As I have traveled this faith journey, I have made some discoveries about myself. Among them has been the realization that I have made choices that have not always been in my best interest, and I have made other choices to protect my fragile heart and ego. I have made choices that have manipulated others to feel sorry for me, and I have made some choices that have hindered my growth into the person God designed me to be.
All of this has been coming to light over the last several months And in making these discoveries I have been more than once embarrassed. In spite of the embarrassment, here are a few that have stuck in my mind.
I have made the choice to judge myself more harshly than I have ever judged anyone else. I have chosen to tell myself that I am “less than”
co-workers, friends, family members, random people I have met at social gathers. I have been living as if I am not good enough, by choosing to believe it.
I have made the choice to remain fearful of new situations and people. I have chosen to avoid many experiences and groups because of what could happen, being judged as a failure compared to my contemporaries.
I have made the choice to build a facade to protect me from emotional and psychological harm. I have used this false self to present to the world a Frankenstein monster of my own creation. And as each day has gone by I have made choices not based on becoming who God created me but rather who I thought that people wanted me to be.
These choices and many more, have lead me to avoid confrontation, say no when I wanted to say yes, and say yes, when I wanted to say no. Choosing never address the hurt that others have caused me, and to rationalize away the disappointment I have caused others. Having made these choices to hide, deny, ignore, and dismiss things about myself has led me to the point of sinking into depression and despair and then choosing to stay there and give up the idea that happiness can be for me.
Why, you may ask, would someone choose to live in these circumstances and remain miserable the rest of his life?
Because it is safe. Because there are few demands. Because there are no risks.
But then God, through the light of His unconditional love, has begun to illuminate these dark areas of my soul, and revealed to me that this is not me and there is so much more to my life. Over and over the Creator has been reminding me that His love is never-ending, and that the cost of stepping into a new life is well worth the risk.
He will always be there.
So now I am left with the Hard Choice. The hardest choice ever. Am I ready to make new choices?