Friday, October 10, 2008

Reality Check

Right now a lot of us are reading the book "Behind Those Eyes" written by Lisa Whittle. It is all about what really goes on behind the eyes in the soul of a woman. What the "real" her is all about. Lisa is teaching us how to become real with God. To be honest, it is tough. There is a lot I share about my life here on my blog, but there is a lot I hope God never asks me to share with you.

My reasons are there is ugly stuff in my past. So ugly sometimes I can't believe I lived that life. Ugliness I just want to take to the grave with me. Looking at someone you just can't tell what is going on inside of them. We may have a teenager that comes from the best family, goes to youth group, excels in sports and has the brightest future within her grasp, but inside where only God has a bird's eye view is an absolute mess.

She may feel empty, so she looks to whatever is willing to fill her up. She thinks her emptiness is the longing for attention from a guy and so begins a life of momentary satisfaction. A life that longs to be saved from herself. A self that allows her morals and beliefs to be shoved to the side to get what she thinks she needs and wants only to be left with much remorse to deal with.

So in order to not reveal this ugly side about her, she masters how to make things look good on the outside. She smiles and laughs. The Christian girl in her has been trained to carry her Bible into the church and listen to the message and if she doesn't have a hangover, take notes.

When she becomes an adult, she attends conferences with other believers and lifts her hands in worship like they do. Her own thoughts keep her from trusting anyone she is surrounded by because she is convinced that if they really knew her they too would feel disgust like she does for the woman she sees in the mirror.

A life filled with choices that are followed by consequences that want to literally kill, steal and destroy her and at times she wished they would. She wants to live right, but there is such a strong pull to the other side that eventually she just gave in. Over and over again. When will the madness end?

As she grows closer to God she knows He is more powerful than her enemy. She learns how to stay in God's Word every day. She now watches the enemy go after her own kids as a fierceness rises within her that she didn't know she had. She is sick and tired of what the enemy has stolen from her even though sometimes she handed herself to him without a fight. She is regretful of what the enemy has killed in her life. And she is fed up with what he is destroying in this present day.

So does she keep pretending and working hard on making things in her life appear to be real or does she surrender in defeat of herself to the Almighty One? I want to be real before God all the time. Every day and every second of my life. I can't fool Him, for He sees me for what I am and undeniably still loves me. I know I'm not worthy of the sacrifice of any one's child, but for some crazy reason God thinks differently. I know that day on Calvary my face and name crossed the heart of Jesus Christ and He let me know of my worth by hanging there until the finish.

Instead of being used for satisfaction I am being used for the Kingdom.

Instead of labeling myself as a slut I call myself His Princess.

Instead of feeling ashamed I feel His glory wrap around me.

So this year alone God has taught me that He wants me to say YES to Him with no hesitation. He gave me Lysa TerKeurst's book "What Happens When Women Say Yes to God" as my guide. Then He wanted me to learn about having faith in Him all of the time and gave me another of Lysa's incredible writings, "What Happens When Women Walk in Faith" to show me the steps to take to live that faith filled life He wants me to live.

Perhaps this is why my friend Amy Brooke's blog is titled "God's Work in Progress", because He isn't done with me. Now He wants me to learn how to be real with Him and so He gave me "Behind Those Eyes" by Lisa Whittle.

Years ago I was in severe pain. Two of my wisdom teeth were impacted which means my teeth were completely covered with swollen gum tissue something that required the dentist to cut my gums away in order to pull my teeth out. I was out on my own and didn't have insurance at the time so I took the pain as long as I could handle it. My Mom took me to her dentist and within a few days I was back to normal and my mouth felt great. The thing is that on the outside, I looked fine. Glancing at me, you couldn't make a correct assessment of why I was in pain. Even if I opened my mouth, you couldn't tell because the gums covered my teeth completely.

On the outside all looked well and healthy, but on the inside I was experiencing excruciating pain. It took coming to the reality that I couldn't handle the pain anymore and allowing the dentist to do oral surgery.

