a travelin’ lady.
About a week ago, I clicked on my “on this day” Facebook feature. A portrait that my friend took of me had popped up on my profile, and I sat and remembered the season that I was in. The caption on the picture read “If you love deeply, you’re going to get hurt badly. But it’s still worth it.” CS Lewis said it, and I had no idea what that meant then…but I get it now. I get it.
This past year I’ve hurt. I’ve grieved. I’ve cried. I’ve yelled. I’ve gone through absolutely every human emotion possible. Lord knows. But yet, I am still seen. I am heard and I am loved anyways. It has been worth it.
Words have been spilling out of every corner of my jagged heart. My journal is covered in them, and they line the core of every poem, caption, thought and intentional conversation I have had. Through the pain, I have learned.
My eyes have been opened to a new kind of growth. The messy, ugly and painful kind of growth. I’ve come face to face with it. It’s kept me up at night. The growth I’m talking about is the growth that involves getting pulled out by the roots – having your world flipped upside down and inside out. Because sometimes, life happens. Sometimes, circumstances we don’t see coming, sneak up and change the direction in which we were headed. Sometimes, things are not okay and we decide to stop lying to ourselves, and deal with the pain that comes with facing that kind of reality. We have to swim upstream, while layers and layers of what we thought were good and right get ripped away. This kind of growth doesn’t tuck us in at night and tell us everything is going to be okay. It doesn’t lie. It is real and it is raw.
So, a lot of times we run. We hide and we don’t let ourselves deal with the reality of our situations. We are told we have to have everything together, and that we have to be perfect all the time. But, I’m here to tell you that you do not. You do not have to have it together all of the time. My Pastor, Chris Carmona, is currently preaching a series titled “this revolution will be led by the broken.” I truly, whole-heartedly believe it, too.
So, I’m finally taking responsibility for my brokenness. Not just hiding behind it or blaming it on anyone else, or living in it like it’s a part of who I am. I’m finally self-aware, and Jesus has been working through the pieces – one day at a time. We are mending it all together; healing hand in hand me and Him.
I’m here to encourage you. Allow yourself room to heal. You don’t have to be afraid of the messy kind of growth. Our pain makes us beautiful. Our pain creates joy. And joy helps us grow. Whatever that looks like for me and you; we can grow.
Jesus says in Romans 5: “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
We have a hope, we have faith – and we get to access and abundance of grace through our faith. We can take GLORY in our sufferings, because our sufferings produce a strength so we can persevere, and that shapes our character and makes us who we are supposed to be. That’s my Jesus. That’s how He loves. Even when I don’t get it and it hurts and it stings, He promises to cover me with grace and love, and tells me it will all be worth it. All of it.
So today, I am choosing to be expectant through the good, the bad, the messy, the ugly, the beautiful and all the in between. No matter how scared you may be or how uncertain the next season you are stepping into may be, Jesus is real. He is GOOD and He who promised is FAITHFUL. We can walk expectantly. Expectant to flourish, expectant to grow, expectant to be healed.
Challenge yourself. Sit with Jesus and ask Him to help you identify your brokenness. Get to know Jesus and how He loves and who He is. The reality is, you can’t trust someone you barely know. So, dive into the word. Get around people who are full of faith and courage, and who can be honest with you and love you at the same time. There is so much beauty in growth.
All of this is making you more beautiful.