How do you become your true self and show up authentically? Do the mixed messages you hear stop you from allowing the real you to come forward? Laura Acuna shares how to get past shame so you can be more of your God-designed self, not less.
I had the opportunity to speak with Laura on a recent episode of Your Hope-Filled Perspective Podcast. We talked about disordered eating and the hope, help and healing available for the diet-weary soul.
Be sure to read to the end for a book giveaway!
(If there are affiliate links in this post, meaning, if you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no extra cost to you)).
Becoming Your True Self
And I’ll stride freely through wide open spaces as I look
for your truth and your wisdom; Then I’ll tell the world
what I find, speak out boldly in public, unembarrassed.
Psalm 119:45–46 MSG
How comfortable are you showing up as your authentic self?
One principle of healing from anything is reclaiming your voice and allowing the real you to come forward to be seen and heard.
But, in a culture that supposedly celebrates authenticity, there are plenty of mixed messages coming our way:
- Be yourself but tone it down.
- Be yourself but reign it in.
- Be yourself but be more assertive.
- Be yourself but . . .
When I was growing up, I was taught that if I attended a meeting with men at work, church or
anywhere else, the best practice was to not speak like a woman. I was advised that men like short conversations, few words, and no emotion.
If I wanted to be taken seriously, I had to somehow silence the feminine part of me when I added my voice to the mix.
Decades later, of course, I believe it’s essential to bring our full feminine selves to the conversation. Our uniquely female perspective is needed. Without it, there can be no full picture.
Jesus, our Creator, understood this, even in a culture that viewed women as property. In Jesus’s day, feminine voices were silenced—but He wouldn’t stand for it.
He did not condemn women who dared to use their voices. In fact, He empowered them to speak and act at critical moments in His ministry.
Friend, shame tells us we must contort every part of us into something different from who we are. It isn’t just what we weigh, or whether we think we are pretty enough. Shame tells us all of our being is wrong, every single bit, so you might as well fade into the background and quiet down.
Don’t you do it. Jesus called women out of the shadows and restored them just as He found them—bleeding, broken, mentally ill, sinful, and desperate. He received them when their full emotions were on display.
They didn’t have to tone themselves down or dial it back for Him to take them seriously. He doesn’t expect you to either.
If you feel invisible and pushed to the side, that isn’t how Jesus sees you. He is extending His hand to pull you out of the shadows, where shame has placed you. He wants you to become more of your God-designed self, not less.
How is God leading you to be your true self? We’d love to hear in the comments below.
SOUL FITNESS: Strengthening Your Core
How comfortable are you showing up as your authentic self? Have you picked up messages that tell you it’s best to stay small and out of the way? What is your reaction to knowing Jesus received women with their full emotions on display?
Father, through Jesus’s interactions with women, you encourage your daughters to become our true feminine selves. Thank you for always valuing who we are and what we bring to the table. May we honor you in all the places you send us, bringing glory to your name. Amen.
An excerpt from Still Becoming: Hope, Help and Healing for the Diet-Weary Soul by Laura Acuña
About Laura Acuna
Laura Acuña is a speaker, author, podcast host and coach. A graduate of Liberty University, she earned a degree in Christian Counseling and a minor in Biblical Studies. Married to Pat, the two are the parents of three sons, and one daughter-in-love. They became first-time grandparents to Evelyn Grace (finally a girl!) in July 2021. Laura challenges her sisters to grow up to become spiritually and emotionally mature. Her new book Still Becoming: Hope, Help and Healing for the Diet-Weary Soul.
In conjunction with this post and the podcast interview, Laura is giving away a free copy of her book, Still Becoming: Hope, Help, and Healing for the Diet Weary Soul.
Leave a comment below sharing with us one thing you learned about becoming your true self and you will be entered into the contest for your chance to win a copy of her book.
You could also share this blog post on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter then comment here to tell us where you shared it and you’ll also be entered into the drawing.
The winner will be selected at random and announced next Monday, February 20, 2023. Continental United States only.