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Opinion: The naked truth about being naked

  • By Shauntai Arrington
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  • April 27, 2016
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We all know the story of Adam and Eve and what happened after they ate of the forbidden fruit. They were ashamed. They lost their confidence and they hid. They hid from the one who created them. They tried to cover their nakedness from the God who created them with a fig leaf. We still try to hide God’s creation. We hide ourselves. Why?

When I was in first grade I used to read aloud to the class after lunch. I remember standing in front of that chalkboard. I was not afraid. I loved reading to the class.

I remember my first fig leaf. My earliest memory of me losing my confidence was due to being mocked because I talked too much. No one wanted to be my friend or go to the ballpark because all the kids said I talked too much. You know what? It was true. I talked a lot. All the time! What was so wrong with that? Nothing. But no one told me. It became a game. I was invited places to play and182958696 everyone would be quiet. Unbeknownst to me there’d be a pool that I would be the first one to talk. I was. Or that I would be the one who would talk the entire way home from school. Yep me again. So? Right?

I was sitting at the table with a friend and her boyfriend. I had been talking nonstop I had just began to notice my friend was covering her mouth and nudging her boyfriend under the table, when she burst out laughing. Apparently she told him on the way over to “watch me” because I would be the one to talk a lot. Even in my first few years in the Army I was “that one” always asking questions in class and briefs always providing input. Again what was wrong with that? Nothing. But no one told me.

Years of witnessing that type of reaction from others when I spoke had worn on me. I began to think this thing I enjoy, speaking, telling stories, or talking about books I read, no one likes it so maybe I should do it less. When I do this thing that makes me feel good about myself, makes me feel like I am smart causes people to make fun of me and not want to be around me so maybe I’ll stop altogether. I lost my confidence and eventually my voice to the point that when I should speak I wouldn’t. Year after year I was sewing those fig leaves.

But in all the years, through all the jokes what they didn’t know was I spent my entire year in Kindergarten in therapy because I had a speech impediment. Those teachers couldn’t understand a word I was saying no matter how smart I was. But I could speak clearly now. There was beauty in my being able to speak. I was sharing it with them and I wasn’t afraid. I didn’t know I was talking “too much”. I didn’t know I was “naked”. They told me I was. I never thought it was annoying until I believed the people who were telling me it was.

When you are naked you are open, exposed. You are being unapologetically you. There is beauty in your nakedness .The naked where you are being your true self. Not hiding behind a title or a role. Not cowering in someogiphyne else’s definition of who you are. The YOU that you are purposed to be. Know who YOU are and be that person. Say the things YOU would say. Feel and believe the things YOU would feel and believe. Are you being your naked self? If not, try to figure out why. Think back to when you picked up that first patch of cloth and who was standing there handing you a needle and thread.

Who told you, you couldn’t sing, dance, write, or play sports? My daughter tells me people make fun of her because she talks too much (she is her mother’s daughterJ). I tell her, GOOD! They said the same thing about your Mommy and you know what? Public speaking has become an important part of what I do personally and professionally. What caused you to doubt what you know you can do? Retrace your steps to regain those things you were passionate about. Those seams will begin to unravel, the fabric will fall into a heap on the floor. Keep going until you’re unafraid to do and say what is right. Until you get your strength, your confidence, and your voice back. Oh and be careful how you speak to those brave enough to be naked around you. You may be handing them their first piece of clothing.

S.L. Arrington

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Shauntai Arrington

Shauntai encourages believers to seek their purpose and an understanding of who you are in Christ, live the life God purposed for you, and love the person He created you to be. You are Singularly Whole!

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2 thoughts on “Opinion: The naked truth about being naked”

  • Paulette Exile

    April 28, 2016 , 9:35 pm

    This was very insightful. Who told you you were naked?

  • Rhonda English

    April 29, 2016 , 3:24 am

    Very eye opening . I love reading this and listening to you talk. Keep striving for greatest.

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