As you can see from an early time in my life, I had an affinity for meeting brick walls. This time would be different. This time is forty years later. There is no physical brick wall for me to run headlong into. However, the figurative is far more painful, and a much heavier load to bear.
I recently began working with a christian counselor friend. Some emotionally painful wilderness experiences seemed impossible for me to let go. I had begun packing those bricks up with me. I toted them anywhere I went. They took the form of brick walls in some relationships, and were heavy baggage in others. My counselor friend advised me that it was time to decide whether to unpack the baggage, and address the issues. I had another option…stuff the heavy baggage away, not addressing it, and let it continue to do the damage it was doing. It was keeping me from becoming all that God had planned for me. It was time to let it go. It became the time to tear down some walls.
First, I had to look at those walls head on. Take the bull by the horns so to speak. So, I began writing. I was actually supposed to simply make a list of all of the people who had hurt me in my life. The people who made me feel worthless, and hurt. I wasn’t sure I could even begin to create that list. I’d tried to stuff that stuff in the luggage in the back of the closet. Now I had to drag it back out, and start unpacking some pretty ugly stuff. Stuff I had tried to forget. Stuff that hung onto me weighing me down. I prayed before I began the list. What else could I do? Then, God put it on my heart to begin writing. No list making for this chick! God gave me imagery, and a story…a testimony to share with you. So the writing began.
Just when I thought I was clipping along at a good pace, sailing down the hill of life on my beautiful bicycle, with the wind blowing in my hair, it happens. I thought I was saying all of the right things, spending time with the correct people, and living a good life. Yet, I ran that fast moving bicycle smack dab into a brick wall. A brick wall build from doubt and fear. It was the craziest experience. I never saw that brick wall coming. It was just like on the news when you hear of a car hitting a pole. That seems to happen frequently in the Memphis area, especially when it rains. Those crazy poles just leap out in front of people…from nowhere. Well, I’m certain that’s what happened here! That brick wall jumped out in front of me from nowhere! Whammo! It only takes a single word, or absence there of, for me to feel the bricks composed of worthless feelings falling down upon me.
I’m fairly certain that the words “You’re not” were spray painted on that wall. Once I hit it, they all start to fall down upon me. Brick by brick, all of the you’re nots began to bury me. You’re not smart enough, pretty enough, thin enough, a good enough wife, a good enough mother, a good enough Pinterest crafter. Yes, I pin all of those cool projects just like you do, and then do nothing with them. You know the drill.
Soon I found myself buried under a pile of bricks, barely able to peek my “you’re not tall enough” head out from the top of the pile. Dust was flying everywhere from the colossal implosion. Yep! There lays the “you’re not a good enough housekeeper” brick shining in the sunlight. It was being covered by the quickly falling dust particles glistening beautifully in the sunlight as they drifted to the ground. Maybe if I stayed there long enough the dust would cover me. Maybe I could hide from the world under the film of “you’re not good enough”.
Now contrary to the words engraved on more than forty years of bricks, I’d like to think that I am an intelligent woman. No, I’m not Jeopardy smart, but I’m not Gomer Pyle either. Yes I’m showing my age, so if you don’t know who Gomer is, take a moment and Google him. Ok, back to an intelligent woman. God’s word says in 1 Corinthians 6:20, “For you were bought with a price; so glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
I know that God’s word is supposed to be enough for me to feel like I am valuable and worthy, but it just wasn’t working for me. I found myself stuck under decades of “you’re not good enoughs” with one “you’re so valuable to Me that I paid a price for you.” Why God? Why did you pay a price for me? I was I on the clearance shelf. You know, you probably paid too much for me. My can is dented. My label is torn. I’m not a pretty can. My label is far bigger than the others. My manager says I should have been thrown away. Why would you buy me Lord?
I heard a flood of the you’re not’s that came from my step-father…the only Dad I ever knew. The “your birth father never wanted you. He came into the courtroom on adoption day and signed you away like a puppy.” “He didn’t care about you or your mother, he just wanted you gone.” Those words echo in my mind many, many years later…you weren’t wanted. I sank further into the pile of you’re nots. Maybe I would just stay here under this pile of bricks.
As I sat under that pile of bricks covered in you’re nots, I heard God calling to me. He tells me over and over that he loves me. He promises me in Psalm 147:3, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” He can heal me too. God whispers to me John 3:16; “For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”
God’s breath washed over me as told me that my Momma, and Grandma love me. He tells me that my husband and son adore me. He tells me above all…He loves me so much that He was willing to let his Son die for me. At that moment I crawled out from under the pile of bricks. At least for now.