I have been really wanting to get back into blogging. I frequently have ideas for topics to explore in a post and I have a huge file with such a list.
Every time I sit down to write though, something stops me. I think it’s mostly fear.
Fear of what people will think. Fear that I will disappoint people or shock people or hurt people. Fear that people will think that I am a different person on my blog than I am in real life. Fear that people will think I’m too vulnerable. Fear that people will think that I am sinfully stuck in grief. Fear that people will assume rude or untrue things about my parents or upbringing.
It’s a hard bondage to be in. But I’m tired of being in that bondage to fear. I just want to be me, a twenty something woman who is pursuing the Lord, and who doesn’t shy away from the bumps, bruises, questions, and doubts along the way.
So here is an attempt to do that.
I came across this blog post recently and loved it. I was somewhat a follower of hers back in the day and I was excited to discover her current blog. The part that stood out to me the most though was when she said, “There’s nothing to see here.”
I have changed a lot over the years. It’s true. I have asked questions and re-evaluated what I believe on so many issues….how I dress, the music I listen to, parenting, marriage, divorce, gender, tattoos, vaccinations, healthy living, legalism, 4 letter words, homeschooling, hair color, body piercings, body image, the Bible itself, the character of God, homosexuality, dating/courting, etc.
On some of those issues, I have changed completely from what I used to believe. On some I have changed slightly. On some I haven’t changed at all. I think you would be hard pressed to find any person who has not changed quite a bit over the last decade or more.
I know some probably look at me and see a completely different person than I was 10, 15 years ago. And I have a lot of fear of man there. I fear that people will think I’m just running as far away as I can from what I used to believe. I fear that people will think that I am discarding the Bible and cherry-picking Bible verses to fit what I want to believe.
What people can’t see, though, is the years and years that literally went into each one of those issues. I can’t think of a single issue that I didn’t pour hours and hours and years and years of thought, prayer, tears, and Bible searching into. I haven’t changed willy-nilly. I am not discarding the Bible, and I am taking care to hold my questions and beliefs (changing or unchanging) up to the light of God’s word. I read from scholars, authors, and bloggers, on both sides of issues, to make sure I am grasping fully different “sides.”
There’s nothing to see here. I am just a person who is trying to follow hard after God. I am just a person who has learned that I would much rather be someone who has doubts and questions and takes them to God than a person who is comfortable with her beliefs and doesn’t continually hold them to Scripture. I am learning to hold many of my beliefs lightly, willing to see if I am in error.
And I feel awake! Awake to God’s grace, His glory, His joy, His fullness. I didn’t know if the light would ever shine this way again and I am continually thankful for the work He has done in my life.
I am currently going through Beth Moore’s Children of the Day devotional with a friend, and one of the sections this week was on the topic of being awake. She was discussing 1 Thessalonians 5:5-6, and the part about being awake as children of the day. She proceeded to describe what being awake is like.
“Then, blessed be the Name of the Lord, something wakes us up. Maybe we’ll never be thankful for what shook us out of our slumber, but we can be thankful at least to feel wide-awake.
“Awake to the activity of God around us.
“Awake to His Word on the surface of that page.
“Awake to the lightning before before we hear the thunder.
“Awake to our present season. Awake to our people. Awake even to our pain lest it end up meaning nothing…..
“To be awake is to still have questions and not just tidy summations….
“To be awake is to still grapple with mystery….This is the paradox of the crucified life: to lose ourselves in Christ is to find our very lives.”
It is an incredible thing to be awake. To be alive. To be walking in dynamic movement in the power of God. It is sobering. And humbling. And sometimes scary. But I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
So there’s no crazy story here. The only thing here to see is the working of God and that is a pretty powerful thing to see.