Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Little things...

Right now i'm plagued. I'm not plagued with big things, rather little things... a WHOLE bunch of little things. My own progress toward finding me has been postponed a week, and tomorrow i get back to the work of figuring out what i need to do to get back on track. But I'm aware that the regular everyday stuff is enough sometimes to derail an otherwise reasonably well life. I've been having facebook issues- I think the biggest issue of all is i've just been spending too much TIME on facebook, I think that's where God's been leading me with all this. But its bickering. And granted, i have a LOT of bickering already going on in my life so my tolerance level for bickering is probably quite a bit less than the average person. But the fact is- i'm NOT a "tough" person. I'm discovering I AM a "strong" person, Praise the LORD who created my gifts and sustains me, but watching my friends, often people I love tear each other to shreds tears ME to shreds emotionally. And i can't do it anymore. This, i realize, IS a good thing. The fact is, there has been so precious little of "me" to go around anyway- time is time, be it a few minutes here, and a few minutes there. And I think its a bigger issue too of "who" my friends are. As i was lamenting my concern about having idolatry issues toward money, on "the City" which is my church's version of facebook, sorta... I got several really kind, thoughtful responses. and the last one ended her reply with

" Love ya sister"

Ahhh.... what a beautiful thing to say, what a generous and kind, and wonderful ending to a thoughtful post. And the thing is- I believe her. I know where she finds this love for a person she only met a few months ago. I have a connection to that source, and it gives me the ability to love as well. But not as well as I'd like. I'd like to be one who loves excessively, lavishly, ridiculously. I'd love to be one who when hearing the phrase of the latest blog post by the amazing Ann Voscamp

(Which, by the way is a MUST READ. Do yourself a favor and read it.) I'd love to not have the response I have when I hear the title of her blog post- "when you've been wounded, cheated, disappointed, and heartbroken." I'd love for my mind to not immediately rush to a few select people: the man who took my innocence without a second thought, The woman who allowed it all to happen and never even ONCE even expressed that she was sorry, the boy at the beach who threatened me if i didn't show him what was under my swimsuit. The man that I trusted that led me down a path that I regret so greatly that I can barely look at him without wanting to burst into tears. And those are only the big things.... As my post title indicates, more than those are the little things.

The broken window by the developmentally delayed toddler who had an ear infection and his best response was to rage out- the CONSTANT financial burdens that threaten to bury me alive, the events whizzing past my head so fast that my sleep deprived "been up with a screaming or nursing toddler for 5 nights straight now" brain just can't compete.... I go through the day HOPING, just HOPING that i got my calendar straight, that I didn't miss one of the bazillion things that demands my attention. The people.... OH LORD, the people... WHY is it so darn hard to get along with PEOPLE? Why am I such a "people person" Sometimes I really wish i was an introvert so i could sink into my own world, my own happy little world, with pictures, and colorful adjectives, and pretty things. But that's not me. I know, i need to not wish away what God has so carefully created me to be. His knowledge is obviously far superior to my own. Maybe someday i'll fully appreciate who God has created me to be and LIKE her. But right now i'm not there. Being her really hurts. It just really hurts a lot. But i'll be ok. My daddy is the king. Someday all this crap will be a faint memory and my REAL life in my REAL home will be a reality.

I wish you all well, as i fight the urge to wish that day was NOW.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Is God JUST? Is God GOOD?

I saw a video on facebook recently, by Francis Chan, an author and brother in Christ that I very much admire. He was talking on the subject of hell: a heated subject no doubt, but he also bunny trailed off on to things in general that God does or said and suggested his opinion of how to deal with not understanding God's will. And it made me think, yet again about the "why's" WHY did i not win the ovarian lottery? WHY did i end up in a home where i'd be molested from toddlerhood, and the resultant effects that carry through even to adulthood- WHY?? I was innocent! i was a BABY. WHAT kind of God would put a BABY in those hands? (If you are not familiar with my story, please feel free to scroll down to the beginning of my blog, I posted my story there.)

I've struggled with this issue. It still is a struggle. And considering my history, i feel qualified to address this subject online. Because I believe that despite my experience God is good. Because my past is not the end of the story. Many (MOST people, if given the same circumstances as me would not be alive now. I KNOW that I did nothing to contribute to my own welfare during this time. In contrast, i have engaged in countless self destructive behaviors, drinking, drugs, sexual activity before marraige, i've attempted to eat myself to death, have completely disregarded my body. But God has been there for me. God swiftly propelled me out of the abusive situation I was living in, He directed me to an amazing man who loves me and cares for me, even when I behave badly toward him. He's provided me with 7 beautiful children who have become my cheerleaders. They know my history, they love me and support me. The family I always wanted- I HAVE! And its all because of HIM, the One who gave up His own son, for ME, and has never failed to show me that despite my unfortunate circumstances, I am HIS and He loves me and will NEVER leave me.

