Emotional Roadblock

Yeeyum is turning three. Another mother would be happy about it. Another mother would be proud. I am neither. And I am torn.

When Cupcake turned three, she had a three month old baby to fuss over and love. If not for the Incident, Yeeyum would have an eleven or almost twelve month old shadow trying in vain to keep up with his older brother. But he doesn’t.

I cried myself to sleep last night. I’ve spent the day stifling my emotions and saving face, because I’ve been shopping with my mother for the birthday. I can’t explain that I’m sad about a baby who doesn’t exist in front of a child who does. It’s not right.

When I was sixteen, my mother and I shared a car. I would drop her off at work and head to school. When school was over, I’d pick her up. One day, as I approached the same road that my house was on, I thought, I should drop off my backpack. Then I thought, That’s silly. I’m going to drop off my backpack, get back in the car, and go get mom? I should just keep going. Even as I drove past the road, I felt like I should go, but I ignored it. I ended up getting hit by a car full of drug impaired people who had just bought drugs from someone. I was hit across three lanes of traffic. Two cars hit me before I ended up hitting a car in a parking lot. The wrecker who got my car gave my parents his condolences. When my parents told him I was alive, he could hardly believe it. The entire car was smashed. The back end of the car was occupying the back seat. I thought, God kept me alive for a reason.

Now I don’t know.

Am I making a difference? Have I helped anyone? I have no idea.

But that is not for me to know this side of heaven, is it?

All I know is the solitary thing keeping me from coming completely unglued is the knowledge that God loves me completely, deeply, unconditionally, and unfathomably. The love for me that led Jesus to die on the cross is still in effect. Even when I am fighting against the riptide of sadness.

Thirsty Thursday: Socially Acceptable Sin

Sexual sin as a whole used to be social taboo in puritanical North America. Unwed mothers used to give their babies up for adoption, leave them on doorsteps of churches, or have their families raise them as a sibling. Marital infidelity was something shameful and if such a behavior were found out, it would cost the adulterer their job or their position or even an election as a political official. Homosexuality was seen as perversion. No one would admit to being homosexual and if they did, a person could be arrested or worse. All manners of sexual sin are socially acceptable today. The only two I can think of that are not socially acceptable are bestiality and incest.

My sin is socially acceptable. No one can see or hear my thoughts. Because of this, I am perceived as a “perfect person.” As a “model citizen” no one is going to point their fingers at me or wave signs of hatred in my face. My doubts and my fears go under the human radar, but blip loudly on God’s.

All sin is unacceptable to God.

ALL sin.

That is why Jesus had to die for us. God cannot associate with sin. So when you’re sitting over there lusting at the girl behind the counter, God sees it. When you think mean things about a family member, God hears it. When you break the laws of the land by surpassing the number on the speed limit sign, He knows. And it hurts Him. Having sex with your boyfriend is practically encouraged in American society, but you are disobeying God and breaking His heart. Only Jesus can wash your sin away.

Jesus has washed my sin away, and I ask for forgiveness when I stumble. I ask for forgiveness when I am not faithful. He is just to forgive me every single time. Have you asked Him to wash your sins away? He can even take your socially acceptable sin.

Loving Losers, Users, and Substance Abusers (Like Jesus)

Disclaimer: This is not about being in a romantic relationship with a loser, user, or substance abuser. My Hunny is a wonderful, God loving person who gives freely and generously and not out of abundance. 

If I recounted the entire spectacle this person, who’ll be referred to as Loser, has been in our life, you’d be reading this blog post for days. Loser is not a family member or someone we have known more than a couple of years. I’ll tidy it up with some brief lowlights: Loser repeatedly borrowed money from Hunny before we were aware of their substance abuse issue, Loser attempted to manipulate me into agreeing with a situation that Hunny had already established would not happen, Loser called collect from rehab to be collected from the facility, acquaintances have called Hunny asking why Loser would not stop calling them after loaning Loser money, and Loser attempted to take money from a nonprofit organization.

At one of these points, I completely broke. The event transpired on the same day as Cupcake’s birthday party. I roamed the grocery store in search of chicken nuggets,  carrying her cookie cake and forcing the sobs to remain inside my throat. As I attempted to hide my red, swollen, tear soaked face in the self-checkout aisle, I felt every eye turn as the cash register rejected my payment. The cold computerized voice shouted, “Get assistance.” Unable to control the tears as well as the sounds fighting to accompany them, I felt what everyone was thinking, How could someone so beautiful be so sad? My thought was, Is there any way I can rid the Loser from my life? Logistically, it can’t be done. My next thought was, How would Jesus treat this situation? (It is embarrassing to admit that my first inclination was not to emulate my Lord and Saviour, but I am growing and I have more growing to do! Obviously.) I returned to the final meal Jesus would share on earth before heading to the cross. The final holiday He would celebrate this side of heaven. Jesus revealed to His disciples that one of them would betray Him and quite literally sell Him out. Everyone asked if they would be the one. No one suspected the culprit was Judas Iscariot. Why? Jesus loved them all. He treated them with kindness. Jesus knew Judas was the one, but He did not treat him differently than the others. He didn’t make snide comments about him, he didn’t ignore him at the dinner table, He didn’t purposefully avoid talking to him, and He didn’t make him take the hard and unwanted jobs. Jesus did not single Judas out. Getting back to Loser. Would Jesus avoid him? No. Would Jesus try to make him feel guilty or bad for what he had done through words and actions? No. Would Jesus lend him money? I seriously doubt it. Jesus would be loving toward Loser. He would meet Loser’s physical needs: bring food, be available to talk, give rides to court dates, help connect them with help/counseling/accountability partner or group/job placement, etc. Jesus would pray for Loser. Jesus would be there without judgement and expecting nothing in return. Real love that is true and pure comes from one source. The only way to truly give real love is to have that love.

