See Me

No masks tonight.

No quote.

Just me… raw and unadulterated.

It’s time.

I need to let you see me so we can both be set free.

I’ve been running from myself for so long that my legs are tired. My body is winded. I want to stop…I have wanted to stop many times. But I feared being rejected. I feared rejection despite the acceptance that was all around me. It’s amazing how one experience can change a person. How one relationship can leave such an impression.

For more than half my life all I knew was abuse.

But I left that behind.

All of it. Behind me. No looking back.

And yet the scars still haunt me. The wounds still ooze and open wide. And I am still broken and battered, lying on the floor, crying out to my God to save me and heal my soul.

But He has. Already. It’s done.

“Pick up your mat and walk.” He said that years ago.

But I didn’t listen. I kept running.

Running while lying on a mat. How does one run so fast only to stand still? How does one change her location so often yet remain in the SAME PLACE?

I am so tired of running. Tired. Breathless. I want to rest.

I want to be ME.

Me.

Who is she? Who am I? Lord, I cry out to you and ask you – WHO AM I?

Who?

Am?

I?

And tonight He came… for the hundredth time yet for the first time. Confirming what others have said to me. Confirming what I already know in my heart and mind but don’t want to admit because to admit it means I must act upon it and acting upon it means I must …. become it… and becoming it means being it…and beings it is where I become a hypocrite because I don’t know how to be…

To be what I am.

To be.

I am.

I am a writer.

I bleed words.

I speak life into people.

I let them know I see them.

I.

See.

You.

I let them know I hear them.

I.

Hear.

You.

I let them know I feel them.

I.

Feel.

You.

We often hear it said that we can’t love others until we love ourselves but I call BS on that one. I call it for the lie that it is because I haven’t loved myself for years. I have loathed myself. I have hated that I allowed pounds to cover up my being because I wanted someone to see me, to TRULY SEE ME. To look beyond the beauty and the laughter and the way I make them feel and to SEE ME. To see my heart. To bleed words with me.

To bleed words…

To speak with me.

To love me through this gift.

To look at me and see who I am.

Who.

I.

Am.

I have loathed this girl who threw it all away because she was afraid of success. The girl who had it all and gave it up. Because having it all meant I had to be and being just hurt. And hurting… well it sucked.

And so I threw it all away.

All of it.

Sold my stuff.

Gave up my life.

Returned everything.

And spent a year running. Yet even at that I failed because in my running I helped others. I ministered to others. I gave to others what I did not have within myself to give to me. And you know what happened?

God brought people into my life to pour into me.

To take my nothingness and speak life into me. To bleed with me. To bleed words with me. To bleed this gift with me.

And I wrote.

I wrote.

I have written.

I bled onto the paper and books were brought forth and people’s stories were told and hearts were healed and people met God. They MET GOD. And I…I was still broken bleeding out on my mat.

I bled.

I bled the words but my heart didn’t feel any better.

Why didn’t my heart feel better?

Why didn’t God heal my hurts when I did what He asked me to do?

And therein lies my problem… thinking I am doing what He asks of me when in reality I only give so much.

“Stop there, Lord. You are pushing too much.” I only let Him go so far. I won’t let Him in fully because He, like every other man in my life, will break me.

Except…

I am already broken.

What if He will be the man who finally pieces me back together?

What if He, unlike the men with whom I connected hips and locked lips before they ever knew my name, will not abandon ship and leave me rowing for the shore alone but will instead introduce himself and call me over to dine with him. For He wants not to make me feel good for a moment but wants to make me whole for eternity. He will ensure I am never broken by his words but will instead construct sentences that build up the most beautiful love story ever told.

Can He be that man who loves me and sees me as more precious than rubies?

He did.

He knew all of me and yet He still loved me.

He knew who I was and what I did and what I would do in the future and yet He still loved me enough to stay on that cross and die, and rise again, and conquer death so I could have life.

And life is not what I have had.

I have had things.

I have had people.

I have had stuff.

But I haven’t had life.

I haven’t lived life.

I stand here broken.

I stand here with my mat.

I stand here wanting to move forward. To walk ahead. To be who I am.

Who

I

Am.

I stand here wanting to be WHO I AM.

Me.

The woman who loves others but still hasn’t learned to love myself enough to believe someone can truly love me.

The woman who will do anything for anyone but feels awkward when someone does something nice for me.

The woman who shares her heart but only to the point that I am comfortable and unafraid.

The woman who God looked at and said, “You are enough”.

The girl who loves God.

Me.

I want to be me.

But how?

Jesus?!

He calls my name.

“Michelle, my daughter.”

I heard him call me, reminding me to come sit at the table.

