I cried because I played it safe

I recently spent the day with a friend I rarely see. Like any other time I’ve spent with friends, I replayed every word that was spoken and every action that was made for the entire day. I thought about ways I could have acted differently and words I could’ve said that would’ve made the day more interesting. After succumbing to the realization that what was done was done and there was no changing it, I started to cry. Not because I was overwhelmed with joy. Not because I was afraid of moving forward. Not because anything said or done was hurtful. No. I cried because I played it safe. I cried because I couldn’t redo the safeness of my actions. I cried because God gave me a very real depiction of the life I’ve been living — safe and guarded. God showed me that by playing it safe, I’m living a life of distrust. Distrust in friends. Distrust in family. Distrust in relationships. Distrust in Him. By not trusting (literally anyone), I start to portray myself as what I believe people want to see. I hide Taylor and put on the people-pleaser. I tell myself that if I were always me, people might not like me. People would hurt me. People would fail me.
John & Stasi Eldredge briefly touch on this topic in their book, Captivating —

“We are not inviting — we are guarded. Most of our energy is spent trying to hide our true selves and control our worlds to have some sense of security… We hide our truest selves and offer only what we believe is wanted, what is safe. We act in self-protective ways and refuse to offer what we truly see, believe, and know.”

It’s been a very rough, emotional week for me. God revealed things to me in the past that I learned to change and seek His face about. I acknowledged pride in the past. I acknowledged the love of money in the past. I even acknowledged bitterness and the need to forgive in the past. But this… This is different.

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This is about trust.
Not the I-think-you’ll-cheat-on-me kind of trust, or the you-better-not-tell-anyone-my-secret kind of trust. This is the trust that pertains to us being vulnerable — bare naked, completely exposed before the Lord.
Why is it that we sometimes pray modestly? Why do we hold things back in our prayers? Why are we afraid of speaking the depths of our hearts to God? What would happen if we brought everything before the Lord in prayer?
Since spending time with this friend, I’ve had some very raw moments with God. I’ve poured out throughout the entirety of each day what’s going on in my head. If I’m lacking in the trust department with God, then the only way I know how to start to trust is by crying out to Him from the very depths of my soul. The only thing I know how to do is be completely honest with Him. Why should I try to hide when He already knows what’s going on in my life?
When God revealed to me that I don’t trust Him nor anyone else in my life, my first reaction was, “how could I not trust you, God? You’ve never failed me, ever.” As I’ve examined myself and am starting to see how much “fake trust” I’ve dished out to friends, I see that distrust in the Lord has nothing to do with what He’s done or not done. Distrust in the Lord has everything to do with me. I ask Him for petty things in my life and refuse to acknowledge Him when He provides in a different way (a way that’s always MUCH better). I secretly allow hurts to develop against God when someone close to me upsets me. When a family member betrays me, subconsciously I blame God for not protecting me. Offenses from the past have built on top of each other, one by one by one, until I now have a wall blocking me from God… A wall that looms above my head, telling me to be fearful of being myself because I can’t trust anyone. It’s a wall that casts a shadow of doubt, fear, distrust, and anger in my life.
Now that the scales from my eyes have been removed, I’m sick and tired of this wall. I’m fed up with always wondering if a person is telling me the truth or lying so they can get what they want. I’m tired of always being skeptical of friends and strangers. I’m sick of limiting God’s power in and through my life.

It’s time for my wall to come down.

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