Life can be brutal

I *had* a different blog post planned today. But, a loss this week drove me to write this instead. As always, thank you for reading. 

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I remember hearing a saying growing up. You probably heard a version of it, but not likely this:

When it rains, it pours. And when it pours, we drown

Being a Christian makes life no easier than being a non-Christian. And to be frank, sometimes being a Christian can actually make it harder. When it all comes down to bare bones, I am just a human. I have losses, heart ache, bad days, aggravations, and sorrow.

Along comes a Song

Know this: Music is a part of my wiring. Somewhere amongst the DNA GOD wove me together with, are quarter notes and stanzas.

When I hurt most, I find myself baptizing myself in music. Often, the lyrics and melodies GOD will use to grant seeds of peace and hope in my hurt.

So, here I am. Broken again. Feeling utterly overwhelmed by circumstances that I cannot see escape from.

This song has been on repeat for a few days now. May GOD use it to impart seeds of peace and hope in your heart. Click the link below to listen to it on youtube.

Remember Me, JESUS

 

 

 

Contending with The Past

Sorry for the delay in posts. WordPress issues and work have hindered my regular posts. This post was intended to be published on Sunday, July 16th

The Opponent 

As Superman fights Lex Luger or any good guy fights the bad guy,  I have my arch enemy. She is a strong, loud dragon whose fangs could pierce concrete. Her name: The Past.

She lurks in the shadows of the night or in the loneliness of the crowd and whispers, ‘you are failure’. Mind you, she doesn’t whisper that I have failed but that in fact my failures define me.

In the last 7 years, I have been divorced twice, went through five jobs, moved three times, and went through two cars. Come on, that screams FAILURE. Yes, I hear you.

In the last 7 years, I have developed one incredibly unhealthy self-image. Worthless. Insignificant. Unwanted. And Yes, she has been winning. In seven years, I have actually grown to hate myself.

You have messed up too much. You will never be any good. You will never______ (fill in the blank). 

She is fiercely strong, and well armed with nearly four decades worth of mistake after mistake.

The Fight, so far

Flanked by anxiety and an incredibly unhealthy dating relationship, The Past has battered me dawn till dawn until I am shaking, crying, pleading for some comfort.

I’ve tried to wield a general hope and faith, finding myself instead weaponless. Again, The Past, she is a fierce enemy.

But Then, comes GRACE

I didn’t know Him when he walked onto the battle field. Small in stature, Grace walked up and placed His firm arm around me just when I thought I had lost for good.

At the beginning of 2017, GOD had gotten my attention. I found myself at the alter of the church, asking GOD to remove the relationship I was in if it wasn’t what HE wanted. And.. GOD did.

I won’t say it was painless. I cared about the guy, though the relationship was highly unhealthy and I ended up with my heart feeling burnt and reburned.

I had to be broken. I am one incredibly stubborn person (Irish-German, what a combination). And it took being financially striped bare, emotionally striped bare and finding myself at an all time high for reasons to absolutely HATE myself.. it took all of that for GOD to get me to see and feel HIS GRACE.

I finally knew GOD’s GRACE was there Mother’s Day of this year. I found myself celebrating my very first Mother’s Day without my sons. My mom, who I have a rocky relationship with, didn’t want to see me.

I found myself sitting and watching the sun come up that Sunday morning, feeling defeated by The Past. Just as tangible as the words on the screen before you, I heard and felt something spoken over me. “THIS ISN’T HOW IT ENDS”.

Speak, LORD, for Your servant listens

One of my favorite Old Testament stories is in 1 Kings Chapter 19.

“So HE said, “Go forth and stand on the mountain before the LORD.”
And behold, the LORD was passing by! And a great and strong wind was rending the mountains and breaking in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 

After the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire;
and after the fire a sound of a gentle blowing.” (1 Kinds 19:11-12)

It’s a reminder that GOD doesn’t always use the big or showy things to get our attention. Sometimes, HE just whispers.

