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Guest Post ~ The Performing Heart by Denise Hildreth Jones

The Performing Heart

I slipped the dress on one item at a time. The group of women who had gathered for our annual VBS for Women event sat staring wide eyed. As I slipped on the skirt I described how the legalistic environment I had grown up in had been a piece in shutting down my heart. As I slipped on the blouse, (all over the clothing I already had on), I shared how losing my dream of becoming a Christian singer shut down another piece of my heart. As I slipped on the matching hat, (Oh yeah, sister had it going on) I shared how I had lost even more of my heart in my thirteen year marriage. As I stood up there in an outfit ready for high-tea with the queen, I let them know that this was a picture of the performer I had become. With my shut-down heart I had created a persona that only let people see what I wanted them to see. The bad and grizzly and sad, well I kept all of that to myself.

The performing heart believes the lie that God hasn’t made us enough. Our story isn’t pretty enough. Our story isn’t fancy enough. Our story well…isn’t enough. And so we put on our shiny shoes and snazzy hat and write our own story. I didn’t want people to know my pain. I didn’t want people to see my tears. I just wanted them to think that I had it altogether. And oh the sadness in that lie.

God has never needed us to have it altogether. But He requires us to accept the story He has written and continues to write for us. Why? Because He is the ultimate Author. He is even called “The Author and Finisher?”

The prophet Isaiah wrote “Does a book say to its author, ‘He didn’t write a word of me’? Does a meal say to the woman who cooked it, ‘She had nothing to do with this’”? And yet that is what the performing heart does every day. And it is a sin. Yes, sad to say but it is a sin.

And in order for our hearts to be reclaimed we have to own that sin. Repent of it. And then go on the quest to reclaim our heart. Reclaiming the performing heart starts by owning our story. So, I encourage you today to do two things in these next few weeks. Write down your story. All of it. Even the parts that you wish weren’t a part of it. And then tell your story to a person you trust with your heart. All of it. There is such freedom when we own truth and bring those things in the dark into the light.

Remember, no one chapter is the whole of your story. It is and always will be simply a piece…there is much left to write. And you can trust The Author…