You look like you have it all together, but inside you’re a wreck. Those who experience this know exactly what we mean. You appear tough and confident, but inside you’re vulnerable. What should you do?
You are not alone
First of all, many people feel like this. For example, it’s very common for this kind of situation to occur if you’ve lost a loved one. You might seem okay, but inside you just want to cry all the time – but you can’t or life won’t let you.
Some people have lived nearly all their life like this. Maybe you’re the oldest child, and you always had to be responsible. Or perhaps the display of emotion was frowned upon – or even punished – when you were young. This is also a common reaction to being a victim of abuse.
Over the years you put on a coat of strength. You have been hurt and anyone touching or even just seeing your wounds is unthinkable. Meanwhile, the suffering inside continues unnoticed and un-cared for.
Try to remember the last time you felt free just being yourself. You might have to go way back into your childhood. Remembering may also bring pain, as you recall things that caused this sense of freedom to disappear. In prayer, ask God to guide and protect you from further damage during this process of remembering.
The enemy wants to keep us isolated and quiet. Don’t let him fool you. Just talking heals, so reach out to someone. Be careful though not to talk with just anyone about your situation. Protect your heart, because if you get hurt again it will take even longer to heal.
You can seek professional help, but it’s also important to find someone spiritually grounded; someone with a solid and transparent life testimony. Do you know a person who is strong in their faith and lives a wholesome life? That person might just be the one to reach out to. Don’t seek advice; look for a good listener instead.
The Greatest Message is your key to freedom
What is the central message of the Christian faith? Forgiveness. When we put on a false face of strength, we might be hiding a need to forgive or be forgiven. Even if you can’t pinpoint a specific event, just knowing about God’s great mercy helps you understand what can set you free from a false image of strength.
God’s Spirit is the Spirit of Truth. When we step fully into this truth, we are the same in front of humans as we are in front of God. The truth is that we have all been hurt. The truth is that we have all hurt others. No one is exempt. But all our wounds, scars, and weaknesses can be cause for joy because of how God choose to show his love for us.
Not a magic wand, but Life
Jesus does not offer magic solutions or psychological manipulation for your problems. Instead he offers his life. He offers his innocence and vulnerability in order that you might be free. This is the greatest truth for the Christian, and it is the source of our spiritual life.
You see, it doesn’t depend on what you did or what happened to you. Jesus knows all about it. And he was crucified for all that badness. He died for you. He knows how vulnerable you are. Instead of showing you how to deal with it through control, he shows you how to overcome it through love.
Forgiving does not mean forgetting. It means bringing to light things that hurt us so God’s Spirit can bring us authentic healing. You can finally walk free in God’s presence.
Let the tears fall
If you haven’t cried in a while, then let it all out. Tears cleanse and heal. Present all your weakness, bruises, and shame to God. He will not reject you. He accepts you as you are.
It’s okay to admit weakness. It’s okay to not have it all under control. This only means you’re human.
Understanding this allows you to rise up, resurrected in the truth that there is a great God in heaven that loves you infinitely.