30 Days of Truth: He will make your paths straight.

Truth 29:  Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:5-6

A note from my journal:

Plans for Me.  Aug 26, 2012 

I sent email to a Christian Counselor who listed childhood sexual abuse as one of her specialties…and this was her verse: Isaiah 61:3..to give beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness that they might be called trees of righteousness…that He might be glorified.  *Panic*

I did it!  Aug 27, 2012  I called to make the appointment and the receptionist said she is no longer taking patients at this time. She scheduled me an appointment with another counselor.  I explained that I really wanted to see the Isaiah 61:3 counselor because I am looking for specific help with CSA.  She encouraged me to try this counselor as her profile indicates she can assist as well. I am sure God already knew this so I will just keep walking.

I remember my hands shaking when I picked up the phone to dial the counselor’s office and make the appointment. I had my heart set on the Isaiah 61:3 counselor, and I immediately felt intense disappointment and doubt when she said that counselor was not taking new patients.

As I was trying to listen to the receptionist, those unkind, mean and confusing voices in my head started yelling at each other all at once.

Maybe I shouldn’t go. Maybe this is not the place. 

Why am I even doing this?  

God, I thought you wanted me to see her! 

Maybe I can’t be helped.  I am crazy.

I will never get well! 

It’s too late.

Thankfully, the receptionist patiently encouraged me to make the appointment with the other counselor and to give her a chance.

God used the verse to point me to the right place, and the receptionist to point me to the perfect counselor, for me.

I just had to keep walking and trusting.

That was the beginning of my healing journey and that pattern played out over and over.

I wanted a map. I wanted the path to be perfectly clear, and then I would put my foot on the pavement and move. I wanted to know how it would all play out.

I wanted control.

Slowly, but surely God was whispering to my heart, “I want you to trust me.”

With healing, I had no idea what was going to happen next. I didn’t have a map, and I could not even see a path.

He was teaching me to listen for that quiet whisper to my heart, “This is the way, walk …”  and I would reluctantly step into the unknown.

God was patient with me.  

I wanted control. I wanted it my way. I wanted what made sense to me.

I made very strong statements to my counselor while gripping rocks in my hand on her safe sofa:  “I will not tell… I will not confront… I will not forgive!”

In those moments, I was relying on own limited understanding and operating in my own flesh, power and strength. My map was limited, and my control kept me frozen…

…and then God would whisper, “move…this way.”

I would take another step into the unknown, and He would prove faithful.

He was turning my “will not’s” into possibilities.

God was making my paths straight.

Place your trust in the Eternal; rely on Him completely;

    never depend upon your own ideas and inventions.

Give Him the credit for everything you accomplish,

    and He will smooth out and straighten the road that lies ahead. Proverbs 3:5-6 VOICE

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Being Vulnerable

Yesterday at lunch, I opened my fortune cookie and it said:

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It was a statement that made me pause.

“You never show your vulnerability”

Thursday in therapy  – I mentioned how sometimes I don’t know how to respond or react.  I even said I feel like I am lying if I respond, “I’m good – how are you doing?” yet, how do I respond truthfully?  Especially when all I have ever tried to do is appear okay – when inside I was anything but okay.

“You are always self-assured and confident”

So. Not. True.  at least not on the inside.   How can what’s projected be so different from what is within?   It’s all I’ve ever known to do.  Hold it together, fearing one small fray will rip apart all of the seams.

Maybe part of me discovering how to be vulnerable, is losing the “I’m okay – all is good” message.   Deactivating Facebook helped me tremendously in this area.  When I quit back in September for six weeks, I never thought I would even make it to the six-week mark.  I’ve yet to return.  I’m not even sure how to return, or if I will return.

Somehow it all connects for me and that fortune spelled it out.  Showing my vulnerability begins when I find my confidence and my self-assurance in Christ, and not in myself.

Not what can I do, but what He can do through me.

Not what I need to fear, but Who I need to trust.

Not patting myself on the back, but praising Him in everything.

Not what I can control, but releasing that grip and opening up my hands to trust Him.

Not worrying about what others think of me, but knowing what HE thinks of me and that being enough, more than enough.  

Not thinking “what if?”, but “what next?” knowing that nothing is a surprise to Him.

I’m learning to let go.   I’m learning to inhale the surrender as I exhale the control.

I’m letting go of power, and it’s making me stronger.

Maybe I am discovering freedom in weakness.

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Maybe being vulnerable for me right now is more like the flower to the left, where the petals that have protected are gently being peeled back, slowly opening, meeting His grace every step of the way.