Brené Brown once said, “Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”
Since becoming a believer, I have found myself praying for God to use me…but not too much ☺ I talk a lot about my “Job” years in my book…all of the trials…and throughout my life I have prayed to God to use my life as He desires…but always with a little “*” behind it…because while I want to be do work for Him on earth and while I believe our vulnerabilities are a gift, I have always been afraid of what it would truly look like to be that exposed to His plan…and afraid of being that exposed to friends around me.
But I have learned from the very wise Brené Brown, “In order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen; really seen. The one thing that keeps us out of connection is our fear that we are not worthy of connection.”
David and I went through so many years of darkness…feeling like God was not there. We lost everything from our house to having a miscarriage, to losing both of his parents. I mean everything. God allowed David and I to go through that…He was refining us into the image of Christ. When we are vulnerable, God blesses us through our pain and trials and heartache. He knows the end of the chapter and the end of the story.
He allows death and heartbreak and horrible, horrible things to happen because He gave us free will to make choices—even if it’s not what He desires for us…but then He takes that and makes something beautiful come out of it.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” –Romans 8:28
We go through fire after fire after fire. Why do we still have faith in God when bad things happen? Clearly, God has an amazing plan because the enemy loves to mess with us and God can take us and use the bad and turn it into good so we can witness to others, share our testimony, discern and grow in wisdom.
“Vulnerability is the core of our shame, and fear and our struggle for worthiness…but it is also the birthplace of joy, creativity, of belonging and of love.” Brené Brown
A friend of mine has been dating someone for the past 7 months, the last three of which they slowed down so he could do some healing before they moved forward. She had been praying and praying that God would speed up his healing and that they would be together and live happily ever after. She was sure that’s what she wanted and she had hoped it was what God wanted too. She literally prayed this every day for three months. She prayed that her desires were God’s will…and as each day passed, she became more and more anxious and confused. Finally, last week she surrendered, truly surrendered it over to Him and in her darkest, saddest and most vulnerable moments, prayed that if this relationship wasn’t right, that God would pry her out of it: that He would make it crystal clear and easy to walk away. She begged Him, as she was so deep into it she couldn’t see out of it; she couldn’t see the truth. She was losing herself and becoming incredibly anxious as the days went by and the guy she was seeing was leading her on and sending her mixed signals. Well, Friday night she got a sharp answer to prayer. God revealed to her the truth about the man she was dating and she was able to let go and walk away. The next morning, after only 1 hour of sleep, exhausted from crying and the realization that the last 7 months had been a lie, she woke up and the first thing she did was thank God that He revealed the truth to her. That when she finally, truly surrendered and was at her most vulnerable, He pulled her out of it and saved her. Despite the heartache and endless tears, God has a bigger and better plan for her and we can only truly see that when we surrender our plans to His plans.
“Vulnerability is about showing up and being seen. It’s tough to do that when we’re terrified about what people might see or think.” – Brené Brown
It’s beautiful to ask for help and to share what God is doing in your life. The risk of being vulnerable is that people can pass judgment on us…BUT, on the other side, there is healing and the blessing that God honors our humility. God doesn’t want our little Christian selves to be wrapped up in pretty little bows and pretending life is just grand while we paste a smile on our face and then suffer alone in pain. He designed us to lean on others, to be moldable so that he can use these storms to make us more in the image of Christ. He honors us when we are simply wanting to live for the audience of One. Knowing this makes us wiser, stronger and a more powerful child of God.
What about you? Do you have the strength to be vulnerable? If not, what will it take to take your mask off? Until next time, keep shining in His grace.