Stepping In My Stilettos
Through watered eyes and rosy flushed cheeks, I looked in the mirror wondering who this girl was. Her stare was intense and invading. She was raw, broken, hurt, and somehow numb. She thought she had it all figured out, but she was so confused. She loved so hard, but was still full of hatred. There I stood peering through the eyes of her empty soul. She was cold, dark, and seemingly impenetrable. I asked if she was okay, she ignored me. I told her she needed help, she rejected me. I questioned her, “who are you?” She stared back into my eyes seeing beyond my face, she saw the to heart of me and returned her response. “It’s me.” My throat dropped to my stomach as I stood with a terrifying realization that this girl was me. She was me and I was her. What could I do? How could I fix this? Is there any help for me? Nothing had worked this far, perhaps, nothing can or will.
I used to ask for help, I’m sure of it, I remember. “Pray about it,” they said. “Take it to the Lord”, they said. But they didn’t know me. They didn’t understand that I couldn’t. Why would God want to hear from me of all people? “God will forgive you,” they said. Maybe God does forgive me, but I’m sure I’m not the type of person He’d like to talk to.
Standing in a silent room, my thoughts were deafening. Tears had began to fall and I brushed them away quickly, knowing that I could just shake it off and carry on as usual, just as I had done many times before. But this time was different. God called out to me. The girl standing at the mirror turned into a girl fallen to her knees in complete surrender and humility to the One who was reaching the most intimate parts of her heart. “I Am here.” I could hear Him speak to my heart. I couldn’t wrap my head around why He was calling to me. I didn’t deserve this, I didn’t deserve Him. He should just ignore me the way I’ve ignored Him. He should hurt me the way I know I’d hurt Him. But in a matter of seconds, all of that guilt, pride and shame turned into humility. Nonchalant disdain and continual rejection transformed into immense adoration and an immediate desire for closeness. Wrapped completely in the grip of grace, all that could be uttered were mere words of sure repentance, complete surrender, and the recognition of utter unworthiness. The girl who couldn’t and wouldn’t pray began to pour out all the pain, guilt, and shame to the hand of the Master who could heal and restore. Words she didn’t even know she could feel, “Lord, grant me Grace, so that it may teach me, grant me mercy so that it may teach me, grant me love, so that it may teach me.” What did these words even mean?
Grace is unmerited favor. Grace cannot be earned. Yet, it is given freely in abundance when we need it most but deserve it least. The life of a believer begins with a little bit of prayer and a ton of abounding grace. Many believe that they have to change their lives before giving it to God. They feel like they have to fix some of their flaws or quit some of their habits before committing their lives. Sometimes, even believers feel like they should figure out a way to do better or self medicate their issues instead of continuing to pray a repetitive prayer of repentance. I remember I used to say, God, I’m not going to apologize with my mouth again, I’m going to show you how good I can be. Then every single time, without fail, I would fail, miserably. Leaving me more ashamed and guilt written than before. This guilt and shame possessed the power to keep me from praying at all for extended periods of time. I would ignore the urge to pray and sink deeper and deeper into whatever struggle I had until it overtook me. This practice forced me to continue a wreck less cycle of high highs and low lows.
Dear sis or brother, please understand that regardless to how much your brain’s logic may justify it, any and every idea that keeps you from praying IS a trick and an attack from satan himself! Feelings of guilt and shame causes one to hide, close up, or draw back. Your heart should break for your sins and for anything else you may do or feel that is uncharacteristic for a believer; however, feeling as if you shouldn’t pray is a trick! Prayer is your direct lifeline to the Father. The very moment you begin to pray in full surrender, the Spirit begins to intercede on your behalf and you have gained the full attention of the Almighty God, the Creator of the ends of the earth and the Ruler of the entire universe! No, you don’t deserve this attention, you never did and you never could. When you pray, you begin to experience grace.
Experiencing grace, in my humble opinion is a three-fold process. It’s meaning includes love, grace/favor, and mercy, all of which are unmerited. First, God’s relentless love seeks and yearns for you, urging you to pray or seek closeness. Then, Gods abounding grace chooses you, overtakes you, and transforms you. Finally, Gods matchless mercy justifies you and captivates you forever. When you pray, experiencing this grace, you begin to realize how just how incredible God is and how much you don’t deserve His very audience. Yet, He granted you this favor anyway. Can you imagine? Just one act of surrender, grants you an audience with the King of Kings.
The “relentless love” gives you a yearning or desire and teaches you humility in a sense of being accepted and wanted though you are completely unworthy. The “abounding grace” teaches you gratefulness and humility because you do not deserve such affection. Lastly, the “matchless mercy” teaches you that you have been covered under the blood of Christ and humility because you have been justified by His incredible sacrifice. Did you notice that love, grace, and mercy all teach humility? Grace is a tri-fold teacher of humility. Though I will not digress into another subject entirely, the subject bears mentioning that experiencing grace puts a believer in humble position. While grace is not intended to make you feel bad, this humility will breed better decision making. For me, I think: “God has been so incredibly good and gracious to me, how can I go back? How can I intentionally do things that are not pleasing to Him?” Little by little, your thoughts, actions, behaviors and habits are transformed… by grace…and because the grace of God prompted prayer.
TITUS 2: 11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
My dear brother and sister, PRAY! Prayer, has the power to overtake, transform, captivate and justify you! But, The most incredible part, is that this mere compilation of 1,320 words, just barely scratches the surface of the power of prayer. Did she say “power of prayer?” I sure did! You see there is power in prayer! So much power in fact, that I disappoint myself when prayer is not my default solution to whatever problem I’m having. How may times are you faced with a problem or issue that is big, uncertain, or troubling, and feel the need to tackle it immediately. Once you exhaust all your efforts, o no avail, you pray about it. We so often say “All I can do is pray.” But beloved, that’s the BEST thing you can do!
Until next time…
Love Lana… By, Grace