I see you there, trying not to let past experiences define you. Courageously trying to keep your heart open to love and trust and the fragile bond of friendship. But I also see your fear.
And I understand your fear.
I know you’ve been hurt many times in the past. I know you’ll be hurt again. Just as you know you’ll be hurt again.
And it’s hard to hold onto hope when your hopes have been crushed. It’s difficult to take a chance on someone or something that may hurt you. So you accept those feelings of loneliness rather than overcome the roadblocks in your mind. But worse than simply accepting them, you justify them.
You tell yourself that you are strong—that you can stand alone—but we both know that you’re bitter and jaded. And afraid. So very afraid… Of trying again. Of failing again. Of risking rejection for the thousandth time.
Because you’re not strong. And deep down inside you hold onto the belief that one more heartbreak could kill you.
But you know something?
You are more than your fears. More than your failures. More than the clutter that litters your past.
You are strong enough… to break down these barriers. To overcome the insecurities that have confined you for so long.
You have what it takes… to trust again. To hope again. To love again.
You deserve so much more than what your fears have supplied;
You deserve freedom in its most wondrous form.
Today is the day to embrace it. And to live—fully live—free of fear.
The word echoes through my mind as hauntingly as it echoed through the dorm at Ashagram.
The thing that most keeps them from approaching the throne of God.
It’s one Hindi word I’ll remember for a lifetime because it’s the one that moves my heart to tears as I wonder why these beautiful women feel shame for a sin they did not commit. They didn’t choose the life of a prostitute. It was forced upon each one of them. Yet they feel responsible for the wrong that was done to them. As if there was something they could have done to keep it from happening.
It’s easy to feel sympathy for these women. So simple for me to tell them that they have no need to be ashamed. But I know that I’ve done it too. I’ve taken the blame for something that was not within my power to control. I’ve felt guilt over circumstances that I couldn’t change. I’ve lived with so many “what if’s”.
Whether it’s truly mine to bear or not, I’ve allowed it to keep me from approaching the throne of God on more than one occasion. I’m willing to bet it’s hindered you as well.
We’re afraid to approach God. Afraid of what His response to us may be. We’re afraid of His judgment, or maybe His mercy. Yes, it’s quite possible to fear forgiveness. So we live in our sharm. We abide in our shame as if forgiveness is only a dream.
But we don’t have to live that way. We don’t have to stay confined within the walls of self-condemnation.
“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.” –Romans 8:1-2
So come now, little one. Out of the sharm. Out of your shame. Freedom awaits you here in the Light.
We interrupt the normal schedule of this blog to bring you an important message:
God has been doing something in me these past four months. I wrote a book, boldly presented it to a publisher, started a blog, and am slowly sinking into the world of ministry to my generation. It’s been amazing, and I’ve been learning so much. But tonight was one of those nights that God just smacked me in the face. You see, sometimes I get distracted from what I’m supposed to be doing and God has to set me back on track. I was skimming through my new book, A Heart Exposed by Steven James, when I stumbled upon these words:
you dance on the breeze in the evening light, you leap on the curl of a wave, crashing white. you twirl on a star in the darkest night, calling, “Live the journey! Live!”
With four more rousing stanzas, Steven James reminded me of my passion and purpose. It’s the reason I started this blog. God called me to live the journey, and when I looked around at the world I live in, I saw that many of my friends and loved ones weren’t walking in the freedom God called His children to when he told us that He had come to give us life to the full (John 10:10). It was my calling to echo the cry my God shouts, whispers, and screams. “Live the journey. Live.” I regret to say that I haven’t truly been challenging anyone to truly live the journey. I allowed myself to be boxed in by structure and say, “This is the routine.” But I never really gave God much freedom to step outside the bounds of my pre-conceived categories. Not that this has been bad… I simply believe that it could be so much better. God wants to make it so much better.
I’m one of those people who strive on structure, yet I hate when routine gets in the way of the Spirit. But there I was, doing the very thing I hate. I convinced myself that it had to stay the way it was because I had to stick to the singleness theme. But honestly, this isn’t about singleness. It’s not about marriage. It isn’t about dating or courting or whatever else you may use to define relationships. It’s about moving beyond waiting for the things that won’t come until the future and refusing to get caught up in the past. It’s about living the journey. It always has been. Until I let myself get caught up in traditions and routine and whatnot.
But I’m going to warn you that tradition stops right here. I’ll still try to post three times a week, but it’s going to have a little less “Rebekah-shaped structure.” I’m not going to force anything I’m not feeling. I will only post what I feel the Spirit is sharing with me to share with you. I’m going to expose a little bit of my heart on this page. The only goal I now have is to live the journey. And I want to encourage you to live with me.