be yourself


brianna sent this to me via picture mail yesterday as she was driving around. i generally HATE church marquee signs, but this one nails it on the head for me. perfect timing might i add. and she had no idea other than she thought it was cool.

one of the hardest things i’ve been working on in counseling came from a huge revelation some time ago. it was revealed from deep inside me that i’ve been associating my relationship with God to how my personal relationships were going down here.

upon further digging we put it together that:

fact: i grew up with a father who wasn’t affectionate, who was emotionally unavailable or ever really around due to travel.
fact: i had a mother who was clinically depressed for most of my late childhood-into my early teen years.
fact: i had brothers who were neglectful of me.
fact: i lacked safety.
fact: i lacked a support system.
fact: i lacked unconditional love.

when i got saved at age 16, i all was of a sudden flooded with a new kind of people.

who loved me.
who supported me.
who invested in me.
who comforted me.
who affirmed me.

i thrived on this attention for years. unintentionally and unknowingly placing these influencers and their opinion of me on pedestals; all the while losing with each pat on the back, the reality that GOD is who i was supposed to be thriving off of. no doubt God brought about these amazing mentors and influences, but i began not only associating these amazing people with God but replacing Him entirely. if someone broke my trust, i lost my trust in God. i would immediately put walls up around my heart – even from God. lacking any sort of mercy. leaving no room for sanctification. losing my trust in Him and in His sovereignty.

“if these people who were supposed to love me and be good people can fail me, surely God can too”.

if someone didn’t want to be my friend or if situations or relationships changed, i’d give their opinion so much power i’d go as far as changing myself, my morals even, to keep things intact without any thought of what God thought of me. or if things got hard or people got too close, i’d just bolt-flee-escape the situation completely. retreating to my own selfish desires instead of seeking God.

my whole belief system needed to be rewired.

what is extraordinary, is that now that i know this about myself. now that i can see the pattern. i can stop it. before i put myself in a vulnerable situation. before i think i need to change myself to please someone else. i can stop it. before i freak out over what someone does or how losing something will affect me. i can stop it. before i turn into “the fixer”. i can stop it.

i can stop it-not being i am tougher or stronger on my own but i can stop it because God is who is He says He is. i can myself. the kind of me i was born to me. not the me i have been adjusting with circumstance.

so who am i?

i am crystal. i am God’s. i am a woman in ministry. i am a recovering sexual addict. i am a counselor. i am a friend. i am a mentor. i am working on breaking my cycles & crutches. i admit when i mess up. i am a sponsor of 2 orphaned children. i seek the affirmation of God before others. i am captivating. i am worthy.

who are you?


  1. Great post, Crystal. I am a husband, father, worship musician, and educator. Clearly a mess, but working on those parts. And covering all of that, a child of God.

  2. great post, sistah… you’re speakin’ to me.

    i am jenni. i am a worshiper of the most high GOD. i am a wife, a mother, a friend, a sister. i mess all of those up from time to time, but i am who i am…

    …the daughter of the KING.

  3. i heard brennan manning quote someone who said this, “you’d better be who you is ’cause if you ain’t who you is, you is who you ain’t.”
    love it and try again each day to live it.

  4. that is an awesome post!

    I struggle a lot with who i am. I let different things in my past define me….i know that i am not a product of those things…but sometimes it is hard to see past that.

    i am just now learning to love and be loved….i am learning to be a daughter…i am learning to be a wife. I am those, but it is still a process.

    thanks for leading me on the process. 🙂

  5. Great post! Very honest…so true that we trade quite of few “vices” when we come to Christ for a whole new set, but don;t realize their damage because the new vices seem so spiritual.


Add A Comment