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Your Story Matters

Your Story Matters

Overcome life’s hurts and reclaim your voice
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I blame Disney.

Those storybook tales we held to as we grew up—the wonder and magic of happy endings—oh how those dreams and expectations can set a girl up for disappointment when life gets hard.

And at some point, life always gets hard.

I remember the day I surrendered my happily-ever-after, that day I sat cross-legged on the bare hardwood of my living room, a thirty-something worn-out mama and abandoned wife. My fears, doubts, and insecurities sparkling much brighter than my trampled tiara.

Broken dreams and unmet expectations leave invisible wounds, ones that linger, confuse, and overwhelm. Our souls stained, our hearts wrecked, we tend to lose hope. Our mouths broken, we fall silent.

While silence can be serene and comforting when we need a break from daily living, silencing who we are, our internal voices, weakens our ability to connect heart-to-heart with others.

Over time, our voices can fade to insignificance. The nothingness permeates our lives with low self-esteem and threatens to steal our very identities.

Have you (or someone you know) ever fallen silent? Felt unable to express yourself because you were misunderstood, attacked, or criticized in some way? Have you ever hurt so badly you doubted the pain could go away? More importantly, have you felt a sharp pull to hide these hurts?

That's not God's plan.

Your voice matters. In fact, it's a personal gift from the One who made you.

Pull that truth in tight—to the very core of your being. Relish the freedom.

You aren't alone. Unworthy. Powerless. You are important in God's eyes. You aren't defined by what has happened to you, or even your own wrong choices; these things will not destroy you. You are loved. Needed. And what you have to say is valuable.

You aren't defined by what has happened to you, or even your own wrong choices; these things will not destroy you.

Intoxicating, isn't it?

Those thin places

where truth seeps through—

those are the places where Jesus walks,

the places we find healing.

Dare you believe it? The Pollyanna euphemisms can fade quickly as you default to what you know best. After a brief interlude of hope, your mind pulls back, pulverized by self-doubt. Is what I have to say really meaningful or valued—does anyone even care?

It's hard to forget those times you were forced to keep secrets. Or those times others made you feel worthless and inferior, pumping up their ego at the price of your self-worth.

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ratings & comments

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Displaying 1–2 of 2 comments

Judi G. Reid

January 29, 2014  11:11pm

Jo Ann poignantly shares her story of overcoming and regaining her voice. She inspires others to reclaim their voice by telling their story, too. It is needed. Each story-teller is valuable in God's eyes and can make a difference to someone else.

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Sarah Knepper

January 29, 2014  1:18pm

This is an amazing book and a beautiful read for any woman hurting in life. What a great gift to give yourself or anyone else!

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