I can remember when I was eight, we lived in an area that was prone to tornado activity. On one particular occasion, a tornado struck incredibly close to where we were. I panicked. I began to shake and cry and froze where I was. My Daddy kept trying to give me instructions on what to do, but I was paralyzed in fear. My Daddy, in his loving nature, knelt down in front of me and cupped my face in both of his hands. He didn’t scream. He whispered. And I calmed down.

EL ROI, OUR GOD WHO SEES, could have spoken to me on Mother’s Day in many ways. But HE knows HIS daughter full well. So HE whispered.

I’ve probably heard people say that it wasn’t over for me before that Sunday morning. But What GOD spoke over my heart that morning was slightly different. “THIS is not how it ends”.

GRACE and I versus The PAST

I wish I could say that every day since Mother’s day has been easy of that I have won my battle with the guilt and shame and worthlessness that The Past flings at me. I can’t, though. There are still days, or multiple moments through out a day that those thoughts might over come me.

And then there are days, that I grab GOD’s GRACE firmly in my hand and I walk in the victory I have in CHRIST JESUS.

There will likely be more hard days, but I pray daily (and sometimes hourly) for GOD to remind me that I fight not alone.

“for the LORD your GOD is the one who goes with you,
to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.” (Deuteronomy 20:4, NASB)

 

 

 

 

Struggle not alone

This is a follow up to my post earlier today.

Suicide is a real struggle, even for the Christian. Those who have not known the paralysis of anxiety or the thick weight of depression may not understand. Those dark thoughts do invade our mind, if left unguarded.

I beg you. If there is even one drop of a thought about taking your own life, seek help. The National Suicide prevention line is 24 hours a day & 7 days a week. Their phone # is 1-800-273-8255.

If not the National prevention line, talk to a Pastor or friend. Talk to someone. Suicide leaves a pain in the survivors often times far greater than that suffered by the one whom took their own life. 

Jesus has a purpose for you. Jesus used David, and he was a mess up too. There is hope for your future, and it can be found in Christ Jesus. 

The Necessity of Hard

As a newbie to bloglovin, a site that allows readers to subscribe to various blog on a plethera of topics, I have found a quite creative solace among the many pages. Much inspiration, Many challenges, and sometimes a good giggle to brighten my day is found.

Today, my feed included a post by the inspirational Ali Edwards (Read Post here). As I read it, I had to suck back the bitter taste of my own divorce 3 years ago. Not only was it an “unwanted divorce” (as Ali worded it), but it was also a farewell to many people in life. 

Ali, my story isn’t yours. Nor will my story be any others as it is mine & mine alone. But here is what I was inspired to write after reading your words
———————–

Dear Past,

For three long years I have avoided addressing you or talking about you. There was some part of me that reckoned that if I didn’t talk about you, the hurt would be less. However, with each day I have hurt more and a bit deeper. 

I want you to know that I have missed you and mourned for you. Through open tears and silent blanket sobs, I have replayed what we once shared. Given the chance, I would indeed do things much differently than I did. yet, the Tardis or any other method of time travel will never be available to me. It happened…there is no undoing that.

I also want you to know that I am doing okay these days. I’m crafting again, which has been therapeutic. I’ve surprised myself at how my relation to you and my relation to the present intermingle into much of my work. 

Sometimes I shine in success only to plunge into failures. You & I had those moments too. Only now I find I can do much more on my own. I have found that, yes, I am indeed stronger than I thought. Stronger than I was with you.

Sometimes I want to be alone in obscurity while other times I crave interaction. These three years have birthed me comfortable in my aloneness, knowing that I am never truly alone. Christ & the love of a few rare friends abide with me. 

Sometimes I find myself doing things I could never have imagined while other times I drone in the monotony that you & I once shared. I’m okay with both.

But always, always I miss you with a deep grieving. I would never have chosen the pain that severed us. I would never have chosen that pain for my sons or their father or myself. Though I often long for you, I am daily moving on. 

Thank You for being part of my life and who I am.