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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

Privacy, Please

Many times we hide behind the door of privacy because we're afraid of being vulnerable and allowing others to see us as we truly are. Does this really protect us, or does it push others away?

What goes through our minds when we see a “private” or “privacy” sign posted? Doesn’t it make us wonder what’s behind it? Is it important? Is it dangerous? Why does it need protecting from the eyes of others? When we ourselves hang the privacy sign on our door, such as at a hotel, we are essentially saying we don’t want to be disturbed. It could be for a variety of reasons: we’re resting, showering, watching television, or just enjoying some peace and quiet. This sign tells passers-by that we don’t want them to come inside.

I don’t know about you, but I cherish my privacy. I don’t post much on social media and what I do share is pretty broad and not real personal in nature. Although I enjoy the company of a lot of friends, only a handful are close enough to know the intimate details of my life. As I started writing this, it caused me to evaluate myself and think of why I like my privacy so much and why it is so important not to allow others in my space, especially when I feel it’s not perfect. I came up with several things. Ultimately, at the bottom of every reason sat one common factor: fear. Fear that they might judge me. Fear that they might not accept me. Fear of being embarrassed if they saw that I don’t have it all together. Fear that they might walk away if they knew the mistakes I’ve made and the list goes on.

Fear is debilitating and can keep us from accomplishing great things, from meeting great people and from living a great life. It cripples us from taking steps that might lead to a significant achievement; it silences our voice that could bring positive change to someone’s situation. The Bible says that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. So by this, we know fear is not of God and it is by no means our friend. Fear is not only an enemy, but an imposter. It has the ability to disguise itself as a friend and an ally. It makes us believe that by not being vulnerable, by not allowing others to come inside, we are protecting ourselves. But are we really?

A little side story …. I enjoy having a clean home, as I’m sure most of us do. Those that are close to me know that Saturday mornings are reserved for cleaning before I do anything else. There have been times when friends or family came by before the house cleaning was completed, and everything on the inside of me wished I could have hung a “Privacy, please” sign on my front door. I would proceed to apologize to my guests for the house. I have since come to realize that I wasn’t really apologizing for my house not being clean, but that it wasn’t PERFECT. I used to believe perfectionism was a great trait to have because it meant I wanted things done well and for it to be the very best. I began to see (at least in my own life) that perfectionism is many times a symptom of and/or motivated by fear and is meant to keep people away. Let’s look at just this one example of having a perfectly clean home, and when I say perfectly clean, I’m talking about magazine-ready clean. Hiding behind this private door of perfectionism lurked the enemy of fear, for all the reasons mentioned earlier – they might judge me, they might not accept me, etc. When the house wasn’t ‘perfect’ I didn’t like people dropping in, I didn’t invite people over, and I didn’t allow myself to leave the house and enjoy the day until it was done. May I be honest here? Most of the time my house isn’t perfect! I work a full-time job, a part-time job, serve in ministry and write a blog. How could I even expect to pull something like that off?! But because I hung the invisible privacy sign on my door, I isolated myself from the joys of life and experiences with those I love and care about most. Fear, the imposter, wasn’t protecting me but secluding me instead.

I still enjoy a clean home, but it doesn’t rule my life like it used to. My mom may disagree with me here, but I really have gotten better! Just ask me out for coffee on a Saturday morning and find out for yourself!

In all seriousness, I encourage you today to take an honest look at the privacy signs you may be holding up. If you just need some peace and quiet, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. But if you find there’s an imposter in your midst, remove the sign and open the door! Let others, and especially God, come inside. He always accepts us just as we are, dirty house and all.


2 Timothy 1:7 (ESV) – “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”

Proverbs 29:25 (ESV) – “The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.”

Psalm 56:3-4 (ESV) – “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?”



Lord, I ask that You help me to recognize when I display the “privacy sign” as a cover up to the real issue of fear. Your word tells me You have not given me the spirit of fear, but of power. Help me to use that power to expose and overcome the enemy and walk in victory.


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