slice of life

To know is to love

I don’t know where to begin, but all I know was I woke up this morning feeling immensely happy. My heart was jumping for joy and, at the same time, calm. Is there something you want to reveal to me, Lord? Instead of the usual morning read, I gave in to the urge in me to praise God today.

Brand new eyes, brand new hands
You have wiped away my past
Brand new day, brand new life
You have pulled me from the lies

I sat on my bed and listened to the song Beauty for Ashes. Tears welled up in my eyes while these words from the song lingered. How can I not cry when I remember God’s faithfulness in my life? I was in a very lonely place before I met God, but He picked me up! He carried all of me, including the weight and the troubles that I was so sure made me unwanted and unloved. He taught me who I am and who I am not.

He took me in, knew me, and still loves me.

Tears fell as if they were begging to be released; I didn’t hold back. My emotions were strong, but they were unknown to me. I wailed with all my strength, asking God to help me understand why I feel so relieved crying out to Him for reasons I can’t grasp. What do my tears represent? Are these tears of joy? Of shock? Of fear? What are the words my soul longed to pray for but couldn’t?

Memories of the past resurfaced, and a pinch of my deepest sorrows and resentments came along the nostalgia. What I didn’t expect, though, was the overwhelming peace in my heart as I stared back at them. At that mundane moment, I felt a breakthrough.

I want to be known and be held in a way a husband cherishes his bride. But the fear I felt through these years was stronger than my courage. I know what it is like to be dragged into a mess and be left behind to fix the wounds alone. It was wise, I thought, to reach out to people and still keep my walls high. If in the end, no one stands up for me, at least these walls will.

I thought that was the case until God showed me that His love, and not my walls, would sustain me. The walls only offered an illusion of security. Brick by brick, He tore down the fence around my heart.

I’m walking into a new season with someone now. Everything is still new. Yet, it strikes me how at ease I am. I always felt in charge of protecting myself and the people I love. But this time, I feel safe being emotionally vulnerable around him.

This doesn’t change the truth that God is still making me whole. He is still perfecting me. And to think that someone who’s also secure in the Lord wants to tag me along in a new journey just feels right — the timing, the person, and our Lord in the center.

As I write this, I still ask God if it is really okay to enjoy touch, something I feared yet longed for a long time?

Perhaps the reason for my tears this morning was the new feeling of being emotionally connected to someone. I never knew I could experience that in the way I experience it now. When my boyfriend locked his hands with mine, I didn’t withdraw. I opened up my hand so he could hold me. There is no longer a wall to hide behind, and I feel like I took a step closer to a higher level of healing. By God’s grace and guidance, I am willing to risk my illusion of safety so I can honestly love him.

Up until this point, life has taught me that touch is destructive. How come I feel differently now?

To know is to love — that’s what God has been teaching me lately. In an article I read the other day, I can’t shake my mind off this paragraph:

“It is very rare for a person to be willing to share important things — to be vulnerable enough to be truly known — unless the other person is also allowing herself to be known. The desire is always expressed as “to know and be known.” The two go hand-in-hand. Having everyone know me isn’t all that great unless I also know them. Conversely, I can’t fully know others unless they also know me. The issue is one of trust. Knowing and being known is a mutual exchange.”

The Bible is always inviting us to know God so we can intimately relate with Him and love Him despite our finiteness. We are called to know God not like how the Pharisees “studied” him, but how the disciples drew near Jesus.

In the same sense, I don’t want to just “study” this new season nor this person. I want to be involved, to honestly seek and be sought. To know and be known. To love and be loved. I admit it’s an effort to open up to another person, but as long as I see God giving us breakthroughs in things as simple as holding hands, then I’m not going to cry over these broken walls.

God is with us. We’ll be fine.

Wonderfilled Journal Louise

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