About a year ago, I realized that there is a problem I face because of the type of personality God has given me. Something I don't like to admit to or reveal but is true and real whether I like accepting it or not. Sometimes, like every other human on this earth, I am sad. I am disappointed. I am mad. I am bitter. I am angry. I am anxious. I am not full of joy. I am NOT okay. For the free spirited, always keep a smile on, keep the peace kinda gal that I am, this really threw me for a loop.
God has taken me through such a whirlwind this year, even before our tiny one went to be with Jesus. It has been a year of self- discovery and healing and learning so many things about myself that keep me from being in perfect peace in my dear savior. I have learned that it is okay, not to be okay and that my only truest hope is in Christ alone. (There's a whole nother post that I'm sure I will write about at some point about this past year and all that God is continuing to do in my heart specifically related to this, but for today, just trust me, that it has been quite a journey.)
I say all this to say that God has allowed me to learn the value in vulnerability and peace in my lack of perfection and keeping it together all the time. But, in my humanness, I still want limits. I still want to project only the image I'm okay with people seeing and not let them see the tears as they are falling. It's okay for people to know my heart is still hurting over our tiny one- it's not okay for them to see my brokenness in its real, hardest, rawest state. Or so I had myself convinced anyways :)
A few weeks ago, a precious friend of ours had a worship celebration for her birthday. Matt, and two other guys, led worship and it was an incredible time of fellowship with dear friends. A few songs in, one of the other worship leaders, who didn't know about Matt and I's recent miscarriage, began sharing Lamentations 3:24 " The Lord is my portion," says my soul ,"therefore I will hope in Him." He continued on to tell about an experience he had recently had at the doctors office. While at the office he ran into some friends of his who were walking out in tears-after a few moments he realized they had just found out they had miscarried their first baby.
I couldn't tell you what happened after that. Me, the keep it all together, always has a smile, trying to find the beauty in the broken self, couldn't control the tears that followed that story and ran out of the room in the some of the loudest cries I'm pretty sure have ever come out of me. I was broken, angry, sad, tired, and embarrassed that I had just had a meltdown at my friends awesome birthday party. But then, it happened. God showed up as always, this time in the form of my precious husband, and friends who followed me into the other room and prayed over me and for me while I just wept uncontrollably. They wept with me and brought my broken self to Jesus when I couldn't get a word out to Him or them. They were the body, the precious body of Christ, who loves me like He does in wonderful and raw moments in this life.
Why do we run so far from the freedom that comes in Christ through his church?
What do we have to prove that Christ hasn't proven in Himself on the cross?
Why, in the rawest moments, do we turn people away so we can mourn or struggle or fear on our own?
Friends, I believe God has given us more. I believe he has given us his bride, to love and care for one another in the hardest moments of life. Life isn't always perfect. Okay, let's get real, it is never perfect! There is ALWAYS something going on, in someone's life, that makes them long for something more. That more is eternity. We struggle, we feel, we have very real heartache on this earth that will one do be nothing compared to the glory that will be revealed when we get to Heaven. Until then:
We aren't called to cry alone.
We aren't called to fear what people think.
We aren't called to live up to an insane expectation of having it all together all the time.
We aren't called to doing this life alone.
I'm not saying every person that reads this needs to go post a Facebook status about their deepest struggles and fears and be done with it. I don't know that that is necessarily the answer either :) What I do know though, is that living life; real, hard, messy, life, with people you love is the way to truest deepest community. I have seen the love of Christ, the character of Christ, the goodness of Christ, more in the last year than probably ever before . This has also probably been one of, if not the, hardest year of my life.
In those moments where His love didn't FEEL real, a sweet friend reminded me and believed it for me and with me.
In those moments where His character didn't SEEM good or loving, precious sisters reminded me of the truth of His word and times when His goodness has been absolutely undeniable.
We need each other sweet friends. Don't hide behind walls of shame and embarrassment because your life doesn't look as awesome as everyone else's on your Facebook or instagram. Real friendships are hard, but the most rewarding kind I've ever been in. Remember that people only see what you let them- Let people in to the real, true, messy, raw, you. You will be blessed dear friends.