Have you ever struggled with drawing near to God? Ever feel like you don't read your bible enough or pray enough? Me too!
I started doing some soul searching with not feeling "good enough" in my "spiritual disciplines, and I noticed It's so easy to get caught up in doing what we know to be right. It's almost as if we keep this imaginary checklist. I read my bible... Check. I went to church...Check. I served at church...Check. In time the checklist gets boring and maybe even apathy can set in.
After a time of prayer and reflection I felt like I got an answer from God and I sensed him respond to me in a way that has changed me forever. I felt like He said, "Myron, your problem is that you grew up in a family where you didn't "know" your family, and they didn't know you." I felt like He went on to say, "you've projected that experience on to me Myron. Therefore, you end up struggling with drawing near." Powerful! I thought about that long and hard and came to the conclusion - it's true.
I knew more about my mom than actually knew my mom. There's a big difference in knowing about someone and actually knowing them. Knowing is another level of intimacy. I've been grieving the fact that I don't know my siblings. Yes, we grew up in the same house, ate at the same table, and yet were miles away from each other in actually knowing each other.
This understanding has taken me on a journey of healing from the wounds the have impacted my life. Here's what I'm learning about KNOWING OTHERS AND BEING KNOWN:
Knowing & being known is about sharing our narrative. We inherently have a need and a desire for connection. Our stories are incredibly crafted in such a way that God uses them to connect us inspire hope in the lives of those who need freedom. Our stories are uniquely embed with the grace of God. It's in our sharing our stories that we release that same grace as we share with others.
Knowing and being known is about sharing the deep parts of us that no one knows. Sometimes, we think that we're safe if no one knows who we really are. There's a risk in sharing who we are and what we've done. It leaves room for people to arrive at their own conclusions, and in that we face the risk of being rejected. On the other hand, there's great freedom and not living in secrecy. I've been saying lately, "you're one secret away from freedom."
Knowing and being known is about being empathic witnesses with those whom God has entrusted to our care. Did you know that empathy is learned? We can learn to dial in and attune our hearts to the hearts of others. When people know and feel that we are "with them" in how we respond, the attention we give them, and the comfort we extend it goes a long way in our maturation and theirs.
Armed with this understanding of knowing and being known. I've been getting real with those around me. I've been getting real in my marriage. I think you have what it takes to know and be known. I think your life can change as you seek to know and be known. In fact, the greatest insight I've had in addition to all of this is that Jesus KNOWS me (Jeremiah 1:5). It's out of that heart level understanding that we can know and be known.
What have you learned about knowing and being known? What would you add?