Opening up to people; this has never been something I’ve been particularly good at.
To clarify, I was raised not to be afraid to speak my mind – and trust me, I speak it – maybe even a bit too much at times. However, sharing your opinion and sharing your pain weigh very differently on the scale of vulnerability.
As you can imagine, not being fully honest with people is a dangerous habit to have. It drives you to feeling disconnected and isolated. But, it’s right in that place that God rushes in and says “I see you, I know you and I love you.”
Light in the dark
To be able to receive honest healing, you have to be honest with your pain. However, to come to a place where you can honestly show your pain, it often takes the revelation that in your weakness, God really is strong.
“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians chapter 11, verses 9 to 10
Now, I’ve heard this verse about a million times, but I never quite grasped what it meant. Or, at least, I never deeply understood it.
What I’ve learnt first-hand from this verse, is that it is truly the weakest and darkest times that build the perfect platforms for the power of God to show off.
Think of a candle; in the night-time, the flame is the same as it is in the day, however, the light it radiates appears much brighter because of its dim surroundings.
I’m sure you’ve heard this metaphor or similar before, but none-the-less, it’s very accurate. In the darkness, light can only appear brighter.
There is no darkness too dark for a flame to give off light, just as there is no situation too dire for God to perform miracles and bring life to.
I’m speaking as someone who has seen it countless times; God WILL show up, He always does, and He will prove Himself strong, in and through your failures and weaknesses.
“I found an even deeper and closer God than I had ever experienced before.”
Sometimes, even if you want to open up your heart to God, those sneaky lies from guilt and shame can tell you, “you’re not enough for God – why would he care about you/your problems?”
I was in that very position a while ago, doubting myself and doubting the Lord. Even though I knew in my mind that those doubts were complete lies, I still struggled because my heart hadn’t learnt yet.
I had to ask myself – so, what now then?
Am I going to let myself wallow in worries or am I going to get back up and seek the truth my spirit is longing for?
By the grace of God, I got up. I got up, and I found an even deeper and closer side of God than I had ever experienced before.
An everything kind of God
One of the most important things that I discovered was; God is an EVERYTHING kind of God.
By that I mean, He wants it all; every failure, every struggle, every wound and broken mindset. There is absolutely nothing that is off limits to God. There is nothing too clean and there’s nothing too dirty. There is nothing too big and there is nothing too small.
God wants everything. He already knows you’re not perfect, so He isn’t going to ask you to pretend you are whilst you quickly deal with your problems in hiding.
You have access to the greatest counselor and the best of friends, and he already knows everything about you. He is always close, listening and ready to heal; it’s up to you to decide whether we want to open up to him.
Choosing intimacy over bitterness
No matter how well you know the Lord, how long you’ve been going to church for or how much of the bible you’ve read, there is always going to be the choice to choose faith and trust over anger and bitterness.
One of the devil’s favourite tactics is to use resentment to turn Christian’s against God, so that they push God away and become defenseless.
Knowing this, we have to be even more aware of our thoughts and choices. Daily we should be aligning ourselves with the Lord’s truth by praying and reading the bible.
“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews chapter 4, verse 12
When we read the word of God, we allow no space for the enemy to whisper lies into our minds and hearts.
The bible, the living, active word of God, is our greatest defense.
Reading the bible pours life into your being, and every words shouts of how much God loves you – even in your broken and honest form. When you know this, you can find such wild freedom, right where you’re at.
Through His word and His spirit, you can be fully secure, regardless of your bumps and bruises, because God sees it all and loves you anyway.
Laura Murphy is an excitable and fast-paced Brit, living in Australia. She can’t sit still; she has a serious addiction to sudoku, and she can be won over by a good cup of tea and a laugh. Studying to become a doctor, she is expectant and excited to see all that God is going to do with her life.