Scared to Feel

Emotions are a terrifying thing for me.

My emotions were like a runaway freight train when I met my former pastor and opened my heart to him.

My emotions led me down a very dark path of following in his footsteps.

And I thought it was all because of love.

It took me a decade to realize that what I felt wasn’t love.

It was something else.

What was it?

I’ve asked myself a million times.

It wasn’t love.

It was a sickness.

A well disguised addiction.

A way to connect with something so that I wouldn’t have to feel loneliness or pain anymore.

The pain of a life full of losses that started in the darkness of my adopted father’s bedroom.

Somehow I believed that was love, too.

How can I tell the difference now between love and abuse?

I cling to God’s word for the truth.

Love is patient.

Not angry and screaming when I accidentally spill the tea.

Not threatening to end a relationship if I don’t choose time with him over everyone else.

Love is kind.

Not looking at my clothes or make-up and telling me I look like a tramp.

Not telling me I am beautiful to get what he wants.

love does not envy or boast;

it is not arrogant or rude.

It does not insist on its own way;

it is not irritable or resentful;

it does not rejoice at wrongdoing

Love is not abusive.

It does not keep dark secrets.

It does not pretend to care.

Love rejoices in the truth.

How many secrets did both of these men ask me to keep? Secrets to protect them.

Everyone does it, but no one tells.

If you tell, I’ll lose everything.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love lays down it’s life.

My emotions flicker to life again when I think about this love.

I realize that I do not need to be afraid to feel.

Feelings were never the problem.

The absence of love was.

Once again I ask God to help me love again.

To receive His love.

And to not be afraid.

Perfect love casts out all fear.

I am tired of being afraid.

Tired of looking for love that isn’t love.

Tired of cheap imitations that steal one’s heart.

I pray that my heart will grab hold of His love and let the roots go deep.

So deep that I’ll never leave Him again.

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 3:14‭-‬21 ESV

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