i have heard so many people say so many times that our past does not define us.
and for a long time, i agreed with what they said.
and to a degree, i still do.
i agree with this part of the statement: that what we did, all those things that make us feel dirty and ashamed and black and empty inside, those are the things that don't define who we are today. because God can take a clean wet rag and wipe you clean from the inside out.
but i believe in something else, too. and that is that our scars define us. they are there to give people hope, the same people who think they are too dirty and messed up to come back around to being okay ever again.
so in a way, yes, i think our past does define us.
those things, those terrible terrible dark places in our lives didn't happen just because. they happened because Jesus knew they could be used someday to help a person up from the dusty and rough ground.
i see it with me, now, everyday. i see how dear friends have learned to trust me with their dark places because they know i won't judge, because how could i when i have been right where they are? i understand the pain they have felt. or the guilt. or the unforgiveness.
what used to be something i was ashamed of is now this thing i can willingly lift up my sleeve to, show people the scar and say, "hey, look at this. i've got them too and ya know what? it's okay. because being perfect isn't necessary, sweetheart."
something i ran from forever is now something i run to.
because if my pain can save one person from going down all the dreary, rainy and dark paths that i took, then it is worth it. every hardship i had to go through is completely and fully worth going through now.
and darling, if someone like me can be saved, i know you can be too.