To shed shame

I’ve got this friend. A beautiful, kind, and deep soul, and the world seems to see her with only shallow eyes.
I’ve got this sister. A yearning and generous soul who doesn’t fit my good Christian bubble but still loves and desires Jesus. 
I’ve got this Jesus. He tells me so many truths I can hold on to, but I just keep finding ways to believe lies. My lies. Other people’s lies. 
I like to think deep. Swimming in shark-infested waters and traveling dangerous intellectual roads is something I’m challenged by, and it is something I do privately very often. But, I can tell you that I haven’t found a lot of people who enjoy going on these excursions with me. 
I realized recently that, like Blurry Face, I care what people think. Too much in fact.
At a time in my life when I feel very vulnerable to other people’s perception of me, I find myself lacking way too often. I battle with a sense of shame of failure for not being what someone else wants me to be. Being a mom has felt like coming in to my own while also losing confidence in my self. Like being independent and under the weight of authority at the same time. 
What Christ is showing me lately, today in fact, is that I’ve been carrying a self made weight of shame. I’ve felt like I owe people an explanation of who I am and what I choose because I want to meet their standard. 
It’s taken me a lot of heartache to understand that any standard they set is no less broken or nearsighted than my own. Their box for me, my box for me, it doesn’t exist outside of my own mind and heart. 
Why? No self esteem fist pumping or uplifting tale makes it untrue. Instead Jesus makes it so. 
Many of the most shameful and brazen societal failures in Jesus’ world were the ones He showed himself to the most freely. He invited them to shed their shame and stay boldly beside him as friends. As family. As His own. 
He saw their brokenness, their confusion, their finite natures as endearing and worthy. They were more to Him than the box their neighbors had put them in. He already knew just how badly they’d failed to meet the standards. He knew their shame. Intimately. 
And He picked them up, forgave them, and told them to simply put it down. Give it to him. 
So, my question today is will I? Will I put it down? Will I stop treating God like He is society and stop treating society like they are a god?  
Will I believe that my worth is cross level high or keep believing that what I have or haven’t done today devalues me? 
This moment I’ll choose the warm and open face of Christ because He doesn’t believe in boxes, He doesn’t blush at my brazenness, and He doesn’t turn His head from my imperfections. The only standard He’s given me: repent and believe in Him. He’s met the standard on my behalf, and it’s the only standard that matters. 
I’m going to turn away from my shame and lack of confidence in myself and turn to my faith and hope in Him. 
With love, 

Tiffany

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