SO on to...
Confession 1. I stole a candy bar from a hardware store in Hickory, NC when I was 6 years old.Well, that might not sound all that bad to you. But, I need to start somewhere, right?
And, it's the first memory I have of doing something really horrible. This wasn't just a little white lie like "No Mom, I didn't hide ANY Halloween candy under my bed last night." It was a conscious act of taking something that wasn't mine & hiding my actions.
What is it that causes us to feel that we have "sinned" or done something that's not right? Especially when we were young... was it just the way we were raised or was there a little voice inside of each of us way back then that whispered, "This is not a good choice."? What is it that pricks our conscience as a young adult... a middle aged adult... an older adult?
All I know is that the memory of that day is as vivid in my mind as if it happened today. I chose to put a small candy bar in my coat pocket while accompanying my dad to the local hardware store. I remember the crime. I remember being found out in my crime. I remember crying in my father's arms & telling him that I was so sorry. I remember walking back to the hardware store hand-in-hand with my dad, returning the candy bar to the store owner -- the same man that I saw in church every Sunday & heard walking to work nearly every day. Yes... heard him walking to work. He loved to whistle & whistled each morning as he walked to work on the road just behind our back yard & beyond the windows of our 2nd floor dining room. We could hear him clearly nearly every morning as we sat at the breakfast table before leaving to walk to school. And, I remember the owner of that shop telling me that he accepted my apology & looked up to me for being brave enough to come back to talk face-to-face with him. I remember the shame I felt that the daughter of that man's pastor had chosen to steal!
I learned a lot in that first crime. I didn't learn enough, however, to never make another mistake or to never choose something which I knew was wrong. It was a good lesson learned by a young "PK" - preacher's kid. And, I learned some lessons through that first offense which have stayed with me & grown stronger as my life has gone from being a little girl in the Appalachian foothills of North Carolina to the woman that I am today on the plains & fields of Indiana.
There are so many things that can be said... about making mistakes & learning from them... how untold & guarded secrets can eat away at you from the inside out... that apologizing can be embarrassing & very difficult at times... how you have to come to a point where you feel safe to share your stories that you've held tightly in your heart... that there are times when you are going through trials & tough times due to the choices of a loved one AND the story is not yours to share... that you need to be aware that some places are not safe for sharing every detail...
I felt convicted recently to come clean by making a few confessions -- privately and publicly. My heart was touched after reading a wonderful post by a fellow writer -- not like me but, a famous writer. I'm processing through how to do that. I'm determined to continue on this journey. If you're a praying person, lift my name up in prayer. I want to be open & honest AND, I want to be encouraging to others who are figuring out their own journeys with their own sets of beliefs & values.
Until the next time...
Be encouraged friend. We are all on a journey... to wholeness. Two steps forward & one step back is still going in the right direction!!
NOTE: I've been working on several posts for YEARS with regard to my confessions. I probably have about a dozen already begun & a few that I posted pretty quietly in the past. If you're interested in reading past, present & future posts about confessions, just search for the label "MY CONFESSIONS" on this blog site.