- What is it?
- Why is it important?
- What difference will it make in your healing journey?
- Where do you find it?
- How do you find it?
What is it and why is it important?
Safe community is a place where you can speak truth and no one jumps to criticize or correct. They listen and ask questions. They let you know what they are hearing so you can actually understand what you are saying. Safe community will give you healthy feedback, constructive criticism, and encouragement to adjust your skewed perceptions of who you are and who God is to what is really true. These are important because you have believed lies about who you are, who God is, and the value of your contributions and voice. Your perceptions of truth have been distorted by other unhealthy voices, a wounded spirit – mind and body.
What difference will it make in your healing journey?
You will discover that what you have believed in the past to be true about God and yourself is not based on reality. You will be able to share and find encouragement for your voice, realizing the Lord has given you convictions, compassion, and passion that He wants you to use in the lives of other women. You will see your contributions have value and encourage others with them. You can just be you and not guard your heart and words – these people are not judgmental, hurtful, or going to reject you for your flaws and your attempt to speak your heart into the air, because they once were where you are now.
Where do you find it?
Safe community can be one or two friends from a Bible Study, Sunday School, Mission team, choir group, etc. where you attend, who seem to really love God and speak authentically about how He is working in their lives. They have walked hard places and struggled with similar things, and yet have learned to turn to God and let Jesus hold their hurt without becoming jaded or bitter. They ask the hard questions of God and others, with a heart of hopefulness that even if He does not answer in the way they want, He is still for them and working for their good. They are not perfect, they will fall down and have hard days, and yet they are real about it all.
How do you find it?
Pray for safe community. Ask the Lord to show you where they are and to connect you to them. Then speak to others, test the waters with tidbits of your story and see who responds out of Gospel authenticity, grace, and love. Make a lunch date or invite them for dinner. Sit next to them at the next church picnic or dinner and get to know them in community. The Lord will show you – a clear picture will begin to emerge of who is safe, who is there for you when you are having a down day, who does not ignore your desperate FB messages and picks up the phone when you call. They have time for you, they ask you hard questions in compassionate ways, praying with you right there, not just saying, “I will pray for you,” then walking away.
Pursuing safe community is part of finding your voice, understanding who God is apart from your hurt and in your hurt, being able to be real without fear, and having a safe place to fall down and let others pick you up in Jesus. It can be just a few or many, in person and/or online, and made up of young and/or mature women. Without it you will struggle to grow beyond your wounds. With it you will find grace and truth, perfectly measured by God, to grow you up, heal you, and set you on a journey to live for Him based on who He really is, who you are in Him, and all He has created you to be.
Would you like someone to help you get started, figure out who is safe and who is not, encourage you as you seek to find a place where authenticity is reflected back at you, and discover your voice in community? Check out my website and blogs where I share who I am and my heart for you in Jesus. I am here. I am safe. Jesus and I are a partnership FOR you! Then email me and we can get started: firstname.lastname@example.org