A number of years ago one of the students I worked with told me, "You're the most radiant person I've ever met." The gal who spoke the words claimed atheism, yet she came to Young Life club every week and often listened to me talk about Jesus. I was encouraged by her words because I knew the radiance she spoke of stemmed from a life of following Jesus. I trusted the time I spent with her planted seeds of hope and curiosity within her.
|Reclaiming Radiance * Katrina Blank|
But a few years after she spoke of my radiance this same girl witnessed me being treated poorly. As I allowed myself to be disrespected by someone who she knew claimed to be my friend as well as a Christian, this girl lost all respect for me. I've never been the same in her eyes because I didn't stand up for myself. She watched her "hero" be trampled upon in my "refusal" to claim my value as a human being, made in the image of God.
I later wondered if she lost all wonderment in Jesus that very night as I failed to value myself the way Jesus does.
I mention this story because I discovered today that it is likely that some of my ongoing health issues are related to how I've let others treat me. My counselor told me concerning one particular instance, "You should be angry. You were treated poorly."
But rather than being angry, I extend grace and my physical body, rather than the responsible party, receives the message and impact that how I've been treated is not okay.
One step closer to wholeness and healing - no more mistreatment of me. For too long I've "valued" keeping the peace at the expense of my own dignity.
* Please note, in July 2013 I would learn that oxygen deprivation was also a contributing factor to my poor health. After years of running and being a woman, my ferritin level (i.e. iron stores) had dropped so low that I was no longer receiving enough oxygen for my body and brain to function properly.