Because at the table He can speak into me and I can walk away filled. And so I take His hand and I walk over to the table and I sit and I dine with him and we talk about the life I’ve lived and with each breath I begin to feel freedom replace fear and shame. And I cry and it feels amazing. And I feel my heart beating again, unafraid, unabandoned. But when I dine with Him I cry with Him and I want more of Him. I want to feel Him and never let His skin leave mine. The skin that bled for me. That loved me as no one ever had. The skin that took pain for me. That skins that becomes all I need to get through this life. His words give me life and that life gives me love and for a moment I am whole and for a moment I can love except the moment fades and the experience dies and I am sitting at a lonely table, without Him.

And I cry.

I cry because I know that even Christ I push away.

Even Christ I cannot keep around.

And I scoot my chair back from the table and walk away with my head held down in shame, wondering why I exist…except at that moment I hear the music playing. The sweet music of the Holy Spirit wanting to fill me and lead me and heal me. The Holy Spirit wanting to purge all the darkness within me and bring me to a place where dining with God won’t lead to sin or heartache or betrayal. I don’t want to offer a kiss but a towel. I don’t want to give Him a kiss that brings death but to wash His feet and serve Him and as I do, I know my healing will come. So I grab a towel and I sit at His feet and I grab the rag and I slowly wash His feet.

“Jesus, I come. I surrender. I give you all of me so I can truly come to love you and honor you and obey you.”

And He places a mantle upon my head and speaks over me that it is time to truly experience intimacy and love. And He speaks to those broken places within me and continues ministering until I can literally feel Him restore my broken heart and pieces.

In a moment my shattered life feels whole and my shattered pieces feel complete and new and I tremble with love and adoration for this man who spoke my name and called me into the world…. And I find myself … In only a moment going from broken and feeling hopeless and like nothing makes sense to suddenly seeing with new eyes and realizing every single moment — every. single. move. — from the last 20 years makes perfect sense.

Because that is what I want from my broken life.

To be wholly Shell. The lover of Christ’s soul. The lady who loves Him so much she will follow Him anywhere, even if it means being lonely for a time so the right person can come in and fill that gap. Even if it means looking beyond my own insecurity to step out into the deep waters that will surely overtake me. Because after all, He calms the waves. He has invited me to the table not to humiliate me but to prepare my heart.

And so tonight, I stand here to encourage you to step out from behind your masks and let Him love you. Because tonight He has the answers we all need. For the hundredth time we will hear them and for the first time we will truly respond, saying:

“See me, Lord. I am breaking. I am broken. I am ready.”

Copyright Shell Vera April 2016

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26 Comments Add yours

  1. Holly G. says:

    Oh my goodness. I am nearly left speechless. The power and anointing of the Holy Ghost on these words is tangible.

    For so much of this, it was as if I were reading what I had written because of our life stories. To read the wooing of our Savior for his beautiful daughter, it has brought tears to my eyes.

    I don’t know what else to say but …. thank you. (hug)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Shell Vera says:

      Thank you for these kind words!! I’m so thankful they blessed you.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

    I’m very impressed with this. It’s real. Thank you for sharing your testimony, your heart and faith!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Shell Vera says:

      Thanks for stopping by to read it. This one was super special to me. It is the first time I truly opened up and just wrote what came into my heart without holding back.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        It’s the only one I’ve got to read so far (I’m at work lol!) but it’s just awesome.

        It’s scary opening up. I know you know that but still… you never know how people will react because you’re putting yourself in a very vulnerable state… there’s a lot I want to talk about but it’s going to take time and hopefully people will be understanding.

        I really appreciate you!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Shell Vera says:

        I just stopped by your blog and love what I see. This was a new level for me and opened doors where I began sharing my poetry aloud. It also was the start of really diving into some deeper subjects in the blog. I don’t do this blog any longer and sometimes miss it – the open thinking and posting – but I still blog over at http://www.TheEssentialCreative.com, still here on WordPress. I also have a creative writing blog where I keep poetry and short stories. I love writing – whether sharing thoughts in free form or poetically. As you open up, you’ll see that your tribe kind of comes… God will bring the people who you’re connected to who need the words you share! Look forward to hearing those thoughts! Have a great day at work!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        I always am looking for good writing. I binge read blogs and stuff on Pinterest. My poetic flow has been moving lately and I’m trying to keep it going. I can’t just write poetry, I have to feel something. I believe you understand this! Poetry is a particularly special writing. So I really enjoy your work!

        I’m pretty excited to have a new friend in the community! Thank you for the follow!

        I would follow your blog but I can’t see the thingy to follow. So I guess I’ll follow the link you sent.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Shell Vera says:

        Thanks so much. Poetry definitely is a mood for me as well. I can write anytime but I have to be inspired and feel a certain way to write poetry.

