Friday, June 27, 2014

Excerpt #2 <3 less than Three

Every part of my mind told me I couldn't handle what I was getting into and that I needed to run. Every fiber of my being told me I was unworthy of this man and that he would break my heart because of my unworthiness. 

As I look back on those years, I think I subconsciously wanted to make Ian feel less than me, so that I could finally feel like I was worthy. I wanted to feel like I was worthy of him, not that he was worthy of me. I wanted to feel valuable, and in turn I think I tried to make him feel less valuable. I was passionately in love with him, but terribly shaken with fear of losing him. 

Ian was dealing with his own inner demons, which is part of his testimony to share and I can't, but I began doing a lot of damage to Ian during those first years of our relationship and the damage is still being seen today in our very healthy marriage. 

I want to take a lot of blame for what happened during those years because I know now just exactly what I was doing, but the reality is that I wasn't necessarily even the one doing the damage to Ian. The enemy was prevalent in our lives like a roaring lion and he sought one thing; our destruction. The enemy wanted very much to make both Ian and I feel unworthy, and he succeeded. He used us against each other unfortunately , but that is what he does. He is cunning, he is slick, and he is successful.  

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 
1 Peter 5:8

When Ian would make a mistake, I would blow it so out of proportion to make myself feel better, because I was tired of feeling bad. I used Ian to make myself feel better. It seemed like as soon as we met, his drinking became so prevalent that I was able to focus entirely on his "problems" and not mine anymore. Fixing Ian, and making Ian better, became my goal. I wanted to change him. I wanted to make him more acceptable to me, and then I would work on myself. 

Very soon after we moved to Arizona, I felt a tug on my heart to get to know God better. I wanted to talk to Ian about him. I wanted to hear from Him. I would call out to Him often. But, I never felt like I was hearing Him say anything back to me because I thought He was waiting on me to change. I kept telling myself that if Ian would just change, then I would be able to change. If Ian would just do this, or if Ian would just help me in this way, then I will be able to handle this all better and be able to finally change. 

I wanted to change. 

I wanted to be free of my fear, my anxiety, my depression. I wanted to wake up and feel happy; not run down and tired. I wanted to have enthusiasm for things;, the way it seemed like other people did. I wanted to feel something, anything, besides downright unworthiness. 

I felt unworthy when I went to the grocery store. I felt unworthy when I was at work with coworkers. I felt unworthy when I was talking to my family. 

And I felt most unworthy when I was with Ian. I loved him so much, and knew I was not worthy of someone loving me back. 

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Excerpt from <3 less than Three

<3 less than Three 

Once I stopped cowering over in fear of what other's believed about me, once I truly became the woman who stood upright as I had always said I was, and secretly hoped to be, I was able to see everything differently. 

Before then, I saw things from the ground up. I saw things from the perception of others, from the world, from the ground. I saw the floor, shoes, dirt and heard only the voices of others that were coming down at me. 

I had this idea that I wanted to walk upright. I had this vision of walking upright. I named my ministry Women Walking Upright for a reason. I wanted to be that woman. But, I hadn't been. 

I was hunched over like the woman in the synagogue in the book of Luke and I couldn't stand up straight. For my whole life, I stared at the ground, thinking I was completely unworthy of my life. I didn't think it mattered how I lived, because I was trash anyways. I could be stepped on. I could be spit on. It didn't matter. 

I focused on my fruits, on how spoiled and rotten they were. I knew there was something completely wrong with me, and I wanted it fixed, but I was never truly willing to express just how rotten I felt. I believed if I could put a bandaid on it and go through a healing prayer, I'd be healed and never again have to deal with my terrible afflictions. I believed if I could just follow enough rules and laws, I would one day prove that I was worthy of His amazing sacrifice. I couldn't understand how if Jesus knew us so intimately and knew us before we were born, then why He ever died for me? It had to be because I was expected to clean up, right?

But, when I lifted my eyes up, and saw Jesus, I couldn't resist standing up straight. I couldnt resist reaching my hands up to the sky; not out of routine or practice but out of a need to embrace the root in which my life was grounded in--Jesus Christ. 

When I wasn't embarrased to embrace Jesus, I was free to live in truth. When I wasn't overtaken with guilt, I was free to call out to Him. When I was free to be who He called me to be, no longer bound by my need to feel worthy to the world, I was free to experience the life He set forth for me. 

And what a life He had waiting for me.