Pat Layton Pat Layton Pat Layton: Sweet Tea for Surrendered Sisters
Anonymous Apostles (Take Two)
As I have shared, I am pretty new to blog world.

I really just got "Sweet Tea" up and running a few months ago. Since then, I have become a blog lover. I love to write and try to wrap words around my ever expanding heart, my looney life and the ministry that God has given me to spend a good bit of my time in.

My favorite part of blogging by far, is hearing what other people have to say and share. I have found the world of the Christian women that I follow to be like confetti falling from the sky. An exciting mix of every color, texture, talent and warmth. I am irresistibly drawn in.

An interesting thing that I have noticed is how often someone places a comment on a post as "Anonymous".

It seems to occur most often when the comment pertains to something personal or transparent that has been shared by the blog author.

That fact has always intrigued me. So I spent some time looking specifically at some of those comments and what they contained to see if I could determine why and when a woman would or should leave her thoughts and feelings behind as "anonymous".

Few of us have lived such a perfect and unblemished life as to not be able to relate to most any post story of revelation, restoration or personal challenge. We are usually quite able to identify personally with the confessions and/or the facets of daily life shared from the deepest heart places of our sisters.

Often the difference between some responders and the posting author herself is that the author feels FREE to share her NAME, most of the time. Even some bloggers, for a variety of reasons, write incognito.

"Anonymous"

Just the sound of the word sounds so lonely to me, so vacant and so damaged.

The dictionary defines the word Anonymous this way:
1. without any name acknowledged, as that of author, contributor, or the like: an anonymous letter to the editor; an anonymous donation.
2. of unknown name; whose name is withheld: an anonymous author.
3. lacking individuality, unique character, or distinction: an endless row of drab, anonymous houses

I have had the awesome privilege of speaking to women around the nation who are either in some form of "crisis" or are ministering to women who are in crisis.

It is my humble experience and belief that those women who are FREE to attach their names, their identity to their stories of pain and restoration are the women who truly enjoy the best part of being healed and FREE!!

God's Word says in Psalms 96:1-3

Sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, praise His NAME;
Proclaim His salvation day after day.
DECLARE His Glory among the Nations,
His marvelous deeds among the peoples.

The scriptures that use the word "Name" are many! Far to many to list here, all claiming the power of the NAME--ours and His!

John 10:3 says He calls His sheep by NAME! He does not call us Anonymous!!

Proverbs 3:3 says
Let Love and faithfulness never leave you,
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart,
Then you will have favor and a good NAME!

Revelation 2:17 says
(She) who has an ear, let (her) hear what the Spirit says to the churches,
To (She) who overcomes, I will give some of the hidden manna.
I will also give (her) a white stone with a NEW NAME written on it!

When God comes into our hearts and we surrender our past, our pain, our shame to Him, He replaces all that old stuff, our old bad name, with a new name! a new heart, a new life!!
We are not Anonymous, we are His daughters, known by Name!!

As I read those comments I have questions on so many levels.

First of all....

What causes women who believe that they are "healed", "forgiven" and "free to shield themselves from someone or something that causes them to cover their identity?

The second question that stirs my heart is this...

If we are truly FREE. If God has done what we say He has done, isn't it our Responsibility and our Opportunity to shout it from the rooftops, to allow other women to hear our voices and our proclamation of restoration and forgiveness??

At the risk of making this post to long, I want to point out a story in the Bible where a certain woman, who was oh so special to Christ, was not able to recognize His presence until she heard her NAME.....read about her in John 20:10-16.

Can we be FREE, if we are we still hiding anything whatsoever? I just wonder?

Some might claim that it is to protect others.

My question is, to protect them from what?

The truth that we are all sinners saved by grace? That ALL have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God?

The opportunity to understand that God has the same healing available for each particular pain?

My experience is that when someone shares a story of Gods' Redemptive Healing....chains of shame and defeat break all around her.

Enemy strongholds are destroyed by "The Word of our Testimony"? Rev 12:11

I do not believe that from the NanoSecond of our Salvation that "Anonymous" is a NAME that God has for His Girls! Anytime, Anyplace.

It just gets me riled up to fight harder for the FREEDOM that God desires.

My thought is let's claim it Sisters! Let's tell the whole world the GREAT things that God has rescued us from and the MIGHTY blessings of His love!!

