This in essence is my goal. To set an example by doing what is good. If I live openly and honestly, I set an example of virtue, humanness, restoration, and healing. I give others permission to join me on my journey despite the fear of failure or the rejection it might elicit when they know they are not alone in their experience. The more of us who amass the courage to embark openly on this path, the more normal this experience becomes, effectively eliminating the tactic of shame and isolation that the enemy so often uses to cause us to falter.
[I]f the name of wife appears more sacred and more valid, sweeter to me is ever the word friend, or, if thou be not ashamed, concubine ... And thou thyself wert not wholly unmindful of that ... [as in ] thou hast not disdained to set forth sundry reasons by which I tried to dissuade thee from our marriage, from an ill-starred bed; but wert silent as to many, in which I preferred love to wedlock, freedom to a bond. I call God to witness, if Augustus, ruling over the whole world, were to deem me worthy of the honour of marriage, and to confirm the whole world to me, to be ruled by me forever, dearer to me and of greater dignity would it seem to be called thy concubine than his empress.
(You do not have to be shamed in my closeness. Family are the people who must never make you feel ashamed.)(You are wrong. Family are the people who must make you feel ashamed when you are deserving of shame.)(And you are deserving of shame?)(I am. I am trying to tell you.) 'We were stupid,' he said, 'because we believed in things.''Why is this stupid?''Because there are not things to believe in.'(Love?)(There is no love. Only the end of love.)(Goodness?)(Do not be a fool.)(God?)(If God exists, He is not to be believed in.)