14 “You are the light of the world.
A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.
15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl.
Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
16 In the same way, let your light shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
A city (a town) built on a hill cannot be hidden.
You don't hide a lamp.
How easy is it, for those who have experienced some sort of emotional trauma, to place our heart, hopes and true self behind a wall of protection?
Through fear of being hurt again, in one way or another, we hide...
As followers of Christ, we're not allowing our light to shine when we hide it away - or, at the very least, we're drawing more attention to ourself and to our problems rather than to God when we try to hide the light within...
...After penning those thoughts, I went off to share hearts with my friend over a cuppa, and the main theme that kept confronting me, personally, was "hiding." Try as I might, I couldn't hide from that conviction. :)
Obviously, God's trying to get my attention. :) He's drawing me to deal with this issue, on a deeper level, so I may be freer on a deeper level. He wants to get to the root of the issue, which He's been chopping away at over the years, as I can handle it. Now I want Him to, also...
After my friend and I went our separate ways, and I felt a great deal better for the experience (it was the first time we'd had a one on one cuppa) I had more time to play with while I waited for my daughter to get out of school early... and while sitting there, in my car, daring to see what God was trying to free me of, I realised "Fear enables me to hide."
I realised that I haven't wanted to let go of fear because it allows me to hide. No doubt it also causes me to want to hide in the first place; however, it now lives with me and walks with me as a trusted friend.
One thing my friend, Julie, remarked upon was having to confront fear. Now, I've heard that many times and I believe one must confront fear in order to overcome it, however, on hearing it this time, it struck my heart with conviction; with a knowing that tells me it's time to confront.
At the time of receiving this conviction, I figured I would have to do something physical in order to confront, but on recording this, while waiting for my daughter, I realised the first thing I have to do is stop hiding behind fear and dare to peek out from behind it. I've been hiding behind fear as though that which lives beyond it is what can harm me, using fear as my saviour, just about.
The image I get is of me standing behind a pillar, taller and wider than I. Darkness is behind me, the light is beyond the pillar. I am cowering down behind the pillar, with my hands lightly placed on the edges of it, barely courageous enough to look beyond the pillar, where I am free to duck down even further if necessary.
On viewing these things, in my heart, I realised that I had to let go of the pillar. I had to stand tall and, focusing on the pillar, I had to declare, "Fear, YOU are my problem. Not the negative possibilities, not the unknown, not the imagined dead-ends and rejections, but YOU. Fear, you are my enemy, not my protector. I rebuke you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. You can have me no more. You have no power over me. Because of Jesus Christ, and all He accomplished on and off the cross, I am free." (If nothing else, taking back one's own power in such a way gives great inner strength and courage... but knowing Christ has me covered also helps - a lot! :) )
Then, mentally, I had to imagine myself walking away from the pillar. I could either walk around it and keep going, or I could knock it down and step over it. And I dare say there will be times when fear will seek to play with me again, during the journey of life; it will try to block me again - I may even reach for the familiarity of it, but that's when I am going to have to mentally step around it, knock it down and step over it, or even pick it up and toss it aside, in order to keep going, and, while doing so, taking note that I am now the stronger one, not fear, therefore positioning myself to receive greater courage.
I've been fearful of so many things in my life, all of which God has helped, and is helping me walk free of. Now, I stand with Him, looking into His eyes, holding His hands, saying, "Yes, Father, I want to be free, too... Lead me..."