It seems to me that we are not to be ANONYMOUS!!

We are to be Redeemed, Restored, Renewed, SET FREE!!!

I would love to know your thoughts!!

***This Post has been rewritten in attempt to embrace my more sensitive side..
How did I do??


9 Comments:

Blogger Melinda said...

"An endless row of drab, anonymous houses"

This absolutely breaks my heart. There is nothing drab or anonymous about the bride of Christ! "Anonymous" hides us under a dank, dirty shroud. Claiming our new name in the cleansing blood if Christ drops the shroud to the ground and finds us glistening in glorious freedom.

If the Son had made you free, you are free indeed. John 8:36

What a word sweet sister-friend...what a word!

Blogger Meems said...

It seems it is easier for us to claim God's grace, mercy and cleansing in a general sense. But when it comes to listing specific sins we've committed or ones we've even been "set free" from we are not so willing to put our name on it.

Healing from an abortion is SO personal, SO far reaching into the deepest part our souls... with SO many layers of sensitivity. Even though I haven't experienced an abortion I've worked with countless of women who have. There are other people involved. When confessed it typically indicts others as well... maybe they aren't so willing to be named. And probably the most sad thing is that our unwillingness to share our deepest sins (whatever they are)is an indictment on the way so many Christians handle this kind of information. Do people really look at you the same after fessing up?

I don't hear a lot of folks walking around talking about having had affairs either... even when they've been healed from it. God uses specific people-- like yourself --- to come clean in front of the whole world. It is a calling. There is a very purposeful anointing that goes along with the call to "be a witness" and I would say ... everyone is not in that place.

You, my friend, are a pioneer for freedom. You have led the way for women everywhere to get set free. Thank you for your testimony and for giving your life to end the horror of abortion in our land.

You know I love you.

Blogger Pat said...

Melinda and Meems!
My two blog buddies! Thank you for your thoughts on my thoughts!

They stir deeply as I feel there is so much bondage among Christian women due to the masks that we wear and the secrets that we hide.
My heart overflows, not with judgement for those who feel they must use the name Anonymous, but for the little piece of freedom and ministry that I believe goes unlived.

Maybe it is a "calling" but I honestly do not see that in God's Word. I just wonder if it isn't simply that God will use anyone who is willing to step out.

On the other hand, If it is, I am so glad that I have it!!

Blogger Paula (SweetPea) said...

I read Lysa's post about her abortion. I either didn't read the comments or didn't pay close attention to all the anonymous.

I am so overwhelmed and tempted with so many blogs that I'm lucky to make my blog rounds without reading comments.

However, your post here is very thought provoking. You are right if someone claims forgiveness, freedom, healing from such pain and decision then wide hide in shame for that decision. I suspect they haven't receive true and full freedom, sadly.

Good point. There is so much freedom when we bring things out of the darkness and into the light. Hopefully just a bit anonymous will give a pin needle view of light and then perhaps they will be encouraged to share under their real name. I love that verse in Revelation about being overcome by the word of their testimony. There is true freedom in sharing with others what God has done. May each one of those people find that same freedom and courage.
Much love,
Angela

Blogger Tammy R said...

I couldn't agree with you more!

People have asked "Why would you tell your children or share your story about your abortion?"

My answer is because I gave Satan too many years of my life living in shame and running from God's truth. I knew in order for me to live in the freedom that my Lord died for,I couldn't be 'anonymous' anymore!

You can call me: no more shame, no more guilt or just all me...Tammy

Blogger Pat said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Pat said...

Tammy,
It is so funny that you used those words. I just got home from my prayer walk and was asking God to tell me more about this.

I had the SAME thought that you shared.

I have spent over 1/2 of my life in bondage and living with SECRETS.

I am over allowing the enemy one single piece of the past pain and sin that God has cleaned up in my life.

For me, hopefully using descretion and honor for others, I will share anything and everything that God prompts me to share or that I feel will help or lead another of His children to freedom.

I fully admit, there have certainly been days, earlier in my walk with God that my method was messy and my motives were mixed but God has honored my willingness to be transparent and has brought every single person connected to my stories into His embrace!

Blessings to all of you! Good stuff.

p

Blogger GratefulinGA said...

You did GOOD!

'anonymous'...it speaks volumes

good night and blessings,
tammy

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