“Hello There. My name is Gillian Joy Titus and I am a 24 year old woman with a pretty basic love for Father God. I spend my days walking through life without fear because I have everything under control. I never worry about the days ahead because I am a woman of character, noble and wise. I know exactly where I am heading in life. I have no insecurities and hardly any short comings. I never ever make mistakes. I have got it all together. My acquaintances have a perfect view of my life, I am transparent. Thos around me are intrigued by my poise and fluidity because every pastor’s daughter should meet these standards. Heaven forbid I step out of line and do what is not expected of me. Oh no, not me, not Gillian. I will oblige to the requirements set by you, and dance to your music as you have requested.
Oh have I mentioned that I am so pleased with my self-image. I never get discouraged or intimidated by the women around me. I am self-assured. I am confident that everything looks well and fits well and is pleasing even to my own eyes. If anything is ever wrong ill hide it and hide it well because I should not show weakness. Oh no I am a woman, a pastor’s daughter; I need to keep it together. I cannot fail you. .
The woman above is a stranger to me now, and I am so grateful and so unashamed of the alteration that took place in my life. I think of it as the box we are all forced to fit into as women. I find it funny now, how we have been conditioned to eat up everything dished out for us because “they” said, do this, don’t do that, or be this and be that. I want you to know that this is who I was pretending to be, who I really wanted to be for fear of failure and this is who I was too scared to let go of because I had known nothing else about Gillian, except that there was a mark I kept missing and trying to smear it with what others wanted for me made my edges blunt and I felt dull. And so from a place of pure desperation I cried before father God for any way out of the miserable mirage I had been surrounded by. Everything was real, even the misery, only I was the fake one.
I used to think that God answered our prayers only when the answers suited us but then I found that in my cry for help, father God had been talking to me all this time and I heard but never listened until I really needed him more than an evening good night prayer or a Sunday preach. I listened, and finally I had no choice but to yield to obedience. I knew father spoke to me about change and I took it into the caverns of my heart and sought after the most brutal of the lot, what was my flesh saying to me that collided with my spirit daily? This very thing right here, flesh and spirit collision. And so I decided to be reckless with my faith and take what I thought was my beauty and value and trade it in for complete abandonment of my flesh and my wants and my desires, I listened and I felt peace insurmountable and I prepared my heart for months and then I finally sat down one evening to have my head shaved for what you may never truly understand, but was in effect the very thing that changed my entire life for the rest of my life.
I had a plan. I would be okay because I could rely on hats and scarves and earrings that I adored but no one could possibly prepare you for the feeling of vulnerability that would escalate further than hope every single day. I quickly recognized how confused I was by this because I had peace, such sincere joy in my heart but so many questions. I want to be completely honest with you, I waited for the moment where I would be completely healed and restored and set free from my tiny box, and I literally waited for this every day. I would reflect on the months gone by and count the centimeters of hair that would grow and still I felt exposed and under microscopic view because I had nothing to hide behind anymore. The more I wondered about this prophetic change I had pursued the smaller I felt every day. So ironic because I am not the tiniest girl around. I began to harbor feelings of frustration in my heart but since I had relinquished control to father I always felt the severe urgency to call on his name as quickly as I would gasp for my next breath. Again I listened and father spoke to me about change. I waited for this big explosion of an answer when I found myself screaming “but father, what good is my prophetic move if nothing moved in me?” and with the stillness that only father God can answer you with, he answered me. Change. I changed, it was the hardest thing I ever had to do but Father lead me and carried me, he never let go of my hand. I stopped looking for affirmation in the mirror because I felt like less of a woman without tresses of hair falling down my back, or because I wasn’t skinny as the girls in my circle or because my life did not resemble those in my age group. I changed. I found a love for myself that was not encouraged by what I looked like on any given day, I loved what I knew was implanted in me by father, growing and being fed by Holy Spirit just as often as I needed food for my flesh.
I acknowledged how tiny the world seemed to me because I am a large girl with large feet and a large nose and large cheeks and large build. I changed. I found a love for friendship, becoming and finding a good friend, I desired to be teachable and absorbent, ahh father was pouring out newness over me and I was soaking it up. The better days of my change only took shape near the end of the first year, I spent quite a large chunk of my life asking more questions than trusting father God but I never felt his absence, he never let me go he never let me be who I was, he allowed me to fight with him and be a child and he let me sit in stillness with him finding Gillian together with him. He showed me who this woman is who he loves and even though I could never really comprehend such a relentless love I am so grateful, so so grateful. This is the truth, my heart is spilling gratitude and I am so overjoyed at the thought of father taking me into the depths that he has kept hidden and safe and special for me. Even writing this has soothed me so sweetly, to know in this moment and every moment still, that I am so loved by father and so flawed but so forgiven. To know that my life is not just in him now and for eternity but that he is my life and life is HIM and with HIM and about HIM and FOR HIM.
So I trimmed the split ends of my life. I chopped of the dead weight and I decided to start again and today 1 year later I really love the new growth. The new growth in my walk with God, my love for him, my friendships, my family, my dreams and my role in ministry, my love, my passion for love, my passion for life, the adventures that lie ahead and the sparkling future that’s waiting for me. I really really love the new growth.
If you enjoyed or feel inspired by Gill’s Testimony do click HERE