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One could say I’ve traveled a lot of ground these last few years. The occasional hill and valley lay shrouded by the majesty of mountains a plenty. Rivers turned to rapids as my soul swirled in search of the fertile, peaceful ground of meadows.

Here is where I am often found these days. Where the Son smiles upon me and we dance with laughter. There’s room to run, to play, to rest and to simply love without restraint.

It’s like joy, which all at once takes your breath away & then fills your lungs with life again.

The Biggest Lie I Did Believe #write31days #31daystobelieve

So you breathe. Deeply.

You inhale.

Grace.

Love.

Freedom.

I still find myself slipping away on occasion, from peace-filled beauty, and I’m climbing fortresses instead. The shallow air lulls me to forget the refreshing air I breathed before.

When I can see again, I notice God’s hand leading me and I keep on walking. Because, I don’t want to stop. I don’t want to go back to the place where I cannot see hope in front of me.

I’ve accepted that for far too long. Maybe you have too? Maybe you know the weary walk and want to retire? If you must, dear one, I long for you to retire into the safety of His all-sufficient arms. He has meadows of peace for you too.

For most of my years, I’ve walked the paths of life looking cautiously for the steep declines. The drop offs unseen. Because, narrow is the road, you know.

All the while, these lies in my head caused me to dread. I fed them with acquiescence. Because, when you feel unworthy, what right do you have to fight them off instead?

So they grew. Their claws gripped fiercely.

Unworthiness.

Shame.

Guilt.

Condemnation.

What a web, which clung so tightly I didn’t even notice it was there.

Eventually, after so many years of treading up hills and not realizing they were really glass mountains I’d only slide down upon, I plum wore out.

Steeped in the need to just get-up and go-again, I kept looking around. Maybe I could pick from the lilies of loveliness and feel as if I might be enough. Perhaps the daisies of determination would get me through.

I didn’t realize I had what I needed all along. So, I ignored the gifts inside of me and kept treading with never ending searches. Some call this obstinate. In my denial, I refused to believe it was self-reliance.

His whispers began to loosen the claws where shame tore my soul thread bare.

When I knew I no longer had to go this way alone, I gave in to surrender sweet.

God met me there. He looked upon my face with great care. I began to look in return then turned back to see where I was.

Step upon step I climbed. Grief nearly dropped me off a cliff. Hurt began to swallow me whole. Defeat kept punching me down.

Then His hand guided me through. Straight into the mountains of all life’s pains we traveled.

Childhood memories creep in now and I have to laugh.

“I feel like a Weeble Wobble,” I say to myself. “I keep on falling but I just won’t stay down.” “Huh,” I wonder.

Is that me or is it God inside of me?

This I’ve known, spouting off puffed-up platitudes could only mean a game of smoke and mirrors, which I simply couldn’t do. It never did compare to the well of wisdom preached to my soul. I needed to draw from the well so deep.

How do you gain the blessings of freedom by telling yourself you deserve it? You are owed it? You are worth it?

And there it is, the biggest lie which I did believe; I’m not worthy.

My soul tousled with lies and half-truths. Something wasn’t right. Saying the words to myself by way of mantra were never going to cut it. Somehow, I knew this but didn’t understand it well.

Then it happened, blessings arrived through tears.

If you asked me a few years ago if I dealt with shame, I’d have said, “Say wha…? Me? Shoot, no. I know I’m loved by God.” If you asked me if I had a crises of identity I’d have raised my eyebrows at you. Or maybe my heart would have felt red hot as I’d retort mentally, “Who do you think you are for telling me such a thing. OF COURSE I know who I am.”

Because I know a lot of things.

In my head.

I needed a hole in my boat of self-reliancy to let these beliefs sink to my heart.

I got it too, through trial after trial.

Blessings arrived through tears.

Unworthiness affected my ability to receive power and comfort in life, because shame kept batting it away. Blocking it at every door.

And shame knocks at many a door.

Shame affects our identity & purpose, by crippling us in fear. By telling us we are anything but who we are in Christ.

And when we’re afraid, because we don’t believe we are worthy of love, of safety, or of being cared for unconditionally, we’ll do anything to hide and conceal it.

Like Adam & Eve, we don the leaves.

That’s why I’m bringing this lie out in the open to see the light of day.

Shame – you have no hold over me because I am His and He is mine. Forever & Ever Amen.

I say this again, after saying it before. Because shame doesn’t like to leave so easily. Sometimes we don’t know where shame lurks in our past & in our hurts.

What if we hunted down shame by actively seeking it out? What if we asked the Lord to reveal shame in our lives so we could pull it out, roots and all.

And what if we did that and we became free, just as the Lord wants us to be?

Oh, what a world we would see.

#31DaystoBelieve #Write31DaysJoin me for #31DaystoBelieve as we continue to pursue what we believe and how it impacts our lives.
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May we learn to #livewell.

with love,
Jolene

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