Tuesday, July 10

Hello God, Are Your There?


It's Me, Courtney


I don't really want to write this post, I'm afraid of putting this out here, but I feel like I need to just clear my mind.  I've been going full speed ahead again.  Like a mouse on a wheel - running to the point of exhaustion - because its what I do.

I don't have to do things this way.  No one has me backed up against a wall.  It is my choice that brings me here always.  It is my escape.  My retreat.  It has been easy in my life to be compulsive - to push myself farther, to go over the top, to escape in anyway necessary because I felt that was what I had to do.  It's how I've kept the very real pain and horror of my childhood from overtaking me.  My propensity to overindulge in any activity able to distract my mind and heart from that pain has been one of the most falsely freeing and grossly debilitating plagues in my life.

I think if you were to peel away all of the layers of my soul, arriving at the deepest part of my being you would find a young girl there screaming endlessly in terror.  A young girl afraid of all that is evil and equally terrified at what is supposed to be good as well.   A young girl frozen in time - paralyzed within the cell she locked herself into in order to protect what little innocence wasn't taken from her.

I've been afraid as an adult, to face the reality of the fallen world we live in.  It wasn't until a couple of years ago that I was able to view my childhood without painting a fantasy of goodness over it.  I never claimed I had a good childhood, but I did my best to downplay what I experienced, denying the evils of it, and protecting the people who didn't protect me.

I've faced countless storms - riptides in my soul as the truth shattered the walls of denial I worked hard to build.  And as the walls have fallen down, leaving the truth bare and exposed, the depth of my shame motivates me to attempt to rebuild more fervently than ever.  As the walls crumble from my high tower of brick and mortar, into piles of dust, I run to and fro attempting to lay another shield of brick until I am exhausted, empty and utterly alone.  It is futile to rebuild.

When the veil is removed from my eyes in moments of clarity I can literally feel the poison of the deep wound in my heart traveling through my body - an anguish so deep that if not for God's strength in my weakness I am certain my body would tear apart from my soul to escape it.  And it is in this moment of gasping and fighting that I have yet to find the courage to trust God deeply enough to walk me through.  It is in this nakedness of my soul that I run for cover - desperate to hide my vulnerability.

I am a Christian, I truly believe that Jesus is the only one who can save me.  In fact, Jesus has been so faithful to me, that I have never trusted a person more than Him, and yet, the trust I have given Him is still so frail, so completely and utterly weak.  I struggle within the body of believers though, I struggle to find other believers who when faced with the truth about my pain and experience don't also run away in fear of it.  And the fear and sometimes reality of rejection keeps me constantly devoid of true, deep and intimate friendships.  That form of rejection just reaffirms that my pain is too deep, too frightening for anyone to endure - that it is too overwhelming.

At the same time, I am guilty of pushing others out.  When the message that people can't be trusted is seared into your heart as a child, especially people who are the closest to you, true intimacy often seems  like a foolish way of opening yourself up for more pain and hurt.  I've self-sabotoged many of my relationships when they got too close, demanded too much intimacy or made me feel too deeply.  I am just coming to terms, almost 31 years into this life, at the damage of my own choices to self-protect.

I can relate, more than ever before in my life, to Adam and Eve in the fall.  In a way I too decided that I needed to control my own destiny, to be like God - to build a life of protection aside from God - making God not a good enough protection for me.  When overwhelmed with the shame, fear and pain of my childhood experiences I too have chosen to run and hide from God.  And yet God still calls out to me.  He still fights for me.  He still invites me to have an intimate relationship with him.

But how afraid I am still!!  On most days the most courageous thing I can do is refuse to detach from this life - whether its by working myself to the point of exhaustion, distracting myself with duty and obligation or tuning out in some other way - I have to fight the constant urge to disengage from life itself.  I have to fight every day to stir up my desire to deeply connect with my husband, daughter and God.  And I often lose that fight.  And it pains me to even admit that here.

So, God, if you are listening, this is me crying out to you, from one moment of clarity - to be my very present help in my time of trouble.  It is me saying I love you and I need you, and I am sorry that I keep hiding and running from you.  It is me saying that I want with all that is wanting within me to have the life Jesus died to give me - one filled with a passionate love for you and others.  One that points like an arrow straight to you for your glory.

Friend, if you are reading this and can relate to my struggle - know that you are not alone, and I am here to walk with you.  If you are reading this and don't know what to say, or how to respond - simply knowing that you care and support me is all that I have ever needed.  Simply saying that you will not abandon me because my pain scares the ish out of you or touches too close to pain of your own is more than I could ever ask, and all that I have ever wanted.

***

15 comments:

  1. Danni BairdJuly 10, 2012

    Courtney, just reading this is so moving.  I feel the same way and to have the life that Jesus died to give us is a huge goal and I admire you for thinking that way.  It seems like a big thing to ask to have that life, but my feeling is that as long as you are seeking it...you are on the right path!  

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  2. courtney, i don't know you and i don't know the details of what you've been through - but we all go through struggles in life and many of us have deep pain within us that we work to avoid and cover up. but it's so good to know that you trust in Him, despite everything. know that you have people who love and care about you - and i, too, will certainly be praying for you - i'll be praying for Him to provide you with the comfort, peace, and love He knows you needs. Hugs, girl.

