I try to understand, but my mind won’t go there. It’s hard to grasp why unspoken voices of the past haunt.
Maybe it’s because there’s too much left unsaid. Those times when a dear friend stabbed you in the back, but you didn’t say anything for fear of making the situation worse. Or that time when your husband lashed out at you unmercifully and then expected your love, while you internalized the hurt of his actions. And that time when your neighbor cussed you out, you were hurt and embarrassed, but you smiled and nodded as if all were OK.
Those unspoken words, voices, that linger in your heart they beckon to be heard. They long to be brought to light.
Can I ask why you chose to be silent? Was it grace? Was it fear?
Can we bring those voices to light?
Not to hurt, but yet to help heal. To help process the past, and grasp the future.
I know it’s hard to grasp!!
Here’s my 31 Days . . .
Have you ever wished you could voice the “real” story or thoughts to a situation you found lingering within your soul?
When I wrote a letter to my teenage self, I realized there was so much more I really wanted to say but felt I couldn’t. I didn’t want to bash others, it was more of I wanted to express my real heart feelings to a certain situation. However, I knew if I did it might hurt others or others would misconstrue what I was trying to say.
So I kept quiet instead of processing what was attached to my heart.
Then I had a few friends mention in round-about-ways “I’d love to tell my story, if only I could do it anonymously.” Oh, I could feel their heart. There is always more to a story and that part of the story doesn’t get told, because in our good heart we DO NOT WANT TO HURT OTHERS.
But what I’ve learned in years of ministry and coaching others is that those stories that never get told – those are the precious moments where we can go deeper and learn more. It’s those stories that make us question and evaluate ourselves. That’s where we learn what hurts others, how we are unaware that some words and actions inflict pain, and we also learn truths that haven’t been revealed to us yet. So in the untold story there is a minefield of untold lessons, life, and love of God.
So, this is where I throw out a challenge –
While God continues to impress upon my heart these stories that are untold, I’ve looked for ways to tell the untold that will make the realization of God’s love grow deeper within each of us. And while all this stirs within my heart and I wonder what all this means, I’m going to step out and begin a 31 Day series on my blog beginning October 1st. The title of the series is “31 Days of Anonymity.”
I would love for YOU to write out a story of an incident that happened in your life, where there was so much more to the story than what others knew. This is not a hate letter – those will not be posted – this instead is a “this is what happened, this is how someone reacted with words-actions-discipline hurt – and this is what I wish I could have told others.” (not a reprimand – a heart letter explaining why it hurt).
Your letter can start out –
Dear Anonymous, Dear Sister-in-Law, Dear Friend, Dear Rapist, Dear Pastor, Dear Man on the Street, etc. (no names, please)
Dear Friend – at the death of my daughter, this is what you said, and it hurt my heart because . . .
Dear Church – when I was going through my divorce, I felt so alienated and judged. When you did this it almost drove me beyond my breaking point . . .
Dear Boyfriend – while you took something so valuable from me, my heart has struggled with this for years. What I really wanted to tell you . . .
Dear Photographer – I’m sorry, it’s that camera. I wish I could tell you the horrible things I was made to do growing up that were photographed then you’d understand why I run . . .
Your letter will be signed — Love, Anonymous.
THERE WILL NOT BE A LINK TO YOU. WHAT YOU SHARE WITH ME WILL BE KEPT ANONYMOUS. I know this takes a great deal of trust on your part and I hope over the years I have earned your trust. I will not release any information. I am only hear to give you a voice, so we can all learn through trying situations.
I want to give:
A voice to you whose hurts lie deep within, but you have chose to extend grace and not argue or rebut the situation.
A voice to you who are afraid to tell the truth of your story for fear of rejection and what others will think.
A voice for you to tell your story so you can see you are not alone.
A voice to you so we can all learn more.
Note, as comments come in there is no need for you to get involved or even feel like you need to comment. If you’d like to answer a thought or comment feel free to do so as “anonymous.”
If you have any other questions, please email alenesnodgrass (at) gmail (dot) com.
The story should be 550+/- words. ALL stories will be EDITED for grammar and content. ALL stories while they might get a little tense must end with ENCOURAGEMENT. (what you learned, and how God helped you move on despite the deep wound) Email your story to alenesnodgrass (at) gmail (dot) com.
I hope you’ll submit your story. I know God has so much to teach each one of us through your untold heart story.