Unless you’ve been living under a rock (or you don’t go to Taylor), you’ve heard about it. And you know about all the controversy that this facebook page has caused. In the days since the page was created, people have applauded, criticized, called it out and more.
(If you don’t know what it is, here is the link to the page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Taylor-Confessions/173240992823553?ref=ts&fref=ts)
When I look through the many posts, all I see is brokenness, shame, and fear. The circumstances in each are different but the feelings are the same: people feel alone. People feel ashamed of their struggles. People feel as though they can’t tell anyone what they are going through for fear of judgment.
That absolutely breaks my heart. It breaks my heart that I probably know some of these people, pass them on the sidewalk, have classes with them, talk to them. It breaks my heart that they don’t feel like they are in a safe place, that they don’t feel that they have anyone to turn to.
And it breaks my heart that judgment on campus is so prevalent that it is the reason for so much hiding, that so many people would rather hurt than deal with the judgment of others.
Judgment, fear, and shame are not of God, they are of Satan. They are tools that Satan uses to keep us from living in community with God and each other. He fills us with guilt for our struggles, struggles that weren’t even ours to begin with, but that he gave us. And then he fills our heads with lies about this guilt – that we have brought it upon ourselves and that we are damaged and unworthy because of it. Satan also fills us with the fear of telling people, because if anyone knows what we did, no one would want to be associated with us. So we keep it inside, we don’t tell anyone because no one can know that we struggle with that. And that guilt turns to shame. The shame burrows deeper in our mind until it starts to fester and consume us, and we begin to believe the lies. We believe that we are damaged, we believe that we are unworthy. And we get stuck. We end up right where Satan wants us.
When we let shame rule our lives, we let Satan win.
And the only way to beat him is to share our struggles with one another. We will never overcome them if we aren’t sharing them with the body of supporting and loving believers.
Believe me, I’ve been there. I know how hard it is. I struggle everyday. But it’s time to be real. So that’s what I’m going to do. Here are some of my struggles:
- Because I was sexually abused when I was young, I struggle with sexual addiction. And yes, I am a girl that struggles with sexual sin. It’s not just a “guy thing.”
- I am medicated for depression and anxiety. I have spent a great amount of my time at Taylor severely depressed and have contemplated suicide numerous times.
- I struggle with self-worth. I don’t respect myself or view myself as lovable and because of that, I turn to guys for love and attention, which has led me to make a lot of mistakes that I regret.
I don’t write these things to brag. They are things that I have been incredibly ashamed of and have tried to hide from everyone and that consumed my life and my thoughts. It wasn’t until I told someone about my struggles that they stopped having power of me, and that I was released from the chains of shame that I had allowed Satan to put me in.
Please. Don’t resort to anonymously sharing what you are going through on a Facebook page. Find someone, anyone, to talk to. Heck, the person I talk to is my counselor Hope, she knows more about me than anyone in the world.
And please. If someone has the bravery to come to you with their struggles, do not judge them. Don’t let Satan have that power over your life either. We don’t know the circumstances that brought them to that place, and we don’t need to. We just need to love them. 1 John 4:18 says that perfect love drives out fear. Sharing is the first step, and your response in love is the second step. With these steps and with the help of God, we have the power to overcome the cycle of shame and defeat Satan.
As much flack as it has received, I have an appreciation for Taylor Confessions because it is opening eyes to the pain and brokenness of this campus. Don’t let the things you read there be swept under the rug and forgotten. Pray that God uses this opportunity to start a revolution on this campus of freedom from shame and lies.
“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.” – Galatians 6:2
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” – Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
“Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.” – Romans 12:9 – 10