The Challenge Of Living A Full Life.

jj

Over the past few months I have come to see the beautiful gift,

Yet one of the most challenging gifts to accept and begin to embrace;

The gift of love.

It’s hard, very hard to live a wholehearted life where you no longer hide who you really are,

But live loving others and embracing a full life.

A full life in the sense of enjoying the beautiful moments and not neglecting the hard.

It’s hard because our culture tries to shove us into a mold.

It’s hard because of our past fears, hurts and insecurities are still ever present and real.

We fear that if we open up, share our troubles, love others deeply, wear our heart on our sleeves,

That if we live vulnerable,

It will all end the same.

That we will be broken, that our already fragile hearts will be taken advantage of and people will leave.

But that is something I am learning about love;

Those things are going to happen regardless.

We are going to deal with hurts, we are going to be broken and circumstances are going to come that aren’t what we wanted,

But I would rather want to live wholehearted and deal with those as they come and enjoy the beauty of a life full of deep joy, deep love and being able to see others begin to embrace that same kind of life,

Than to continue to live protecting my heart, shielding my true feelings and letting the deep wells that are within me, dry up.

Three main authors and books that have begun to cultivate this desire in my heart and through that begin to renew my mind are Brene Brown : Daring Greatly, Bob Goff : Love Does and of course a gracious God and His Word: The Bible.

It has been a hard couple months seeing all that I have been missing out on life because of fear.

It has been hard to see how much I’ve pulled back in relationships and them growing deeper because of insecurities and holding onto past hurts.

It has been a hard few months of slowly letting those things go and grabbing a hold of the truth that we are to love as Jesus loves and that is loving with all that we are and all that we have. To love sacrificially and to love deeply.

And over the past few months, I have been so thankful for having a horse and pup who show me what love is and by loving them better, I have seen the changes that love does on beings. How it changes them, how they begin to trust more, enjoy my company more and are more than willing to give it back in return.

You see, change isn’t easy.

It’s hard because it’s going against what we have allowed ourselves to be ingrained to do;

To protect ourselves, to guard what we have and to worry first about ourselves.

But that isn’t it.

To be vulnerable is to put ourselves out there, to be willing to ask other the questions others don’t ask them, to go to someone and talk when we know they need it rather than watching another season of our show, to go and share the struggles and hardships we have been through to give hope to someone who is facing something similar, to be someone who loves freely, who smiles and who laughs and who is who they are.

And maybe you will realize during this season of being vulnerable that there are deep struggles you have faced but have never realized before, or deep deep hurt that you have never addressed and this is part of it all and you aren’t alone. And it is beautiful when we are able to take those pains and hurts to talk with someone who can walk us through it, because we can’t do it alone. I couldn’t do it alone and still can’t, so I am thankful for christian counselor and now people who do life with me that continue to listen, show me the lies I am still believing and point me back to the only One who can heal me and restore me, Jesus Christ.

It is a beautiful gift to live a life of wholeheartedness,

To live a life where you  no longer look to the approval of men but only from God, who is faithful and loving, merciful and just, who is forgiving and full of grace.

But it isn’t one that just comes when you decide to live wholehearted,

It’s a beautiful process and I am thankful that God is patient, that He is gentle through it and as we bring our brokenness before Him, He will heal it and heal us.

I am no where close to living a wholeheartded life of being someone who is vulnerable.

I continue to guard myself,

I continue to let fears and insecurities pull me back into my rigid shell rather than loving freely,

I continue to hinder relationships because I hold onto pieces of my past,

And I continue to withhold the love I so want to show others because I’m afraid it won’t be accepted, or what they will think or after I do so, they’ll not want it anymore.

However as I see those deep hurts I still have, I am thankful. Oh so thankful because I am now able to work through them. Building up a courageous heart to hopefully one day love freely and without limits, to no longer fear what may happen but rather embrace all that could.

Because living a life of vulnerability and of wholeheartedness changes things, not only does it change us but it changes others.

I hope that after you have read this ramble, it has made some sense.

That is has encouraged you that there is far more to life than living in the past or in fear,

There is more to life than living guarding what you were given to give away,

There is far more to you than the lies you have begun to believe,

And you have an immense amount of beauty/treasure within you that others need.

There is far more to life than to withhold all that our gracious King has given you for Him to be glorified and you to live set free to do so.

For there is something beautiful in someone who lives a life laid down,

For someone who seeks first His Kingdom and righteousness regardless of what others may think

And who loves so deeply that it radiates a light far beyond something they themselves could create.

There is beauty in the one who no longer cares what they look like in the eyes of the world but only the eyes of a loving Father who rejoices in His creation living.

But that is the challenge of living a full life, it is costly and isn’t easy.

Because it takes us choosing to change our ways, choosing to renew our minds and choosing to do what we have been told not to do : be vulnerable and real.

Let me tell you, although it is hard and it is a continual choice to live a life of wholeheartedness, so far for me, it is far better than continuing to live guarded and holding onto hurt.

There is something so beautiful in moving past my fears of loving others deeply and doing so.

There is something beautiful about living this life who God intended us to do so.

There is beauty in real people, showing the real struggles they go through and no longer trying to cover up brokenness.

Because there is deep beauty in brokenness, there is deep beauty because in that brokenness and pain, there’s room for redemption and a place where only the love of a gracious Savior can reach.

May you live your life no longer bound by the chains of guilt and shame, being held back by fears and insecurities; but working through them, being healed by the deep hurts and pains so that you can live your life with deep courage, vulnerability and a whole heart full of love in all that you do.

You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love
Galatians 5:13

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