The fear of fully feeling

By Dave Henning / June 16, 2022

“Like Adam and Eve, the temptation is to flee.  To cover who I am and how this feels because I’d rather wander lost than sit with the fear of fully feeling, the fear of being transparent and known, only to experience the flooding shame of rejection and abandonment. . . .  When you hide from who you are, what you are ultimately hiding from is yourself.”- Ann Voskamp

Ann Voskamp concludes Chapter 1 of WayMaker as she stresses that God doesn’t want a soul to hide from the feelings, hoping, dreaming, or the grieving.  Because hiding from yourself represents a haunting, exhausting kind of lost.  And Satan treasures keeping you distracted from taking time to ask your soul who you really are.  For every day you find yourself distracted takes you farther from the life you envisioned.

However, you find your way when you ask where you are every day.  And, Ann underscores, God’s large enough to hold you, however or wherever you are.

Furthermore, Ann sees it as striking that God used the word ayekah.  Instead of the more common generic word for ‘where’ in Hebrew, eitoh.  Which simply means to locate.  On the other hand, the author emphasizes:

“Ayekah . . . expresses a heart motivation beyond mere location, and ayekah conveys expectations: ‘Where have you gone?  Where are you if you are not here with me?’ ”

Thus, we only find restoration in attachment to God.  Above all, God, the WayMaker, makes a way to you!  Also, Ann notes, the whole universe echoes with God’s ayekah.  So, Ann states, all we need to do is keep whispering this shortest one-word answer: himeni, here.  Not in the sense of an answer to a roll call, but in the sense of I am all here.  Fully present.

Finally, Ann states, real ways exist to simultaneously decrease your pain while you increase the number of ways to navigate through the pain.  And actively, bravely trust.

Today’s question: What Bible verses alleviate the fear of fully feeling?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Walking back to the right road”

About the author

Dave Henning

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