Sometimes ladies, we just need to be real with ourselves and surrender to the Great Physician. Don't tell Him how to do it, just trust in Him and let Him do what He does best to fix the mess within.

Let's learn to become real with Him and live the life He wants us to live. A faith-filled, no hesitation, real life that is all about Him.

Click here to visit the author, Lisa Whittle. I haven't read her post yet, but she said she had something God gave her for the Yes to God study girls. Go visit her even if you aren't doing the study for God just may have a Word for you too.

You know I love you.

Have a great weekend.

~Many Blessings~


Jill said...

Thanks for sharing and constantly offering an encouraging word. I love hearing what you have to say and am grateful you are setting a great example in being real for all of us as we work thru this book. God is honored and we are blessed. I pray He blesses you for your obedience, submission and trust - it's real and just what He wants and we need. Have a wonderful weekend,

Leebird said...

"She is sick and tired of what the enemy has stolen from her even though sometimes she handed herself to him without a fight."

That statement hit me hard, sister.

I am sick and tired of Satan putting me on a guilt trip for all of the times I failed. For every time I've shoved a donut in my mouth to self-medicate. For every time I sought out the approval of other's to find my self-worth.

I was a virgin on the day my husband and I married, but I have been unfaithful to the lover of my soul in countless ways. No matter the type of sin we have found outselves wallowing in, we are all "just sinners" and you and I are so blessed because we get to add the "saved by grace" phrase to the end of that! You are beautiful inside and out. Thank you so much for being real and letting me watch and learn. Love, Lee

Paula (SweetPea) said...

What a wonderful testimony.

I love this:
"Don't tell Him how to do it, just trust in Him and let Him do what He does best to fix the mess within."

Wow. Those words were for me. Oh how I question what He is doing or rather SEEMS He is NOT doing. Not selling my house after 15 months, not reconciling my marriage after 15 months. Why? When? No, cross those out. Just believe and trust. Oh what a hard road.

Love ya,

Tammy R said...

Lelia, grabed my heart,we do have alot in common!

It's wonderful how God takes our messed up lives and uses it to show others His unconditional love.

Trusting God with my secrets are difficult but I've learned with trust comes freedom.

Julie said...

He's coming for those broken places....

It's hard to go back, but it is so worth it, cause we really don't move forward until we do... we're stuck in those broken places... He came to set the captive hearts free.... It's so amazing...the freedom... I know you know...


Runner Mom said...

You have such a heart that shares with others. Wishing I could give you a hug right now.

Love you,

Paula said...

Hi Lelia, I posted a comment, but it went into the abyss, so here is try number two (albeit shorter!).

This is an amazing post, and I'm feeling everything you say! I can hear myself saying the words, as I lived it too.

I especially loved - "She is sick and tired of what the enemy has stolen from her even though sometimes she handed herself to him without a fight." The hardest part is forgiving ourselves for what WE allowed to happen even though we knew better. But Amen that we have a forgiving and gracious God who patiently waited for us to return to Him when WE messed it all up!

We cannot change the past, as we know, but we can use it for His good, and to help others to not make the same mistakes, even though we see these mistakes happening right in front of our eyes. His love WILL shine through. The key is to stay close to Him, give up control to Him and let Him do it all, which includes what He must still do with us.

I got to the 'order' page last night to buy both of Lysa's books but thought I'd better wait as I already have a library here waiting to be read, but I am going to order them today, as your post has proven to me that they will help me, just as they have helped you.

Keep smiling my lovely friend, and keep your head and heart turned heavenward, and He will guide you, and also hold you when you need it most.

Love ya, Paula :-) xo

Paula said...

Oh, and if you hadn't already guessed, my 'shorter' comment turned out to be an essay, so whoops! ;-)

HisPrincess said...

You have just described me to a tee. It gives me so much comfort to know that others really know whats going on.

Pat said...

I loved reading your post. God is so good to love us through the past, the present and the future.
He wants all of our Surrender and Has so much for us in return.
Blessings sweet sister as you press on and press in!

