Thursday, October 29

An autumn heart tour

Last Friday, I had a lot of fun participating in the Autumn House Tour at Hooked on Houses. It was enjoyable to take photos of my house and share some of my spaces with you.

What I want to do today is to share some other spaces with you. But I don't have photos of these spaces. In fact, these spaces are ones that I keep hidden as much as possible.

I know that we all struggle just a little bit with issues of privacy in blogging. Should we share our names? Should we tell where we live? Should we give our husbands and kids screen nicknames? Our world is a funny place, and these issues of privacy are legitimate.

Then, too, we all sometimes struggle with how much we can divulge about ourselves and our feelings. Some bloggers seem to find it easy to just "let it all hang out" and tell how they feel about all kinds of issues; others avoid highly-charged issues altogether. Both of these approaches are fine, I think. Each writer must find the path that works for her or him.

My goal in this blog is to have an open home and, more importantly, an open heart. And I want to confess a struggle to you.

If you were to go back and read my blog from the beginning (which I doubt anyone wants to do; just trust me on this), you'd find that I often shared photos of little projects around my house or occasionally one room in my house, but that's about it. As I've decided to post a few more photos of my house over the past few weeks, I've done it with much fear and trembling. Why? Because I'm afraid that someone in the big scary worldwide web will see my house and want to break in and steal my possessions? Because I'm afraid someone will recognize photos of my house and stalk me or try to snatch my children? No, that's not it.

I've been afraid to post photos of my home because I'm been afraid that you, my blogging friends, wouldn't like me if you saw my house.

I know--it sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? And yet there it is. Now don't get me wrong--I don't live in a mansion, so I wasn't afraid that anyone would think that I was guilty of conspicuous consumption or showoffiness. It's not that. It's just that I live in a fairly new house that I didn't build myself. I was afraid that, if you knew that my house wasn't a DIY project, you wouldn't be interested in what I have to say. I was scared that you might reject me based on an external circumstance.

You know what? Those feelings are indicative of a much deeper issue. They're indicative of unresolved, unhealed feelings of not being good enough for your friendship. This summer I wrote about my birthmark, and about my need simply to accept myself. When I wrote that post, I felt that I had made some real progress in this area. As I consider now my hesitancy to show you pictures of my house, I think that perhaps the same old issues of insecurity are still at work.

Why am I telling you this? Mainly because I want to keep this blog as a place where I am open and honest. It would be quite easy for me to say that the rest of the house was a mess when I took the pictures of the rooms for the home tour (which is true). It's a little more difficult for me to admit that my heart was a mess, but that's the truth of the matter.

I want you all to know that Imparting Grace is a messy place. If you have insecurities, come right in. If you sometimes feel unsure of the love of God and other people, make yourself at home. If you're afraid of being rejected because of some external circumstance, sit here with me.

We'll take off our masks together and share some grace with one another.


  1. I feel very comfortable at Imparting Grace because I think that you "get it" and know the TRUTH of what's important. Yes, we all need a daily dose of grace and mercy; yes, we all struggle with the "what if they saw the REAL me syndrome".....yes, we all cower in fear of rejection, but it is so refreshing to know that the playing field is not about ME. It is really about inspiring one another (Heb. 10:24-25) and encouraging one another towards the things that REALLY matter. All the rest is fluff, and sometimes I lack fluff!!! but I do enjoy seeing everybody's elses projects, diy stuff, and such. There ARE times when I decide I need to unplug and limit the input either of things I am starting to envy or limit the amount of stuff I can really focus on. Anyway, all of this to say that I appreciate your honesty and transparency! Thanks for sharing!


  2. Richella,
    I love your blog and your honesty. You can share as much or as little as you want with us. You have a beautiful spirit, and that is what shines through your blog. God has blessed you with a beautiful house because He loves to give good things to His children. But I KNOW that you would still love Him and praise Him if you had nothing.
    "Every good and perfect gift comes from God." James 1:17
    Thank you for being real and transparent.
    God bless you, friend,

  3. I do understand what you are saying. There are magnificent and not so much in blogland, I think the important thing is to appreciate and be grateful for what the Lord has given us no matter what it is and to take inspiration from everyone. Sharing is a gift, and a gift is always a treasure. Your blog is truly a gift. Hugs, Marty

  4. I hesitate to post about projects and things around my house sometimes for the same reason, Richella. Sometimes the things I make or do just don't feel "good enough". Ironic, I know, considering the name of my blog!

