“I was in the shadows
for so long.
to be found,
to be invited
into the light.
I was in the shadows
for so long
that I lost myself
and forgot to wait.
forgot to listen.”
Yesterday, when I went to confession, Father told me that I was loved…that God loves me. I didn’t know how much I needed to hear those words until I heard them. Somewhere along the way, I had lost that truth, and I spent so long searching for something that could make me feel God’s love again. Those words were a much needed reminder of my worth.
Sometimes, it’s easy to get so caught up in the world that you lose yourself and forget to be loved. You get mixed up in the chaos of life and stop listening to God’s messages.
This week, I was able to block out the world and just listen.
I met a little 6-year-old boy who told me that I was pretty. In all honesty, his comment took me by surprise because men my age are all too often passive and insincere. However, his comment was made with the most innocent of intentions. He was only admiring the beauty he saw in his world.
At first sight, this little boy seems like a normal, happy child; but his life is far from normal. He’s been abandoned by a mother he’s never met and by a father who is too busy to take care of him. He has so many questions that may never be answered, and he’s angry. In truth, he has a right to be angry; but instead of letting his anger rule his life, he sees someone like me and smiles. He looks at the world and sees the good in his life. It’s no wonder Jesus told us to be like children.
“Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” –Matthew 18:1-4
Many of us can probably relate to this little boy’s pain. We have had many unanswered questions about life. We have felt abandoned by our Father, and we have felt angry because there’s nothing we can control or change in this life.
If only we could just as easily relate to a child’s view of love and beauty.
Children can look past the lies, hatred, and anger in this world and see truth. They can live in this world and not let the chaos blind them to the beauty that surrounds them. They can receive love and just as easily give love.
As an adult, I have found that it is sometimes difficult to hear God’s voice amidst the chaos of our everyday lives. So often we feel that God is not speaking to us and we gradually create more chaos as a way of drowning out His whisper in our heart. We start to believe lies that lead us astray from His plan for us. We trap ourselves in sinfulness, and we start to ignore the love and grace we were created to live with.
It becomes so easy to live with the lies: “I am worthless.” “God does not love me.” “Just this one time” “What I’m doing isn’t that bad.”, but deep in our heart, God’s whisper can be heard. We know it’s all lies, but believing them starts to give us false hope. We feel in control of our lives, when, in reality, the only thing we are doing is creating more chaos and damaging our spirit.
Eventually, we hold on to the lies because fear takes over. We hold on to the lies because our other alternative is forgiveness, and being forgiven means that we can no longer ignore God’s love and grace. Letting go of the lies and being forgiven means that we owe it to ourselves to listen to God’s whisper…to love others…to have a childlike faith…and to love ourselves
“Mercy bend and breathe me back to life, but not before you show me how to die…”
-Show Me by Audrey Assad
Originally Written and Posted: October 31, 2010 at 9:34pm