Share: how confession can be good for the soul

To share or not to share, that is the pertinent question in an over-sharing society.

I baulked at sharing  my soul for year, curled away small inside, seeking to hide from shameful secrets that destroyed childhood innocence.

Heavy with heartache nothing could take away.

Until…

One day someone shared how Jesus had set them free. He radiated light and joy and peace. I was hungry for all of those.

So I listened, felt my heart grow warm and ache with longing. Because Good News deserves to be shared, unapologetically, liberally.

Bad news? It eats away on the inside, increases fear, cripples confidence and destroys trust.

When I came to faith in Christ it released me to live an unchained life, one broken link at a time. Click To Tweet

How can you not share a story of freedom? How can you resist the lure of unconditional, redemptive love?

It began with school assemblies, street evangelism; it moved to city missions and larger outreach. I was on fire for God.

Then stalled when sickness, pain and shame ate away at me and I hid myself again.

Years of counselling. Valleys of darkness. Steady drip of tears. A soul in flight.

Eventually, things shifted; I stretched out of the confining chrysalis and learned to live out the freedom Christ died to give me.

butterfly preparing to flyNow…

I share words on a public platform, poetry for the soul, the way to become renewed through relationship with God.

I want my story to reflect God's eternal story of redemption, restoration and grace. Click To Tweet

I share truth to help others to see and sense the light of His presence because we walk this wounded road together and share its sorrows.

My mission is to offer a message of hope to other hurting souls as I share my brokenness, woundedness, pain, and the gradual overcoming of them by God’s grace.

Now I can live openly, unafraid, unashamed, because my darkness has been brought into the Light and surrendered to Jesus.

And friend, you can do so too as you find your true self in Him.

As always, I’m happy to be sharing my words in community with our gracious host, Kate Motaung and the faithful five-minute-friday writing crew as we write on the prompt ‘share’.  And with Barbie, as we share what God is whispering to our hearts for #WeekendWhispers. You are very welcome to join us.

**Note** – I’ve also been sharing my story of a life transformed by grace in a poetic memoir, ‘Seeking Solace: Discovering grace in life’s hard places’ which is available now on Kindle – UK readers can access a direct link on the side bar of this blog. Part of the proceeds from the sale of the book will be going to Action for ME to support raising funds for future research. 

25 Comments

  1. Joy, sharing life-giving truth can be some of the best sharing. Sharing from your own depths of heartache brings life and hope to others. I’m sorry your past was so cruel. I’m so thankful for the redemption God has worked within you. And He’s given you a platform to share redemption and hope with others. I’m sure He’s using you in amazing ways. I loved your take on SHARE this week.

    1. Jeanne, your words are so kind and encouraging. If others can feel less alone with their struggles and can find hope and encouragement through the sharing of our own pain and problems, then it is well worth being vulnerable and open. I’m also “so thankful for the redemption God has worked” within me. It’s what gives me a story of grace to reveal and courage to share it. Thank you for bringing encouragement to me at a time when I feel particularly vulnerable in the sharing. I really appreciate it! 🙂 x

    1. Joanne, if you see grace within the words I share then God is certainly in the detail. He equips and enables us to find our voice and share the Good News of His great love to others. Bless you, friend!

  2. Such an important reminder of how our stories can bless others. I was always hesitant to share my story because it didn’t seem exciting enough – but my words and experiences are important. (Now I have a new blog to think about! 😉
    (Visiting from FMF)

    1. Annie, each person’s story is valid and makes a valuable contribution to others. We all have unique ways of relating to and experiencing God’s redemptive power in our lives. You have much to contribute. No life is too small or seemingly ordinary to be able to reveal God’s extraordinary grace woven through it. Keep on sharing!

  3. So true that some things are so hard to share but have to be shared, otherwise they just eat away at us and hold us back. I’m glad you have known God’s freedom and I think it’s great that you bless others by sharing your story and what he has done. It’s so important to know we’re not alone.

