This past Sunday, I had the opportunity to speak in church.
The topic was a pretty easy one to tackle, but as I was preparing, I felt inspired to share a personal experience from when I was in high school. One that is personal to me, and I hadn't thought about in a few years.
As I was giving my talk, the same prompting came to share that experience, so I shared it.
After the speakers were finished, my Bishop came to the pulpit to announce the end of the program, and said something that really hit me.
he thanked all of us who spoke and said something along the lines of:
"it's not easy to put yourself in that vulnerable situation and share things from your heart."
For some reason that line really hit me.
That simple word, vulnerable, has been stuck in my mind.
It is a word I have heard used from time to time, but never really understood its meaning.
So I did some research and found this definition:
"susceptible to physical or emotional harm or attack."
Obviously, sharing personal experiences in sacrament meeting does not lead to harm of any kind.
However, any time those special personal experiences or feelings are shared in any setting, it allows room for criticism from others, which creates that vulnerability.
As I have been pondering about this, I realized something profound for me:
I need to allow more moments of vulnerability into my life.
I realized that because of past experiences, I have associated vulnerability with pain.
Because of that, I have been very careful at safe guarding my personal thoughts and feelings to avoid having any vulnerable feelings.
As I have reflected on this, I have realized that that is not in Heavenly Father's plan.
As we learn in the scriptures, we are given weakness so that it might become strong.
I have come to realize and be reminded that those "weak" moments of feeling vulnerable are given to us to allow us to learn and grow and become stronger.
How foolish I have been to avoid those moments in my life.
Am I saying that I need to create moments of vulnerability for myself? Absolutely not.
However, when those moments arise for me to be in vulnerable situations, I need to embrace them instead of run away from them.
they are given to me to progress and to grow, and I need not be afraid to take those moments.
Here's to allowing more vulnerability into my life this year!