I was peeling an onion the other day and tears were streaming down my face. I was breathless from the pain of what my own life layers represented as I slowly started peeling away the layers of my life.
A layer of hurt. Hurt I've caused others. Things said without thinking of the pain my words would have on someone else. Hurt I've felt from rejection. Hurt from betrayal. Hurt from words. Words that wound. I've said my share of them. Hurt is the largest outer layer. The one that protects the inner layers. Concealing the inside. If I could get could peel away the outer layer, perhaps I could begin to work on the other layers that need to be exposed. The deep layers, and get to the core of who I really am and find my life's purpose. But without removing this part, the other parts just stay hidden. So, I rip it off! It's old and cracking. It's been there a while. There's no use for it. As with hurt, it just needs to be discarded. It's of no use.
A layer of Anger. The next layer is anger. I've been angry for a while. Angry at God. Angry at myself. Angry at circumstances. Angry at people. Just angry because life's not easy. Bitter and stubbornness needs to be removed. If I could get the tough layer peeled away, I'm sure the layers underneath would start to be more useful. More pleasant. Easier to remove, softer in texture, and aroma. But this layer is not easy to remove. It lies just beneath the tough old outer layer of hurt. If I can just put my strength into removing it, letting it fall to the side, then the next layer will be freed from the hurt and the anger.
A layer of Pride. When I peel this layer away the juices start to flow. The tears of years of holding on to actions that reflect a spirit of unforgiveness. Seeing my self as self righteous. as superior in words and deeds. Such shame lies within this layer. This layer has held back the best parts of me. The real me. Once pride is gone, the person I want to be lies just inside.
As these layers have been peeled away from the onion, it notice a heap of useless parts. And I'm tried of holding onto these layers for so long. They have taken the best of me and kept them hidden them deep within. But I am exposed. I'm grieved at what I've let me own heart become. Tears flowing like a river, as I wipe my eyes with the back of my hand. The person God wants me to be lies just head. I want to keep peeling away each layer, but I'm afraid.
A layer of Fear. Fear of failure. Admitting I'm not what I can be. Fear of rejection. Fear of love lost. Fear of hurt. Fear gripes me as I silently pray to God that I'll get through the layers to something good. Something worth His love. And at that moment, a calm comes over me. I'm reminded of a scripture. 2 Timothy 1:7
"For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline."
I begin to feel His presence and the courage to continue presses me to move on.
Love. God loves me. He loves all of me. My rough, cracked and hard outer shell. He knows all about my layers. The hurt, the anger, and the pride. He knows I'm fearful of what I've become. Ashamed of the years of sin. Layer after layer I peel away until I reach a green leafy center core. The core represents the place where I first began. When God created this onion, just like he created me knew that I would grow if tended. New life needs deep roots. As time has passed, I've left my roots become dry. I haven't tended to my need for a greater power to keep me healthy. I've become self sufficient. A plant can't water itself. It can't give the warmth of the sun to prosper. I couldn't do it alone. I'm not alone.
Peeling away the layers revealed a greater need for my maker. A hope burns within me. I was created by a living, forgiving, all seeing God. One who takes care of all creation. Rom 15:13: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.