Tuesday, February 23, 2010

You Fit

The voice comes out of nowhere, stealth belying it’s powerful cruelty.  “You don’t fit here!” 

At first, I’m confused, then incredulous that I should feel this way now, here in the midst of my own people.  But I still listen and believe and four little words derail an entire week. 

As  a missionary woman, I’m prepared to feel different when I arrive to a new country and culture.  It’s just stating the obvious to say I don’t completely fit here (yet).  As much as I work to become all things and strive to adapt to my new home, I know it just takes time.  So, I wouldn’t be injured if that’s what the voice was referring to.      

But it’s not.  No, it’s condemning me now, while I’m spending a week at our mission base, surrounded by my own countrymen.  I’m caught completely off guard by the echoes of “You don’t belong”.  I never expected to hear them here.       

(Lest one of my dear coworkers read this and wonder if something was done to make me feel this way, let me just state very clearly that no one did anything unkind or said anything thoughtless or was anything but gracious to me.)   

I let four words reverberate in my mind, pierce my soul.  With surprising speed they multiply, accusing me with increasing disdain.   

“You’re spoiled!  You have a dryer.  Everyone else uses a clothesline.”

“You’re frivolous!  You love to shop and wear high heels and dangly earrings.”

“You’re selfish!  You don’t enjoy your children as much as she does.”

“You’re soft!  You can’t endure a few hours of heat for the chance to visit with friends.”

“You’re shallow!  You spend too much time thinking about how to make your house beautiful.”

My soul is painfully crippled and I am exhausted from repeatedly telling myself that these things are not true, when all the while I fear that they really are. 

My soul needs true revival, not a pep talk, so I go to the words of life.  This time the voice I hear is His.     

“Oh child, you BELONG.  I chose you.  It brought me great pleasure to bring you to myself through Christ.  You are my masterpiece!  You fit in me. 

I carefully chose you, with your unique interests and gifts, to be a part of my body.  I put you where I want you, high heels and all.  It pleases me to see you doing the special work you were created to do.  You fit in my body, child.

And you are neither spoiled, frivolous, selfish, soft or shallow.  I never think that when I think of you.  My voice rises above all others to declare you Holy, Blameless, Complete, Accepted and Loved.  Will you listen to me?  Will you believe me, child?”

“Yes, Lord!,” I cry.  “I believe!  Help my unbelief!”  The condemning voices fade and I’m free. 

**As painful as it is to admit that I wasted so much joy last week, I know that there is nothing new under the sun.  I hope that sharing my experience will encourage someone else who is wading their way through a murky mess of lies.  There is never joy in comparing ourselves amongst ourselves, because we are such ignorant judges.  The only One that can declare the truth about us sit on high and has already made it abundantly clear.  We fit.** 

Scripture: Ephesians 1:3-8, 2:10, 2:21-22; I Corinthians 12:18-20


Kathleen said...

Such power and truth in so small an article. I pray that everyone who reads this will hear the freedom that releases the listening heart.

Donna said...

Shilo--I am sure that was not easy to write. I am praying for you.

I do believe we can easily fall into judging others and letting others judgements comdemn us.

I have spent hours praying for His truth to reign over the lies that I have heard.

May we all seek to love as we would want to be loved and to walk as Christ has shown us.

Delighting in Him

Anonymous said...

Just when you think you know someone, you'll never know what their inward battles are. I know that personal spiritual battle of truth and feelings is very real and painful. But it's all for Gods glory in the end. Praying true peace for you - that is the name of your blog, right? You are deeply loved!

Ana said...


You have such a beautiful heart, thank you for sharing this with us, several times I feel like that too.

Big hugs and many blessings!

Brenda said...

I think its rather common to struggle with these feelings when we are with our co-workers. Hopefully our co-workers are such wonderful people that we can't help but admire them, sometimes that admiration can make us feel a little bad about ourselves. Obviously you got through this, but it is a journey.

Thanks for sharing this and for being so transparent.

Ashley L. said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! From time to time I feel like I am not a "real" missionary or that my sacrifices aren't "real" sacrifices because I don't have to endure many of the hardships that so many others experience. I have a warm comfortable and even pretty home (in my eyes at least), and I have many amenities that others sacrificially live without (I have a dryer too!), and so on. I was so encouraged by what you shared! It spoke to my heart. Thank you!


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