Authentic: When Rejection Needs a Final Word

sunlight in the trees

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

This post is a little longer than most of my posts. I wanted to share some of what God’s showing me about my One Word: Authentic. I hope you’ll read to the end.

*****

I’m living in the limp lane of life right now. My knee is slowly recovering from ACL reconstruction surgery in February, and I don’t get much done from sun up to sun down. I’ve had to accept that some tasks will be completed, and others will wait for another day.

I’m used to being in the “do-er lane.” Moving fast through my to-do list, accomplishing much in a day. I’m up and down and moving around, going to appointments and driving the kids where they need to be.

Bench Alone

“Do-ing” makes me feel accomplished. Like I’m achieving, serving others, and being productive. I believe it may also cover over the sense of inadequacy I’ve struggled with since girlhood. If I’m accomplishing, surely that gives me value, right? Marking things off my to-do list means I’m being productive, doesn’t it?

The limp lane has forced me to slow down and examine— not just my physical life—but my spiritual life.

Black and White Aspens

Because of the wounds rejection and bullying inflicted on me as a girl, I learned certain lessons. Granted, my wounds are not as deep or devastating as many. I discovered ways to protect myself from being hurt again.

I learned to tuck away my emotions—the ones I deemed unacceptable by others—and I only let the safe ones show, or I went into “observer mode.” The problem with this is that I’ve become afraid of feeling, really feeling. If I let my true feelings show, I could be rejected. Or, they could be used against me to make me feel “less-than.”

Quiet trees

I’ve been living in the “limp lane” in my spiritual life. I spend time with the Lord every day. He feeds and nourishes me. He speaks to my heart, draws me in and equips me.

The Lord has shown me how my wound has distorted some of His truths.

I’ve spent years grappling with the effects of rejection. The heartache, the lies I’ve latched onto because, well . . . they felt and seemed so real . . . the ways I’ve viewed myself, believing I was less-than others because of who I am.

Cross in the window

When something happened that struck that wound, I prayed about it, and stuffed the emotion. The fear of feeling the pain, of exposing my heart to another—and even to God—felt too risky.

I accepted the confirmation of my lies and worked to align my thoughts and feelings with God’s word as best I could. And I moved onward. I didn’t deal with the pain of the event. I merely accepted it.

I strove to overcome all of this in my own strength. I’ve asked God for help, and He’s helped me. But, I’ve also worked to handle things on my own, because that’s how this independent woman rolls.

Or limps, as I’m seeing now.

Sunlight and rocks

The missing factor in this equation is embracing God’s view of me. Sure, He loves me. I know this.

But have I truly grasped how very much He loves me? Have I accepted that I am beautiful to Him? That He only created one Me?

Not because the mold was so bad, but because I am that special to Him. That goes for each one of us. He created us for continual fellowship with Him, not only so we can call out to Him when we’re desperate.

Autumn purple flower

When we insist on operating in our own strength, rather than trusting God, we end up walking with a limp. We topple and fall.

As much as we let God into our hard, He enters in. But if we choose to “buck up” and do things on our own, God won’t force His way into the situation. He’ll be there for us, but He never forces.

Let God into the hard 2 copy

I’ve come to see that I walk spiritually with a limp right now.

I’m tired of limping. 

As God shows me when I’m thinking/operating in the lies I’ve believed for decades, I pray. I’m asking for His perspective, and I’m learning to lean on Him in new ways.

Sunrise beauty

Pursuing authenticity with God isn’t easy, but I want this more than I want to do things in my own way. The first step for me is to trust God with my real emotions.

I want to stand fast, walk strong in His strength. My own strength is pretty weak.

What about you? When have you lived in the “limp lane” of life? How have you learned to trust Jesus in new ways?

This song, by Francesca Battistelli, fits the idea of being honest with God and each other.

Today, I’m linking up with Holly Barrett and #RaRaLinkup.

Advertisements

20 thoughts on “Authentic: When Rejection Needs a Final Word

  1. Limp Lane, I like that. I think we all spend a lot of time there, even when we think we’re not. I’m guilty of that. I chose a path and called it God’s only to realize it was what I felt comfortable doing for God, not necessarily what He had in mind. What He usually has in mind are things way out of my comfort zone, things where if God doesn’t show up, I fail. That forces me to trust Him, not my own abilities.

    Like

    • Gene, I’m with you. I LIKE my comfort zone. And it’s easy to serve Him in ways where I’m still comfortable. God does usually call us to do things that are bigger than us so that we have to depend on Him in the doing. It’s a scary-wonderful place to be when we have to depend on Him to be able to do something.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful essay, Jeanne, and lovely pictures!

