I have been a pastors wife for 17 years. I was a young 19 years old when I married and my husband accepted his first pastorate. Looking back, I realize I knew nothing. Seriously, nothing. I knew how to stand at the back of the church dutifully by my husbands side and shake hands with sweet people who really didn’t know me. I did this for many, many years. Throughout those early years in ministry I tried really hard to be a supportive, strong, encouraging leader in our churches. I really wanted people to like me. So in order for people to like me, I needed to dress the part, serve in every area effortlessly and make sure they didn’t know any of my deep struggles and God forbid they know any of my sin. It was exhausting and lonely and I was stuck.
Lately, I have had the beautiful privilege of counseling with brave women. Women who have chosen to trust me with their pain. Women who no longer want to be bound by past hurts and daily struggles. Women who choose healing. We do not get to escape sorrow, pain or suffering. We live in a broken world, aching for redemption and our hearts are wounded. We live and breathe and long for peace. We go to battle with the flesh. We go to battle with our husbands, our children and our friends. We search for answers and fulfillment all the while our hearts are wounded and our souls ache.
Healing is a choice. It begins when we allow someone to enter into our struggle and to bear our burden. Freedom is found when we share our story and push our wounds into the healing light and out of the shameful dark. We overcome when we apply the sweet salve of God’s truth to our broken hearts and aching souls. We heal when our souls are laid bare and we brace ourselves for the condemnation that is sure to follow and we are overwhelmed with the goodness of radical, scandalous grace.
We we’re made for more. We were designed to demonstrate the strength of the Savior through our weakness. Why then do we pretend to be so strong? We can BOAST of his mighty power through us. This broken, aching, mess of a world is no match for the sustaining, overwhelming, and matchless grace of God. Choose healing, tell your story, apply God’s truth, and be wrapped in His arms of grace. Be still and be loved.
“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ”~Galatians 6:2
It happened again. It usually comes out of nowhere when I least expect it. Feelings of hurt, pain and insecurity creep back in and go from a dull whisper to constant chatter. I sat in my car at a red light recounting the hurt, every feeling of anguish and bitterness. I wallowed in the self-pity of it all, feeling rejected and alone. I reached out to my husband for comfort. He did not disappoint with his words. They were words of truth and should have been a sweet salve to my brokenness. But his words were no match for the constant chatter of lies. I lashed out to him. I drove to my office. As I began to try and go about my work, another voice persistently whispered to my heart. “Talk to me”.
Jesus was drawing me to Himself. I shut my computer, opened God’s word and let the lover of my soul speak. When Jesus speaks, my heart is softened. When Jesus speaks, the lies vanish. When Jesus speaks, I am empowered. When Jesus speaks, I love generously. When Jesus speaks, I am set free.
So many times in my life I have looked to others for the affirmation my soul thirsts for. I’m learning that the truth of scripture, the love of my Savior is the foundation I must live my life upon. I’m leaning into Jesus today and listening for His voice. He’s speaking grace over me. What is Jesus saying to you today?
photo credit: A Guy Taking Pictures