I’ll be the first to admit that I was afraid to believe in certain things. For instance, I didn’t believe that I was enough of a woman for a man. I didn’t believe that I was pretty, or even had much to offer. I wasn’t sure about successful marriages or even dating in a biblical way. At some point in my life, I lost the courage to believe in positive things. Sometimes, things can transpire that knocks the wind out of our lungs. We learn to stop hoping, stop looking for the positive, and eventually stop living. We begin to just exist daily in the shell that we call our bodies without satisfaction.
If we act this way long enough it becomes normal. We learn to make accommodations for dysfunctions, toxic thoughts and negligence. We imprison ourselves in the very jail that we want to be saved from.
I can remember several times where I hoped to have a savior riding on a white horse to come sweep me off my feet, and love me into a healthy person. That didn’t happen. Mainly, because I put my trust in mere mortals and tasked them with the horrible assignment of making me well. Misplaced hope–when it should’ve been in God–caused a lot of internal damage. By putting my hope in others, I displayed that I didn’t trust God.
In a cliché manner, people will say “put our trust in God.” I mean that sounds easy enough, but it how easy is it to fully put your life in God’s hands? It takes time. It takes courage to trust a man who you cannot see because we’ve been unable to trust men we could see. In time, however, there will come a time where you surrender. There will be a moment of sacrifice where you throw your hands up and stop allowing dysfunction to run havoc in your life–I did, finally.
I wanted to believe that I had more to offer. I wanted to know who I was designed to be. I wanted to be the woman who existed in my head. I wanted to live higher and lighter. I just wanted to be me.
I once heard a pastor relay this anecdote and it remained with me:
He was riding in a cab in Africa and the driver was African. In order to make some type of conversation in the cab, he said to the cabby “I never cared much for Africans.”
The cabby responded, “Oh, why do you not like us?”
The pastor replied, “Because you all are so arrogant.”
The cabby responded, “We are not arrogant. We are just what you would’ve been had you not been slaves!”
I almost took off running when I heard that. In essence, the cabby was telling the pastor that his past hindered his present, and since his ancestors were slaves then he operated in certain mindsets. I wonder who I would’ve been had certain things in my past not happened. If I never lost my virginity. If I didn’t prostitute my potential for momentary attention. Who would I have been? Whether we realize it or not, the past is weighty and it costs.
With this revelation, I encourage you to believe. Have the courage to want more and know that you can be/have more. But, it all started with my decision to surrender to Christ.