Engaging Your Story

Engaging your story with kindness is the single greatest act of rebellion in a world that constantly looks forward without looking back. Showing yourself kindness is courageous. It is aligned with God’s heart for you and your life. The journey of learning to have compassion for your younger self for not knowing better is difficult, painful, and the most worthwhile experience you could ever have. We have to stop looking at our past selves and chastising them for not knowing what the adult versions of ourselves do. Your younger self needed to be loved, protected and fought for. When any of those needs were not meant, for whatever reason, it leaves a wound. The wound needs to heal, or it will continue to come back.

Over the past few years, I have realized that too often we see ourselves as supporting characters in the story of our life, never even daring to entertain the idea that we are one of the main characters. We have made everyone else into main characters and ourselves as extras. We make excuses for other people’s actions, acting as if our pain was somehow lesser than someone else’s until the pain becomes too much. We see everything that happens to us, either by circumstances or by our own making, as secondary. Yet, when we do something wrong, we chastise ourselves as if it is the worst thing that could happen. But where is God in all of this? What if the relationship you have with God became the center of your story? What if you started to engage your story with a kindness that can only be revealed by God?
 
Engaging your story with kindness sounds great; but what does it actually mean? Well, first, it means acknowledging that you have a story that brought you here, filled with valleys, mountains, and everything in between. It means looking at the times when we get hurt as opportunities to heal. It is daring to hope that there is something better, even here. It means expecting goodness to come instead of darkness. It means knowing your emotions do not get to dictate your reality but they do point to something important. Listen to your emotions, especially the ones that make you want to run in the opposite direction. They will lead you to the places of your heart that you may not know had been broken.

Did you know your body holds emotional wounds as if they were physical? When you experience a really deep emotional wound, your body’s physiological response is as if you had just received a body wound. This the reason why when we’re experiencing deep emotional pain, it will feel like your body actually hurts. We all have those triggers that set something off deep down inside of us. They may seem super small, and nine times out of ten, I will be the first to rationalize away the pain and disregard it. That is not kind though. Kindness is taking note of those moments and bringing them to God and asking why. Instead of settling for the pain, we stay curious.
 
Your body knows when there is unhealed trauma. I know using the word trauma to describe an experience may seem uncomfortable, because we identify trauma as large “T” traumas like child abuse, sexual assault, neglect, war, etc. However, trauma is the response to a deeply distressing or disturbing event that overwhelms an individual’s ability to cope. There is a number of things that can be considered deeply distressing to one’s ability to cope, it doesn’t have to be large “T” trauma. Learn to have compassion for your own experiences, regardless of how big or small the experience may seem. If you are still thinking about it now, that means is has significance. Asking yourself why may be the greatest step of kindness you could take.

There is no one size fits all process that I can give you to engaging your story with kindness. I can’t do that for the sole reason that it would discredit the uniqueness of your story. Your path to healing will look different than mine, because God created us as different people. The one piece of encouragement that I can give you is that God is with you. This healing journey may mean you get angry with God, lash out, cry more than you ever thought was possible, and go to depths you never saw yourself going. The good news is God is with you. There is a fear that I had, along with many reading this I presume, that if I allowed myself to feel the depths of my pain, there would be no going back. I feared I may not come out. There is a quote from Brené Brown that I embraced when it came to this: “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”
 
It may be difficult learning to look at your story with kindness, but God’s love should be at the forefront of this journey. God’s love is deep, it is redemptive. There is no part of your story that God has left untouched. He is a kind and involved father. Asking him where he was in the most painful parts of our story opens our hearts to receiving his love, safety, and nurture. If you look at your story through anything other than love, that is not God. Before there was ever a person that sowed lies into your heart, there was God. Before there was anyone against you, God was all ready for you. God’s love is not reactive to lies, to battles for our hearts, to satan, etc. God’s love is simply active. God’s love for you stood before you were ever born. How would it change your mindset if you believed God’s love was not reactive but active?