    I guess I’ve been limping for awhile now. But I’ve never had the ‘personal relationship with jesus’. I wish it were otherwise, but my faith…and much of my life…is coldly logical and flippant to the edge of nihilism. If it weren’t, I would not have survived, because there are early childhood experiences that you either process through the lens of “it don’t mean nothing”, or they kill you.

    I do believe; I wish I could hear Christ’s footsteps, but I am convinced that the trouble is more in my own ears than in his remove from me.

    Like

    • Andrew, I suspect you have a personal relationship with Jesus, it just looks different than mine. As it should His relationship with each of us is unique. And He knows what we need, in interactions, conversations, and presence. We each learn to hear Him more clearly over time, as we learn to trust. I think this is one of the hardest things in our relationship with Him. I appreciate your transparency, Andrew.

      Like

  3. Beautiful reminder, Jeanne! This past week I was in Nicaragua and as much as I wanted to do things in my own way and with my own power, I was helpless to do so. There was lots of limping last week. They physical demands were more than I have ever experienced before and this played on my mental and emotional well-being. It was only by allowing God to take my weakness and make it into His strength that I made it through the week. It was the most humbling experience of my life.

    I’m praying your limp becomes strength as you release it all to God. Thank you for these words and the reminder that God is whom we need to trust with our lives.

    Like

    • Mary, I can only imagine how amazing, how humbling your time in Nicaragua was! I loved what you said about letting God take your weaknesses and make it into His strength. I can definitely understand how that was a humbling week. And thank you for those prayers. I’m excited to see Him working in this area in my life. It’s going to be steps forward and backward, but I know He’s helping me. 🙂

      Like

  4. Powerful! Authentic!
    I love the picture of limp lane.
    God used your words to confirm several things He has been telling me. We need to go get coffee and talk!
    Love you Jeanne!!!

    Like

    • Brandi, thank you so much for stopping by. I love when God uses other’s words to confirm something in our hearts. May He continue to speak to your heart, my friend! Love you back!

      Like

  5. Yeah, I’m overwhelmed right now. And I’m seeing how much I don’t place on the Lord. And I need to place it all on Him, and quit carrying the load. It’s hard … when you just want to get things done … get it all done, so you can rest. 🙂 I have so much to learn. So much. (trying not to get overwhelmed about that) 🙂

    Like

    • Awww, friend. I’m sorry. It seems like I have to continue to relearn and be reminded to place my burdens, my hurts on the Lord. Trusting His timing for working things out in our lives IS hard. Maybe we can encourage each other as we travel this road. Try not to get overwhelmed about all you have to learn. 😉

      Like

  6. Everything happens for a reason, right? Maybe you needed to limp to get you get back to walking. Reminds me of the poem “Footprints” – All the best…

    Like

    • Yes, Lisa. And I’m a firm believer that God doesn’t waste anything in our lives. I’m glad God shows us those areas in our lives where we are limping so that we can begin to let Him work in them. “Footprints” is a great poem.

      Have a great week!

      Like

  7. Much of what you said today i could identify with jeanne. i have struggled with those feelings of less than. and often felt i didn’t want to bother GOD with my problems. in the end, i end up being very lonely and emotionally stunted.

    over time, i have purposely moved to be more open with people and myself, about how i felt…honestly. and i just tell them one new truth i learned that day,

    ultimately, we all need to take our burdens to Christ and allow Him to change us. blessings today as you face the future, confident that GOD is caring for you. blessings girl:)

    Like

    • Martha, thank you for sharing a part of your story. I think you’re right. We need to be intentional about being open with people. After so many years living in observer-mode, it takes some practice to assert myself and share openly.

      And yes, taking our burdens to Christ is the best place to leave them! I always appreciate when you stop by, Martha!

      Like

  8. Ah, the Limp Lane. Honestly? I’m there right now. I’m just mad. Crabby. I don’t know why. Just am. So maybe I’m not even limping. Maybe I’m just sitting in the middle of the road, refusing to move.

    Thanks for this, my friend.

    Like

    • Marie, I’m so sorry you’re in the limp lane. It stinks sometimes. And I had to chuckle. I’ve been in the middle of the road, refusing to move too. I’ll pray for you today as you move forward, growing stronger mentally, spiritually and physically. I always appreciate your visits over here. 🙂

      Like

Comments are closed.