I’ve believed my fair share of lies over the years. Lies our society feed us about what’s hot and what’s not, lies others have told me to bring me down, and lies I’ve told myself.
Sticks ‘n stone can break my bones, but words will never hurt me…. Lie
Pictures in the magazines are real. I could look like that too, if only I….. Lie
I don’t have the intellectual horse power above the shoulders to cut it…. Lie
Nobody will know…. Lie
They go on…. and on…. and on… BUT, I’ve uncovered a new biggie today that I thought was worth sharing.
A relationship with God is easy…. Lie.
I was dupped for a long, LONG time. I’d heard the verses “Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” along with “my yolk is light”, and I believed if it wasn’t easy, I must not be doing it right, there must be something wrong with me. It didn’t help matters that when Christianity was first explained to me, the only real understanding I walked away with was, you have to “Believe in your heart, and confess with your mouth and invite Jesus into your life”. Easy enough… done and done…. now what?
Now what…. I wondered that for oh…. 12 years. Then this concept of relationship finally started to sink in. I had relationships with other people, and they required my participation to work, I have no explanation for why I thought a relationship with God would be any different.
I think we can all agree relationships are hard work. You have to give of yourself, lay down personal agendas, give up your free time, money, sleep, etc…. To appease a husband, children, friends, your boss. What I’d never thought of giving before however was my soul, I kinda assumed that went lock, stock, n’ barrel with the inviting Jesus in… but as long as I held onto the lies, they held onto my soul, and it wasn’t mine to give to anyone. I believed if you bear your soul you will get hurt… if you tell people the crazy that’s in your brain, they will reject you. I did not see those as lies until the last couple weeks. They were truth, because I’d never ventured out to prove them otherwise, and I’m ALL to happy to add them to the list of confirmed LIES now.
The other hard part about relationships, they can hurt like no other. My mom and I were watching a movie last night, one of the cheesy Christmas love stories, with no name actors, that the networks come up with. We had the plot figured out within the first 5 minutes of the movie, but we watched it unfold over two hours anyway. Over the course of that two hours, when the heartbreak inevitably struck, that we knew would be rectified soon, the heroine of the film dissolved into mess of tears and depression as her heart broke, and my mom made the comment, “Isn’t it funny that it actually does hurt… a heart break”.
Heart breaks, however, aren’t only suffered at the hand of a significant other… parents, kids, friends, they can all break our hearts, and the pain is no less. We had shared portions of our souls with these people, and they used that to hurt us. Not a hard lesson to learn… don’t do it again. When your dating and that occurs, the resolution (while painful) is still fairly easy… you part ways and you no longer have to worry about maintaining a relationship with that individual. When the hurt comes from family however, that can be a much trickier road to navigate…. you have to re-establish the trust that was broken, and that takes time, commitment, grace, and forgiveness. I’ve never heard of a scenario where the two individuals wronged realize it at the same exact time, and are both ready to rebuild at the exact same time. Given that, it would stand to reason that the one initiating the re-building should be prepared for a little (lot) resistance. How often is that part easy to forget. When your initial efforts are thwarted you retreat, lamenting the faults of the other for not seeing your peace offering for what it was.
I’m starting to figure out the common denominator though to successful relationships, ones that can weather the mistakes and hurts we inflict upon each other. If the individual you’re working on a relationship with, is also working on their relationship with God…. chances are REALLY good, that things are going to work out for the best. They will be more prone to forgive, offer grace, not judge, and love you in spite of you. If someone doesn’t need God, I have to believe they think they can manage perfectly on their own… and if their standard of perfection is what I’m going to be measured up against…. I’m setting myself up for a failure.
Moral of the story…. Not everyone will reject and ridicule you when you lay yourself bear, and expose the crazy hiding in your brain, and when you find a place you can be TRULY transparent, it is a slice of heaven on earth. BUT, be careful who you bear your soul too… and when… The bible didn’t say guard your heart from everyone…. but it did say to guard it, because there are those out there that will destroy it if given the opportunity.