Good Friday, dear friends! I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker today for her Five-Minute Fridays … just five minutes of unscripted writing. Today’s prompt is truth, and it’s a candid one, from a transparent heart. It was encouraging to me as I penned it; perhaps it will encourage you too.
I once had a friend who told me I intimidated her. A friend who’s honest and transparent, real about her own struggles. “Before I really got to know you,” she said. “You intimidated me. You were pretty, and you seemed so smart.” I was a bit surprised by her admission, and truth be told, my pride was a bit bolstered. I hate writing that latter part; pride is ugly. But it’s an honest admission from a sinful heart.
Pride reared it’s head in that moment because we all long to be told we’re pretty, captivating, desirable. Her words felt good because truth be told, I so long to hear it, because I so often doubt it.
Here’s the truth. The real me struggles with doubts, insecurities, fears and anxiety. There are dark places, broken places, and too many failures to count. I get frustrated with my kids, and I keep an imperfect house. I desperately want to be a minister of grace, but all too often I dole out harsh justice. I have the beginnings of crow’s feet, and a few age spots, and that bio pic over there on the right hand side of the page … I photoshopped it just a bit to remove imperfections. And I write because it’s as vital as breathing to me, and I believe God has given me a ministry of words, but I’m scared to death to pursue it. There’s a book proposal collecting dust, one that I submitted to a lone publishing house who told me they would consider publishing it if they hadn’t just signed a similar project. And I shelved it when I got their rejection letter. I’ve never shopped it to anyone else because I’m fearful: fearful of the work, of the critics, of failing.
All of that and so much more (things that would take significantly longer than five minutes to share) is true about me, and those truths shape my days, but you know what? There’s another truth. And this truth … it prevails over all my own shortcomings. This truth triumphs over even death. And it is this:
I know I am fearfully and wonderfully made by a God who knew me even before He laid the foundations of this earth. I know that I am prone to wander from that God, but He pursues me with an unrelenting passion, even to the point that He sent His son to die a gruesome death on an ugly cross so my defiant heart could be ransomed and reconciled. I know that there is no truth apart from Him, and His truth brings light and life and freedom. I know that my way is determined, my path is protected and my hope is secure. I know that I am clothed with strength and dignity, I am an adopted royal heir, and the King delights over me with singing. And that King … He promises to never leave me, nor forsake me.
This is truth that trumps all others. And even when my own shortcomings threaten to choke it out, it prevails. This is God’s truth, and it is constant, secure, eternal. This is truth that forgives, truth that transforms, truth that holds. It’s truth for me, and it’s truth for YOU!
“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
– John 8:32
I pray this transparency was encouraging. It takes a bit of bravery to be honest about our shortcomings, but I think that honesty allows others to open up about their own struggles as well. So please be encouraged today, friends. And know that whatever failures or insecurities may be true about you, His truth overcomes them all!
I also linked this post with the lovely Casey Wiegand.