Author | Cristina Rosiles

Recent

Archive

 2021

Categories

no categories

Tags

1 Corinthians 1 Kings 1 Peter 2 Corinthians 2 Peter Aaron Vickroy Abba Abiding Abigail Bradley Abundance Accountability Actions Adam Salway Addiction Adoration Adventure Alafia Adeleke Alex Hinton Alignment Andrew Elder Andrew Smith Anger Anna DiCosty Anna Goellner Anointing Ansley Davenport Anxiety Armor of God Ashlyn Williams Ashton Brantley Asian American and Pacific Islander Month Aubrey Gold Authority Autumn Pressley Awakening Bailey Meyne Balance Beauty Becca Johnstone Becca Morgan Being Uncomfortable Being mortal Beloved Benji Johnston Bentley Clark Bethel Black History Month Blessing Body Image Body of Christ Boldness Boundaries Brad Schiebel Bravery Breakthrough Brittany Futch Brokenness Brooke DeLoach Brooklyn Holloway COVID-19 Caitlin Cooper Calling Calvary Cam Pace Caroline Barnes Caroline Beasley Caroline Newton Carolyn McLain Celebration Change Charlie Knox Child-like Chloe Glass Chosen Christina Hensley Christlikeness Christmas Survival Guide Christmas Claire Jordan Clarity Colorado Comfort Commitment Communion Community Comparison Compassion Complacency Confidence Connection Consistency Contentment Control Conviction Correction Counseling Courage Covenants Creativity Cristina Rosiles Dating Decisions Dependency Depth Desperation Devon Radford Disappointment Discernment Discipleship Leadership Blog Discipleship Discipline Distraction Diversity Division Doubt Dreams Dutch Williams Easter Eat the Book El Roi El Shaddai Elders Elijah Elizabeth Sprinkle Ellie Knight Ellyzsa Valencia Emily Baker Emily Goldin Emily Helton Emily Summers Emma Kate Shelton Emma Whitmer Emmanuel Fortuchang Emotions Empathy Emptiness Encountering God Encounter Encouragement Rooms Endurance Enough Environment Envy Erin Gilleland Eternity Evan Correa Evangelism Exodus Expectation Faithfulness Faith Family Fear of the Lord Fear Feeling Lost Feeling Safe Forgiveness Fredom Freedom Freely Given Freshley Friendship Fruits of the Spirit Fun Future Garner Gay Generosity Genesis Gentleness Gift Giving Giving Glory of God God as a Father God is Smart God is with us God's Character God's Heart God's Names God's Plans God's Plan God's Power God's Presence God's Promises God's Timing God's Voice God's Will God\'s Character God\'s Heart God\'s Names God\'s Plans God\'s Plan God\'s Power God\'s Presence God\'s Promises God\'s Timing God\'s Voice God\'s Will God\\\'s Character God\\\'s Heart God\\\'s Names God\\\'s Plans God\\\'s Plan God\\\'s Power God\\\'s Presence God\\\'s Promises God\\\'s Voice God\\\'s Will God\\\\\\\'s Character God\\\\\\\'s Presence God\\\\\\\'s Voice Government Grace Gratitude Guatemala Guidance Haley Blanchard Haley Hall Hallie Turner Hannah Cole Healing Heart Posture Heaven Hinds Feet on High Places Hispanic Heritage Month History of Prayer History of Revival History of Wesley Holidays Holiness Holly Avera Holy Spirit Holy Week Home Honor Hope Hospitality Humility Hunger Hunter MacInnis I Am Ian Burkes Identity Idols Image of God Imagination Influence Inheritance Intention Intercession Interning Intimacy Isolation Jake Stephens Jamaica Jamie Cherf Jealousy Jennifer Daniel Jessie Thomas Jesus John Wesley John Joseph Josh DeRamus Journaling Joy Judgment Julia Baughn Justice Justin Patton Kalli Drake Karla Sanchez Tavera Katherine Burnette Katie Courson Katie Pilson Katie Pitner Katy Smith Kelley Losinger Kelly Losinger Kelsey Parham Kennedy Browning Kimberly Klaer Kindness Kingdom Knowing God Knowledge Known Kourtney Axelberg Kristen Fikse Kyle Pickett Language Latinx Heritage Month Lauren Forbes Leadership Legacy Lia Herrera Life Light Lindsey Conway Listening Living Water Living with God Logic Loneliness Longing Los Angeles Loss Love Languages Love Luvlan Lee Mackenzie Wells Maddie Marsh Madeline Current Madelyn Livingston Madison Davis Makinizi Hoover Mariah Foote Mariah Taylor Marlena Sculac Marriage Martin Luther King Jr. Matthew Maturity Melissa Merrick Mental Health Mercy Meredith Ashburn Messiah Miracles Missions Morgan Attebery Mourning Names Narnia Nashville Natalie Mata Nathan DeYoung New Covenant New Year Obedience Old Covenant Olivia Beals Olivia Ellis Openness Outreach Pain Passover Past Paul Peace Perfection Perseverance Perspective Peter Pharisees Philippians Power Praise Prayer Guide Prayer Meetings Prayer Pride Processing Prophecy Protection Provision Psalm 23 Psalms Purity Purpose Rachel Dow Rachel Erin Taylor Rachel Henderson Rachel Jones Racial Healing Racial Reconciliation Rebecca Mejia Recipes Reconciliation Red Rising Redemption Refinement Reflection Reform Refreshing Relationship Remedy Repentance Resolutions Resources Responsibility Restoration Rest Resurrection Reverence Revival Rhythm Righteousness Risk Romance Romans 8 Romans Rosalie Vendrell Ruth Sabbath Sacrifice Salvation Sam Adams Sam Carroll Sam Darby Samantha Forbes Samantha Richey Sanctification Sarah Savoie Savannah Shaw Savannah Ugan Scripture Seasons Secrets of the Secret Place Seeking God Selah Self-love Sermon on the Mount Serving Shaking Shame Sidney Counsell Singleness Sin Slowing Solitude Sorrow Sovereignty Spiritual Disciplines Spiritual Gifts Spiritual Health Spiritual Themes Spiritual Warfare Status Steadfastness Stephanie Seda Stephanie Stewart Strength Stress Struggles Suffering Summer Survival Guide Summer of Psalms Summer Surrender Temple Temptation Tenderness Tension Testimony Thankfulness The Beatitudes The Church The Cross The Gospel The Law The Lord's Prayer The Lord\'s Prayer The Lord\\\'s Prayer The Prodigal Son The Road to Life The Secret Place The Shack The Ten Commandments The Trinity The Word of God Therapy Tori Kramer Transformation Transition Trust Truth Uncertainty Unity Urgency Values Victory Vision Vulnerability Wandering Wednesday Night Recap Who Am I Wilderness Wisdom Wonder Word for the Year Words Worship Worth