Many of us live lives of duplicity. We are confused, having misled ourselves into believing that we are free of the chains of our past. When we look back at the journey of our lives, we proudly mis-conclude that we have moved beyond the effects of the devastating points of our journey. Yet, the power of our painful past influences our choices in innumerable direct and indirect ways. Choices regarding our relationships, professional life, parenting style, friendships, ministry and more are all affected by our experiences. We store the ruins of the most painful moments deep within. However,
God desires the secret spaces in our hearts.
He knows the dark corners where we hide our pain, secrets and shame. And he longs for us to invite him into our most protected hiding places. For it is within these dark, hidden rooms that we have tried to lock away those experiences that are the most painful. This is where we have stashed the remnants of abuse, neglect, disappointment, or heartbreak.
We struggle with opening those long-sealed doors. For behind them lie secrets or emotions so black, we are ashamed even to face them. We are unable, or unwilling, to see how they continue to impact our lives, so we convince ourselves that the doors are better left closed.
We are comfortable with our secret rooms, not only do they hide our hurts, they give us a place to hide as well.
Our identity is often intertwined with much of the mess stored within these places. Subconsciously we question who we will be if we let them go. We wonder what will be left of us when our purpose isn’t fueled by what lies deep within.
Then, we fear the risk of exposure. Our stored-away hurts or guilt barely allow us to love ourselves. How will others love us if they really knew what we had experienced? Or what we were capable of?
But, these locked-off rooms are even more insidious than they seem.
Because, here is an important truth:
our past directly influences our desire to submit to the will of God for our lives.
When we hold our hurts close, refusing to turn them over to our Savior, they become barriers. Instead of offering the expected protection, they serve as blockades separating us from our Lord. We cling to our experiences, desperately believing them able of keeping us from further hurt, but instead, they keep us from experiencing the love and peace that comes only through intimately knowing Christ.
Many of us tremble at the prospect of bringing the full sinfulness of our hearts to the Lord. We struggle with trusting Him in our hiding places. Thankfully, He gives us more grace for this, as well. Because He loves us, God will continue to knock at our secret doors.
God loves us too much to allow the beauty of His love to be overcome by darkness of our pasts.
He doesn’t simply pursue us until we accept Jesus as our Savior, but He pursues us until we have given ourselves completely to Him. He pursues us as we grow in faith and godliness.
God will relentlessly and lovingly pursue us right up to the hiding places of our hearts.
And if we are brave enough to open the door, and allow Him to carry away those burdens we were never meant to bear, we will experience new freedom in and through the Lord.
Once we have invited our Savior to enter into our secret spaces, and excavate those hurts that we are unable to free ourselves from, our freedom will compel us to love Him. We will become fully enabled to present our lives as a fragrant offering to Christ, through submission to His purpose and plans.
This process of becoming free from our chains will not be simple. Our past has contributed to our present, and is a part of the lens through which we see and experience life. Exchanging our limited understanding of the world, for God’s wisdom and will is scary and can leave us feeling naked and vulnerable.
Yet, God accepts the offering of our vulnerability, and gives us new strength.
If we are willing to patiently undergo the excavation process, confronting our hurts without succumbing to the numbing or avoidance options that the world offers,
He will give us wings like eagles to rise high above the pain of our past.
We will run the race and not become weary
We will walk and not feel faint.
For prayer on today’s topic please stop by Daily Hope & a Prayer.
For further study- Isaiah:40
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