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Posts Tagged ‘vulnerable’

We love because He first loved us.

These not so small words have been bringing me to tears lately. I have been sitting and stare at this truth.

I know love at all because He first extended it to me.

So often I can pride myself on the self effort of love. I crave loving deeply. I make every effort to do so. What I forget is that it’s not my love that I’m offering.

Love comes from somewhere.

Love started with someone.

THE only reason we know love at all is because He first loved us. THE only reason we recognize love at all is be He was the first to present honest, right, true, and deep love to us.

I am realizing how much further this extends into so many other deep truths.

I know grace because HE first had grace on me.

I know forgiveness because HE first forgave me.

I want to make people feel seen because HE first saw me.

I want to make people feel valued because HE first valued me.

Love, grace, forgiveness, value, and life come from a someone. They are started with a someone. Any parts of those words that I know is because of his firsts. To know more of the depth of those words is to know Him.

I am sitting in the weight of what I know because of Him. I am sitting in the weight of wanting to extend the offer of those because they were first offered to me. I just shake my head at the gift.

I smile now at the glimpses of those firsts I see of Him as others offer those words. Whether they realize it or not they accepted something, and someone, that was first offered to them.

My love is not my own. It started with a someone first. I am only offering the extension of that same gift given to me.

I hope to give that gift deeply more and more every day of my life. 

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I often use the phrase, “I’m working on it” when referring to my heart. I am learning that in reality I use this phrase as a shield to guard against actually having to confront my messy heart.

I used this phrase recently, and afterward I had to ask myself the question, “am I really working on it?” I can play this card as a safeguard – as if saying, “I’m working on it” lets me off the hook for responding out of my fears. By hiding behind “working on it,” I give my fears permission to take root in me.

The reality is that our mess is really hard to work on. It takes courage to confront our own hearts. My heart resembles a crater field after the dust has settled from battle. It displays the wounds of life. I have craters with other people’s names on them. I also have holes that echo the natural consequences of my unwise decisions. I get overwhelmed when staring at all the craters in my heart. I have also experienced seasons of ignoring my wounds and walking away to find comfort elsewhere.

The false advertising of life is that pursuing comfort elsewhere does not add wounds to the already broken heart.

As the wounds of my heart run deep, they manifest in different masked ways. If feels scary to confront them. Saying it out loud makes them more real.

The foundation of my crater field happened in high school when the affair of my father came out. The news shattered my world and brought on a deep level of pain I never knew could be reached. This grief sowed seeds of real fear in the core of my heart. These seeds manifest themselves in ways I am aware of as well as in ways I am still learning to identify.

I struggle with abandonment in paralyzing and infuriating ways. I guard my heart so tight that pain can’t find a way in. This fear paralyzes me from taking risks to experience real life and real intimacy.

I also fear being replaced all the time. I fear intimacy as it forces me into places that require the risk of being vulnerable and my heart exposed. I fear being a “meantime” friend as if it were only a matter of time before my friends find someone better than me. I am not using “better” in a prideful way, but voicing my deep insecurity that keeps my heart on lock down. I hate the nagging feeling of always holding my breath in waiting. I even imagine, and play out in my head, being left by the other person as a way to prepare myself for pain. By actively staying in this place of fear, I voluntarily place the shackles on my life of being enslaved to those fears.

I hate this long standing pattern of life for me. God has already done a ton of healing in me. I can honestly say that I am more whole than I used to be. It is a conscious effort to choose to trust people. I am trying to get used to sitting in a place of discomfort and lack of control. That place is terrifying for me.

There’s still the question of what if someone did decide to leave? This is a real possibility. I still grieve the loss of some really close friendships. It is even more of a possibility as our culture moves further away from commitment.

God is my redeemer. He promises that he “began a good work in me and carries it on to completion.” I have now edited my comfort phrase from “I’m working on it” to “He’s working on me.” I cannot heal my own heart. God is gentle as he waits for me to surrender my white flag to him. God has been redirecting my life out of the desert. I have spent too many weeks/months/years living life there.

Instead of adding bricks to the Great Wall of me, I desire to begin surrendering myself to him. Hillsong has a great song with lyrics that state,“rid me of myself, I belong to you…lead me to the cross.” This is my hard prayer to pray.

What are you “working on?”

How is He working on you?

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