    1. Carly, I received a word in prayer a few months ago which echoed the title of your blog. My life has felt narrowed and constrained at times and it was heartening to think God was calling me into a spacious place. Quite what that looks like, I have yet to discover! But it gave me renewed hope and encouragement, such as I receive when hearing that others are blessed by the words God gives me to share. I so agree with you about it being important to know we are not alone. It’s my modus operandi as a writer to express the truth of those words. Thank you so much for adding to the conversation here. Bless you, friend! Have a great weekend.

  4. Beautiful words, Joy, as always. (Had no idea your book had been published – what truly wonderful news!)….absolutely agree that it’s important to share and I myself always err on the side of over-sharing, as I’ve found that you never know who might benefit from hearing your story……thinking of you. Helen xxx

    1. Hi Helen. It’s lovely to see you here and back to writing again! As for my book, it’s such early days that I can’t quite believe it myself. I had to lay aside my perfectionist tendencies to be able to complete it at last! An author can always see flaws in her work and ways to do things differently, but God uses our imperfect prose (and poetry) to reach those who need to read it. Your over-sharing is something I share. Years of counselling has left me prone to spill the beans! And when we are vulnerable and transparent about the things we go through, we discover how it often speaks to others in their own brokenness. Whether I see you around the blogosphere or not, you remain in my thoughts and prayers. Bless you, friend. Xx

    1. It certainly can be hard to share some things, but I totally agree with you, Tara, about how “God is with us in the midst of it all.” That’s our wonderful reassurance when we’ve been prompted to share deeply personal things. Blessings and hugs to you!

    1. Joyce, your insights and kindness mean so much to me. Thank you for taking time and using precious, limited energy to stop by and offer sweet encouragement at a time when I feel quite vulnerable. Blessings and hugs to you, dear friend. Xox PS: I love how you’ve expressed this: “the most cobwebby corners of darkness” – a perfect way to describe its entanglement!

  5. To share the Lord and His wing-giving love is the most beautiful gift. He gives and He wants us to turn around and give to others. Oh, that I would could and would give in His ways for His Kingdom.

    1. Amen, Linda. I love how you describe it as “His wing-giving love”. He gives to us in such abundance and we are able to give to others from its overflow. I join you in praying we are enabled to “give in His ways for His Kingdom” and be a small part of making it known. Bless you for adding your own rich insights to the conversation here. I really appreciate you stopping by and sharing your gifts! 🙂

  6. This is so beautiful as always, Joy. I love this – “I stretched out of the confining chrysalis and learned to live out the freedom Christ died to give me.” Freed to fly! I love your mission statement! You truly are living it out. I do thank God for you and your posts! Blessings and hugs to you!

    1. Trudy, you are a beautiful encourager. Yes indeed, we are freed to fly! You write of this journey too and know first-hand how confining our circumstances can be and how much we need release. Thank you so much for seeing how my mission statement is actually being lived out here. That’s a heartening thought. I’m grateful for your company and greatly blessed by your friendship. Blessings and hugs to you too! <3

  7. I’m so grateful that you’re sharing your heart with us! I’ve learned much from you. And the ability to connect with others who have walked through dark valleys yet come out victorious because of Christ is the most priceless gift! Blessings to you!

    1. Carrie, I really value making that heart to heart connection with you. It’s so good to know we can walk through life’s dark valleys with Jesus and come out the other side battle-scarred, wounded and limping maybe, but victorious in Christ. In sharing like this we help one another to stay encouraged on the journey. Your words assist me to review my life in the light of experience and see how God is keeping me through it all. You are a blessing to me too. Thank you, friend!

    1. Hi Amy. Thanks for stopping by! It’s good to meet you. I agree that sharing our testimony can be a bit anxiety provoking or make us feel uncomfortable at times, but God honours our willingness to share and thereby help others in the process. And it’s great when we arrive at the “joy and gratitude to God” part afterwards! Blessings on your week, neighbour.

    1. Oh that’s good to hear! You are such a blessing, June. I always enjoy you stopping by. Have a blessed (reading) week! 🙂 x

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