Writing biographically has always been a challenge for me. I want to share enough of my traumas to lay down the pain, but it's my story, not the other players in those scenes. Because my childhood was painfully dysfunctional I have had to pray for years how to tell any of those stories and still give honor to my parents and others. After much work in prayer and counselling I have totally forgiven everyone. I haven't avoided revisiting those scenes; I don't sail down de Nile (denial) anymore. I honestly believe the pain I bore and bear were never intended toward me; some troubled adults got pushed (or were impaired by substances) to making decisions that ended up hurting me.
I have written in code in my journals for decades. I use a code because I never want anyone to be hurt by me writing out my prayers or journal entries that could be read by someone else. As I write here at Thrive Christians I will be careful to more fully spell out when I am writing in general or about me. Honoring and respecting others filters everything I do.
As I write this today I have to admit that God has trusted me with more betrayals from birth on than many people I meet. I learned about God trusting His children with tough situations from the Bible: Job, Joseph, Jesus, David, Daniel, Jeremiah, Leah...just to name a few. But a young beautiful talented woman named Gigi Taylor gave me my greatest lesson many years ago. Her mom, Frenchie, is the mentor I mention often on this blog.
Gigi and her husband have been committed Christians since their teens and nearly twenty years ago their first child was born with cerebral palsy (some complications during birth); and a year later their second child was born with even more severe cerebral palsy. This talented successful graphic artist committed her life to overseeing the construction of a home with a central elevator and design that would accommodate two wheelchairs rolling and a bath would that let her care for her youngest, Will. He amazed the doctors by living until he was twelve, but he could not see, talk, walk, feed himself or hold his head up without help.
Gigi and Doug knew God trusted them with these precious wonderful children. They considered it their honor. Their daughter is a genius and an incredibly talented singer. She is a college freshman with scholarships for excellence. I can only imagine what she will do in her life. Gigi became so frustrated with the issues of red tape in dealing with everything she had to do to care for the children that she wrote letters of complaint accompanied with possible solutions. She ended up being appointed a position by the governor and she led sessions to educate social workers, nurses, doctors, etc. on ways to better work with parents. She and her husband have counselled hundreds of parents to help them navigate the waters of red tape in medical, educational, and endless issues that go along with cerebral palsy children.
So.....I've got stuff, "issues" and I'll only tell you enough about them for you to believe I have first hand knowledge with loneliness, feeling abandoned, rejection, fear of losing it all, and wondering if it's all worth it. I personally sense that those are part of the human experience. But know that I agree with Gigi. When you did nothing to bring some great challenge into your life; know that God trusted you with it. He will actually use the situation to define you and make you eternally significant in the Kingdom of God.
Paul Billheimer's book, Don't Waste Your Sorrows, says "Why, God?" has been asked by Christians from all levels of spiritual maturity throughout history. It is not the mere presence of suffering but how a Christian reacts to it which determines one's spiritual growth through sorrow and pain.
I know this post is long.....sorry. I'm full and want to write. Yesterday a Jewish friend who I love dearly shared with me that this year during their high holy days he honestly laid his whole life before God in relinquishment more fully than he has ever done before. Ever since that day life has been more difficult. I don't think I offered him any relief. I'm convinced we think this thriving life is about being happy and getting our way. I believe we're here for far more eternally significant reasons.
I recently purchased a tag for my car with In God We Trust on it instead of the typical SC car tag. I've never had a Christian symbol on my car before because I didn't want my car to be less than a great witness. I figured my driving, or it being dirty would be a poor image for Christianity. But I live by that slogan and today I want to encourage everyone who has read this far (wow...I'm impressed if you're still with me) that nothing is too big for God. He can be trusted; I don't know about anyone else, but He can be trusted.