Into the Depths: March 2007

Saturday, March 31, 2007

My New Ride

So, this is my new work truck. I wish I had a picture of the old S10 so you could really see what an upgrade this is. I am not the least bit sad! Considering it's a free car that I can drive not only during work, but any other time I want, well, not a bad deal. I said thank you, several times, to my boss!

My small group on Sunday mornings started "Believing God" by Beth Moore this week. I am really excited. This weeks lessons were great and I truly can not wait to see where God will take me through the course of this study. Sometimes as I am writing answers in the book I have to stop for a second and think, 'Did I really write that?' I am wholeheartedly astounded at the work God is doing in me. I don't think I ever thought it really possible. I know I didn't believe it possible. Even what I hoped He would do doesn't compare to what He is doing. I love this.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Birthdays, Flowers, and Growing Up

BryAnn and BretLynn celebrated the big number 5 yesterday and they adored their ice cream sundaes!!

My first beautiful rose of spring. Can I just say how proud I am that I didn't kill it over the winter!!

Life Group was really good tonight. I can tell you that when I walked in and saw that one of the folks I know was conferred with before this whole situation went down was there, well I wasn't thrilled. I thought, 'Oh great, two people judging every word that comes out of my mouth.' But then there I went again, doing the judging myself, so I prayed again that His grace and mercy would consume me and be all that could flow out. And as always, He was so abundantly faithful. There were several times tonight that as I spoke His Spirit was just so overwhelming that I couldn't help but tear up. I am so grateful for His faithfulness that has so relentlessly kept me in the palm of His hand, especially when I was doing everything in my power to pull myself out of it.

One of the questions asked of us tonight was this. "What is a gift God has given you and how can you use it in the body of Christ?" Something like that anyway. My answer, though odd to me, is my past. It's twisted and painful and dirty and sordid. It is also full of a plethora of experiences that give me the ability to identify with innumerable people.

2 Corinthians 1:4 Who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

So that is my answer, I'm grateful, even those things that I am just beginning to deal with that still ache in the core of my being, even those things, I am grateful. I am thankful because as much as I hate my own pain, my heart aches with the pain of others. I can't see a person cry and it not leave me in tears. I am affected greatly by those who hurt so thank God that He has allowed me the opportunity to experience His comfort and compassion so that I can share it with all who cross my path.

You know, I have been considering lately the role of God in my life. I mean from day one. As I look back at that little girl who, for a long time, only found solace in church. Who sat on the front row even if the rest of the family was ten rows back. Who, at seven, was singing in the adult choir because there wasn't one for children. Who cried when we couldn't go to church because dad was at work and there was only one car. Who couldn't wait to make her first communion because she thought it would get her closer to God. Who would walk through the streets of the neighborhood singing church hymns. I believe God has been drawing me in since day one. I grew up in a home that was nowhere near Christian. We went to church because my mother believed it would lead to hell for her if we didn't. But I have always, somehow, known that God was about relationship. And I am so grateful that though He knew it would take me 31 years to really get it, He loved me enough to keep after me the whole way. It's as though He took hold of my hand and no matter how hard, how diligently, how desperately I tried to break free of His grasp, He was holding on for dear life, my dear life, and He was, no, is never letting go.

Monday, March 26, 2007


Pretty sunset, huh?

So, I'm having some confusion in my brain these days. I know that is new and shocking for anyone who reads this blog, but there it is just the same. ;) The good news is, it is new confusion, I imagine that is just another part of this process called life. Once you get something figured out it is time to move on to the next area that will boggle your mind.

Here it is, what do I do with this friendship now? I don't know what to do with it, where to go, walk away altogether, I just don't know. Somehow I don't feel like it is right to hug on Wednesday's and Sunday's, listen to the customary "I love you," then go our separate ways. That feels so shallow and trite to me. Fake even. I don't harbor ill feelings toward her, though I have to give my thoughts over to God innumerable times each day in order that my heart might stay resentment free. I have found that my normal tendency is to sink into that bitterness with full force simply to protect myself from further harm. But I have been diligently asking the Father to protect my heart from that very thing.

Problem is, I have nowhere to go with the friendship. There is no foundation. The depth and closeness that I thought were there must have been in my own mind. I say that because for her to know as little of my heart as she now seems to know, any depth we had must have been one sided. So, we could start from scratch except that she still feels as though she is right. Which would be fine if the problem were about what shoes go with which outfit, but it is instead about the condition of my heart. It doesn't matter that I know she is wrong, it matters that we have nothing to build a friendship on. Even in my darkest days, God was a part of my life. I have never had a friendship that God was not a part of....why would I want to? Thus, I don't know how I can have a meaningful relationship with someone who doubts me to the core.

Yet, I hear sermons on friendship, on being a peacemaker, on building bridges in broken relationships, so I am left wondering what the right thing to do is. I don't know what would honor God here. I don't know what He would have me do. As of now, I still go to Life Group at her house. Each week, though, is a huge battle in my mind because I can't help but feel her rolling her eyes when I say something, wondering who else she has shared her feelings with, wondering if her husband, the leader of the group, believes about me as she does. I know for a fact that is not of God. So again, I beseech God to allow me just to rest in His grace and remember that He alone knows my heart. But, let me tell you, that is HARD.

Point to the story, I have no idea what to do.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Couch Wrestling

At first we loved chillin' on the couch...but then....

The kicking started and it wasn't so much fun anymore!

