Rena’s story inspires me to reveal mine.
My story is one older than the hills or even mountains. As a little kid I was cute. [I’ve got pics]. I lived in a home with a loving, church-going family. I was safe and secure and lovingly tended. However, when I started school as a little kid, I had a huge come-uppance. [See? That term dates me, for sure]. From a warm and nurturing home-life to a classroom of pretty and cute boys & girls came this well-fed, chubby little girl with a mop of fuzzy hair and a funny last name. Well! They were not going to put up with that! So they made fun, teased and generally shunned me. One guy, who was older than I was, would hide behind a tree on the way home and when I passed by would chase chubby little me.
I tried to make friends…and because we all went to Catholic school, they pretended to accept me into girlie circles, scouts, etc. But…like the proverb…I was always the last one to be chosen for a team, for a game, for the softball, volley ball, field hockey [remember that?] team. Yep. REJECTION! If I could make this typewriter shiver & shake I would write the word “REJECTION” in blood curdling strokes.
When party plans were made with my “friends” my suggestions were ignored. I’ll never forget that one incident in my preteens when we had planned a party [there were always parties to extend my sufferings.]. I always went expecting a different outcome and the outcome was always the same….some incident of rejection. Sister Grandma created an outfit for me to wear which included a long skirt [instead of cuffed blue jeans & shirt]. She said that I looked nice in that outfit and my “friends’ would think so, too! Hah! They laughed at me, insulted me and scolded me for NOT being like the others. Tears of REJECTION.
I was always striving to be accepted. You know what that means in the world. Trying to please people so that they would like me. Terrible thought, now. One would do most anything [within some reason] to please so I that would be accepted. Though these are just examples of my lot in my youth…[it seemed that it lasted for an eternity] it left an almost indelible wound in my heart. Striving, striving to be loved. Striving to be prettier, smarter, more skilled, more competitive to prove that I was worthy of someone’s…..anyone’s attention, respect, even admiration! I took that into the workplace at school. It was like my mantra. What a burden!
My divorce sort of clinched it. That’s it! Then I became like a wild woman. Lowering my ‘Catholic’ standards that were somewhere etched in my being….but ignored, I reasoned my way into many compromising situations which were more painful to my conscience than the REJECTION I was trying to run from.
Paul said it best. ‘OH wretched woman that I am. Who will deliver me from this burden of sin, pain, rejection? Thank God He will’ However, not so fast, lady. When Christ came into my life it was like a huge burden was lifted….I fell in love with a glorious God/Man Who had taken all my stupid sins and thrown them into the sea of His forgetfulness. And….And…He accepted me!! Oh God! What a concept. And for awhile it was so! My real first, First-Love. JESUS CHRIST. I wrote love songs to Jesus. I consecrated my craft to Him. I wrote songs of praise, songs to the words of the psalms…I wanted to be a ‘VESSEL UNTO HONOR’. My first song to Jesus. I would get up early, early to read the Word of God. I was amazed. As a Catholic we did not read the Bible except for the Gospels and Epistles. But Oh Lord! This was life changing. I remember sitting on the bed and saying out loud to myself….Where did this magnificent treasure come from? It was too good to be true. He was here all the time and I never knew even it. [Gen. 28:16]
But the dregs of the results of sin still remain and so the sin that so easily besets us reared its ugly head and like a “silly woman” that is described in 2Tim. 3:6, still immature in the Lord [excuse] and able to allow myself to be deceived [excuse] I was on the brink of a spiritual calamity, to be sure. It was getting darker and darker and I was in a horrid situation as the plot for my spiritual downfall was progressing rapidly. And I did not know how to get out of it.
But God did. One eventful night during a Bible study in a private home, God sent His prophet to skillfully and tenderly extricate me from this hellish situation. I was carefully drawn away and with teaching and admonition and rebuke and deliverance I finally fled from there.
I thank God for His deliverance from evil. I still must be careful each and every day for I still mess up, sin in word and or deed when I don’t discern the will of God and act on my own even… after all these years and all this teaching and all the prophecies. Thank God He forgives when we confess our sins and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness. But the results still remain. Those cannot be erased but must be accounted for. That’s why Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to help us NOT do those things for which we will be shamefaced before the Judge of all the earth, Jesus Christ.
If I keep that in mind…that I must stand before the Judge of all the earth Whom I love and will have to face Him and account for all I say and do and THINK, then my story will have a happy ending. That thought must govern my life, in Jesus’ Name.