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The fear of my past catching up to me

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Keeping up with The Cantelmo's: The fear of my past catching up to me

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The fear of my past catching up to me

As I have shared before, I am reading What Women Fear by Angie Smith along with the (in)courage book club. This book club has been such a blessing to me; I hope you can join us next time.

The chapter that I just finished is about the fear of my past catching up to me. Is this one of your fears? I know I struggle with this.

Every week after I read a chapter in the book, I log onto (in)courage and watch a video of Angie Smith and Jessica Turner discussing the book. For each chapter they bring along a special guest. This week it was Tam Hodge. Her story was powerful. She had a past that she wanted to keep a secret forever. A past that caused her shame and regret. You can read her story here. When Tam was sharing, she said that our story should direct others to God and not to ourselves. That is so true.

A few days ago I wrote a post on FROG (fully rely on God). In the post I shared that FROG is the theme of our moms group this year. I promised to share about my introduction at moms group.

I can meet someone anywhere and talk their ear off, but when I have to introduce myself in front of everyone, my heart starts racing. Our leader prompts us to share with everyone: how long we have been married, how many kids we have and some of our hobbies. Then my palms start sweating, I feel myself getting dizzy. This is one of those moments where my past is catching up to me and I was not prepared to share it with everyone. They don’t even know me. I can’t win them over with my personality before they judge me. I can’t lie either.
It’s my turn: My name is Melanie, I have 3 kids, Grace is 6, Olivia is 20 months and Luke is 6 months, I enjoy dancing, biking and being with my family. Okay you can go…I try to hand the conversation to the next person.
They want to know, what’s my husband’s name and how long I’ve been married.
Um. Yah. So. Yah. My husband’s name is Anthony and we have been married like I think around yah know….a year and a half. Well maybe only 15 months. Around there somewhere.
Everyone starts saying, “Oh you’re newly weds!”
Yah, so Anthony and I do things backwards I guess….yah know, have the kids first, then get married.
I feel myself going bright red.

These are the moments that I dread. I don’t mind sharing with someone one on one, after we have gotten to know one another. When I know they are safe and trustworthy. When I can share my story and give God the glory for the path of healing and restoration He has brought me on.
Can you relate?

Is it that we feel so judged?
Maybe no one is judging me, but I can perceive that they are.
There was a time where Anthony was meeting someone for coffee a year ago. The man asked Anthony, “So how long have you been married? And how old is Olivia?” Okay, go ahead. Judge us.

God is teaching me that my story is worth sharing.
God is a God of healing, restoration, and grace.
If He can be glorified by me sharing my mistakes, my wounds, my short comings, (gulp) and my past. Then it’s worth being judged. 


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At October 26, 2011 at 10:48 PM , Blogger Franchesca said...

I think we all have a past and being aware that maybe we do have a 'past' that other might judge, I think it makes us more compassionate people. I am sad that so many are quick to judge and overlook the hand of God at work and all he's done in a life. I love that you shared that our stories are supposed to lead others to God, and not ourselves. So so true.

Thank you for sharing your heart, and story. You will help others, and bring glory to God through it all.

At October 27, 2011 at 11:00 AM , Anonymous Lauren Turner said...

Absolutely love your vulnerability. What an encouragement and an example for others. I love seeing how God chooses to redeem each of us. Lovin' your blog!

At October 27, 2011 at 12:24 PM , Blogger Kristin said...

It is hard when we feel we are the only ones with a "past"...but the reality is that you had the chance to share it and there are probably women in your group who also have a secret that they don't share.

I think we need to try and remember not to point out the speck in our neighbors eye before dealing with the plank in our own!

Thank you for sharing here - it is an example to others to start being "real" as well!

At October 27, 2011 at 4:35 PM , Blogger The Arizona Russums said...

love this. God can redeem anything! and it sounds like He is richly working in your life! :)

At October 27, 2011 at 4:35 PM , Blogger The Arizona Russums said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At October 27, 2011 at 5:56 PM , Blogger Heather B {dreaming big} said...

This is so true! God can take anything the devil meant for evil and use it for good - the power of redemption! Glad I found your blog today!

At October 27, 2011 at 7:09 PM , Blogger Très bien said...

He can totally be glorified through your past.
Romans 8:28 "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good for those who are called according to His purpose."
I have a past as well. We ALL do.
We have ALL fallen short. But He is the God of ALL grace [1 Peter 5]. Thank goodness for that grace. He can even use our sin for good! Crazy, I know :] Thank you for sharing your heart. I hope you are encouraged!! Keep sharing your story. God will use it to bring about good.
ps. I am visiting from Follower Fest :]

At October 27, 2011 at 7:50 PM , Blogger Angie said...

Yes! I know exactly where you are coming from! My husband and I have been together for 6 years and he adopted my girls from a previous relationship - and there are times when I feel so judged about this.

Thank you for sharing!

At October 27, 2011 at 8:23 PM , Blogger Sarah {the fontenot four} said...

Amen! Thanks for sharing!!

At October 28, 2011 at 7:51 AM , Blogger Kate said...

Love this! The past is the past and I hate how people judge you based on your past and not your present (heck we shouldn't just at all...but we're human). Though I'm ashamed of some things in my past, I'd rather be humble and imperfect than perfect and prideful. So glad I found you on the follower's fest! Newest follower! :)

At October 28, 2011 at 9:37 AM , Blogger Digger said...

Hello! I found your blog through the Follower Fest going on at Casey's. I'm now a follower of your blog too. Thank you for this post. I needed it today!

Digger ~xoxo~

At October 28, 2011 at 9:39 AM , Blogger Heather @ we.are.the.holdens said...

I love, love this... He can turn anything over and make it into good. Love your heart..:) Coming over from FFEst

At October 28, 2011 at 10:14 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just saying Hi from Style Outside the Box! We would love to do a link swap with you! :) New Follower from Oct Fest! :) Come say HI at


At October 28, 2011 at 11:10 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am your newest follower from the Fest!! I love this post and I needed to hear this today, thank you!

At October 28, 2011 at 11:30 AM , Blogger Ashley@Heart2Heart said...

Your story is beautiful and is worth sharing! I believe you will lead so many to God! You are beautiful and empowering and no one in the world has the right to judge you. You are going to change many lives.

At October 28, 2011 at 8:02 PM , Blogger the lowes said...

so glad you shared your story - and your heart! look forward to reading judgement included. :) blessings to you new friend!

At October 29, 2011 at 11:49 AM , Blogger Stacey Nicole said...

Great to read your story! I'm hopping over from Casey's blog, new follower~ Hope you have a great weekend!

At October 29, 2011 at 12:48 PM , Blogger kinze said...

wow love your blog .. so encouraging ... coming from the follower fest ... so happy to have found ya!

At November 1, 2011 at 7:06 PM , Blogger Simply. Splendid. Living. said...

I know exactly what you mean. It's one thing to share personal info about your family one on one, but it's much harder to feel like you're announcing it to everyone! I got married after I had a baby so I can't judge. : ) I believe there's an ideal way to marriage and family life, but a lot of us find ourselves on a different path than what is "ideal" and the Lord's still able to bring us along and use us for His glory. -- And hopefully we can be less judgmental and more understanding from our experiences too.


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