I pray and hope that what happened to me in my childhood will NOT be for nothing. I don't think its a coincidence that my gifts and talents are in the areas of writing and public speaking. I don't think its a coincidence that my personality is very people-based. I'm totally a people person, i love to relate to others, i love to hang out and talk and am friendly. I would love nothing more than for my gifts and talents to be able to be used to glorify HIM, to nurture and encourage some of the millions of people who have endured sexual assault. I have to believe that this can be turned around and used for good. And I do. I have faith, and more than that, i believe that God IS indeed good. I believe what He said in His word:

Romans 8:28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Deuteronomy 7:9
Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.

Psalm 31:23
Love the LORD, all his faithful people! The LORD preserves those who are true to him, but the proud he pays back in full.

Psalm 33:18
But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love

Psalm 103:11
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him;

That's just a few of the hits i got when searching "those who love Him" on Biblegateway.com. God's word is clear- He LOVES us, and just because we can only see a tiny bit of the picture, we don't know what our future holds- what miracles we will experience, what miracles we will witness, if we just keep persevering, even when its really really hard. That is my goal, and i KNOW that through HIS power alone, He can get me through this, and he can get YOU through whatever your struggles are as well. NOTHING is too big for Him- the creator of the world. Be encouraged! He's got it covered,
With Love,

Monday, May 9, 2011

a hiccup.

Well, things were going so well, something had to give.

Here's what happened. I've really been thriving having had this newfound revelation that i could not only HEAR but EMBRACE that I am a precious child of the most high God and my value exists in THAT not in what anyone thinks of me, not ANYONE, not Andy, not my mom... not anyone. And finally its "stuck" God just managed to communicate it to me in such a way that it was far more than just dry facts but real. That was good. And is good BUT, my newfound understanding of prayer as being as easy as talking to andy and frequent as i'd talk to any good friend is a new paradigm, and something i really need to get used to. I think that when you change really fast, you leave behind old habits and sometimes its hard to find new habits to replace them, so you fall back into old habits. Well, I realized yesterday at redemption group, when one of my leaders pointed out to me that it sounds like i'm back to "doing it all myself" which is kind of my default setting- stemming from a life where i've felt like no one was trustable but me. Its true, that's exactly what I was doing.

Another problem is that realizing, truly REALIZING that all the crap that came down on me when I was young was 100% undeserved, it was WRONG, and it was EVIL, and i've been very very angry about that. God is working on something with me, and giving me an outlet for that anger, that i'm not quite ready to talk about yet, but its coming. (don't worry, it doesn't involve anything illegal, ie. homocide) Its really the first time i've been really really ANGRY about myself. I've been angry about others hurt by this same person, and others hurt in general, but not so much me.

Well, that anger has translated itself into anger directed toward God. After all, he was THERE. He put me, a helpless baby into those hands that hurt me, and forever changed me, who I was, what my future opportunities would be, all of that, and He didn't have to. He could have acted supernaturally to get me out of there. But He didn't, and I don't know why. And someday I will, but I just don't have access to those answers right now. And if he was THAT unwilling to act then, how can I trust that HIS justice would be sufficient. Because i've been thinking a lot about justice lately, and i WANT IT. It has not escaped my attention that my perpetrator is walking around, free as a bird, living life like he's NOT a serial sex offender, which he IS. He has escaped justice at every turn. That is WRONG WRONG WRONG. I've fantasized about that little, insignificant man and how easily i could TAKE him down. I've thought about how it is NO FAIR that I had to live my life in this prison while he's free. And of all perversion, that God's justice said that MY sin, was just as bad as this monster's sin. I was entertaining these thoughts, all the while knowing that i was entering into a domain which was not mine to enter. I was denying the VALUE of the one who created the universe and me along with it. I was denying the value of the One in whom i find MY value. I was placing MYSELF as a god above Him, determining that I could make justice happen MYSELF.

Sigh.... How exactly does this happen anyway? I so know better. But the other wonderful leader in my group who loves me enough to be straight with me pointed this out. She showed me how truly, my sin IS as bad as that sorry excuse for a person who tried to destroy me. I created myself as an idol. She pointed out that the first step here needed to be repentance. I knew it anyway, without her saying, so i went straight home and holed up in my bedroom with my Bible, and went to the index in the back and looked up repentance, thinking it might be a good place to start and here's the first verse i turned to. Ezekiel 18

30 “Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign LORD. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. 31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign LORD. Repent and live!

Ouch! But true. Then i turned to Isaiah 30:15-18 and read

5 This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says:

“In repentance and rest is your salvation,
in quietness and trust is your strength,
but you would have none of it.
16 You said, ‘No, we will flee on horses.’
Therefore you will flee!
You said, ‘We will ride off on swift horses.’
Therefore your pursuers will be swift!
17 A thousand will flee
at the threat of one;
at the threat of five
you will all flee away,
till you are left
like a flagstaff on a mountaintop,
like a banner on a hill.”

18 Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you;
therefore he will rise up to show you compassion.
For the LORD is a God of justice.
Blessed are all who wait for him!

So how is that for the perfectly conveyed message by the one true God, the one who forgives me even for my atrocity, and lavished me with HIS amazing love. do you SEE all that's covered just in those last two sentences??? JUSTICE, how to be BLESSED, and what to do to make it happen- WAIT-

I think this is awe inspiring, so i will continue on, I will get up, brush the dirt off my behind and i will try again, with yet another second chance from my Lord.