Peeled Away

I’ve spent the last week living in community – with friends and with strangers.

Just a few years ago, this would have felt impossible.

I could barely leave the house, let alone the country. Just going to the corner-shop was too terrifying to contemplate.

I couldn’t eat breakfast with my husband, let alone every meal with strangers.

I couldn’t meet the eyes of friends, let alone tell my story to a roomful of people.

These are good things. But they were hard things too.

I still had to fight the urge to hide and retreat.

I still found it hard to eat and to live with others – especially since I’d worn my struggles in such a public way.

When I talked to people, I was frightened of what they’d see.  I wanted to be so much better than who I am.  Confident. Strong.  Godly.Beautiful.

I felt ashamed and exposed and tired and weak.

It’s made me realise how far I’ve come – but also how far I have to go.

But I’m scared.   Like a quivering mollusc, clinging to the sand: the Lord is peeling me away, but I’m worried I’ll rip.

I believe He loves me and wants my good.

I believe that real life is found in Him and in relationship with others.

But I’m scared of love and I’m scared of life and I’m scared of relationship.


Scared of other people. Of being seen – and then rejected.

Scared of myself.  Of what I want to be and what I am.

Scared of God.  Knowing me, accepting me, leading me to the places I don’t want to go.

Taking me forwards into the warm, noisy, messy place, where there are people and I’m alive.


3 thoughts on “Peeled Away

  1. You’re not a scaredy cat. Courage is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. So you are a very courageous and open cat. Thank you for your blog.

  2. Emma, Keep pressing on. I have been reading a boo by Henri Nouwen called, “The Inner Voice of Love”. It has helped me so much over the recent months in my healing process. In the reading for the day the daily reading was titled, ” Keep Returning to the Road to Freedom”. Henri speaks about our healing as not being a straight line. Things will continue to come up that may cause setbacks but just as if we were on a road driving and we go off the road slightly when we get back on the road we do not have to start all over again. We can always return to the road to freedom in which God continues to love us unconditionally. A road on which I need to return home to many times. Continue to LIVESTRONG Emma!!!!!

  3. Thank you Ann and Terence. I’ve been re-reading 2 Corinthians and it’s been real gospel balm: a reminder that Jesus is strong when I am weak and that though sometimes I feel squashed, I’m not crushed.

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