Truth Seeker

I grew up in an era of sweeping things under the carpet and hiding our real lives from our neighbors and friends. It didn’t matter if the whole neighborhood heard the fights and saw the bruises—we did not discuss it. And many of us thus were taught to be hiders of truth as well. We even learned how to hide the good things like promotions and awards that we should have let our friends celebrate with us. Today I still hide the truth to protect those I love; except those stories will soon come to light on these pages as the God who saved me from shame and healed my brokenness prompts me to share more. My desire today is to be taught and to share what I have learned that others may learn too.

Things are different for people in today’s society with social media peeking into our lives every day. We post pictures of our trips and adventures. We post cryptic messages when we are angry or sad. We blast at people who have hurt us. We take self-portraits of our moods so everyone knows if we are happy, sad, or drunk! What we don’t do is talk about how we were abused as children or spouses. We don’t talk about addiction in our family. We don’t talk about abortion or the child we gave up for adoption. We hide our divorces in our new marriages. We hide if we are living with someone or in a sexual relationship outside of marriage. We hide if we want or have a relationship with someone of the same sex. We don’t talk about the missed suicide or the suicide that we deny occurred. We hide that our family is struggling with financial burdens or is crying every night because they don’t know how to help their ADD, autistic, or mentally ill child. Those things we still hide from one another.

I have a new truth today. My truth is that God loves me. He sent his son Jesus to save me from my sins and to give me hope in a new life. This God has inspired me to openly share with you the many many sins of my life, and his redemption of that life. Those things above—he let me walk through most of them. God didn’t heap burdens on me that I might fail in life or feel worthless. He taught me to give him my burdens and to let the Holy Spirit help carry them. He gave me you to lift me up when I thought I should die. I want to learn more from him so I spend time in the Word of the Bible. I spend time listening to your stories and I am motivated because I see the potential for change and growth in our lives.

It starts with speaking the truth. Share your burden with someone today. Ask for prayers. Send me a request—it would be an honor to pray with you. Pray for me too. This journey I am entering is not easy. It has painful moments. But I have hope today, hope for you and hope for me. God bless you and bring you truth and hope.

Maggie

“Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.” Psalm 25:5

Turn the Pity Party Around

Every now and then, even the happiest, most optimistic person can slip into a little pity party or period of sad. Yesterday was my day. It was a day spent with a good friend but also a day missed with another, that I should not have missed. I have found that the best way to combat the negative thinking and self-flagellation is to reach out to others. I reach out first to see how they are and what their needs are or I reach out and tell someone I am having one of those days and need some friend time. Everything changes when I get out of myself.

Jesus spoke to the disciples, as recorded in Mark 10:42-45, about the role of leaders. It is to put others first and to serve others first. There is something to be said about getting out of our own way and into the needs of others. Somehow it lifts our pain. It is not always easy to see the needs of others when we want someone to see our needs. If we are drowning in emotion, it will take effort to put someone else first. It may take tremendous effort to come when called by a friend in need when we think we have nothing to give. Do it any way!

I find I may actually be more willing to expend effort for the benefit of another person than I am for myself. Rather than sit in my robe all day watching mindless TV, I force myself to dress and meet someone. Now I have energy. Now I am motivated to move. Now I have changed from looking at my problems to the joy of spending time listening to someone else. My mood will change, even if just for those few hours away. My alone picture is erased. I have hope. I have peace. I have a warm sense of belonging. All because I let God take me to another place.

Try it. I promise your pity party will change to a have blessing party instead!!

“Whoever wants to be a leader among you first must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be the slave of all. For even I, the Son of Man, came here not to be served but to serve others, and to give my life as a ransom for many.”
Mark 11: 43-45