I feel as if I refer to the past year in a half a lot. I catch myself starting endless conversations this way. I suppose it is because my family and I are still on this journey that really only started in the past year and half. The other part of it comes from a much deeper, darker space within me. It could be that I never want to be where I was or who I was prior to this. I suppose I had led myself to believe that I was okay with it all, that the past was the past and now is just now and the future is nothing we can even measure here on earth. I do believe all of this whole heartedly except for the past part. I didn't know until about a month ago that I was quite ashamed of the past. As it turns out I wasn't truly accepting my redemption yet. In fact I believe that I didn't even want to be seen anywhere near that light.
One of the best parts about moving to a new town 6 hours away from the place you thought you would always call home is that no one knows you or your crap ( or what they think they know about you and your crap). This alone is a fairly fabulous freedom that I had never known. However anonymous existence only lasts for so long and it isn't really what I believe God intends for our lives. God used this time to not only free me but to break me and it was effective. The problem is that this freedom still lingers, that freedom unleashed an unbridled existence within me and for the first time in my life I began to live out my life for an audience of one, that one being my heavenly father.
Recently I heard others perceptions of me in rather public forum. I wanted to run so fast from those words, they were embarrassing and very much not true, and perhaps the worst part was that although they didn't describe me now they weren't far off from where I used to be. From who I used to be. And maybe in the past these feelings would have made me feel a step up in the world. Now they made me want to hide. I had forgotten who i was living for and quickly allowed myself to believe that these other persons feeling should be become part of my own. Instead of adopting my true identity.
My fault beyond the shame and hiding was that as soon as these emotions came across my heart I began to question God for what he wanted. I immediately started to pray and ask God what more he needed to strip, what more he needed to take. What more can I give? At the same time take it all.
But the most surprising emotion was the embarrassment. I can't even pick a time in my life where I have been embarrassed. I am what you would call an open book. I am quick to point out my ridiculousness. I wear my heart on my sleeve. I really believe that my life and my experiences are not mine to hold but rather are meant to be shared, they don't belong to me. So the fact that I felt so embarrassed was not only shameful but foreign. Our Sunday gathering was the absolute worst. I felt as if I couldn't even lift my head. Making eye contact or engaging myself in conversation was impossible because I was full on invested in not being seen. I had confused the message I had been sent in my interaction to mean that I needed to be invisible. If no one saw me they couldn't have opinions and if I disappeared I wouldn't have to feel this way anymore. P.S. it didn't work.
I spent a week in Vegas with Brian 2 weeks ago. I had planned to write and to read God's word the entire time I was there. I knew I wanted to allow God to use that time to fill and change my heart. However, every time I opened my bible it was if I was in the middle of a giant auditorium filled with screaming people. And I allowed that to mean that God was letting me sit in my squalor for a bit. Allowing me to experience my sin. Allowing me to feel what I had claimed. If I wanted to be the own lifter of my very head I could try it. I don't believe God ever gives us what we truly deserve but I do believe he allows to walk in our sin on occasion to ultimately show us the ways of our own hearts. And the way of my heart was that I was allowing other peoples view points of me to dictate how I felt about myself but ultimately dictate how I thought God felt about me. I was willing to give the whole year and half up for someone else's perceptions.
I don't see the message any different now except that I now realize it has nothing to do with me. I mean this in the opposite vein of pride. What God wanted me to give was all of me. I believe now that what I was to learn was that God could care for me in all circumstances that his love was enough to lift my head when I felt as if I couldn't. That I had nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about. Who I was and who I am are all part of his plan. I am no longer seen in my own light but in the light of Jesus. Thats the identity I adopt.
I know this seems like quite the babble and it may not make much sense. You won't catch me apologizing. My hope is that within the babble you would find something that reminds you of the very redemption you yourself have been offered.
We have two options we can walk around attempting to hide from the very God that knows us better than we know ourselves or we walk in love, in the truth of being known for who God intends us to be as if we already are. The latter is much lighter. The latter is eternal.
Walk In Love Friends-