Open or Closed?

I wonder how many times I've stared at a blank page, wanting so badly to write, but lacked the words or organization to put them on paper? Too many to count, I'm sure. It's during moments like that that I just start. It may be silly, pointless, rambling, and usually extremely short, but I at least try to make an effort. Writing means too much to me to ignore completely. I may not be the most creative, but that's not why I usually do it. I generally do it to be honest with myself...or attempt to organize swirling thoughts. Thus the reason why most of my writing consists of journaling. I can express myself and still stay hidden and safe from the prying eyes of the world.

Huh..."prying eyes of the world." That's not the first time I've used that phrase or one similar. I think it shows just how private I tend to be and even how important it is to me. See? I learn things about myself when I write. I keep so much to myself. I don't often express how or what I'm feeling and when I do it has the potential to come rushing out all at once with little consideration to the listener. I over-analyze almost everything to the point I usually end up "psyching" myself out. Opening yourself up isn't easy and and some of us, meaning me, tend to do so with great reluctance...yet I wish it came easier. Being vulnerable actually requires great strength. When vulnerable you open yourself up to ridicule, heartbreak, betrayal, fear, and pain. On the other hand you also open yourself to warmth, love, compassion, comfort, support, and even understanding. I admire and respect people that display the strength of character to be an open book. To wear their heart on their sleeve.

Talking with a friend this past week has made me even more aware of my tendency to hide within myself. I find it easier to withdraw than share my fears and doubts. To laugh than admit that I cry and to hide rather than declare I've been hurt. I used to think that not telling all left me with a sense of mystery, but all it was a facade. It hid my fears and disguises my weaknesses as strengths.

I've always found it easier to communicate through writing. My mom discovered this fairly early on and encouraged me to write. There were a few times in my early adolescence where I would write notes to my parents because I was unsure of my wording or felt awkward about saying it in person.

I am still learning and I am so thankful that God's mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22&23)! Growth is not always achieved without pain and I need to remember that that includes stepping outside my comfort zones. Not just activity wise, but on a much deeper and personal level.

"But now, O Lord, you are our Father, we are the clay, and you are the potter; and all of us are the work of your hand." Isaiah 64:8 NASB

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