We know secrets. We hide our own. We promise to carry someone else’s. We listen to the whispers of gossip as bonds of trust are broken. We clamor to hear the exposed secrets of celebrities and high profile people. It’s almost as if we feel better about our secrets when the secrets of others are revealed.
And yet we stuff our secrets way down deep. Hoping they’ll never escape.
Our secrets would shock others if they knew. Our secrets ignite fear when they surface. Our secrets smother us in shame. Our secrets are dangerous. Our secrets are worse than everyone else’s. Or so we think. Or so we’re told.
We’ve been warned about what happens.
Don’t tell anyone. They won’t like you. They won’t understand. They won’t want you anymore. They’ll ridicule you. They’ll leave you. They’ll never believe you. You’ll lose everything. You’ll lose everyone. They’ll know you’re a liar. They’ll know you’re weak. They’ll know you failed. They’ll know you’re worthless.
Have you ever felt this? Have you ever been told this? I have.
The problem with secrets is that they’re based on lies. Lies that keep our real feelings hidden. Lies that keep us pretending. Lies that prevent us from making new choices. Lies that hold us hostage. Lies that eat away at us from the inside out.
Lies cripple us. But it’s not easy to break free and tell the truth. Truth is risky. We don’t really know what will happen.
But here is truth: There is no fear in truth.
Once the truth is out, there’s nothing left to be afraid of. There’s no script to remember. There’s no house of cards that will come crashing down. There’s no second shoe to drop. The truth is out––as dark, scary or messy as we think it is. Once the truth is out, we can step over it and out of it. We can let others into our darkness so they can help us walk out. We can expose our wounds of the past and let healing begin.
And when we open our vault of secrets and let the truth be seen, others feel empowered to share their dark, scary and messy truths. We’re not the only ones who have gone through this. We don’t need to stay in the bondage of lies. We don’t need to carry this burden alone.
Here is more truth: God already knows the truth. He knows where we’ve been. He knows what we’ve done. He knew it would happen before we did. And He loves us the same before, during and after. He loves us completely. God knows our secrets. He wants us to break free. He’ll help us. He’ll heal us. But we first have to let Him into our dark places. We have to let Him touch us where it hurts. And if we do, we’ll never have to hide our secrets again.
We’re only as isolated as our deepest secret. So let’s get our secrets out. Tell a trusted friend. Tell a counselor. Tell a pastor. Tell God. Tell someone. Together let’s take a step toward freedom.
“You spread out our sins before You–our secret sins–and You see them all… Satisfy us each morning with Your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives.” Psalm 90:8, 14 (NLT)
May I pray?
God, we all have secrets from the past. Some we’ve told, and some we haven’t. Some of us are living secret lives now. Lord, we can’t break free from our secrets without help. Breathe truth and strength into us today. Help us find someone we can trust and be honest with. Help us to be honest with ourselves and with You. Lord, we want to live without fear. We want to sing for joy. Grant us peace and courage as we step forward today. Amen.
Q4U: What is the hardest part of keeping a secret (your own or someone else’s)?