Carol said...

Lelia, thank you for a beautiful post, beautiful and real. I've been right there with you. I believe God has brought all of us together to show us as women we've all suffered from our own past mistakes and poor choices, and He has loved us all inspite of it. Also to remind us we are not the only ones and we need to know that.

I'm with Paula, I'm going to have to get Lysa T.s books, I'm sure they'll speak to me too.

God is telling the evil one you have no power with these women now they belong to Me, they are my daughters.

Stay real sister,

Josie said...

I get so much hope and strength from your blog. We are all sinners and it is good to remember that it is through God's grace alone we can be saved. There is so much in my past that I am ashamed of, but your words bring comfort that I am not alone. Thank you for sharing! A hug would feel good about now.

Becoming Me said...

Wonderful post and one to which I can so relate...just the day before you posted this I wrote something called Evil twin. The Lord is really working on my heart

Jeankfl said...

Thank you.. so many of us have a past we're ashamed of.. and yet, it's made us who we are.. and it's not a surprise to God..LOL I hope we don't have to share everything, too! Take heart.. He that began a good work in you is well able to complete it!

LynnSC said...

Thanks Lelia for being so real. As ugly as the past may be... it is the road that led you to where you are today.

This statement,
"She is sick and tired of what the enemy has stolen from her even though sometimes she handed herself to him without a fight."

hit me right between the eyes. There are many times that I have given myself over to the enemy without a fight. But... now the fight is ON. I will not give myself or my children over to him without a huge fight.

Thanks so much for allowing God to use you. You are a blessing to me and others.

Anonymous said...

Lelia, thanks, once again, for a post that speaks volumes... it was so good to read following my post... glad I popped in on this lazy Sunday... hope you're having a restful weekend. Naomi x

much2ponder said...

Just popped over here from Pam's blog, hope you don't mind. I enjoy reading what you have to say about the book you are currently studying. Makes me want to buy it. I will when I am finished with the study I am currently doing. Thanks for sharing so openly. I'll be back...

Connie said...

You are precious and God is at work in you! Hope you are enjoying a lazy Sunday afternoon. Connie

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

You are precious Lelia. Stand strong and be courageous in oue Lord! I love you girl. Talk about being real...I am learning from you.

In His Graces~Pamela

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Lots of love coming your way tonight.


Liz said...

Once again a testimony that speaks to my heart. Love and prayers your way...God is doing much in you and through you!

On a light note:
I tagged you on my blog if you want to come play.

KMTM1970 said...

Leila, I'd like join the Tuesday Bible study. My friend Lee Merrill told me about this group. How do I join?

HIS Daughter said...


I love you you and your heart. GOD, Our Father gets total glory when HIS daughters have none of their own to get in the way.

You and I and many others can give HIM total glory for everything in our lives without hesitation. We messed it up badly and so anything we have become and do for HIM is all HIS glory.

Somehow, I think there are more of us needed in this hour, "for such a time as this". So many women and young girls think they have messed it up too badly to have GOD ever be able to use them or even forgive them!

Praise GOD, we are examples HE is the Master of remaking broken pieces, even tiny shards of glass from a smashed and broken life.

I love you and I'm praying for you. GOD will see you through this and you believe it and you keep standing, and then stand some more.

We reap what we have sown, but as new creations in HIM, we do not lose heart, because when we cannot see it, our perserverance is working for HIS glory.

Love and prayers,

Letters From Midlife said...

I've enjoyed reading your posts and what you are learning in your walk with God. I recently started a second blog called No Ordinary Faith where I could write about the deeper lessons the Lord is teaching me about Him and my relationship with Him.

I added you to my blog list and hope that is ok.


Shabby Olde Potting Shed said...

wow Lelia,
Grat analogy about the impacted teeth... and how on the outside it seemed all was well... yet in the inside something else entirely was going on... ~ I related to that alot.
I'm so thankful for you....
Love n prayers,