I named this page, and my blog withstanding the Siege for many reasons. During my darker days of depression I was thoughtful one early morning from a sleepless night that was very normal in those days, I thought about my struggles. Lots of people use phrases like “fighting depression” “battling depression” and so on. But I felt like it wasn’t just a battle, it wasn’t just one fight, it was like a Siege. Sieges of old could last for months, even years. Sieges on cities were designed to starve out the people within the walls. There are many enemies on this earth, all different kinds, we face a myriad of physical and spiritual enemies, and lots of them seek to starve us in different ways.
On Bing I found this on that restless night/early morning- The Longest siege in history:
•”The longest siege in recorded history was the siege of Candia (present day Iraklion on Crete). The fortified town was besieged by Ottoman Turks for 22 years, from 1648 to 1669. The fortress was defended by Venetians, supported by allies from Christendom, mainly Knights of Malta, France and Austria”•
22 years friends!!!
And so I decided that’s what depression can really be like, it’s not one battle or a fight, it’s withstanding a siege, A siege upon the heart, mind, even your very soul. And then I realized how good the name was for a blog or something. I realized I wasn’t just withstanding depression, I had been withstanding sieges of abuse my whole life, fighting patriarchy and complementarianism and I didn’t even know it.
But Now I know, and many other women, and men are awakening- the awakening is being described as “deconstruction” , deconstruction happens to many in lots of different ways, here is one example from a friend, enjoy, and may you be blessed by her words and her heart 💗
I want to talk about blind spots. I want to talk about those ingrained beliefs that we have that we don’t even acknowledge, speak of, or even realize. These are the cultural memes that are so deep inside our head that even if our conscious minds know better, our unconscious will silently sabotage us. Women have a ton of them. And some of the things that I say might have you thinking “I don’t believe that”…but that’s why these beliefs are so pernicious: on some level, most of us do.
First. We women tend to think that we are not worthy of love. There are numerous applications and causes for this. One very important one is the female propensity for people pleasing. We try to be everything for everyone, to always keep everyone happy, and to bend over backwards for the wishes of another because we think secretly that if we are always sweetness and light to those around us, these works might make up in some small part for our unlovability. “I may not be lovable, but at least I’m useful”. We place ourselves last, and sometimes, this can lead to a woman endangering herself in an abusive relationship. Sometimes it makes her remain in a job or a church or a social situation where really, she should probably leave. Sometimes, it just eats her from the inside out until she burns out or snaps…and no one knows why because “she was always so nice”.
Another reason why women believe themselves unlovable is that they find themselves not beautiful. For example, women almost never look in the mirror and like what they see. No matter how beautiful. We have been cultured to believe that a woman’s beauty is her worth, and we are constantly bombarded with images and messages saying that we are worth little. You may believe yourself to be beautiful. You may even (correctly) believe in your mind that your worth is not determined by your appearance. But you probably also resonate with the statement that, at your lowest, you’ve considered yourself ugly and unworthy of love. We attach this to relationships because, of course, we think that regardless of our other traits, we have to be attractive to earn the love of a man. We come to believe that our worth is in finding a man to accept and marry us, and we are pressed to believe that if we fail in this, we are worthless and weird.
We as women tend to get caught in the strange doublethink that we are at the same time too much and too little. We think that we are too bold, too smart, too loud, too outgoing, too passionate, too much. We also think that we are not enough: not smart enough, not pretty enough, not experienced enough, not strong enough, not clever enough, not good enough, not parent enough, not wife enough, not dutiful enough. As singles, we think that we scare men off, but we also think that we’re not out there enough. As wives and mothers, we think that we are inadequate at the same time that we think that we are too much.
As I began to awaken to a true, loving, intimate relationship with God, I was confronted with these lies. And they are lies, straight from the Enemy of our souls. See, I found the lie of my unloveliness standing athwart my ability to receive love from God. I grew up around the idea of God, and I had been told about God’s love, but I could not accept that God loved me in a personal kind of way. I believed that God had a general love of humanity, but I was never able to believe that He loved me individually. My blind spot was that I didn’t think that I was very lovable. I thought that He just tolerated me. I took the world’s rejection of me, and the various and sundry rejections that I had faced from the men in my life and I projected those onto my understanding of God.
But God brought me out of that. Now I know that the Enemy wants to make us believe that we are unlovable because he doesn’t want us to receive and reciprocate God’s love. The Enemy tells us that we are ugly specifically because God calls His bride beautiful. The Enemy tells us that our flesh is the end-all of our beings, but God says that we are new creations in the Spirit. The Enemy tells us that we are too much because he wants us to back down and be quiet; he tells us we are too little so that we won’t dare raise our eyes to Heaven and see the truth.
You are beloved of God, and not any less beloved because of your gender or anything else about you. I bring this up as my inaugural post here because this was the turning point in my spiritual walk. This was where I finally came alive to Christ abundantly. I also bring it up because some of you may be in a context where even people who bear Christ’s name are helping to tell these lies to you. People repeat these lies and reinforce them without even realizing it. That’s the nature of deception from Hell. The first step is recognizing it, and the second is rejecting it and replacing it with the Truth: God adores you. God is passionate about you. He pursues you and is not repulsed by you. Never, never, never let anyone convince you otherwise.