Christen Limbaugh Bloom: God is teaching me why silly stories seriously matter

Have you ever had a crippling moment of self-doubt? A tiny voice in your head tells you your idea is stupid, your opinion is tired, your solution to that problem you’re struggling with won’t work...fill in the blank.

That voice visited me as I sat down to write an article this week. Every time I began to type, the voice crept in, telling me my stories are too silly to share.

To be fair to this little voice, I am chock-full of embarrassing moments, like the time I literally had to cut myself out of a skort with scissors – at work – after the zipper got stuck (yes, that happened).

CHRISTEN LIMBAUGH BLOOM: I TOLD GOD I’D GIVEN UP DATING, BUT WHAT HAPPENED NEXT SHOCKED ME

I usually enjoy sharing these tales with people – but this week was different; I didn’t feel like sharing my trying tales with readers. Maybe you’ve had similar experiences.

After giving in to the vicious cycle of anxiety for a couple of hours, I decided to talk to God about it. I couldn’t fully articulate the rationale behind my worries, but as always, He filled in the gaps for me. Soon after praying, I remembered a theme from a book I’m reading titled “Love Does” written by Bob Goff.

The book is a compilation of hilarious anecdotes from Goff’s life, all which point back to the amazing love of God. This excerpt struck me most, “God doesn’t think of us any less when things don’t go right. Actually, I think He plans on it. What He doesn’t plan on is us putting a fake version of ourselves out there to take a hit...When we hang the fake version out there, it’s not the version God created.”

Goff’s analogy helped remind me that I was so busy worrying about what people would think of me if I told my own whimsy or “silly” stories, I had completely lost sight of the fact it was those very types of events that brought me to Jesus in the first place. And part of finding Him is to surrender our pride and take ourselves less seriously.

Think about it. When you genuinely bond with a friend it’s typically not about how great things are going for each of you. Rather, we connect with people on a deeper level through our real-life, messy struggles. Some of them are funny, some of them are sad, but they all point us back to one common truth: no one has it all figured out.

I grew up learning about God my entire life, but I didn’t come to truly know Him until an honest friend opened up about the bumpy road of mistakes that ultimately brought her to Jesus’ perfect grace.

Similarly, my husband Sam and I fell in love with a church this year where the pastors tell quirky, embarrassing stories about the ups and downs of their personal lives. The sermons resonate because the pastors make themselves vulnerable to the congregation, each and every sermon they establish a bond of trust by admitting their not-so-perfect moments. Which is necessary, when you think about it. Don’t forget – one of the things that makes the Bible so endearing – and authentic – is that its authors share endless stories that put themselves and their colleagues in a seriously unflattering light.

I still have a lifetime yet to learn, but one thing God is teaching me in this season is not to discount the aspects of my life that might seem awkward or “cringey.”

We shouldn’t shy away from sharing our flaws or mistakes with others because it’s actually those moments when we realize we don’t have it all together, that we need God’s guidance. And what better way to connect with someone than by laughing at yourself?

Think about it. When you genuinely bond with a friend it’s typically not about how great things are going for each of you. Rather, we connect with people on a deeper level through our real-life, messy struggles. Some of them are funny, some of them are sad, but they all point us back to one common truth: no one has it all figured out.

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When we realize and admit this and are willing to share our weaker moments, we can create better relationships with the people in our lives, which is what God ultimately wants for each of us.

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2)                  

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