Vulnerability Sucks

3af81342ffcc33a47c591099bd183756Picture it. Girl likes guy. Guy likes girl. Conversing starts. Surface level at first, and then – all of a sudden, one question changes everything.

And that’s when I bail.

Well, usually that is. At the first sign of vulnerability with the opposite sex, I am out like shout on another route. I hate it. The possibility of being rejected, yeah – not gonna happen.

Until Jesus hits me. Not literally people, seriously – it’s Jesus. He quickly whispers every so softly, that it’s okay. That I have to try and that everyone has to start somewhere.

God, I’m 26 years old. I think it just would be easier to stay hidden behind the loud laugh, sarcastic expressions, and mysterious life story. Don’t you agree? But, no matter how much I argue with Him – He knows, and so do I.

I can’t wait when vulnerability doesn’t suck. 

You see, as many of you know – I write a lot. Behind a screen it’s easier to share the hurt and pain, and sometimes even re-live bad experiences. But in person, with someone who could potentially be someone I might have to tell everything too – nope, I’m out. It’s kinda like PDA moments in movies. Okay, not just moments – the tension that even builds up to these moments – I squeal, get awkward, cover my eyes, and if possible – run.

I’ve been like this for years, and only in the past two weeks have I realized why.

I’m in fear of being intimate – physically and relationally.

And to be intimate requires vulnerability. 

Can you relate? Yeah – I know, it sucks doesn’t it? Like really – all the crap I went through – I overcame, I sang the praise song, I have the verse written on my coffee cup – and still yet, I’m in fear of one thing I desire.

Why is vulnerability so hard? Why is it that the few things that are the deepest desires of our hearts are the hardest battles we will ever face?

“There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary—we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit!”

Romans 5:3-5

Recently, I went through a situation where for the first time in more than three years, I let myself open up. I allowed myself the opportunity to push past the surface level, and really just let go just a little bit. And you know what I wish I could tell you right now? That it turned out perfect. But the truth of the matter is, that it didn’t. It hurt really bad finding out that the one time I opened up, He wasn’t ready to receive what I was giving him.

Though I was willing to trust him with my words, He wasn’t at a place where He could steward them well. 

And honestly, it’s not his fault. That’s not what I was saying last night when I was blaring Bye Bye Bye – but nonetheless, forgiveness has come. The fact is, I know I have to learn. Ask for more discernment, be quick to listen and not always respond immediately. But also, I have to be willing to open up – even with knowing the possibility the hurt may come. Because people are flawed, they are and I am. I won’t always steward every conversation well, so why do expect someone else has to as well?

And there’s many reasons why I’m choosing to travel down the rough path of learning and not running this time. Not just for the many I know God’s called me to be vulnerable with for the sake of discipleship and freedom. But honestly, you want to know the real reason I know I have to learn this? It’s because one day I’ll have a ring on my left hand and there will be a time when my sweet, beautiful creation of the Lord husband doesn’t exactly steward every single word I say the right way. And when he doesn’t, running away won’t be an option then. 

Brene Brown said, “We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection.”

I love that she used the word cultivate in there.

Dictionary.com says that cultivate meanstry to acquire or develop (a quality, sentiment, or skill).

It literally means the exact thing that God is asking me to do. And honestly, I think you, too. Just try.

I can’t promise that I’ll become the next Brene Brown, but that’s not what God is asking of me either. He knows me, He knows the hurts, the wounds, the past and the present that affect every part of my heart. And He knows why for you too.

So, today, I move on – I dust off the dirt of the past, learn from it, and step forward into another day. Though right now vulnerability sucks, I have hope that one day – it won’t suck so bad.

Now, back to jamming N’SYNC.

xoxo

jess

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