The Truth Is Scarier Than Fiction


I don’t like to say anything unless I can be sure of amazing the whole room. In that, Eliza Bennet and I have some similarity. So it makes starting a blog hard. I want it to be perfect from the beginning. (Like anything I ever do is perfect. Sheesh. Need to get over myself.)

And I want to amaze everyone with my wit, my ingenuity, and my pithy ponderings. Who doesn’t hope to do that, I suppose?

Well, I may sometimes me able to offer that, but not always. The only thing I think I may safely promise is this: To be “scary honest”.

See, I’ve noticed something about me. I’m a LOT like a lot of YOU. My house is messy, my kids don’t behave, I forget important birthdays, I say things I shouldn’t when I KNOW I shouldn’t, I eat too much ice cream, I sometimes even fall in for Hollywood gossipy stuff, cuss, or get too wrapped up in politics. And sometimes I lie.

I lie about a lot of things. Just like all of you. I lie when I say “I’m doing well”, when I’m really not. I lie when I post only good stuff on Facebook, because the bad is too embarrassing and not every “friend” would be kind if they knew the whole truth. I lie when I let people think I have it together, when I totally, abjectly DON’T.

But I’m cheating myself and everyone else when I do that. See, we all lie, because we are all afraid that we are the only ones that don’t have it together. We’re afraid that if everyone knew who we REALLY are, then they would “hide yo wife, hide yo kids”!

I spent my teenage years trying to act like my childhood didn’t happen (long story). I spent my early adult years trying to make up for my teenage years (another long story). I eventually got honest with God. But God already knows everything, so it’s not like being honest with Him is an option, right? I still worried that no one would ever love me. The real me. The me that hides. The me that lies.

Then, unexpectedly, I fell so deeply in love with a man that fell so deeply in love with me, that I decided to risk it. I told him everything. E-ver-y-thing. The silly. The embarrassing. The scars. The wounds. The fears. What had been stolen. What had been given away. I held nothing back.

And he not only loved me still, he loved me more. And he shared the same deep things with me about him. And we found a safe place like no other we had found on earth. Perfect love cast out all fear. Because in our love, we found complete safety with each other. In almost 10 years of marriage, I’ve come to believe this: We are safe from doubt because we chose from the beginning to be completely honest with each other. No secrets. And it is our mutual honesty that has fueled our love to burn ever brighter, and our embrace to grow ever tighter.

Seeing the effect that honesty had on my marriage, as I grew more secure in Brian’s love, I was able to risk more. To risk honesty with select female friends, here and there. As the Holy Spirit led me, I shared scary bits of me with those I decided to trust. And I found, every time, a woman that was willing to be honest back, and relived to find that they could be scary honest with me, and not be judged, but be loved, be encouraged, and receive heartfelt prayer. (As opposed to the gossipy kind of “prayer requests” many “Christians” peddle.)

We need love in our lives so that we can feel strong enough to risk being honest. And we need to be honest so that we don’t all feel so alone, like failures waiting to be discovered.

Because we aren’t failures. We are beloved. And we each of us need to KNOW it.


About thejenwren

Wife, Mom, Daughter, Sister, Bestie. Wordsmith. Disappointed perfectionist learning to be okay with "enough". Honest and often too literal. Snark enthusiast. Home-schooling, crunchy libertarian-leaning. And above all, before all, and in the end, a Jesus follower... because He's infinitely worthy of being followed, even if imperfectly.

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