I like anonymity.
I don’t desire a public life. A life of public profiles, Tweets, Pinterest boards, Facebook, WordPress blogs and my deepest thoughts available for scrutiny.
My life has been public before. My mistakes were taken and magnified. They were falsified, exaggerated and spread out. The labels given to me followed me everywhere.
I have enjoyed being private because of this. Hiding who I truly am because my wounded self convinced me that it is not safe to be myself in an open and vulnerable way. Yet here I am today on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and on a blog. Where will this lead? What does this mean? Are my thoughts really worth sharing? Are my likes and interests really worth making public? Am I truly a person of value with a message of value?
Let the redeemed of the LORD tell their story– those He redeemed from the hand of the foe.Psalm 107:2
I believe that if we focus on the shame and humiliation that surrounds our most painful stories then we miss the point. I’m not who I once was and the God of redemption is rewriting my story. My story has the potential to bring hope but more importantly our stories of redemption bring glory to the Lord. As hard as it is we can step out in faith to proclaim what God is doing in our lives. What a privilege to be used by God in this way.
In my journey, God, in his mercy and grace did not call me to a place of self-exposure all at once. It has happened little by little. First to a single lady long ago. She didn’t turn away in disgust. Then to the man who would become my husband, who loved me and pursued me in spite of my story. Then, years later, to ladies at a Bible study. But even then the words came from my head, from a place of pride, sheltering my heart as I communicated that I was “doing well” — that I had overcome my trauma. Not God, but I. And finally to a support group where I recognized and allowed myself to admit that, in fact, I wasn’t “over” my woundedness and that the pain of all those traumatic events and betrayals are still a thorn in my side that impact every aspect of my life.
Up until now I have shared parts of my story with carefully selected people in a carefully selected way that masked my true pain and vulnerability. I’ve avoided the group of people that bore witness to my suffering. The ones that judged and rejected me because of the mistakes I made and for acts perpetrated against me. But God is calling me to more and, despite myself, I am responding — struggling with the level of exposure and fear for what it might mean to be known and to be authentic. I hear him clearly as He whispers, “My strength is made perfect in your weakness”.
I am weak but He is strong (2 Corinthians 12:9-11).
I was lost but now I am found (Luke 15:24)
I was alone but will never be again (Deuteronomy 31:6).
He is my redeemer (Exodus 15:13) the reason I tell my story.