“It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are.” e.e. cummings
I woke up yesterday morning to find my spirit filled with courage and noticed the absence of fear. It was just gone. In it’s place were many things. Evidently, fear took up a lot of space in my spirit. Therefore, that left room for many Kingdom attributes to fill that space.
What I woke up to, INSTEAD, was courage, love, peace, acceptance, security, joy, hope, trust, identity and so much more. God always trades UP!
Father God is always moving in our lives, even when we can’t see Him. I had no idea the healing I would receive by accepting the invitation to teach a workshop at our 2014 Vineyard Women’s Conference. If you’ve been reading any of these posts over the last two years, you know my battle with fear of being seen and heard. The wounds that caused these fears were legitimate. The more I stepped into my true self, the more shrapnel I took on. The obvious solution was to hide. So I did. For over 20 years, little by little, I went farther back into my cave.
The truth I saw was this fact: Hurt people, hurt people. That truth didn’t cause me to be brave. It just drove me farther back into my cave of isolation. Everyone, self-protects for various reasons. That was my reason.
Over the last couple of years in this healing journey, I’ve been asked to teach a few times. But each time required courage to overcome those two gigantic fears. 1. Being seen. 2. Being heard. But each time I was surrounded by friends who loved me, whether I stepped up to the plate with a hit or a swing and a miss.
I agreed to each invitation, knowing it was part of my healing journey, but I was also launched into fear before, during and after each session. It’s not like I’m teaching a lot, or even for long sessions, but for someone who has spent the majority of the last 20 years hiding, even 7 times of being seen and heard is extreme. I’ll stand with you and you go do it! That was always a better plan in my book.
There was a time 2 years ago at a conference in Colorado where I wrote something during a meeting that I was invited to share with the entire group at the beginning of the conference. Terror struck but courage persevered. Once again, I was surrounded by friends.
At the Vineyard, the first time I was asked to share anything was to our group of intercessors, a few weeks after that Colorado trip. The fear was really out of control. It was ridiculous, actually, so I was able to key into that – genius that I am – and ask Father God what lie I was believing. He told me and I was able to ask Him for his truth INSTEAD. Before the teaching, I still was trying to be brave, and cling to the truth that Father God had told me. My friends, Randy and Jane, who happen to be our pastors, prayed for me. They didn’t know my fear-based lie. Randy says, “You are safe here”, among other things. That was it! That was the truth, in human form, that my heart needed to hear! And this healing journey has indeed been one of great safety.
For me, isolation – although comfortable, is not my answer anymore. I am risking being known which is awesome because in that process, I have met the most incredible people who are all on the same kind of journey! The women’s conference this weekend was two days of realizing we all self-protect. There are no original lies. We all carry various fears of being known. However, if I know who I am in God’s heart, then people can’t really mess me up.
Here’s a funny story. One time, in one of my teaching moments last year, I lost my train of thought! My train completely derailed. I drew a blank. I looked at my notes, my eyes blurred and I couldn’t read them! I stood there with about 40 people staring at me. What was my response? Did I suddenly close in prayer? Pretend to have a coughing fit? Make a joke? No, I said, “Oh crap. My mind went blank.” I wrote a poem after that fateful night.
I didn’t die
I didn’t cry
I didn’t run
And, I had some fun
I was indeed safe.
Someone prayed for me before this conference who didn’t know my struggles with the fear of being seen and heard. He said, “There is a call on your life, but if you don’t take the first step, you won’t get there. It all starts with one step.” What is the call on my life? I don’t really know but I sure love that quote by e.e. cummings, “It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are.”
Let the healing journey continue!