Seeing clearly

In the past month and a half, I have been blessed by the sharing of others who grew up with a parent who was/is a hoarder, or who experienced other dysfunction within their childhood homes. I say blessed, because several of these women who have shared with me have done so for the first time in their lives. And I feel honored that they chose to share with me!

And then the old thoughts of insufficiency came back to me...

Why would they want to share their stories with me? Why did they choose me?

Of course, the obvious answer is that they saw my story--real and open for the world to partake of. But I believe that it goes much deeper than this. I want to believe, (and this is spoken in humility, I promise...)I want to believe that they sense safety, compassion, hope and acceptance that they don't always experience in the world at large. (At least, I hope that they sense these things from me.) I continue to stand in awe that people choose to share their stories with me, especially when it's a total stranger!

And then, as I pondered the possibility that this was true--the safety, the compassion, the hope, and the acceptance--I realized that it might just be more than a possibility; it might be true! Even though I can easily align myself with the victim mentality and playing the role of the reactor instead of an actor, I also have something within me that being a victim has created and nurtured.

Recently, I was watching a show about undersea life that grows and lives so deep under the surface of the ocean that it never experiences the light of the sun. These creatures were so beautiful and yet, the light we enjoy above the ocean would destroy them. As I thought about these beautiful creatures that we don't normally get the opportunity to see and behold, I thought of my own childhood and the secret of my family. Until this fall, I spent my whole life keeping my reality tucked away from the light.

Like those amazing sea creatures, I kept a huge part of me deep within where no one could see it. I believed that those things made me ugly and unlovable. And although the things that I was hiding were not by the world's standards beautiful--we don't delight in emotional abuse and mental illness--those things had created something that is immensely beautiful. No matter how deep inside and how hidden I believed those things to be, they were creating a more beautiful me!

As I continued to think about these things, a verse came to mind:

"We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!" --I Corinthians 13:12, The Message

Even now, my life is in progress. When I look at it and try to understand it, I cannot. But I understand more today than I did yesterday, and tomorrow I will understand it even more. I know one thing for sure, when my Daddy looks down from heaven at me, He sees a very beautiful woman--one who wants to bless Him and others! He sees me clearly now, and in time, I will see clearly too!

Until I see God clearly and thus see myself exactly as He sees me and know Him as He knows me, I am going to cling to the promise of someday getting that blessing! Someday I will see everything as it is, and I can't wait for that day! And I believe that when that day comes, I will further understand that all those hurts from my childhood are the particular things that have made me beautiful and perfect!

And as sure as these things are true for me, I believe that they are true for you too!

Daddy, thank you for the glimpses in the mirror that allow me to see the beauty from my pain. I know that I often spend a lot of time whining about the things that have harmed me but you are always faithful to reveal just enough to remind me that you love me and that I am beautiful. Continue to work in my life, pushing me day by day toward total healing. Speak truth into my life when I cling to warped reflections. Hold me in your arms and love me until I learn to love me too! In Jesus' name, AMEN.


Unknown said…
Amen. God does give us beauty for ashes, thank you Jesus for the ashes because without them would we truly be beautiful? Ceci you are beautiful and I am thank to call you friend.

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