>My long time friend Russ has gotten me thinking today. Russ and I grew up in Boyscouts together. Yeah, that’s right…I was in the Boyscouts. I know I’m a girl. Don’t mess with me…I’ll tie you up in a knot, put a splint on your leg and get you lost in the woods.
That’s not the point of this anyway.
Russ wrote on his facebook status about feeling emotions of loss and sadness. And about really experiencing those emotions. And how it’s okay.
Do you even know how hard I have worked my whole life to NOT feel those things? To push the grief down, to put the anger away, to hold the tears in…even when alone. It’s not an easy thing to do. To avoid emotions is unnatural.
So, why do I do it?
Because I want to be strong. I want to be in control of myself. Because I want to prove to everyone else that I can handle all that life can throw at me. Because I am afraid deep down that if I let others see my weakness that they will chalk me up to having a weak faith.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
God created me in His image (and you, for that matter). He created me to feel anger, grief, joy, sadness, laughter, disappointment, etc. And they are His emotions. He has felt all of those things. He knows what my heart feels. He has experienced all that I have.
So, for me to deny myself these aspects of my Creator is the lack of faith. It is me telling Him that I don’t trust how He made me. That I don’t know that He will lead me through those shadows of death and doubt and fear. But when I allow those pieces of me to work I am trusting Him and His purposes for all that I experience.
>Suzie,How strange is it that the faith that allows MOST for human weakness elicits so many of us to feel things like "Because I am afraid deep down that if I let others see my weakness that they will chalk me up to having a weak faith." The sad thing is, I wonder if some people really do think that way about others. I'm not sure how they perceive their Christianity, but it's certain no part of the faith Jesus and Paul present us. What happened to "My strength is made perfect in your weakness." During those Boy Scout years you mentioned, I was going through personal hell, whether any of you saw it or not. I felt utterly alone and an outsider to everything. My relationship with God was laden with anger over poor treatment from others and the loss of my father. I stuffed the grief because frankly, no one else cared. I'm lucky I survived those years. I'm so glad God has blessed me with an abundance of caring people, but even now, I often struggle with sharing my feelings for fear of the same things you mentioned. An ex-gf of mine told me that men shouldn't need to be encouraged or told they are man enough – they should just know and never need anything from anyone. Nothing could be further from the truth. We aren't gods. We are human and our flesh fails. Too many women today are being taught that they have to be "strong" all the time. That to be weak, emotional or submissive for any reason is to destroy all the feminists worked for. These beliefs are wrecking havoc on who God made us to be. Everyone praises authenticity in principle. Yet, those who live bravely as real people are punished with judgment, criticism and shame. Cities on hills make good targets, but they make strong refuges as well. Though we are targets, we are also inspirations and comforts. We have nothing to prove except the truth. That we are inherently needy, weak, and not in control – made so by a God who longs to meet our needs, fight as our knight, and be a trustworthy ruler king – even if we don't understand his methods.So, as you stated, in the face of human frailty, we turn back to God. A God who weeps, who grieves, who rejoices, who yearns, who is disappointed, who is excited, who hurts, who longs to be loved…a God who has made himself vulnerable, though He had no need to and every reason not to. That's who we look to and lean on, though the world and even our family and friends may fail us.
>it has been my personal experience, that when i finally give way to those difficult emotions, sending them out and up to Papa, that whatever things wound up tight in me begin to loosen, and whatever has been stuck becomes free.