I have been watching the hearings for the Supreme Court Justice seat, and I couldn’t help but think about how grueling it is to go through that; where you are publicly being questioned about who you are, what you’ve done and what you believe, and yet the strength it takes to go through that process is the strength that is needed to be a Justice of the Supreme Court. She is faced with personal questions that might be embarrassing. She is confronted with questions with an air of trying to undermine her character and credibility.
I had to testify in court when I was 16, and although it was a completely different reason, I am sympathetic to the public scrutiny that one has to go through. I was in front of a court room of people, and when I was on the stand to testify, that was one of the most exposed, raw and vulnerable times I have ever been through. I remember the defense attorney trying to make me look like a liar and and discrediting my character. I felt the attack. It was painful. I felt a strong need to defend myself. I was prepped on what I would be asked and that I would just be required to answer truthfully. I remember breaking down and crying at one point when asked to give certain details that were extremely difficult to do, not to mention adding the stress and trauma of the defendant being right in front of me.
It doesn’t have to be in a court room to have these same experiences of feeling like you are put on trial, exposed, vulnerable, maybe discredited. it might be an experience at work, or maybe it’s an experience with family or friends, maybe it’s in school. It is natural to feel the pain and the need to defend yourself. Being put under any scrutiny is not a place anyone wants to be under, and yet we will all face it to one degree or another from time to time in different circumstances.
I remember, in my court-room experience, the love and support of my family and most importantly prayer and leaning on Jesus. was the beacon that carried me through. The night before I had to testify, I had an extreme case of anxiety, I remember my mom just holding me real tight as we laid in my bed, trying to calm me down. I remember having my mom and dad right there at my side supporting and fighting for me. A lot of the experience is a bit of blur, but those are the things that I remember with clarity. I knew I had the support of my family and Jesus was taking care of me. God has used that experience in my life to strengthen me and depend on Him and He has shown me the appropriate response when I face other kinds of scrutiny.
Whatever experiences of scrutiny, critical examinations you might be experiencing or have experienced, I am here to say it’s not meaningless, and there is something good that can come out of it. Focus on Jesus. He knows exactly how you feel, he was scrutinized to the point of death. There may be weeping in the night, but joy will come in the morning. Tell the truth in love. and be who God created you to be, rely on Him and He will give you the strength to face whatever you need to face. Ask for His wisdom and wait on Him.
“Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:-6.