I struggled to find the right topic for this weeks blog post. There have been so many whirlwinds of God speaking into my life this week that I couldn’t quite put my finger on any one thing. But then it hit me. There is one thing that God has been confirming, and re-confirming to me all week long. You are not hidden.
So what does that even mean you ask? To me it means that my life is seen, and every single second of it matters, to God, to other people, to me. It actually took me some time to begin believing this truth because of all the lies the enemy has spoken to me over the years. You see for a long time I felt hidden away, misunderstood, isolated, unimportant, insignificant, like nothing I did really mattered anyway. I would chase after one thing and then another, reaching goals and accomplishing hard tasks, and still never feeling like it really made a difference one way or another in my life. I felt trapped. Satan is really good at deceiving people that way. He’s had thousands of years to perfect his skills after all.
It was while I was working on my very last assignment for my Doctoral degree, the final dissertation, that God really planted something in my heart. I was writing about David in the bible, someone I admire greatly, and aspire to be like. I was writing about how he lived a life after God, in endless pursuit of Him. I wrote about the intimate relationship he shared with God, and how even in his greatest failures he always turned it around and honored God in the end. I was going on and on (partly because I had to get 26,000 words) about his life, his highest highs and lowest lows, and God began to speak to me. He asked me a question (several really). He asked me “Leiah, if every moment of your life was written down like David’s, your greatest strengths and accomplishments, and your lowest lows and biggest failures, and all the in between, for people to read for thousands of years to come, what would it say?” “What would be the ongoing theme?” “Would it be Me (God)?” “Would you be an overcomer? Or fighting the same battle over and over again?” “What would your story say?”
Those questions hit me like a ton of bricks. I really began to think about it. I came up with a few answers, but then began to wonder, who the heck would read my story anyway? What would anyone be able to learn from me that they were able to learn from someone like David? I then told God that I was thankful that it wouldn’t be written out, and that his question was only hypothetical. I’m pretty sure I could hear laughter coming all the way from heaven when I said that, because God responded in a way I wasn’t expecting (as usual right?). He reminded me that my story is written down. It’s recorded in heaven. He reminded me that he’s been there every second of the way. He planned me long before the foundation of the world. He knew me before I even entered my mothers womb, and fashioned me there for his purpose. He reminded me that even though I wasn’t planned by my parents, I was planned by him. They may have been surprised to be having another baby, but He had it planned long ago. He has recorded every cry, every laugh, every smile, every tear. He’s seen it all. The good, the bad, and the ugly (and boy has there been some ugly).
He told me that he knows my story by heart. He knows every single letter of every single word, and that there’s never been one second that’s been hidden from him. I don’t have to explain my story, he knows where I’ve been, and exactly why I was there. He knows every detail of what’s happened to me, and how its affected me. Now at one time in my life this would have been terrifying to really think about, but now its actually the biggest comfort I could ever feel. So it was awesome to be reminded of all those things, but what he told me next is something he’d had to confirm a few times for me since. My story is being read by others every. single. day.
Now I thank God that not every detail of my life is on display at the public library and in millions of hands all over the world like David’s, but it is being read by many others. It’s being read by all of those who are watching me live my life at any given moment on any given day. My life is teaching others either good or bad with each and every interaction I have. When I am at the grocery store huffing and puffing in line because I am having to wait longer than I wanted, someone is reading that I need some work in the area of patience in my life. Or if I show grace to someone instead of hostility because they just spoke harsh words to me, that person is reading my story, and finding a reflection of Jesus there. If you don’t believe me that your life is being read by others, just hang around a kid for a while. They’ll pick up something from you in a second and repeat it until perfected (usually the one thing you didn’t want them to notice). But I hope you get my point. Every second of every day, your story is being written. It is your job to make sure it lines up with the one God wrote for you long ago.
It’s a hard thing to admit our faults and weaknesses. So stinking hard! I don’t want to admit that I struggle over and over and over again with the same things! I don’t want you to see that I have been crushed under the weight of the grief I feel for the life I thought I had, but really didn’t. I don’t want you to see that I’ve been broken in ways I never thought possible, and that some days it is still overwhelming for me to think about. I can imagine David didn’t want people to see his short comings either. I’m sure he didn’t want us to read about the affair he had with a married woman that lead to him having her husband killed. It sounds more like a Dateline story than one you should read in the bible about a man after God’s own heart ,right? But as I considered these things, I was reminded that sharing our short comings allows us to share the goodness of God. So here I am. Here I am with this blog that I already know what God is leading me to share on. He knows I don’t always want to, but God also knows that I will anyway.
I would rather know that someone read the story of my short comings, my pain, my brokenness, my heartaches, my stupidity, my hard headedness (I don’t think that’s a word), leading me to experience the goodness of God, and have them read all my dirty laundry to find Jesus there in a powerful, real, and personal way, than to keep it to my self for my pride’s sake.
Every detail matters in your story. Every single one. Make each and every day count. When the good happens, Glorify God. When the unimaginably horrible things happen, Glorify God. When you mess up, Glorify God. When you overcome, Glorify God. We don’t have to like whats going on, or what has happened to handle it in a way that somehow Glorifies God. We just have to make sure that his light is shining through us in some way no matter what comes. If you don’t know how to do that, read about David.
You are not hidden. Your story matters. People are reading it every day and looking to find the light of Jesus there. Can they see that on the pages of your story as it unfolds each and every day? Or is it dimmed because you are rushing through life just trying to get through it? Are you hoping that people don’t see you? Are you hoping that you are hidden because you are ashamed of where you are? Too bad. You’re not. Whether you like it or not, SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE, is reading your story. And God is too.
I want you to remember most of all from reading this, that there is one named Jesus who sees you. You are not hidden to the one that is THE light. Jesus was there before the world was formed, and already thinking of you. He couldn’t wait to see your story unfold! He couldn’t wait to be there, in every moment, leading you and helping you along the way. He was waiting in anticipation for your birth, just as the world waited for His at one time. He is giddy and excited when you let him be a part of the orchestration of your life. He is overjoyed when you come and ask Him to let you follow along His story for your life, and not miss one single word that he wrote for you. Jesus wants you to know that he sees you today. He sees your heart, your desires, your thoughts, your short comings, your brokenness, your heartache, ALL OF YOU. He loves you. You are not alone. You are not forgotten. You are not unloved. You are not unworthy. You matter. You are precious. You are significant. You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
You are seen today. You are not hidden. You are here because someone needs to read your story. Someone needs to find Jesus there.