As I said last time, I made a pact with myself never to get real.
Fast forward to life overseas, where we serve with a team of people, 11 families, and we are it for English speakers in a city of 200,000. Even though we don’t live on a “mission base” we all live in close proximity within the city. And, just like that, there was nowhere to hide. When there is conflict, sickness, hurt feelings, or need we are all in it together. We have to be each other’s family, co-workers, and friends all wrapped into one. When I get offended, I can’t quietly slip away and move on, because I have to continue to rely on, work with, and spend time with these ladies.
One day, a few years ago, I was preparing for my daughter Hannah’s birthday party. We were going to have a little tea part in the front yard, and Hannah really wanted lemonade for her special birthday drink. Since I struggle with Lupus and live in the tropics where the humidity makes it worse, there are times when it is really painful to complete everyday tasks like combing my hair, stirring pancake batter, and yes, squeezing lemons.
In a moment of desperation, as Hannah’s party loomed just a few hours ahead, I called my friend and next door neighbor to ask if she might be able to help me squeeze the lemons. She immediately came over with tears streaming down her face. She told me how much it meant to her to be allowed to see the real me, the messy me, the one that needs help and doesn’t get it right all of the time. It was a turning point for me. I realized that by acting like I had it all together, by never asking for help, by wanting to appear perfect, I was actually isolating myself and robbing others of the joy of knowing me and being able to serve me.
Since that time, the Lord has grown me SO much in this area, and allowed me to be able to reach out for His grace in my daily life and allow myself to be ministered to by others in my life.
“When I am wearing a mask, not only can others not see me, but I can’t see them. I see everything through a thin veil of perception…. What would it look like if I allowed Jesus Himself to determine my comfort zone? What if, instead of walking into a room with a wall around me, I was able to walk into a room and move toward others in freedom? Before I am able to do that, I have to be convinced that I am safe. And that is exactly what Jesus came to do.”
So, I want to ask you….What is the greatest hindrance keeping you from getting real? Are you willing to be your real messy self? The one who doesn’t have it all together? Are you willing to ask for help when you need it and be honest about your struggles?
1 Timothy 4:15 says, “…let your progress be known to all people.” Your progress, not your perfection.
More to come….
I’d love to have you subscribe and join me here every day!
Here are the other posts in the Sisterhood series: