Thursday, October 20, 2011

Secrets

It is O-dark-30, and I am writing this is my new flannel pajamas surrounded by tubby bullmastiffs. One is pregnant. The other is just tubby.

Secrets are on my mind. I used to have some. But, years ago they came bursting out and since then I am hard pressed to keep anything quiet inside. If it's on my mind, it's on my tongue and out in the open before I even know it. This is not right, but that is a whole other blog post. It's just that once the dam broke I can't seem to hold anything back.

For years now, I have worked side by side with girls and women who have secrets. Deep, dark secrets. Scary secrets. The kind that you box up and lock up  and throw away the key. The kind you can't bear to think about because if you did, your life as you knew it would be destroyed.
Ugly secrets. People would leave you secrets. God would hate you secrets. You think you might just howl your pain and then lay down and die secrets.

I know this because I used to keep some myself.

The thing is, you think letting the secret out will wreck you,
when the whole time, the secret you are keeping is killing you from the inside out. Rotting you, really.
  • "If people really knew me, they wouldn't love me."
  • " If I work harder it will prove that I am worthy and lovable and the secret won't matter anymore.
  • "If I drink/take drugs/party (fill in the blank) more, then I won't think about the secret.
  • "I must be ugly and wicked and evil and no one really knows me."
  • "It doesn't matter what I do. I've already destroyed my life and there is no hope for me."
Do you know what these types of thinking lead to?
  • Hardened hearts.
  • Distrust.
  • Broken relationships.
  • Depression.
  • Harmful behavior of all kinds.
  • Turning away from loved ones.
  • Turning away from God.
You see, it's not the actual secret that is killing you; it is keeping the secret that is twisting you in to someone that God never intended you to be.
One thing I've learned in years from working one-on-one with first class, blue ribbon-winning secret keepers, myself included, is that everyone thinks their shameful secret is the worse than every one elses.
It's not.
That is a lie from the king of liars, satan. This is how he keeps you for himself.

Because if it's too shameful, too horrible, to ugly, too scary to ever say out loud to God or anyone, it will stay locked up inside you,like a cancer, where you come to believe it is not just a part of you, but IS you. It becomes how you identify yourself. The filter through which you view yourself. It grows and grows until you come to believe that you are as ugly as the secret you keep.

And guess what?Your secret isn't really a secret at all. Not from God.

 
"God would surely have known it, for he knows the secrets of every heart."
Psalm 44:20-22

 
"You spread out our sins before you— our secret sins—and you see them all."
Psalm 90:7-9

 
 "Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable." Hebrews 4 :13.

 
But before we get all freaked out, thinking about a God who knows everything and surely must despise us because we despise ourselves so much, hear this:

 
"Let all that I am praise the Lord;
may I never forget the good things he does for me.
3 He forgives all my sins
and heals all my diseases.
4 He redeems me from death
and crowns me with love and tender mercies.
5 He fills my life with good things.
My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!
 
 
6 The Lord gives righteousness
and justice to all who are treated unfairly."
 
 

 
and...

 
"The Lord is compassionate and merciful,
slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
9 He will not constantly accuse us,
nor remain angry forever.
10 He does not punish us for all our sins;
he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
11 For his unfailing love toward those who fear him
is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
12 He has removed our sins as far from us
as the east is from the west.
13 The Lord is like a father to his children,
tender and compassionate to those who fear him."
 
 Psalm 103:2-6 and 8-13

We are trying to keep our secrets from the only one who can save us from them.

"But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness." 1st John 1:9
 
We don't need to be chained like slaves to  our secrets. We are children of God!

 
 15 "So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children.[a] Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”[b] 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children." Romans 8:15-16

 

  We are called to be free from our hidden secrets and let God himself carry that burden like a shepherd carrying his lambs:

"Praise the Lord; praise God our savior!
For each day he carries us in his arms."
Psalm 68:19
 


 
So what secrets are you keeping?

What secrets are keeping you?

Isn't it time to just take a deep breath and put them down, once and for all?
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