One more point I would like to make before we start: We have to be stern with your mind, but gentle with your spirit. The stick is for your natural self, your sins. The carrot is for the growing of your spirit. We are going to be exhorting your mind, but sweetly encouraging your spirit. Sometimes a lesson might be difficult and hard to take. This is the path the Lord gave me, and sometimes He encouraged me, and sometimes He chastised me. Both were necessary so that I could strengthen my weak parts, and subdue the parts of me that were ruining my life.
Yes, some things will be hard to hear However, a) it is most likely because you are being convicted of something you have hidden deep down and didn’t even know it or b) it’s because every human needs to be chastised at some time so we can fix errors in our lives.
That includes all of us who are prone to OCD, panic, and anxiety. These feelings we have seem so strong that we think we can’t overcome them. Until we get strong enough in our conviction to take a stand against our own false sense of reality, we will not heal. Chastising words help us develop strength of conviction, strength of character, so that we can overcome the fear and anxiety we feel. It is not to wound, it is to mend.
So there will be times when the words in the book sting. It is a good sting, a healing sting. These are the “stick” to get you walking through the rough spots of the road to healing.
There will also be chapters that are hard to take because they seem just too wonderful!! If you have OCD, panic, and anxiety, it is because you do not fully understand the love the Lord has for you! You do not understand your own wonderful, glorious position as a child of God! If you knew how much you were loved, cared for, cherished, your joy would crowd out these fears and irrationalities.
Honestly, these truths were more difficult for me to accept than the “sticks” that the Lord used. I could easily understand how much I sinned, but had a very hard time with how much I was loved. Please do not gloss over these either. It is not noble to refuse the love and blessings of the Lord. Accept both the carrot and the stick, knowing that the Lord is providing both for your healing.