Do you ever look in a mirror, and wonder how you became the person looking back at you? I’m sure that the image you see in the mirror comes with many happy & wonderful memories that wove beauty into your soul. But how about the not so wonderful… the hurtful… the broken ones that left you scarred on the inside.
Oh I’m sure many of you are like me, very adept at hiding those scars… hoping and praying that in time they will dissolve into the deep recesses of our minds, then we could do life solely out of the beautiful side. This had been my dream for much of my life. Push away… forget… ignore… Sadly, like a shaken pop bottle, eventually the ugly would come bursting out at such velocity that there was no stopping the mess it would leave in its wake.
For myself, this unchecked and unhealthy baggage left much carnage in it’s wake. On the surface, I was happy go lucky, involved in Church and serving the Lord with everything I had, trying to earn His favour…. His Love. Oh how I craved to be Loved… Love was this elusive thing that always seemed just out of my reach.
Yet, nobody knew the battle that was waging within me, how could I explain to someone else what I could not understand myself. So what did I do? I continued putting on masks: I had the Sunday School Teacher mask, the Good Wife mask, the Good Mother mask, The Good Friend mask…. all the while dying on the inside feeling unlovable. unseen and broken.
Consequently, every once in a while…out of the blue and unexpected… the pain would burst forth and all the hurt and anger would explode out of my heart, often through my mouth. The problem was, it still wasn’t truth, you see my hurts were buried so deep that I could not even bear to face them, so instead I would spew it out where it didn’t even belong, unable to explain or even understand myself what or why it had happened. This left those around me wounded and me beating myself up because I couldn’t understand where it came from.
I mentioned earlier that this left a lot of carnage in its wake; a broken marriage, broken relationships with my children and my friends. How could people possibly understand something I hid so very well from them… things I was actually hiding from myself.
As I look into that mirror today, I can see the faithful presence of Jesus in my life… even in the brokenness. I can recognize now that if that shaken pop bottle of emotions inside of me, did not let some of the fizz out I would likely have exploded. Jesus used these moments to both humble me and open my eyes to truth… truth that I had hidden so deep and didn’t want to look at… and He offered healing.
Jesus slowly but surely taught me to see myself through His eyes, rather than through my own. He taught me that I was not broken or unlovable… He actually opened my mind to understand that I had been deeply hurt as a child and a part of me remained in that stuck place. A place the enemy of my soul wanted to keep me locked to, but thanks be to God, that He sent Jesus to unlock the shackles that had kept me chained to my past.
In time, Jesus restored much of what was lost. Unfortunately, my marriage was not to be one of those things, the damage was just too great. Yet, as life moved forward and I allowed myself to Love and be Loved, Jesus restored my faith in things of beauty, the ugly scars started to diminish… and with His help I began to flourish.
Jesus literally brought beauty out of the ashes… I am so thankful for His Love and His Grace… His forgiveness. Jesus has changed me from the inside out and He has shown me that I AM Loved, that HE has an amazing plan for me, and He WILL use ALL that I have gone through to fulfill that plan.
Sometimes, the past pain creeps back and I start listening to the lies of the enemy, he doesn’t change tactics even if I have… and sadly, sometimes I still fall for his lies and am tempted to believe them. In this place of weakness I have often failed, reminding me that I am still just a beautifully broken work in progress… who has placed her hope and trust in Jesus Christ, knowing His Love is unchanging and His Forgiveness is as far as the East is from the West. Trusting that He has me in the palm of His hand, even when I don’t always feel it.
Thank you Lord,
So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfill his designed purpose. Romans 8:28 TPT
Thank you for Your Word, and also for remind me that the enemy of my soul also knows Your Word and twists it to serve his evil purpose. Lord Jesus, as I was beating myself up because of my recent actions, I started to put my focus onto verses like Matthew 15: 8 & 11, where I started questioning everything in my heart.
Maybe this too has been the battleground of your mind. Is this a place the enemy has you trapped? It may not be hurt & anger like what is continues to be the thorn in my side reminding me of my ever present need for Jesus.
Maybe yours is Fear, or Apathy, or Laziness… the list is endless. What I do know is Jesus is the healer of ALL that tries to take us down. He is the REDEEMER of brokenness and the RESTORER of All things good, which He planned for us before we were ever born.
If we will let Him, Jesus will take everything we have gone through, every tear we shed, and He will place us in positions to be able to come alongside someone else that is suffering. “He has comforted us so that we in turn can comfort those He places in our path”… what an amazing promise.
My life is very different now than it was 20 years ago, the mirror now reflects a woman who loves Jesus with all her heart, a person that now uses her Mess for His Message. Honestly, there is no greater privilege to come alongside someone that feels totally alone in the world and show them the incredible Love of Jesus… simply by being present.
I recognize now that my past will often converge upon my present, but I no longer have to let it define me. I have a choice to be defined by my past and hold onto all of the hurt and pain inflicted upon me, Or…I can be defined by the Grace of Jesus Christ, that He died for me so that I might live and live life to the fullest… my friends I choose Grace… I choose Jesus, I pray you do as well.
Blessings, Janet ❤️Journey4Jesus
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