Only Brave People Come Here - The Place of the Soul secrets belief thief mask

Only Brave People Come Here – The Place of the Soul

If you want abundant life then you need to be brave and explore the inner world. The secrets you keep maybe keeping you sick. The chief thief is the belief beneath.

I remember the first time I went to see a counselor. I was so afraid as I thought that he had some sort of psycho superpowers and would be able to see right through me.

What I feared most was that I would be exposed. That all my ugly would be seen.

It didn’t happen and the relationship was very helpful. Since then I have seen many counselors, therapists, psychologists, etc for either professional supervision or personal help.

I was recently asked by a friend what was the most helpful thing that happened when I was the lowest in my depression. I thought for a moment and realized that the help came from a psychiatrist.

They validated my current crisis as being totally understandable for what I had been through.  Then they offered a practical caring path out of the dark hole I was in. As I was real with her she was real with me.

Are you afraid of soul talk?

Therapy offices should have a sign saying

‘Only brave people come here’.

It takes guts to admit you need help, and it’s so easy for others to suggest that you go to counseling when they aren’t the ones under the microscope.

We are a stubborn people and we like to be in control. We like to portray that we have it all together and that we don’t need others.

A self-help book is preferred to a ‘let me look into your heart’ conversation.

We mask up

I read this recently

Personality comes from the Greek word persona, which means “mask.” Our personality is not our true self. But because we think it’s too risky to expose our inner pain, we create a mask and we hide.

We think our mask, our personality, will be more lovable. But you can see the dilemma.

Our mask enslaves us, keeps us in hiding. We are not free.

Instead, we grow increasingly alienated over time from authentic connection with others. A tragedy for sure, given we all want to belong.
Phileena Heuertz Mindful Silence: The Heart of Christian Contemplation

The first mask we had was some quickly gathered fig leaves. We still, when the inner world is seen, reach for whatever is quickly available and on hand at the moment.

We rush to anger, cynicism, talking too much, comfort food, alcohol, control, withdrawal. Anything to get away from being seen as an emperor in undies.

While in our deepest places we want to be known, explored, discovered and touched.

What remains unhealed 

I have had this little phrase bouncing around my brain over the last week.

What remains unhealed
will continue to steal. 

I don’t want anything to steal life from you.

When I mean life I mean the kind of life Jesus talked about in John 10:10. An abundant overflowing river of life.

The whole passage reads like this.

Jesus said to them, “Very truly, I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before me are thieves and bandits; but the sheep did not listen to them.  I am the gate. Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. John 10:7-10

What steals the life

Who or what was the thief that Jesus was talking about?

I, for a long time, believed it was satan, also called the accuser.

It’s easier to blame something or someone outside of ourselves than to take a deep and vulnerable look into our inner life.

I still believe that satan does steal, rob and destroy but more so by blowing across the glowing embers of the lies we have believed as truth.

  • I’m unworthy
  • I’m unlovable
  • I’m flawed
  • I’m ugly

All of these are glowing coals of beliefs that have been formed and calloused into our deepest thinking paths.

A couple of quotes

‘The chief thief is the belief beneath’, because the subconscious is always the power behind the decisions we make, and the outcomes we experience. D. Riddell

Your subconscious is where your story lives and subconscious wins. You can’t outthink your subconscious. Dr. Shannon Irvine


In the recovery movement, there is a little saying

You’re Only As Sick As Your Secrets

We all want to keep some things private and you don’t have to hang out all your dirty laundry for everyone to see.

There are some things though that need to be shared with at least one other safe person.

Recently I have had some emails from people who wanted to share stuff with me and just in the very act of writing they found some release.

They were able to tie some of the strands of the story together. For the first time, they were beginning to make sense of it all.

What secrets are keeping you sick?
What secrets are making you sick?

Quotes to consider

  • We will continue with sick or negative thinking in spite of ourselves, as long as it’s meeting some need within us. Heal the bruise, before practising positive thinking. D. Riddell
  • It’s much easier to take offence than accept responsibility for our own sick thinking. In this way we can eventually isolate ourselves from both God and man, trapped in a pit of pride. D. Riddell
  • We have any number of escape routes from pain, but the path  of transformation is learning how to be with the pain so new life can emerge in and through us. Phileena Heuertz
  • As we grow in self-awareness, we often realize that some of our reactions to present circumstances are actually in response to past events that are buried in our unconscious. The current situation provides a trigger for the unresolved pain. Phileena Heuertz
  • Genuine transformation is a change process that is not under our control.
    David G. Benner
  • If you do not transform your pain, you will surely transmit it to those around you and even to the next generation. Richard Rohr: Essential Teachings on Love (Modern Spiritual Masters)
  • Transformation more often happens not when something new begins but when something old falls apart. The pain of something old falling apart—chaos—invites the soul to listen at a deeper level. Richard Rohr
  • God’s healing transformation of our lives occurs gradually, steadily, progressively. Timothy R. Jennings
  • The road of the disciples is narrow.  It is easy to go past it; it is easy to miss it; it is easy to lose it, even for those who have already walked it.  It is hard to find.  The path is narrow indeed; there is a real danger of falling off on both sides.  To be called to do the extraordinary, but not to see and to know that one is doing it–that is a narrow road. Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Questions to answer

  1. What gets in the way of us being able to share our secrets?
  2. What makes someone safe enough for you to share your secrets?
  3. Are you afraid of real deep honesty? Why?

Further reading

Just Don’t Touch That Button – Your Unbearable Feeling

Life’s not Fair! There is a Mystery to be Known

Barry Pearman

Photo by Janita Top on Unsplash