Why My Heart Breaks for Bruce Jenner
By Linda Michaels
As I sat in front of the TV watching Olympic athlete Bruce Jenner share his story, my heart was breaking. It was apparent that this 65-year-old man had lived a life of endless internal torment and struggle.
The man who was once considered the greatest athlete in the world, believed he would only find peace if he transitioned into a woman. He said he once prayed and asked God, “How do you see me?”
He didn’t indicate that the Lord had given him any answer to that question, but I pray that someday he will hear God’s voice and know exactly how God sees him.
If there is one thing I have learned as I have walked with the Lord for more than 40 years, it is that Satan loves to lie to us and God loves to tell us the truth.
Growing up in an alcoholic home, Satan had the opportunity to speak lies into my life from a very young age.
My father was a kind, fun-loving and generous man, even when he was drinking. But when he was drunk, we simply couldn’t depend on him to show up. My mom would be left waiting for him at the store where he was supposed to pick her up after she had grocery shopped. I would be left sitting on a curb at school while it grew dark wondering if my Dad would ever come.
Because of these early experiences, Satan was able to convince me that my Heavenly Father was the same as my earthly one and He could not always be trusted.
I also came to believe that it was somehow my fault that Dad didn’t show up. This may have been because my mom sometimes, in an effort to get us to behave, would say, “If you all aren’t good, your dad won’t come home.”
Well there were many times when Dad didn’t come home; and although it was because he had been drinking, I was sure it was because my best efforts at behaving were somehow not good enough. I didn’t know exactly what was wrong with me, but certainly there must be something terribly defective in me for Dad to forget about me so often.
Then one day, God spoke to me and I received an answer to the question Bruce Jenner had asked God. Finally, I learned how God saw me.
It was at the end of a session with a Christian counselor. As we prayed together she said, “Lord, Linda has been through a long dark tunnel and You are the light at the end of that tunnel.”
In that moment, I saw Jesus in my mind and I was frightened. I wasn’t sure if I should run to Him or run away because of the shame I felt in never measuring up. I made a split-second decision and ran into His waiting arms. Then as He held me, he lifted my head and said, “Linda it has all been a lie. I didn’t make you defective.”
It was s stunning revelation at the time. I remember sharing it with others and saying it was like living your life as one gender and being told you were a different one or thinking you were one race and finding out you were a different race. Being “defective” was such a part of my core identity, that I was literally reeling at this knowledge. Could it be that I was actually ok? Jesus had said that I was.
Suddenly scriptures began to speak to me in a new way. Psalm 139:14 reminded me that I was fearfully and wonderfully made. Deuteronomy 31:8 says my Heavenly father will never fail me or abandon me.
John 8:44 tells us that Satan hates the truth and that when he lies to us, it is consistent with his character. He is a liar and the father of lies.
So today, I pray that Bruce Jenner receives an answer to the question he prayed that day. I also pray for all those who are not at peace with the way they were created. To each and every one, I say, you were wonderfully made and nothing will bring you more peace than hearing the answer to the question, “God, how do you see me?”
Copyright © 2015 Linda Michaels, used by permission.
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