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  3. Melissa SwensonJuly 10, 2012

    Praying for you! Don't be scared to post things like this. You'd be surprised at how many people probably feel the exact same way that you do. I just wrote this verse down  a few weeks ago: "Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And everyone who knocks, the door will be opened." Luke 11:9. Check out my blog here. I felt the same way you did just a few weeks ago! 
    http://adayinthelifeofamomandawife.blogspot.com/2012/06/whew-what-week.html

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  4. jamiebrooke19July 10, 2012

    This is beautifully raw and honest post.
    I hope you know that you are not alone in this struggle. I am constantly struggling with giving over all my trust to God. I'm not saying we are having the same problem, but I know how hard it is to trust people and sometimes even God Himself.
    Anyway, I'll be keeping you and your fight in my prayers!
    xoxo, jamie brooke

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  5. Chelsea FrancisJuly 10, 2012

    This is such a brave and raw post and I applaud you for your transparency, especially when you've been hurt and struggled so much as a result. My roommate is going through a very similar situation and sometimes I wish there was some way that I could understand her pain and fear. But all I can do is listen and pray and be there. Prayers for you as you lean on Jesus to find healing and peace. 

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  6. Oh Courtney.  I'm sorry.  I wish I could zap your pain away.  I think, if we were all honest with ourselves we've felt what your feeling.  We all try to distract ourselves, or at least try to hide the reality of our brokenness from others.  This was very convicting to me b/c I think God made me to be a vulnerable person but lately I've been trying to ignore my brokenness.  I've been avoiding him.  Well, not true.  I speak Christianese to him.  I give him shallow time with me.  But I haven't been letting him get to the barebones dirty yucky reality of my heart right now.  I feel compelled to meet with him in a real way today and to believe that he wants that kind of intimacy with me.  Thanks for helping me remember that.  

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  7. I'm so sorry to hear you're struggling Courtney! You write of your pain in such a moving way and it's impossible not to feel connected with you, despite a world away in life experiences. I admire your courage and strength and I'm praying you'll find some peace to quiet your demons forever. XOXOXO

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  8. Thank you so much for this post, it is so refreshing and honest! Please know that you have a community of people here who will pray for you, and listen to you!

    Carly
    www.lipglossandcrayons.com

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  9. Thank you so much Devon! <3 <3 <3

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  10. Once again, Courtney, you inspire me. I can only imagine how difficult it must have been for you to post this for the world to see, but I applaud you for your courage, and your faith and testimony. Thank you for sharing your belief in God, and for not being ashamed. Faith in Christ is not easy to have, but I feel that, even though always doing His will is not easy at all, and is sometimes seemingly inconvenient, you are doing your best, and you will be rewarded for your efforts. I truly admire you, girl. :)

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  11. Courtney,
    Thank you for sharing your heart to the depth of your soul with us.
    I am so sorry for the things that have been done to you.
    Just know that you were a highly wanted baby, little girl and woman.
    Because you have a heavenly Father who loves you and desires you to be here to serve Him.
    He has a lot of work for you to do because of what has happened to you. He will heal you so you can live an abundent life and help other wounded people.
    Psalm 139:1
    O Lord, You have searched me and known me.
    You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
    You understand my thought from afar.
    You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
    And are intimately acquainted with all my ways.
    Even before there is a word on my tongue,
    Behold, O Lord, You know it all.
    You have enclosed me behind and before,
    And laid You hand upon me.
    Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
    It is too high, I cannot attain to it.
    Where can I go from Your Spirit?
    Or where can I flee from Your presence?
    Even there your hand will lead me,
    And Your right hand will lay hold of me.
    For you formed my inward parts;
    You wore me in my mother's womb.
    I will give thanks to You, for I am 
    fearfully and wonderfully made;
    Wonderful are Your works,
    And my soul know it very well.
    My frame was not hidden form You,
    When I was made in secret,
    And skillfully wrought in the depths
    of the earth;
    Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; 
    And in Your book were all written
    The days that were ordained for me,
    When as yet there was not one of them.
    How precious also are Your thoughts
    to me, O God! 

    http://thepeacethatpassesallunderstanding.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2010-01-01T00:00:00-06:00&updated-max=2011-01-01T00:00:00-06:00&max-results=9

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  12. CCs_Cheap_ChicJuly 10, 2012

    It is such a blessing (odd word, I know) to read about others who feel the same.    I read. Incessantly. Because it is so much easier to be lost in another world, one that resolves and has a happy ending than to live in my own. Not that my life is so bad now. But it was, and that screaming little girl - she still lives in my heart too. And there are so few in the sheltered world of the church who can relate. They are frightened and intimidated by my life. And I am terrified. Of them. Of liking them, of having them like me. Of getting too close. And I want more than anything the 'abundant life' promised, but most of the time it is easier to stay in my hole. I understand. Your truthfulness and vulnerability doesn't make me want to run. I will pray for you.

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  13. I relate to your struggle, Courtney. I relate in ways that I've never shared on my blog and might never completely share. I disengage too, a lot, and it is a constant fight within myself to not do that. Thank you for this post. I loved you before but I love you even more now.

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  14. Prayers for you!  What a beautifully worded post.   Just know that there are a lot of people out there who think that you are beautiful just the way you are and who care about you deeply, whether you feel it or not.

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  15. This seriously reminds me a lot of myself.  I am so sorry that you are going through some things. I know all too well how that feels. I have never got in depth with how I felt about a lot of things. You worded this SO well. I think you are absolutely darling & everything will work out. Give it to God.. I left it at that.

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Thank you so much for your lovely comments! I don't always have time to respond to each one, but I do read them! XO