Lately I've been doing a lot of unraveling.
I'm discovering threads of false narratives that I've had woven through my life, and as I start to pull on them to see what they're really made of, I'm finding out that they're actually dry and brittle and covered with dust. This is a strange and slightly scary phenomenon, because I used to have such strong convictions about certain things--hills I was willing to stick my flag in and die on. But with a little tugging and a little digging, I'm realizing that these hills are actually precariously stacked empty boxes that topple over fairly easily.
It's disconcerting to be at the bottom of a battle you thought you had won.
Unfortunately, I think the scarier part is wondering how people I love and value and treasure and respect are going to react when I finally "out" myself. Will they still love me, and (even more than that) respect me and my views? Will they take the time to listen and wrestle with the things that I have wrestled with? Will they believe me when I say I did not set out to become the opposite of the person I used to be?
All of a sudden I have new battles to fight, new hills to dig into, and new faces in new camps to familiarize myself with. And I'd hope in the middle of all of it--all the battles, all the camps, all the faces--we'd still find Jesus, together. In fact, I'd hope that there would be no more battles and no more camps. Just people who love the same miraculous, holy, GodPerson that came to save us all. Why can't we just have that?
I'm tired of fighting with people. It just makes me tired and weary, and so, so sad. I think it's hard for us to remember (or understand, if we've not yet done it for ourselves) how scary it is to find yourself on the opposite side of a very strong conviction you once held. It's so difficult to see your thinking change with every jarring thought that drives it in even deeper. All of a sudden, this new conviction, this new truth, is everywhere. Headbutting you in the face. Making sure you don't forget and that you don't ever get comfortable. And all your memories start bubbling to the surface, and you begin to realize how colored they were by what you used to believe.
I know this is mumbo-jumbo and so vague, but I don't know how else to explain it.
How else do I explain the searing pain that cuts across my heart every time communion is served and I am reminded that the place I worship in tells me that I may never offer this beautiful sacrament to another believer simply because I am a woman?
Or the tears that fill my eyes when I see people running away from Christ and His perfect love because people that call themselves Christians have felt the need to tell them that they are condemned to hell for loving someone of the same gender?
Or the anger that rips through my brain when I hear people shame teenage girls for being teenage girls and having teenage girl bodies that they need to "cover up" so we can protect our teenage boys from sinning?
I just don't have anything left. And I'm at the point in my life where I'd rather be accused of loving too much and too extravagantly than loving too little. I'd rather be known for being "permissive" than for persecuting. I just would.