        If you like creative writing, I keep that at (right now) at ShellVeraPoetry.wordpress.com – I don’t update it often. But I am going to be merging this one (Eyes Straight Ahead) and the creative writing with TheEssentialCreative.com, as that is the one I bought the domain for and put my time into. My desire is to build a community of creatives that share their works and help one another grow creatively over there. I have some fun plans for it the second half of this year so that is the best one to follow. And I post creative works as well as stuff about essential oils, family, relationships, faith, business, and community.

        Liked by 1 person

      5. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        Awesome!

        Liked by 1 person

      6. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        I think I followed the poetry blog… I don’t know for sure though cause WP has been doing weird stuff for me lately…

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Shell Vera says:

        You did and I appreciate that! I will put a post up if I do close that one out. It will take a bit to merge them. This one (Eyes Straight Ahead) has eight years of writing! The creative writing one you followed is newer and serves as kind of like a portfolio. As I was writing my poetry book, I used it to collect ones that I liked and see how others responded so I had an idea which ones to put into the book when I wasn’t sure between two poems.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        Any of your blogs you’d like me to follow let me know. Day 1 and I’m already a pretty big fan!

        Liked by 1 person

      9. Shell Vera says:

        You’re awesome! Thank you! It’s inspiring to know you enjoy my writing like that. I stepped away last month while wrapping up a book for a client and I’m itching to get back into the rhythm! Two more weeks and this one will be done and then I’ll be back to creative writing and working on some fun and thoughtful stuff! A series you may enjoy when I start it again, based upon what I’ve read from you so far is Music & Musings, where I dissect songs with my thoughts! Oh wow! It’s my favorite to write and share. It’s on this blog here but that’s the first one part I’m going to be moving over and starting some new ones on. There’s been some really great new (to me) Christian music I’ve been listening to that has my mind deep diving into the lyrics! Off to read a couple more posts form you before I jump into my afternoon! Have a great day and thanks for the support and encouragement!

        Liked by 1 person

      10. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        I’m looking forward to all that! And I hope my blog will be a blessing for you. A lot of it is things the Lord shares with me. So I share them with everyone. I also try to keep things shook up with some poetry and other little oddities I can think up.

        And, not many guys follow my blog but I try to share things about how men should be. Along with this, in a man’s point of view, I try to help you ladies with understanding men. And just because a girl might have grown up thinking she’s ugly because of societal standards doesn’t mean she is! I tend to have a pet peeve about women thinking they’re ugly because they have weight issues. Ugliness comes from within.

        There’s my philosophical and historical stuff too. I don’t mean for everyone to agree with me it’s all my opinion but I do appreciate the support!

        I still happy to have you in my community!

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Shell Vera says:

        Thanks so much!! You’re right about ugliness – when I was at my fittest and what society considered to be “ideal”, I was ugly as all get out inside. My soul was imprisoned to soooo much! Loved your post about that – The Random Thoughts ones! We need more guy bloggers within the church community so I’m happy to see you filling this space! Bless you!

        Liked by 1 person

      12. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        I’m glad you liked it! There’s lots more! Dig in whenever you want!

        Liked by 1 person

      13. Shell Vera says:

        Also, I’ll be sure to return the favor and follow from my website (it’s on WordPress too) as well. I already followed you from this profile (it’s linked to The Essential Creative). I appreciate you following the blogs!

        Liked by 1 person

      14. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        So far, you like reading my blog and talking. We’re going to be best friends lol!

        Liked by 1 person

      15. Shell Vera says:

        Lol! I do enjoy conversation and reading. Does your wife blog as well?

        Liked by 1 person

      16. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        Nope… she enjoys watching makeup and minky blanket shows on Facebook. I’m the more outspoken one of the couple lol!

        Speaking of which I hope I’m not bothering you!

        Liked by 1 person

      17. Shell Vera says:

        Not at all! I was just curious if you were both writers!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Shell Vera says:

      After that whole conversation yesterday I just realized you were on the creative writing site! I’d forgotten I’d shared “See Me” here! I was wondering how it came up for someone to find when I’d stopped blogging on the other one last year! Too funny!! 🤦🏽‍♀️ (face palm emoji)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        Lol!! I’ll forgive you.. I checked out most everything, your blogs, your Instagram and such. Not trying to be weird, just getting to know you.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Shell Vera says:

        Lol I’ll worry when you complement me on the color of the new blinds! Until then, no worries. This is what the internet is for and why we share social media. I did laugh out loud though! Helps me realize I should streamline things once done with this client project I’m working on. Or at least begin doing so.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

        Glad I could help you in some way!

        Your new blinds are nice! Lol! Jk!!!!!

        Liked by 1 person

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