Okay so if you haven’t already thought I’m a little bit crazy, the next post will solidify it. I blogged awhile back about an ideal version of myself that I’m constantly warring against.
Tonight I felt myself understand a little bit more of who she is. In my community group we talked about holiness and how we either allow God to mature our currently selves into holiness or if we strive to attain holiness on our own. I’ve struggled for awhile on understanding how to let God mature me versus working on my own. I’m not sure why I’ve always thought I needed to work towards being a better Christian.
It wasn’t until recently that I started to embrace the idea of not trying so hard. That Christ in me is what transforms me and nothing that Rachel Mueller can do will change that. It may be a combination of the legalistic school I attended as well as my young attempts to reconcile Godly discipline with grace but somewhere along the line my continued salvation rested upon me. But then it all started to change and I finally started to understand the reality of what my salvation and God’s love for me entails.
So anyways, back to holiness. I described my past attempts at holiness in how I always felt there was this idea version of me that haunted my every move. This woman looked pretty much just like me, except had longer prettier hair, was about 80 pounds thinner, and had smaller features. Her personality was nothing like mine though.
She rarely lost her temper, had a nightly quiet time that was filled with the presence of God, tended to err on the sweeter side, always had time for everything, kept her room clean, met everyone’s expectations, and didn’t shout awkward sayings. That was who I felt I needed to be in order to be holy. She was the one telling me I would never measure up in the middle of my sleepless nights.
She’s the one who was disappointed and embarrassed when I made a fool out of myself. For years I’ve longed to kill that ideal version of me. To strip her down piece by piece and refuse to hold myself to a standard that no one else does, regardless of my preconceived notions that they do. Tonight I realized that she’s slowly started to fade into the background.
Maybe it’s because I’m finally starting to feel loved and accepted for all my quirks and insecurities. I say awkward things, make a mess, lose my temper, and love deeply. I feel things unlike most people, and while I can be sweet and incredibly tender, I am fierce. I am loyal and strong and independent. And I cut my hair when I’m bored and pierce my ears when a boy breaks my heart. I am alive and full and complex.
And while Veronica (that’s what I call her) is incredibly disappointed that I won’t ever be her, I’ve started to love who I was created to be, and that is not her. I think the glory of God comes alive in that – that is how He matures me into holiness. When I begin to embrace the things that make my DNA unique. Because I feel safe within a group of people that love me, it allows me to experience the enormity of God’s love for me. I’m finding that the two are so intertwined I think my heart might shrivel up and die if I lost either. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world to have the life I do – regardless of how messy or painful it is – I’m okay.
I am okay.
I’ve seen this promise come to fruition:
“Therefore I am now going to allure her;
I will lead her into the wilderness
and speak tenderly to her.
There I will give her back her vineyards,
and will make the Valley of Achor (heartbreak) a door of hope.”
I have truly seen my valley of heartbreak become a door of hope.