No really. It's time we have a heart to heart.
You've seen me on stage. You've heard me belt ballads. You've seen me raise my hands in praise. You've watched me give speeches and presentations. You've seen me poised and posed in front of most crowds. Depending on how long you've known me, you may have been one of the "lucky" ones who watched me turn and smile and walk across stage in my heels and evening gown. (For those who didn't see my pageant days, you may now be having an "ah-ha" moment as things are starting to make sense about me.)
For the most part, I'm an open book. I've put my life out there because so many feel they know me that I felt they really needed to know me. But as one recently said of my blogs "You share your business without telling all your business." Thanks. I like to think it's a skill I've perfected. I'm good at hiding things. I'm good at painting on the smile (after all, I was first runner up to Miss America...indirectly, but that's another story for another day!).
What you don't see - and may never - are the insecurities deep down in my soul. And why on earth would I be sharing this with you and exposing my vulnerabilities?!
Being "on stage" or "in the public eye" for my job, church, and ministry are somewhat by choice and somewhat by design. But because of these "positions" people have ideas about me. I've heard everything from "She has it all together" to "I can't believe how fake she is." We've talked about this before - the comments about my outfits, hair, makeup, weight, the image others have of me and the perceived image they think I have of myself.
Today I'm here to share something profound. Are you ready? Here it is...
I AM HUMAN.
A life. A heart. A soul. A daughter. A wife. A mother. A sister. A sinner. A leader. A servant. A dominant personality. A people person. A people pleaser. A wounded soldier. A scarred believer. A guilty prisoner. A set-free captive. A God-seeker.
Who I am at my core is who God made me to be. There are parts of my personality I can work on and pray through, and there are other strands of my DNA that are just a part of my makeup.
I say things I regret. I do things I wish I could take back. I hurt people. I disappoint others. I fail. I fall. I aim to please and sometimes drastically miss the mark. I seek to serve and sometimes unknowingly ignore a need.
A dear friend handed me Beth Moore's "So Long Insecurity." I'm barely through the second chapter and she's hit me square between the eyes. Oh, this book is for me. This quote sums me up to a tee:
"We need a place we can go when, as much as we loathe it, we are needy and hysterical. I don't know about you, but I need someone who will love me when I hate myself. And yes, someone who will love me again and again until I kiss this terrestrial sod goodbye." - Beth Moore
That's it. That's me. I want to know someone will love me even when I hate myself. I'm needy. I can be hysterical. (Boy oh boy, can I be hysterical.) I've been guilty of looking for my security in all the wrong places. I've known my strength should come from the Lord, but sometimes I've had my own pity party in my weakness.
I beg of you - hear me on this - don't look at me and judge. Don't look at anyone and judge. Whether you have this idea of someone who seemingly has everything together or if you're casting the stone on someone's sin, please look deeper. Just stop to think that behind whatever exterior you see there is probably an insecurity, a wound, a scar shoved down so deep you might not even be able to touch it.
Here's what else you need to know. I am drawn to people but if what you like about me is "me" then I will surely disappoint you. (Do I need to repeat the list about all the ways I fail?!) But here's what else I can tell you. I give you my heart. My broken, shattered, even powdered heart. I've put myself out there and I've been crushed to the point of being pulverized. I've given of myself only to be rejected and betrayed. Why. Not I, but Christ...
My life is not my own. What is woven deep down into my genetics is who God created me to be. Flawed and all, He put this life on His earth as someone who seeks to bring Him glory. If what I do hurts you, I'm sorry. If what I say offends you, forgive me. If what you feel is anything less than loved and wanted, sometimes I know not what I do. But hear this: As much as I fail, and fail others, I serve a God who never does. Great is His faithfulness and all glory to Him!
I pray today you see me - not "me" in my fallen state but the "me" He's created to share what HE can do!
"If a person attracts through his personality, that becomes his appeal. If, however, he is identified with the Lord Himself, then the appeal becomes what Jesus Christ can do. The danger is to glory in men, yet Jesus says we are to lift up only Him." - Chambers