I am afraid of intimacy.
There. I said it. Can you tell I’m already uncomfortable?
It’s not necessarily the closeness that I’m bothered by. I’m a very affectionate person and crave love and touch. I really wish that’s all intimacy was, but it’s much more than that.
I’ve struggled for a long time with stillness. Being still. Especially with God. Letting silence rest around me in a room. I’ll turn on lights, music, TV, YouTube, the microwave - anything I can to avoid quiet. Part of me believes that stillness is a waste of productive time. Other times, it’s near impossible not to be distracted by the ticking clock on the wall or the hum of the refrigerator. But if I’m telling you the truth, the real truth, I’m afraid of being seen.
There is a palpable awareness of self in silence. When I become intimately aware of all the things I am and am not, I don’t feel worthy to let God close. The last thing I want to do is disappoint Him so I run and hide. “No, you can’t go there. You can’t touch that. It hurts too much. I’m afraid of what you’ll say or do if I hand you those pieces.”
What I desperately long for is to be loved for who I am. The real Lindsay. The Lindsay very few get to see. To be known and to know deeply. I have read that the birthplace of love and belonging is found in being vulnerable. Vulnerable. Taking off the layers, exposing all my parts, trusting in another, embracing intimacy. The very thing I most desire is what I most fear.
Trust is a process but it requires a step. A risk. Making a move towards a relationship that promises to be everything I need and desire. A beautiful surrender into a love that’s been tested over and over. A faithful Father who loves His daughter and sees her just as she is: beautiful, wanted, whole, valued, pure, and seen.
“That’s how much you mean to me!
That’s how much I love you!
I’d sell off the whole world to get you back,
trade the creation just for you.” - Isaiah 43:4
I once read, “Don’t try a new hairstyle on the day of a first date.” I think the same is probably true of cooking new recipes for dinner parties. The guests were women I respected so I really wanted my dish to be unique and tasty. I hadn’t had much success with a slow-cooker before but my love of tacos overcame my fear of crockpot failure. In an act of ambition (and faith), I made these for the first time on the day of the party. And boy, oh, boy were they worth it. Grab some taco-loving friends and enjoy!
Slow-Cooker Poblano and Honey Lime Chicken Tacos
prep time: 15 mins
cook time: 4 hours
total time: 4 hours 15 mins
Serves: 8-10 tacos
3 pounds bone-in, skinless chicken thighs
3 poblano peppers, divided
½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons honey
3 teaspoons sriracha, divided
3 large garlic cloves, grated
¼ teaspoons kosher salt
8-10 taco-sized corn or flour tortillas
¼ cup roughly chopped cilantro
½ cup cotija cheese
Place chicken in the bottom of a slow-cooker. Season liberally with salt. Slice one poblano pepper, sprinkle over chicken.
In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, honey, 2 teaspoons sriracha, garlic and salt. Pour over chicken. Cover and cook in the slow-cooker on high for 3½-4 hours or low for 6-7 hours, meat should be falling off the bone and easy to shred.
While the meat cooks, roast remaining two peppers over a gas stove or under the broiler until charred on all sides. Place in a bowl and cover with plastic. Let sit for 10-15 minutes. Peel off skin, remove stem and seeds. Slice into strips.
Once the meat is tender, remove chicken from pot. Shred with two forks. Spoon any fat that has come to the top off of the cooking liquid. Return the shredded chicken back to the cooking liquid. Add another teaspoon of sriracha if it's not spicy enough and season with salt and pepper.
Heat tortillas up over a gas grill (or in a dry skillet on medium high). Fill with shredded chicken, top with roasted poblano pepper, cilantro and cheese. Finish off with a squeeze of fresh lime juice. (Don't skip the lime juice!)
“Unpack Your Heart” by Phillip Phillips
from Behind the Light
Lord, please help me tear down the walls I’ve built around my heart. I invite your presence to fill all the spaces I’ve hidden from you. I don’t want to hide from you anymore. Come close, Lord. Tune my ears to your loving whispers throughout the day. Whispers of who you are and who I am in you. Bring healing to my heart from wounds of being vulnerable. I believe you will never let me down and never let me go. Give me the courage to receive your love and the love of others. I trust you with every part of me. Amen.
When I was in middle school, I used to get on the phone with my best friend and talk for hours about everything! The music we liked, the boys we liked, our “grown up” plans, our thoughts about how life worked. There never seemed to be enough time or enough to say.
Aside from the lost art of phone calls, I also miss the playful, genuine transparency of sharing day-to-day life with someone. Maybe this will resonate more for those who are single, like me. But, I believe we all crave the intimacy of a relationship that exists in the core of who we are.
This week, pause to recognize God’s presence with you throughout the day. Talk to Him like you would a best friend. In the car, walking to school, before you fall asleep. Let Him see and hear you as you are, not as you want or hope to be. Lean into the truth that He’s near and intently hanging on every word you say.