Thursday, October 16, 2014

Owning Your Worthiness (31 Days of Healing in Him)

“I believe that owning our worthiness is the act of acknowledging that we are sacred. Perhaps embracing vulnerability and overcoming numbing is ultimately about the care and feeding of our spirits.”
BrenĂ© Brown, Daring Greatly

I may brush my teeth, shower regularly, and eat three meals a day, but that doesn't necessarily mean I take care of myself.

About a year ago, something inside started brewing again. I could feel the tension, as though I were still tied to something, so I decided to go back to counseling.

“The worst kind of brokenness is the kind that you don’t know you have.”
Amy NeftzgerThe Orphanage of Miracles

What was unearthed through counseling, prayer, and self-reflection was an issue with worth. A deep down belief that I wasn't enough. Informed by what people said or did, I have struggled with feeling unacceptable and not worth choosing.

Even in sharing this I start to feel a crushing pressure on my chest. I don't want to give people so much power.

Existing this way makes an enemy of my own reflection, threatens my relationships, and leaves me skeptical of everyone, especially myself.

But it's in this space that God speaks and is working to heal me. With grace He opens my eyes to see the idol of my heart, my "need" for people acceptance, but ultimately, my lacking.

I breathe in a new truth — that I have always been acceptable. And He unravels the string that has kept me bound to people.

I find how little I've thought of myself, cared for my heart, or acknowledged my deepest dreams and desires. I feel the pain of my own choices to belittle myself and ignore the voice that tells me "I am His."

Fear and doubt has kept me from "feeding and caring for my own spirit" (Brene Brown).

I watch the struggle in my own children to carve out a place for themselves, not rattled by the words and actions of others. It is a battle we all face.

The balm is belief. It's the confidence of knowing who you are and whose you are. A verse comes — "You are fearfully and wonderfully made" (Psalm 139:14). Why do I struggle to believe that?

On the way to school this morning my daughter and I were marveling at how amazing it is that God made us so different and yet so similar. How there's no one in this world just like her. Triggered by the complexity of friendships I wanted her to know how special and loved she is — regardless of what other kids say or do. But also how important it is to find ways to appreciate the uniqueness of others and extend grace when the differences sometimes cause conflicts.

I can articulate these thoughts and believe them about her, but I need to believe them about myself, too. 

I study this verse — "in God I trust and am not afraid. What can man do to me?" (Psalm 56:11). I ruminate on a friend's honest response to it:

"What can mere mortals do to me, Your word asks? I've got a long list of what they can do. And what they did. And if I stayed right here too long I will become afraid again. But I'd like to answer that question while there is praise on my lips because here my thoughts are the purest and the most truthful. They can't touch my soul. They can't take my name off Your engraved hand. They cannot make me matter less to You or be loved less."

They can't touch my soul, if I don't let them. They can't inform, dismiss, hurt, who I am if my confidence comes from God. When I accept His words as truth, His thoughts of me matter more than the noisy crowd.

Caring for my soul is like learning how to walk again. Being honest with myself about what I need and want and honoring that. Some days it looks like setting boundaries and other days it looks like making time for creativity or crocheting or just rest.

Once we "own our worthiness" (Brene Brown) we will take better care of our souls. What does this look like in your life?

This is a post from my 31 days of Healing in Him series. You can find all the posts in this series here, updated each day in October. Category: Inspirational & Faith #write31Days

1 comment:

Trudy said...

I also struggle with taking care of myself, "with feeling unacceptable and not worth choosing." To embrace our own worthiness is so tough, isn't it? A lifelong process of healing... Thank you for being so transparent. I can identify and that makes me feel less alone. I love Shannon's quote. I also appreciate what you both do at the abuse support group.

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