Empathy. Understanding. Experience.
If just for a second we could see into the hearts of everyone around us, as if obtained a sweet super-power, we would all be so intimately drawn to each other because it would be like looking at an xray of our heart. Just a few minutes ago I was reading my friend Kelly’s blog and found so much joy an encouragement within the post [read it HERE]. Taking a couple minutes to read her post entitled “all.pretty.normal.” reminded me of why I tell my story, which something I’ve been struggling with lately.
When I first started telling my story and certain times through the maturity of my pursuit of “professional speaking”, I wasn’t living my story… I was simply telling it. What I mean by that is, I hadn’t dealt with a lot of the pain involved in my story and certainly wasn’t practicing what I preached to these students when it came to the protection of their heart[s]. During these moments of inconsistency, I felt like a liar, a fake and had so much shame that I would almost cancel speaking engagements because I hated the face that I was shaving in preparation for a day at the school. During those times when I would have preferred that the razor take off my skin and not just the hair on my face, I was comforted by two things…
- The knowledge and understanding that God is glorified through all things, even our most assholeish moments.
- Students and teachers alike needed to know that they are not alone in what they have gone through and are experiencing.
To be honest, the only person that was negatively effected through those moments was me… and the dagger that dug the deepest was that I felt completely alone. I am so good at manipulation and my worst victim is usually myself, but the most common victim[s] were my best friends and surrounding community. My character was weak but I wore a really pretty mask of boldness and strength, so I hid behind nights at the bar, and make out sessions with good friends, complete strangers, and random acquaintances. I hid behind wordy, “vulnerable” blog posts, over emphasized moments of “spiritual epiphany”, and opportunity to give advice and take the focus off of myself.
If you want my opinion… my character was shit.
It is sad that I can’t draw a specific time period in my life where this all took place, it was sporadic, random, and took shape when I was “lonely” and didn’t really want to fight hard to get through the struggles and obstacles. However, I can draw a time for when it all changed, and that time is November of 2010. I have decided to be new, accepted grace and allowed it to be my motivation. Knowing that I don’t have to please God in order for Him to love me, but that He is simply pleased with me because He loves me has changed a lot of things in my life and pursuit.
It truly breaks my heart when people feel like they are all alone in the pain they are feeling, or the corruption of their individual depravity, or the unspeakable acts that have been done to them… to you, and me. It is this heart that will keep me speaking and possibly pursue it more seriously than ever, however, I am hesitant, because I also know that God is calling me to be within a community of hurting youth and a community hungry for truth.
Character is an issue of the heart, not an expression of a facade. If you are dissatisfied with your character, seek God with ALL of your heart! Stop trying to please God in order to make Him love you; He already loves you and is waiting for you to respond to His perfect, never ending love. Please tell your story… to anyone that will listen! You will be absolutely floored at the response you get from people who relate with your story and understand your pain… It is so beautiful when hearts align in that way!
If you need a place to get things off of your chest, work them out before actually speaking them to someone, there is a website that is built just for that… AVulnerableLife.com was created specifically for those moments where you have so much to get off of your chest and need to know that someone is reading it. When you post on AVL it is anonymous, for the comfort of your heart.
Share Your Heart. Seek the Heart of God. Be Free.