The discovery process started with the tuck the fringe moment, that there is a girl in here that God blessed with a unique purpose for life, trying to get out from underneath the armor of not being enough. The armor that many of us carry, but that is unique for each of us. Letting this girl out, vulnerable and exposed has been painful. At times, it seems easier to cover her up and revert to the patterns that feel familiar and even though daunting, safe. Going back to pleasing and appeasing for acceptance sometimes feels better than rejection. At least when I’m tucked in, I’m in control and somewhat protected.
The saving grace in this process is the girl fighting to get out is stronger than the pain of staying stuck. There have been some uncomfortable situations that have tested me along the way. Testing me to stay true to my heart and not tuck the fringe. Standing up for myself and setting boundaries is tough for me. I realized that the girl on the outside was conforming to the expectations of others which felt completely unnatural, but I still did it. It’s like playing the victim role when the heroine is the truth inside.
UN-tucking the fringe, I started making decisions based on what was in my heart and not the expectations of others. At first, it felt like I was back in Jr High standing up to the mean girl, defending myself and my actions. I could feel old wounds surfacing and my heart ached. I was desperate each time to “fix” things. But that just meant giving in and going back to my old ways. I felt isolated. The amazing gift was that it brought me back to God. I’ve always felt like I have a close relationship with God. I talk to him all the time. However, the pattern of trying to please others put everyone first, before him and before me.
Painful as it was and still is, it is extremely liberating. The tuck the fringe moment for me was knowing that rejection from others will always be there, but God will never reject me. “The enemy wants you to feel rejected … left out, lonely and less than. But God wants you to know you are destined for a love that can never be diminished, tarnished, shaken or taken — a love that does not reject or uninvite.” A daily devotional from Proverbs31.
As I continue this process I know that it is going to be a life long journey. I know that I will have times of struggle and triumph. The lessons continue to come from very unlikely sources. Letting go of situations and others, when it’s time can feel like failure to me because I want everyone to get along. But I know it’s all part of the plan. Letting go of attachment to situations and people is a big part of my journey. I am becoming more aware of my patterns and the seeds that I tend to cultivate and learning where they came from in the first place and how to change them. Honestly, it’s friking exhausting, but the amazing gift is the authenticity of those who are with me for me.
This process has changed my marriage, my friendships and of course myself. Knowing that my first focus is God in my heart guiding me through and the discernment when it comes to my spiritual gifts and the people in my life.
I recite these personal mantras daily to keep me grounded and when I feel like this world is distracting me.
Thank you, God, ~ I am enough.
Let my thoughts, words and actions be holy and come from peace.
I am sowing the seeds peace, love and understanding.
Sharing this with others is a large part of the healing process. Every time I am inspired to write about my journey, doubt comes into play. Who am I to think I could write something others would want to read? However, every time I have this doubt, I receive a subtle nudge. If this speaks to you, please feel free to comment or share.
To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,[a] and to still another the interpretation of tongues.[b]11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines. (1 Corinthians 12:8-11)
My hope for us all is to live true to ourselves, let go of our doubts and UN-tuck the fringe.