Wednesday, April 12, 2017

When Jesus hijacks your life -- LET HIM!!!

First off, I will be honest in sharing that Jesus didn't just change my plans HE KILLED'EM!! All of them!
In fact, when I asked Him which of my plans I could hold on to He said "nothing but Me."

For several years I fought against Him but I always lost and today... I'm SO glad because I didn't know how much He wanted to bless me.

Take my advice and save yourself the headache and heartache: 

I was raised to be very analytical and so I set a lot of goals for myself. Anything that strayed from the target was quickly eradicated.
You ever meet those kids that know exactly what they want to do when they're older? That was me.

As a young girl I had literally planned out my whole life by the time I was 14.
I knew exactly what I wanted to do, how I was going to do it and even with so many odds against me, when I turned 21... I was done.

My plan was simple -- travel the world.

Of course, I never planned on meeting Jesus... 

At twenty I had accomplished the very things I had planned on since childhood and I was still miserable. 
The people who were actively in my life were good to me and I was still miserable.
I wasn't tied down to the responsibilities of kids or marriage nor did I desire it and I was still miserable. 
I had more money and materialistic crap than I've ever had or wanted and I was still miserable.
I had my own apartment (which was uncommon for first year stewardesses) but I was traveling and staying in 5-star hotels and I was still miserable. 
I could travel anywhere in the world dirt cheap but I was still miserable.

By the world's standards, my life as a young woman looked perfect.
With all the obstacles that I had broken through to get to where I was at I should have been happy but I was miserable and extremely suicidal. I already wrote about my salvation day here.

Anyways, when I first accepted Jesus into my life I had no idea what it entailed. I figured that I'd try Him out and see what happens. If I didn't like Him then I would just leave. I had nothing to lose. Right??

 But at the end of the day, I didn't care because I couldn't get away from Him. I had fallen in love with His presence. 
When I was obedient to His promptings... He was very near
 Likewise, when I was disobedient He stepped away and waited for me to come back to Him. I knew when He was near and when He was absent.
When I was told that accepting Jesus was accepting an actual PERSON into my life I didn't understand but I forged ahead anyways and I lost EVERYTHING that "I believed" was important to me.
  •  The plans that I thought I wanted was exchanged for Jesus's presence, plans, and purpose for me.
  • The toxic people I thought I couldn't live without has been replaced with people who are safe to entrust with my heart and that of my children.
  • The shameful habits I thought I needed in order to feel fulfilled has Jesus walking with me as I seek hope and healing in community with His people.
  • The isolation I thought that kept me safe but in reality was keeping me hostage has been filled with people that love me and my children.
  • The marriage I never wanted gave me my very first best friend ever. He's so gracious to me it's ridiculous.
  • The children I never wanted teach me EVERY SINGLE DAY about the LOVE, MERCY, and GRACE of the God that calls me His.
I would NEVER have imagined my life the way it is today. Never.

"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." ~ Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, April 10, 2017

God, I forgive You. I don't want to be angry anymore.

It has taken me years to come to a place where I can finally say "God, I forgive You" and then really thank Him for giving me EVERYTHING I received in my life.

 Both the good and the evil.

I know that it sounds arrogant for a mere mortal to say such a thing about forgiving God and I've been rebuked by the churched for even implying that I was mad at Him but I believe that many people with childhood wounds, like mine, need to know that GOD IS SORRY for the evil that they've had to endure.
It was NEVER His intention for us to get hurt. I, for one, needed to know that He cares.

It is painful when children suffer at the hands of the adults in their lives and no one takes notice nor cares and then brushes off the lose of their childhood as "part of life" and that they should just "grow up and get over it." Especially when that lose includes sexual abuse.

For me, I would have rather been killed. Out of all the abuse I endured sexual abuse hollowed me out.
I learned to feel nothing. I hated being touched. I kept people at a distance and to this day I still do but God is working on me. And I am willing.
I want to feel my emotions the way they were intended to be felt.

I remember the first time that God wanted me to look at my past and I absolutely refused. He waited. Several months would go by and as I got to know Him a little better, He would point back to my past and I would get mad at Him and refuse. He waited.
A couple years went by and our relationship had really blossomed into a great friendship and then again He pointed me to my past and I finally lashed out at Him but in the middle of my fury He gave me a vision and said three words that stopped my hate dead in it's track:


He weeps for us.
Honestly, I was so shocked to hear it that I asked Him "wait, what?" and He said it again. I became undone.
I cried for what felt like forever as He spoke His love over me and His promise of protection.

I didn't realize that I was serving a God that cared about healing my past wounds. I didn't know that our relationship had become so intimate that He would apologize to His own creation. Nor did I think that something like that was even possible.

I had been reading the Bible and Jesus spoke of having that sort of intimacy with God if we surrendered our lives to Him but I didn't believe it until then. Which is a good thing because in the following year, 2016, my past punched me so hard in the face that if God had not worked with me earlier I would have been crushed by the weight of it's darkness.

When the news of my nieces and nephews sexual abuse reached me I lost my mind long enough for God to step in and remind me that He had me exactly where I needed to be.  
His timing was at work and He had full control of the situation. I just needed to trust Him. He had a plan and purpose.

Where did I fit into His plan??

Last week I sat down and had a serious heart to heart with the woman that raised me. The woman that I highly admired but also the same woman who had caused me so much pain and suffering.
We had not seen each other in almost a decade and we last spoke on the day my dad passed away, almost two years ago.
When I saw her and said "hi mom" I was reminded that this woman was everything I ever wanted to be in life. When I think of the word "strong" I think of her. Actually, anyone who has ever known my mother has described her as strong. She always said whatever she wanted to say and she didn't care who she offended. She was fierce. Both her and my father together were a fearless duo.

Speaking to her last week about my past and the pain that sexual abuse had caused me and our family was rough BUT it needed to be said. Listening to her responses was disappointing but it made me realize that God had orchestrated our meeting in His perfect timing. He had prepared me for this day.

The thought of speaking to my mom always caused me a great deal of anxiety because I always felt like I was a pauper speaking to the queen BUT on that day God reminded me of who I was in Him and He gave me the strength to not only speak His truth to her but He also strengthened me to love her in her brokenness.

In the end I was able to tell her that I had forgiven her for everything from my past and that I have forgiven the family as well and that if they wanted to ostracize my children and I from the family I was okay with it and I forgive them for that too.

Hate and unforgiveness is too heavy a burden for me and my children to carry.

I'm done being angry!!!

"Unless the Lord had been my help,
My soul would soon have settled in silence. If I say, “My foot slips,”
Your mercy, O Lord, will hold me up. In the multitude of my anxieties within me,
Your comforts delight my soul."~ Psalm 94:17-19