“For this is what [the enemy] fears. He fears who you are; what you are; what you might become. He fears your beauty and your life-giving heart.” – Captivating by John & Stasi Eldridge
I haven’t blogged in well, a long time… there’s a reason for it. I hid my heart. I shied away from the vulnerability of opening my heart to you, and I apologise for that. I am not altogether sure why or when it happened, but somewhere down the road I stopped trusting and instead I started hiding. It was to protect my heart – and yet, as always when I do things in my “silly human girl fluffy logic” I managed to achieve the opposite. This morning I was planning a moms & daughters’ event I run at the school where I teach and as I started listening to the Holy Spirit reveal all these exciting ideas for the ladies, He suddenly changed track and it was my heart on the operating table… I didn’t see it coming. There were tears. There still are, but there’s also a comfort in knowing God is not satisfied with my remaining in my hiding place…
What He showed me is this: the enemy hates me. He hates women. He hates that we are the incarnation of God’s heart for Beauty and have the same life-giving potential that God himself already is… look at the world: the enemy is intent on destroying the beauty of God’s creation through genocide, war, destruction, pollution. That which is of beauty, reminds him of his own failings and he is relentless in seeking its destruction. Why do you think as women, we struggle most with our self-image? I have never believed that I am beautiful – despite many prophetic words and encouragement. I just couldn’t receive that; the Doubt, Lies and Fears were too over-powering. Instead, I hid that away in my heart. I will smile sweetly when someone says anything about my appearance, but walk away shaking it off… not receiving it. I have allowed the enemy to hold me captive in my own thinking. I have held myself back out of Insecurity and the Lie of Worthlessness.
The enemy hates that as women we have life-giving hearts; we are created to nurture and give life to future generations. Living in South Africa, it is blatantly apparent that the enemy is intentional in his attack on women. The injustices and crimes against women are heart-breaking – rape, abuse, violations of basic human rights… the enemy hates women. Men are not only to blame for being tools of this destruction. Instead of speaking Life and Love to one another, we seem so much quicker to gossip or slander, destroying each other with our words. We do not stand together, protecting one another’s hearts. I know I haven’t. A friend was praying for me the other day and saw an image of a heart made of glass. She could see its a heart, but it was made of broken shards glued back together. That’s my heart. Its been broken before and I have managed to glue it back together and its a mess. And now I am withholding it out of self preservation… but I am also withholding it from those around me. I have stopped opening it up and sharing the life-giving potential within.
Amid the tears of this morning, I asked the Holy Spirit why He would want me to open up my heart filled with my shame, my insecurities and fears – none of it is good, God glorifying stuff. He simply replied, “Your sorrows make your joys so much sweeter. If people don’t know your sorrows, they can’t appreciate your joys to the same degree. Rainbows are always the result of light through the rain.”
So this is me confessing: I am terrified of being vulnerable. I am terrified of really opening my heart to others because of the shame within. I have held back out of fear. I am sorry.
So often in my blogs I end by praying for you… this time, may I ask you to pray for me? May I ask that you pray for God to continue to heal my broken-shard-glass-heart? That the Holy Spirit will continue to hold me fast along this journey of healing? That He will give me the courage to follow and allow Him to do His work? Its terrifying to know that what lies ahead is Vulnerability, Embracing my Weaknesses and Sharing my Hurts… but I hold onto the truth of God’s Mercy, Faithfulness and Love. That He is my Healer; my Protector… and that He has a Plan and Purpose for all this. And I am kinda hoping it includes kicking the enemy in the teeth every time I open my heart to share Life (and not hide) with those around me.
Thank you for hearing my confession.