    Be encouraged in this: I love the glimpses of your *real* life that you share. Bloggers who show only the best of themselves, only their greatest successes, only their cleanest, prettiest, shiniest, most perfect rooms and selves make me feel that I, as a reader, am being kept at a distance. In some cases that's okay, but the blogs I really love reading are those where the writers are brave enough to let me see that they are as imperfect as I am.

    Share what feels right to share. I (and I'd venture a guess that your other readers) love you all the more for it. :)

  5. You truly have amazing Grace and I'm so glad I've happend upon Imparting Grace.

    Like you, I've often struggle with the same issues..YET...God has made you who you are...he loves you and it's eveident in the spirit I sense as I read your blog.

    A true friend...looks at the heart...NOT at the outward. So know that regardless of the type of home you live in, or the type of DIY things you are special and unique...and are God's child and he LOVES you!


  6. I think all of us struggle with that exact thing on some level.

    We either think we are too much, or not enough. Or both.

    I heart you, girl! Preach it!

  7. Just like your birthmark story touched me (way back in the summer), this one touched my heart also. I AM THERE! I photograph corners or carefully cleaned rooms, but not when the laundry is knee deep. Amazing, huh? Yeah, we're all imperfect. I just try to focus on the little things, which means a lot of times I miss out on the bigger picture.

    There you go again, teaching me a lesson!

  8. Wow. This post had to be hard to write. It perforated that part of me that needed lancing in order to pour out some insecurities of my very own. I struggle with so many insecurites of my own and love coming here to a refreshing and grace filled cyber home.

    I now know that my instincts of liking you were right on the money. I'll be coming back again and again.

    I like you -- and like the velveteen rabbit --- I find you very lovable and real.

  9. I love coming here, and I love your house, and if it was a total mess (which you seem to think it is) I wouldn't care, because what I love about it is that YOU are there. YOU, who I've never met but who I know would be a great friend and neighbor if I knew you in 'the real world' :-)
    If you only knew how insecure I feel and how much I worry that bloggy 'friends' don't really like me or care about me, because.... well, because if they really liked me I'd get lots of comments! Ha, now there's honesty for you ;-)
    And that's all I'm gonna say about that!
    sending big hugs

  10. Oh sweet friend - we come because we love you, and all that you stand for, and yes, I still love you even when I saw that amazingly gorgeous house, because the Lord has blessed you.
    Take off that know that's what I just wrote about today...we love it here.

  11. I just got caught up on your last few posts. Let me say that your house is just beautiful. Beautiful! Let me also say that I too have recently had a "heart relapse," some ugly that I thought was long gone and then it reared its head out of nowhere. How I can relate to everything you wrote! And don't even get me started on my people-pleasing ways and how all that finds its way into blogosphere.

    Your honesty always makes me feel right at home.

  12. I think your feelings are shared by many others, including myself. The messes are more common than anything around our house!! And rejection is a fear we all face. I'm glad to know we can face that fear together! :)

  13. Wow! I am so glad I found you! I love your blog and your home!
    I agree completely with your post. We have been blessed with a wonderful home that I am so thankful to have. We moved to Chicagoland almost 2 years ago. We quickly became involved in our church and I found a great group of friends in a moms group.
    So many times I have been told, "I can't invite you to my house now because yours is to clean/big/decorated/organized." Once I was even told "I wouldn't have been your friend if I knew your house was like this". Seriously.
    I don't think people realize how those comments sting.
    The funniest thing is I don't even have drapery rods on any of my windows. I just hang raw fabric using rings and push pins. I have two chairs in my living room that are 30 years old. My living room rug is from TJ Maxx. It isn't as if my home is completely furnished by Ethan Allen's decorators.
    Oh well. We can't control others. ;-)
    Thanks for being willing to share. Continue to share your is BEAUTIFUL!!!!

  14. Somehow I missed this post...
    I think your sweet, loving spirit and joy in the Lord shine through on your blog. Your home looks comfortable and welcoming... not fussy and unapproachable. It is encouraging to see a sister blessed!!! You are special and wonderful, and so is your blog. Blessings!

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