Free People

Do you remember the famous quote from that M. Night Shyamalan movie The 6th Sense: “I see dead people”?

Well… lately… I’ve been seeing “free people.”  People who aren’t like so many of the people I grew up with.  People who aren’t afraid of what other people think.  People who are comfortable in their own skin, not afraid to tell you what they think and also not afraid to hear what you think.  People who are smart and witty and bold and true to themselves.  People who know themselves.  People who seem to have found their niche in the world and are living it out with joy and confidence and… freedom.

I want to be a people like that.

 

But that’s a little tricky for me.

You see… that isn’t how I was raised.

I was raised to be nice.  Pretty much above all else.  I was raised to please others.  I was raised to believe that it was of ultimate importance to be “easygoing” and to “just go with the flow.”  I was raised to believe that I should hold myself back for the sake of others— that even if I could be excellent at something, I should limit myself so that the people around me “don’t feel bad about themselves.”

I was raised to worry about what other people thought of me.

I was raised to think that what someone else thinks of me always matters— and that people often say something but secretly mean something else.  Therefore, I should take time to really analyze other people’s words and that I should look on even the positive comments with suspicion. “There must be an ulterior motive,” I grew up thinking.

Basically, the adage “Do to others what you would have them do to you” meant, in my family’s mind, “let other people win; don’t ever say anything that might possibly be perceived as negative or critical in any way; do whatever you need to do to serve others and “fill their cups”— even if it means you lose sight of your own relationship with God or your own desires or opinions or mental or physical health.”

Make other people happy.

Don’t rock the boat.

Don’t tell your true, deep feelings about something or someone— even if they ask!  “People don’t want to hear anything negative about themselves. And if you think about it, you don’t want to hear it either,” I was told.  Literally.  In writing.  Just a few weeks ago.

But I have to admit: overanalyzing everything I say and everything other people say to me and fearing public opinion and always doubting myself has not served me well.

And.  Just for the record: I have decided that I actually do want to hear “negative things” about myself— if they are true and/or given in wisdom and thoughtfulness and with my own personal growth or integrity in mind!  I want to know where my blind spots are, where I have faulty thinking, where I could use some correction, in what ways I could do better or be betterI want to be a healthy, open-minded, open-hearted, free, alive person!

And maybe a little kick in my butt could do me some good!?!

 

I’m sick of the messes my own insecurities, fears, and over-analyzing tendencies have gotten me into!

I’m sick of being an emotionally-stunted, don’t-know-myself-or-my-giftings, perpetually-worried-about-public-opinion, overly-troubled person.

It’s high time I concern myself more with God’s opinion of me than anyone else’s.  And it’s high time I get to know who this “me” is that He “fearfully and wonderfully created” so long ago.

I’m nearing 37 years old, for goodness’ sake.

Jesus said He came “to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10).  He also said “it is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick” (Matthew 9:12).

Well, here I am, Lord.  

I’m a lost, broken, trapped, weak, confused, sick woman. 

And I need You.

Desperately.  As always.

Please find me, please piece me back together, please unbind me, please strengthen me, please bring me clarity and truth and wisdom.  And healing, Lord.  Please teach me what I need to know to move forward in health and freedom.  Please continue to bring healthy, open-minded, whole-hearted, courageous people into my life to model for me what it looks like to truly live To truly live without the shackles of fear and intimidation and foolishness bogging them down.

I want to be a free people, too, Lord.

enjoy-life-freedom

 

* * *

What about you?

What is limiting you from living in freedom?  In what ways are you lost or broken or sick or in need of divine assistance?

Please feel free to share your comments or your own journey in the comment section below.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Heather Muncy

    Kristi,
    You wrote the words that so many people feel, but don’t know how to put it into words. Thank you for considering me a FREE person. In many ways, I am free. Because of Jesus and because of the way my Mother raised me. She didn’t over-think everything people said, and didn’t hold back on what she felt needed to be said. And because of that, I often have no idea that someone has meant anything other than what they said. This is freeing.

    Although, I wish I had more of her in me, because there are certain people and situations that I am not FREE, but wish I were. I am a recovering Peace-keeper, I still often back down on saying or doing what should be said or done. I am learning to embrace my Peacemaker Spirit which is the healthier way to live. I want everyone to get along and all to be well, but sometimes that requires the tough conversations, but I am afraid to have them. And the reason I am afraid, is because I know that they are struggling with all of the things you described above, and I don’t want anyone to misunderstand my heart or motives. So I simply smile and say all good things. Keeping the peace.

    Where my freedom comes, is when I am enjoying day-to-day life with people like you. People who knows that when I say all great things, I truly mean it. And if I say anything negative, it is because it will lead to even more great things. Peacemaker.

    Matt 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

    I love you, sweet friend. Your gift to write and share with others is God-inspired and filled with a desire to truly love others. Continue to use your gift, and don’t let the devil steal your time by telling you to over-think things. Simply listen to the Holy Spirit within you. “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32

    • Thank you, Heather! Thank you for your affirming words and also for sharing a bit of YOUR journey on here! It is always inspiring to hear other people share their own challenges and victories. I am glad to hear that you are a work-in-progress as well! I pray you will continue to come alive to the areas in which you need even more freedom. Thank you for showing me what it looks like to be “a free people.” Love you. 🙂

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