I’ll subtitle this: Reflections of a Nearly 38 Year Old Hot Mess Mama
My birthday is in just a few short days. I LOVE birthdays! (I mean, the alternative sucks right?) I usually celebrate a week, if not a month, in April… birthday celebrations, surprises and blessings make me happy. They also make me reflective. Today I reflect on how much I have changed in the last 10 years. I went from a mostly timid, introverted, worship leader to a brave yet spastic, mostly extroverted, growing preacher chick.
I’ve walked through some hell in these past 10 years. I’ve fallen more in love with Jesus. I’ve faced some of my biggest fears – and won. I’ve gotten my heart broken and experienced Jesus putting it back together. I’m more of a courageous bad ass in life today than I have ever been. I still face fears, still face insecurities, still get tempted to crawl in my shell when going through unsettled soul stuff. But the bad ass in me is growing and winning! Here are five things I’ve learned along the journey.
You have to do things that scare you. Sometimes, you can choose them, sometimes they just happen but you will have to walk through the scary stuff. Just do it. Even if you have to do it afraid.
You must value freedom over secrets. There’s something powerful that happens when we become vulnerable and share the things from our hidden place. Over the years, I’ve found freedom in letting people into my ‘messy’. James 5:16 is no joke and confession, as da** hard as it is, brings crazy freedom. And freedom is worth the price, y’all!
“Confess and acknowledge you have offended one another and then pray for one another to be instantly healed for tremendous power is released through the passionate, heartfelt prayer of a godly believer!” (The Passion Translation)
Ask the hard questions. I hate asking questions. (It’s linked to pride in my life but that’s another story.) But I’ve found if you just come out and ask, life is such an easier walk. When the ultrasound tech was acting weird as she was checking out my 20 week pregnant belly, I could continue to let my mind race or ask the question that had the same answer whether I asked or not. I cut to the chase and asked, “Is there a heartbeat?” Of course, I didn’t want to hear the answer she gave me but it saved me some agonizing mental guessing.
Loving confrontation is necessary for healthy relationships. I come from a long line of non-confronters. I also come from a long line of passive aggressive behavior. They are both what come natural to me. Not cool, not healthy. Overcoming the fear of what you might hear and overcoming the tendency to manipulate by confronting situations head on isn’t always a pretty road but it is a road to flourishing relationships. Before you bulldozer personalities let out a big hurray, let me use this definition of confront: to bring together for examination or comparison; set face to face. Confrontation is done to be able to see things clearly, with no judgements attached.
Dreams do come true. Sometimes you have to work your butt off for them but I’ve found if I take the one or two hard steps, the grace of Jesus is what makes them actually happen. Grace, as in, God’s power to do things that I cannot do.
So happy birthday to me! I’m so grateful to Jesus that I’m not the same person I was 10 years ago. I’m grateful for another year in my journey. Cheers to being a bad ass in life! Eat some cake for me this month!