Shed a Few Layers and Expose Yourself

Loveseat w/ CushionsLoveseat w/ BlanketLoveseat w/ TearsI’m a mere mortal, going all out on a pursuit of a freedom-drenched life. And, yes, this is my love seat. A recent vacuuming yielded a Pokémon Game Boy cartridge, several bobby pins, guitar picks, writing implements and candy wrappers, a ruler, a flashlight, one quarter and one nickel. (Man, even my guests are broke.) By unveiling this grungy piece of furniture from my living room, I am kicking my fear of exposure!

Layers are coverings that insulate you from harm. These defenses appear in many ways. They show up as arrogance, pride, people-pleasing and wearing a false front. Funny thing is, the more we try to guard ourselves, the more we try to protect, the more damage we wind up doing. Layers shroud our true selves, undermine our confidence and sabotage our relationships. Wear too many layers, and you’ll be headed straight towards paranoia.

“When we hide, we don’t connect with others,
and when we don’t connect with others, our souls atrophy.”

~Donald Miller

I’m much happier now that I’ve climbed out from under my shell. Something surprising happened when I admitted my inferiority. What I thought would lead to disgrace actually lead to betterment. I’m lighter in my spirit, that’s for sure. (Constantly making comparisons was downright sucking the energy out of me.)

When I decided to stop concealing the things in my life that are below-par, I felt so liberated.

I doubt that I’m the only one who ever agonized over not being rich enough or educated enough. I’ve got a feeling that your efforts to bullet-proof your life are holding you back from the joy of openness. Friend, I want you to reach your God-ordained destiny, so please quit holding back. Don’t fear being human. Don’t let layers weigh you down. Silence the negative narrative in your head and unearth your true self in spite of your fear. It’s time to pull the plug on your insecurities. Stop spending so much time and activity in trying to get everybody to like you!

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once preached, “Courage faces fear and thereby masters it… Courageous men never lose the zest for living even though their life situation is zestless; cowardly men, overwhelmed by the uncertainties of life, lose the will to live.”

By shedding layers, I’m taking risks and developing my faith. And guess what… doors are opening. Oh, I’ll still cover my greys and conceal my blemishes, but beauty aids aside, I choose to lay bare my imperfections.

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