Thirsty Saturday: Loving You

Yes, it is supposed to be Thirsty Thursday, but I did not have my laptop or any means to write a post. My laptop is back and I MUST continue sharing why there is an Easter celebration: Jesus. In the first post, I wrote about how Jesus willingly left heaven to be the son of an unwed mother. The second post talked about God’s love for us. In this third installment, I’m letting you know an important fact that gets over looked from time to time. Jesus openly loved the people around Him even though they were awful and horrid.

Excuse me?

Jesus hand picked twelve men to be His main disciples. Out of twelve men; who saw Him all the time: traveled with Him, listened to Him, prayed with Him, ate with Him, saw miracles He performed; only ONE followed Him to the cross. ONE.

Jesus loved Mary, Martha, and their brother Lazarus. They were His friends. Lazarus got ill and then died. When Jesus showed up with the express purpose to raise Lazarus from the dead, Martha starts in on Him. “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died!” (John 11:21) Jesus didn’t stop loving her.

Think about the last time you were in a large crowd of people. What was running through your mind when you were amongst all those people? Were any of those thoughts kind or nice? Compassionate? Jesus looked at the crowds and had compassion on them (Matthew 9:36). He saw all the people who needed Him, and He loved them.

Palm Sunday is tomorrow. That is the day we remember all the people shouting, “Hosanna, Hosanna,” and waving palm branches at Jesus. These are the same people who will shout, “Crucify Him!”

It doesn’t matter what you do, did, or are about to do, Jesus loves you. He always has and He always will.

Greater love has no one than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friend. John 15:13

 

30 Days, 30 Scenes {Day 6} Whatevs Scene One

This past weekend sucked. There really isn’t a better description for it. Other than a few bright spots, it was a crap fest.

I decided to use my Whatevs category to write a love letter to myself and to you. If you’re feeling bad, if  other people’s expectations of you are wearing you down, if the comments from others are crippling, then this is for you. This is for us.

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A little reminder that His all encompassing love for us is more than the circumstances of our life. His love is more than enough. We are enough to Him.

Thirsty Thursday: The Famous and The Forgotten

Easter is an important holiday to me. It is the day I celebrate God’s ultimate gift to humanity: Salvation.

The most quoted New Testament scripture and most “famous” is John 3:16 (the reference is well known, but the actual text may not be), which says:

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

Most people have heard this verse or they roll their eyes when they see people hold up signs with “John 3:16” on them. Do you know what the following verse says?

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world may be saved through Him. John 3:17

So, God didn’t send Jesus to tell us how awful we are and how dirty our lives are? No! God sent Jesus to the world to save us.

God WANTS us. He sent Jesus to die on the cross for US. He LOVES us.

There may have been a person in your past who told you all the things that were wrong with you and why you needed to “get right” with God. Someone may have told you how unworthy you are or how bad you are. But God looks on you with LOVE. He looks at you with COMPASSION. He sees you and DESIRES YOU. His desire is for you. If He didn’t want you, He wouldn’t have sent Jesus to die on the cross. When Jesus prayed that God would take this cup from Me, meaning not die on the cross (Mark 14:36), God wanted Him to do it anyway. He wanted you so much that He tore Himself apart for you. He did this to give you an opportunity to have a close relationship with Him while on earth and to spend eternity with Him in heaven.

A (Slightly) Morbid Valentine

I had planned on posting about making sugar cookies for my snowed in neighbors. I had planned to blog about Random Acts of Kindness and how kindness is needed. But my father-in-law called. Hunny’s Aunt is in the hospital. She may or may not be having a heart attack. His Aunt has five children and has been their sole parent since being widowed this past summer.

My maternal Grandmother died suddenly in September 2009. I never got to tell her goodbye. I was unable to attend her funeral. Despite these grim facts, I know she knew that I loved her. How do I know this? I was the only grandchild who sent her a Mother’s Day card that year. I know this because my mother told me she made a big deal about it in a phone conversation they had.

I almost died this year. On January 29th, I started bleeding. I bled so much that I passed out in the bathroom at home. I bled so much that I lost Yeeyum’s brother. I bled so much that I passed out in the ER. I bled so much that I needed more than four bags of fluid. I almost bled to death. But I didn’t.

When I thought I would die, I did not have any regrets in regards to my relationships. My husband knows I love him. We don’t have the finances to go on lavish trips, regular dates, or buy each other nice presents, but he still knows that I love him. Yeeyum is almost fifteen months old. He knows, as much as he can, that I love him. Cupcake and the rest of family know that I love them. My friends know that I love them, too. Even people I don’t care for know that I love them (Because I do love them. Because God loves them.)

No one is guaranteed tomorrow. If there is anyone in your life who you haven’t told you love, tell them. If you haven’t told someone you care for them lately, find a way to show it. Someone you love may need the encouragement. Someone you know needs to hear this. Maybe you need to hear it:

You are LOVED.