I've missed writing these last few days, but I didn't find anything worth sharing until this morning. The anger I have had tucked away has faded a great deal, and I see now that instead of burying emotion, I need to face it, see it for what it is, speak God's truth against it (ie rather than accept bitterness towards someone, counteract negative emotions and ponderings with what Jesus says: "Love your enemies... Pray for those who use you... Love... Love... Love..." and so on...) and, at the same time, trust God to deal with whatever circumstances face me. Not easy at times, but with practice this will grow. It makes for a far more peaceful way of living, I tell ya. :)
I mean, to NOT carry around the heavy burden of anger, to not feel bitterness, to not ache for revenge and justice and all the rest of it, truly is a better way to live than to be weighed down with so much negativity and stress. Imagine carrying... ooh, I don't know... let's say a bus on your shoulders all your life, then suddenly, one day, someone comes along and takes if off you, offering to carry it and deal with it for you. Imagine how light and free you'd feel not having to carry it anymore. Now that is freeing! But the trick is not to take it back again! After all, many of us are creatures of habit, and some of us do tend to stick with what we know.
Not that I was always focused on what it was that I had captured anger over, but I can clearly see how much lighter my heart is on handing such burdens over to God, and dealing with them in ways He knows are best... Lighter and far more peaceful. (Why do we forgive? So WE can be set free...) So, yeah, I'm feeling a greater deal better in myself these days.
However... OH, come on! You knew there as a however coming! ;) lol! I am here to share my lessons and what God reveals to, and teaches me, after all...
So... However ~ I have found something else in my heart that needs dealing with. And I guess it is part of the brokenness that I've swept under the carpet. The anger was used to keep this part of my heart hidden, I think; to protect this part, the more vulnerable and insecure part of me.
Does it surprise you to learn that I'm insecure? It often surprises many, with their response being 'But you have so much going for you...' Me, I have seen the mirror. I have seen my faults and failures and so on. In the eyes of the world, I don't make the cut. But my insecurity did not come from who I am now... though, what insecurity I possess now does have a lot to do with the way I still see myself. But my insecurity came from my childhood.
I never felt worthy of anyone; of love. I suffered with being rejected and ridiculed. I suffered so much I would near panic in going out in public - especially on my own. When speaking with someone I wasn't close friends with or angry with, I'd stumble over my words, turn bright red, and wish I'd never been born. I always feared people, and feared they'd think me a snob when in actual fact I just hated inconveniencing their life with me being in it, and went silent and kept to myself because I just wanted to stop existing most of the time.
Gee, even after my daughter was born, if I was out in public with her I was fine, but on my own I would want to hurry home and hide, wondering what I had on my face to make people look at me. I hated being looked at; forever expecting further ridicule and rejection. I hid behind make-up, food, cigarettes, and even alcohol, at times, pretending to be something I wasn't... And when that didn't work, I hid behind anger, it seems.
God has healed me of so many things. He has been working on my confidence for years; trying to build me up and set me free in that area. And yesterday He started taking me deeper in this area. Through a conversation with a friend, I came to be reminded how 'lower class' I've always seen myself to be. And when I stopped and looked at this yesterday, I accepted it even more, so much so that my heart grew very heavy, quite quickly...
LONG STORY SHORT: I know God loves me - imperfections and all! And I know I have so much to be grateful for. I do have a wonderful, faithful husband who loves me without conditions, who doubles as my best friend. I do have great kids whom I just adore to pieces! I do have beautiful friends. But when I stop and look at these things - these precious beings, such as yourself, I ache because I just don't feel I have enough to give.
Ok... I haven't the time to go into all of the details, but, the long and short of it is, I still don't feel good enough. This is the secret I still hide in the depths of my soul. This is still the foundation of my insecurities. This is still the door the enemy uses to get through to me; to get to me; to bring me down; to stir depression in my soul. This is still the key to the door I lock myself behind from time to time. This is the part of me that anger still wants to hide, protect and defend. This is the part of me that God is still dealing with, even as I write this.
Hmmm, this is not what I wanted to write to you about. I'm happy to share it, but it's where these thoughts led me to that I wanted to share. I want to share what God impressed upon my heart this morning: Loving the ugly bits. But this letter has dragged on. I don't like making these letters too long, so I will start writing the next one asap. Until then, I'll leave you with this:
1 Peter 5:6-11
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
God cares for you. No matter where I am at right now, I KNOW God cares for me. IKNOW He loves me. I KNOW He works ALL things for good. I KNOW He hasn't given up on me - in fact, what I share with you is evidence of Him working in my heart and life; working to truly set me free. And I KNOW, with ALL I am, HE CARES FOR YOU! HE LOVES YOU! WITH A PASSION!!! And that I want to speak of next time I write.
Until next time, remember: YOU are dearly loved!
All my love and respect