“Go let go”
A simple phrase. A whisper darted through my mind. I shook my head to forget it. Actually, I smirked at the weakness of the thought. Let go? No thanks. There isn’t one portion of coding in my DNA that makes that an option for me.
I hold on. I protect. I achieve. I control. I don’t LET GO.
I was born with a strong will. Early relationships taught me to navigate perfection and expectations. As long as I can remember, I have been able to take a look into someone’s eyes and know exactly what they want. I discovered early that when I deliver, I receive trust, control, opportunity, and identity in return. In addition, I was always reminded that I was loved by God, and thought it was my job to please Him.
I achieve. I win. I get what I want.
If I wanted someone to like me, I made sure they did. If I was supposed to be a good girl, I was. If I wanted a job, I got it. If I wanted good grades, I got them. I followed the rules. I studied hard, I worked hard, I planned hard. I graduated top of my class. I got to go to college for free. I managed a major retail store at 18, and I bought a house before I was 20. I fell madly in love and married a man as driven as myself who knew how to get exactly what he wanted. Our powers combined…and life began.
Life is hard. Try Harder.
Life is hard. It is also fun, and exciting, and full of adventure. No doubt, I will share many of the stories that are sprawled across the pages of the next 15 years of our walk together. Gain, loss, children, jobs, dreams, travels, crisis, ministry, relationships, growth, betrayal, accomplishments. Whatever it was, we could handle it. Be strong. Power up. Figure it out. We always figured it out. And then came the whisper…
I control my feelings. I control my emotions. I pick and choose my memories. I write my own story.
“Go let go.” A friend invited me to some Bible study with donuts and sent me home with a workbook. Chapter 1 walked me through the defining moments of life and asked me to write about my deepest wounds. I put them on paper. My heart felt weird. It hurt. It felt weak. I didn’t like it. I shut the book. Chapter 2 never happened.
I control what you think of me. I only show you what I want you to see. You don’t know me.
“Go let go.” I made some new friends who were really open about their lives. They didn’t always put their best foot forward. I didn’t know how to read them. They were vulnerable, and it looked like weakness to me. They wanted to know me. They rattled me.
Everything is organized. I have a plan and a backup. I have security.
“Go let go.” A simple heart disorder that runs in my husband’s family unleashed itself on him, and every day became a scary reminder that it could take his life at any time. ER visits became common.
“Go let go.” We began to realize that many things were not as they seemed, and we entered a season of disappointment and betrayal.
“Go let go.” A storm was swelling, and it was impacting every corner of our lives. Our health, our jobs, our home, our kids, our community, our purpose.
Every mounting storm in our life was followed by this whisper. Instead of shaking our heads, and explaining it away, we finally leaned in to hear the voice of the One who had been so patiently waiting for us to come to the end of ourselves. We decided to uncurl one finger at a time and begin to discover what it meant to give up control, step into the unknown, and let go.
The whisper wrecked our lives.
I’m here to write about it. Most people write their masterpiece after the storm, but I’m going to put this journey on paper while I’m still in the midst. It is time to be vulnerable. Every piece of our lives has been rearranged, and a new journey has begun. It has been painful, messy, and oh, so out of control. I’ve never been such a mess. The mess has lifted the heavy burden of control from our shoulders and has brought us to a place we wouldn’t have dared imagine. There is unexpected freedom in the mess.
I’m discovering it.
Walk with me? Discover it with me?