months have been this for me, also. Almost to a T. It’s hard to remember that in Christ, we are made new. We are not our thoughts. our bad habits. our circumstances. our past. But rejoice in this: even in the storm, your heart continues to hold on to Him and His will…..stronger and longer, inviting God to continue his glorious work in you. He will bless you, immeasurably for that! A friend once told me, that in the valley is when you can really feel God near and to relish in that, because in times of Good, his presence may not feel as intimate and near; Its a blessing. The same person allso told me, that when you’re closer to where God wants you to be, or on the way to big things/ revelations, that the Devil will try harder, in fear of loosing his strong hold on you.( I find immeasurable comfort in that!). Rest in God. He will never take us to places, he will not take us through. Xo

  12. Gina, you are amazing, lady!!! For real. Thank you for being real. And, trust me when I say this, you are never going to lose your business or have people think you are crazy. Instead, you are impacting lives. This is a gift you got!!! Amazing. Simply amazing!

  13. Gina, I love you so much for this post. Thank you for being imperfect & vulnerable & sharing. I’m reading it at a time when I’m broken & I know I need to grow… but it’s hard. Thank you for showing that it’s ok & beautiful to be completely open & vulnerable.

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Gina is a Minneapolis based wedding and lifestyle photographer that loves bringing the LIFE out of people & capturing that energy on camera. Contact Me