Lately I have been wading through the waters of telling our personal story. This water is strong and fierce, and now more than ever I have learned the importance of being careful about what pieces of myself I want to share.
We have a long list of over-sharing floating around on social media. I’ve over-shared, we all have. But, there is a difference between being brave and obedient versus blind and unguarded. Your heart and story is way too precious to be trampled on.
This is what I have learned over the years of dealing with my junk and listening to other women’s stories; if the memory still stings when you think of it, you are not over it.
Where does your heart go in the remembering stage?
Your answer will be your gauge.
Truthfully, we have numerous stories all tied around a few key moments in our lives. Our heart keeps records of the times we were rejected, the many times we screwed up royally, and the moments where the core root of our identity was in crisis. Those are the ones we can’t get over and the most talked about. There is an importance, a need really, to tell our stories, but it is up to us to decide what pieces of our hearts to share.
A good storyteller will often use their story to heal, help, or teach something profound. On the other side of that is a person, or people, attached to your story. To be really honest, that was always the piece of my puzzle that I never wanted to deal with, or face. It was safer to tell a nicer truth. I kept taking that next brave and scary step until I grew into the process of weighing out my words carefully.
There is a universal truth in teaching and being vulnerable; if I hold back, so will they. Being my most vulnerable self has paid off in the long run in the most painfully, beautiful way.
I have no regrets for my invisible walls coming down. My regret would be only if I wounded someone in telling my truth. But, here’s the deal about our story…it’s ours. We don’t have to ask permission in the telling of it, but we will be held accountable for it. Accountability has to be our measuring scale.
Tell your bravest story, the one that is not attached to a victim label.
Tell the one where you get very little of the glory.
Tell the truth and let love be the framework that you build your story on.
I have completely closed a chapter in my life with the recent passing of my father; I feel only love towards him. You would think that would give me the green light to dish, but I feel like this sacred quiet is of more importance in sifting through the grief. Grace has covered all the cracked and fractured places in my heart…and I’m grateful for all the unbelievably hard moments in my life that have made me a much better minister, but more importantly, a much better and deeper person.
You are never wasting your time when you extend grace and forgiveness.
My baggage became my platform and my purpose; I celebrate it and feel no shame.
I’m not a victim. I’m a messenger who just wants to tell recovering over-sharers that closing chapters of our stories with grace and forgiveness makes for a much better story. And, you really don’t have to tell everything…unless you’re chatting it up with Oprah or a therapist.
Be brave, but also be careful.
The pain in your story wasn’t meant to destroy you, it was meant to position you for God’s purpose in your life.
You get to decide when you are ready and how much to share with others. Guard your heart. Guard your story. And, guard your people. Fiercely.