Monday, October 28, 2013

Let's Talk Sex

I have a passionate interest, and haven't really been sure how to start sharing it. I've struggled my whole life with my self image. As God has healed all these broken pieces and revealed who I am in him I feel a huge desire to start talking about it. From that journey and sharing pieces with others I have seen just how many women are struggling with the same junk. The problem for many of them is the same as what mine was, shame. Well, I'm not going to let the devil have me hiding anymore.
If women started talking we would find we all struggle with the same issues and the fear and shame would be gone, healing would come.
We've become numb to the images we see on magazines and TV these days. I recently found myself watching a Katy Perry video online with my daughters. Deep down I felt a little dirty for doing it, but I told Jason what a good message the song had. The words were really good...the images were really bad though. 20 years ago that video wouldn't have been allowed to air, now it is the norm. I had been so desensitized that I justified allowing my little girls to watch it. What the heck am I putting in their heads? I do not want my daughter swinging naked from a wrecking ball in 10 years, or worse I'm sure.
I'm starting a project, not sure if I'll try to write it as a book or just turn it into a series of blogs. I'm going to be digging into women's sexuality. How did we get here? Where did we go off track? What are the roots of our beliefs about ourselves sexually? How do we fix that?
I don't think we can understand any part of that without actually talking about sex and our perceptions of it. We need to start going back and reading the fine print of this junk Satan is selling us. There is a return policy, let's haul this crap back to the slimy salesman that conned us into buying it in the first place.
If you have any suggestion or any experience you'd like to share, PLEASE do! Prayer for this journey for me would be awesome too!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Take It Off

I recently had a battle going with my daughter. She had learned to ride bike, she was still shaky, but she was getting better every day. She wanted me to put her training wheels back on.
I didn't understand why she didn't want to just take off and pedal now that she could. She wanted the security of those training wheels back, life was easy with them. She didn't have to pay that much attention, less was required of her. Now that she knew she could ride without them she seemed to regress. She was able to go so much faster, turn quicker and go places those old wheels wouldn't have allowed. It was everything she had been wanting, yet somehow the comfort of those old training wheels pulled her back, she wanted that security back.
Well, I find myself frequently putting my training wheels back on too. Growth and change can be so hard. I find myself running back to the comfort of all those things I wanted so badly to be free of.
I convince myself it's OK to hang onto them, after all, I can ride that bike without the training wheels. It seems so simple when I think of my growth like my kid riding bike. It's just silly to keep trying to cart around with those old training wheels. There is so much more I can do without them. I can go so much faster and further.
Training wheels are a lot easier to take off though. It's also easy to recognize when you've put them back on. My life is not so simple. It's difficult to see when I slip back into my old ways of thinking and acting.

Lord Jesus, Help me to stop reaching for and thinking about those old training wheels in my life! Open my eyes so I recognize when I'm holding onto those old chains, when I am tying myself back up.

Hebrews 12:1-2a
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus,  the pioneer and perfecter of faith."

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Stripping Down

It's amazing how miracles happen, how God's love rolls over me again and again. In the little moments it washes over me, I find new pieces all over.
It's been almost 7 months since I went off all of my medications. Most of the time my life is moving along and I don't even notice the changes, but then something happens. Last month my moment came when I went to the Mops group I had attended prior to getting sick. I wasn't nervous at all getting prepared to go or driving there. Hhmmmm...that's different. Then I walked in. I wasn't sure what to do with myself because none of the normal feelings came. There wasn't any belittling chatter going on in my head. It was just me. Freedom. I just kept tearing up from the joy of it all. Just being able to walk into a group and be there. Being able to speak to friends without fear or anxiety attacking me was awesome.
For the first time in many years I'm enjoying autumn. For many years I would start to get depressed in late June, anticipating winter. I know that's silly, depressed in June because winter is coming?? Once we'd have that longest day of the year I knew every day forward would be shorter, eventually leading to cold and dark days. By the time the leaves started to turn there was nothing left to be happy about. This year I assumed I'd feel the same way, but it didn't happen. The days are shorter already, the sun sets more than 2 hours earlier already, and there is no depression. I'm actually anticipating the season changing. What? Me? Who am I?
I know this sounds silly to some people. Unless you've walked under that kind of darkness I suppose it may be hard to understand. I just know how thankful I am for the freedom I've been given. I suppose in some ways it's like the blind man in the Bible being given his sight, like the crippled guy being able to walk. I can do things I didn't even know were possible, things I didn't even know I was missing out on. I didn't even know how handicapped I was until Jesus stepped in and healed me.
I want to share something I posted on my blog when I was still sick.

I know you're there,
but many of my days are filled with black.
I know you're there,
Even when I can't make sense of the persistent
pain that invades my every pore.
I know you're there,
When I feel like dying, my life seems so pointless and void.
I know you're there,
When I even question your love and wonder why you
are letting me be trampled by my own mind.
I know you're there when I feel your presence wrapped
around me as I cry through the confusion.
I know you're there, you're holding me tightly and
sharing each tear.
I know you're there,
Even when I don't understand your purpose for
allowing the pain and emptiness to swallow me.

It's hard to read that, I remember that place. I'm glad I kept a journal of it all so I never forget and I can always remember what God did in me. I know even more now that he really was there, I also know his purpose, well, part of it at least. God has shown his power, love and glory in healing me. I knew then that he was there, he heard every cry out of my heart. He healed me.

What is he waiting to do for you? Ask him.