Throwing Down My “Badge of Courage”
I recently sat down with a sweet mentor and told her I felt like I had something with which I needed to part ways. God had kindly revealed to me that I had been holding on to something with a tight, closed fist and since my hand was closed, I wasn’t able to freely receive from Him, or give to others. As soon as this realization took place, I desired to find whatever this thing was and let go of it once and for all. I had a hunch it had something to do with past hurt from our separation, but wasn’t exactly able to pull it out on my own; so I set up a time to meet with Teresa, our Relational Wellness pastor. It took us just a bit of *SOZOing* to identify what exactly it was, but we finally nailed it! It’s almost too embarrassing to tell you, but I will say it because life is a process and I love inviting y’all to join me on my process to wholeness and freedom!
Ok, what God revealed makes total sense to my heart, but i have a hard time trying to explain it to others, so bear with me as i try my best:
I see it as a badge. I was hurt deeply by my best friend. God saved us + beautifully redeemed our family, but didn’t erase what happened to me. I still had scars from the wounds gashed deep into my heart. I had come to believe this pain would always be present, and that it was rightfully mine. I endured a hardship, and this pain was a souvenir I collected on the journey. …It might sound twisted, but almost like a badge of courage of something that’s been earned. …Like it was rightfully mine, and I’d sometimes slip it on to make sure y’all didn’t forget what journey I had been on, all I’d learned, and overcome. It was my badge of courage and honor. That might be hard for you to understand, but I am writing this with the strong belief that this will ring true to someone who needs to hear it.
Well, God asked me to throw my badge down. It’s not mine, in fact, it was never supposed to be something I picked up in the first place. It’s a false ‘safety net’ and it was holding me back from receiving gifts from Him, giving myself fully to my husband, helping others fully, and quite honestly, it was dishonoring the miracle that God preformed on our marriage! I was not believing the truth of Jesus’s shed blood covering all wrongs, and making all things new. It was as if I was believing his blood wasn’t quite powerful enough to cover our wrecked marriage AND my hurt. My hurt was just too much. What a lie I had partnered with! All Things New is something I myself boldly proclaim about our relationship, and tell others it is so possible with God, yet I had begun believing a lie that was keeping me from embracing this truth! The scary thing is, this is something had crept up slowly over the last several years, and I didn’t even realize I had partnered with it. This badge hindered myself from full forgiveness, hurt my spouse by keeping him at arm’s length, and kept me back from being fully free to receive from my good Father because I felt like something was ‘off’ or I was in some sense ‘broken’.
All this processing happened about a month ago and let me just tell you how good God is: Since this time, I FEEL FREE! I feel fully myself. Since I’ve parted ways with my hurt, I feel like I’ve been able to love fully, and see with God’s eyes once again. I have begun dreaming clearly, loving fully, and seeing beauty in the process of forgiveness once again! God has since highlighted other areas of my life such as relationships, bad habits, laziness, and He’s begun refining these areas as well. It feels so good to make all these other areas right. I feel no shame, and am excited to connect with people and share this experience once again. This blog has always been the answer to a call God gave me years ago to be vulnerable and share the process of walking through a season of uncertainty and then redemption. Though at times I’ve felt like I have nothing worth while to share, so I’ve ignored it. God’s showing me that this is the stuff to share; it’s called life. It’s called process. It’s the good, the bad, and all the in between. Trusting that this helps someone know that the only badge worth wearing is the one Jesus rightfully gained for you, and that is called REDEEMED.
*if you don’t know what SOZO is and would like to know more, DM me, I’d love to share!