Have you ever been completely honest with someone even though you were scared to death? Have you ever faced that moment where you laid everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, on the table for them to analyze and pick apart? You knew you would face the possibility of judgment for your actions, but what you were facing could no longer be held in anymore?
Last night I faced that moment. A simple conversation with my friend Emma turned into a heart-to-heart, and I became the epitome of “all the feels.” I don’t let my guard down easily with people (I know that doesn’t make sense since I’m sitting here telling you this story now), but I don’t. I’m an open book in so many, many ways and in other ways, I refuse to show any amount of affection. Seriously, if you want to see awkward just watch me hug my sister or my friend Kaelan. I don’t get affectionate often. But last night, I finally let my guard down with one of my closest friends.
Letting my guard down, allowing myself to trust in abounding ways, is something I have not done in a couple years. I was unashamedly honest with Emma. I told her things I have been holding in for an incredibly long time. I told her things that are probably the bravest confessions I’ve made in this time frame.
It’s not like she didn’t already know. She is one of my closest friends after all. But the importance is after all this time, I finally felt like the door was open, and I wanted to admit it. I told her I was done hiding, I was done pretending, I was done fighting by myself, and I needed someone to know.
The experience was liberating and a moment of revelation for me. Who am I to say God is working something wonderful in my life, something meant to bring Him mesmerizing of amounts of glory, and then never tell anyone about it? I realized if I truly believe God is working these things in my life, I should not be ashamed of what people think or how they perceive it. It’s God’s plan for my life, not theirs.
The same way I had to learn to stop rejecting grief in my life, I had to learn to simply let God work in my life, but not be afraid to let others be apart of that process.
I sit behind a computer screen a lot and talk about and glorify my faith journey. But in theme of honesty, y’all deserve to know I struggle. A lot. I’m still being shaped and molded into the person God wants me to be. I’m still trying to learn how to heal from people and situations that consistently make me feel like I will never be good enough. I still look at God and wonder how long he plans on having me wait for His promises. I doubt if I even understand His promises for my life. There are times I’m confused by his plan for my life. I just struggle.
Had God shown me His plan for my life six years ago, I would’ve ran the complete opposite direction. Who willing wants to face moving (well, that part I did want), heartbreak, anxiety, death and all the dreams for their life turned upside down. Had God shown me that where I am now, is where I would’ve been six years ago, I would’ve never moved, I would’ve never let myself fall in love, I would’ve distanced myself from everything and everybody in efforts to preserve my fragile soul from a world of hurt.
However, that’s the very problem. Had God shown me the entirety of His plans, I would have planted myself like a tree. God cannot show me the entirety of His plan because He knows I am humanly incapable of grasping how bad and good will somehow combine for His glory. He knows how unwilling I would have been to follow. That’s instead why He walked me through it, step-by-step, building my faith to trust Him every step of the way. Though, as I stated earlier, it doesn’t mean I don’t struggle comprehending His plan, because I do. But, it’s still a journey we make together.
I think I’ve told this story before, but on the plane back from Guatemala in 2014, I swear I met my guardian angel. As a bit of back story, I had been broken up with my ex-boyfriend for four months, I was deep in grief and heartbreak, and I truly had no idea where to go in life anymore. I was at the epitome of loss and I felt like confusion toward the circumstances in my life displayed a lack of trust in God. I was hopeless. This, combined with my trip to Guatemala, placed me on a plane from Miama to DFW reading The Lady in Waiting by Jackie Kendall.
Halfway through the flight of trying not to break down and cry, the lady seated next to me asked about the book I was reading. We strung up a conversation over the book that eventually led to the apex question – “well, why are you reading it?” I could not have held back if I tried.
I told her everything. I told her how I was in love and wanted nothing more than a future with that boy. I told her how things got difficult, in a matter of weeks our relationship ended, and I was left heartbroken. I told her I was hurting. I was confused. I admitted I wondered if it was apart of God’s plan for me to get married. I even flat out told her I thought I was a far better match for him than his new girlfriend. (Please don’t judge, I was heartbroken and in need of a confidence boost) Every feeling I was trying to cope with and understand, I dumped on this complete stranger on a plane.
I held back tears, but she heard the authenticity in my voice, and I heard it within hers. The conversation she proceeded to carry with me struck me. She told me the story of two boys who lived in a neighboring house to hers. The boys started dating a pair of friends, yet all felt something was wrong. The four of them sat down to talk and pray because they believed God was calling them to date the other. So they amicably ended their relationships and began new ones. All are now happily married.
Maybe she made this story up. Now that I go back and tell it, it seems like she was. Honestly, I don’t know what to make of this story. I certainly don’t believe she was telling me to date my ex-boyfriend’s brother (awkward, right?). But I think it was the bravery to follow God’s calling, no matter how risky, complicated, confusing, or difficult was the message she was trying to relay to me.
Beyond that, she told me I would be married, and to someone who loved God more than me. She reminded me it would be my choice who I married, and who I gave that chance at my heart. Yes, I know I shouldn’t place the possibility of my future in the hands of a complete stranger, but I can never forget the words she spoke to me. Her assurance was the comfort I needed. Like so many things in my past, a little moment with a stranger became a big moment in helping to shape who I am becoming today. I refuse to deny that because then I’m denying myself.
So why does all of this matter? Because in the moment of honesty I shared with my friend Emma, I realized I wasn’t scared anymore. The same way my moment of honesty with the stranger on the plane gave me a solace that I needed. I didn’t want to feel crazy for sharing very real experiences I had with God and others in my life. I just told her and decided we’d sort out the details later. I realized I could move forward with God’s plan with a sense of grit. I didn’t feel ashamed of the work God was doing in my life. Maybe I didn’t find the all clarity I wanted from my conversation, but what I did find was a bravery I didn’t even know I needed. I went to bed last night and told God “whenever it’s time to lay it all out on the table, I’m ready.”
Being honest reminded me that it’s okay to struggle. Honesty reminded me of who I am, and what my worth is in Christ, which I really needed. If I’m being honest, as hard as it was let my guard down, I felt free.