All in all I had a pretty uneventful babysitting adventure. Little miss Sara was not really into sleeping, unless of course she was laying on her tummy, on my tummy. This did not make for peaceful sleeping for Aunt Steffie. I fell asleep at six last night and didn't get back up until after seven this morning...I was worn out, to say the least. I wish I had pictures of them in their church outfits, but apparently my lack of sleep affected my judgement so much so that I forgot how to work my camera. Oh well, imagine really pretty babies in precious plaid dresses with huge pink bows, see, you get the picture. Sadly, I think I am almost ready to go back to sleep!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

My Jesus

I am now a bonafide pianist.....o.k. slight exaggeration. Really, I can now play two songs. "The Swing" that I learned in the eighth grade and "Jesus Loves Me" that I learned this past Sunday. But that is a great start if I do say so myself. ;)

So, about the video up there. If you have never heard Todd Agnew's "My Jesus" you definitely need to click play. Really, even if you have heard it before you should go ahead and listen again, it is that good. I am kind of in the middle of a process with God right now where I have just asked Him to reveal to me more of who His Son is, was, well, both. I guess that really sounds so elementary for someone who has been in church in some form or fashion since birth. I just think that I learned the basics and then stepped away. Ok that sounds weird. I think that my focus stays on God and off of Jesus more often than not. Not that I don't know the fundamentals. I know that He is God's son, the Word made flesh. I know that He was born of a virgin, suffered and died for my sins, rose again three days later and now sits at God's right hand. I get that. I have confessed with my mouth that Jesus is Lord, I believe in my heart that God raised Him from the dead. Doctrinally, as far as basics go, I'm sound.

But, I want Jesus to be my best friend, literally. And, to be quite frank, I think I have some misconceptions in my heart and mind that cause me to distance myself a little from Him. I understand the concept of the Trinity, so I know that when talking to God, seeking Him, loving Him, I am doing the same with Jesus. But, I never cry out to Jesus, Himself. I think I minimize some things out of a lack of understanding, and I don't want to do that anymore. How can I lead others to Him if I second guess aspects of His sacrifice in my heart. Ok, I may not be making much sense to anyone but me, just know that this is where I am and this is where my walk is. I am asking God to help me understand more about who Jesus was when He walked this earth, what He went through and how that should effect me on a daily basis. Get it?

So, anyway, that is where this song came from. Well, not really. It came from Todd Agnew. It came on the radio in the midst of my chaos last Tuesday and I just lost it driving down the road. I went and bought the cd that night and have been listening to it ever since. I feel like I am being a bit evasive about this, which is not like me on here, but I have recently learned that people can and will use your beliefs, false or not, against you if they so choose. So, forgive my hesitance, I'll work on it.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

I Will Be A Piano Player After All

After many, many years of asking friends who knew how to play piano to teach me, I finally found someone willing to do so!! My first lesson is tomorrow at four and I am so stoked. A little embarrassed because, well, I'm no good yet....but I will be some day. ;)

I did have the conversation I had planned with my friend on Thursday. It went well, really. I believe God orchestrated it and controlled the direction of it. I know that our friendship will never be what it was, but I also know that God knows best. As time has progressed I have heard more and more of how this whole event unfolded, people she talked to, got advice from...in my opinion, tried to form alliances with, and I am undoubtedly hurt. I feel judged and betrayed for sure. But I am so aware of God's hand on my heart through the whole ordeal so I can be sad, I can grieve the loss, even admit to God my anger, and in spite of all of those feelings, I am still so grateful that it happened. I am more pleased with where my walk has gone than I am sad about what my heart had to go through....if that makes any sense.

I am reminding myself that those who would hurt me, judge me, betray me, whatever, they are just as human as I am. I'd like to think I wouldn't do the same thing to someone else, but it doesn't matter. Even if that isn't the sin I partake of, there are plenty others that I succumb to daily. So, all that to say, I am astoundingly well, all things considered, and I cling to the truth that God is good.

Friday, March 09, 2007


So, this is the page on my desktop calender for today. I think it couldn't be a more perfect fit to appear on my birthday. I love that God is into details!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

So, About That Roller Coaster

I feel at peace. I didn't know peace was possible in me. It is. I feel like God has used this situation to firm up my faith and alleviate any doubt I had that I am in fact a child of the King. I believe He carried me the entire uphill portion of this go round. I know He did because if He hadn't, I'd still be sitting in a slump, crying my eyes out on the side of the road. He gave me the assurance that He would be by my side at our life group tonight. That whatever happened, good or bad, I would not be alone. He enabled me to be real and vulnerable when the threat of attack was highly possible. He protected my heart. He enabled me to speak truth and then took that truth and backed it up with His word in an overtly tangible way. I am in complete awe.

What's more, I am thankful that this situation came up. I am grateful that He orchestrated all of it and then carried me through it. Did it hurt, absolutely. Will it continue to hurt, possibly. But I have more faith today than I ever believed I could have. And, shockingly to me, that makes it worth it to me.

I believe now that I must do my part to bring restoration to the relationship. Can I restore it, no. But I believe God is calling me to do my part because, well, that's Biblical. I will be clear that I believe, in the depths of me, that she was absolutely wrong. However, I will also thank her. Thank her for loving me enough to confront me when she believed she needed to, even if it was wrong. Because regardless of what issues in her actually caused these feelings, I know that she loves me. I believe that her motive, as far as she knew, was to lead me in the direction of Christ. Which, in a way, she did. She spurred me on to greater depth and intimacy in my walk. She pushed me into really searching out God's assurance that I am His and He came through and gave exactly what I needed. So, however wrong, however painful, even if the relationship is never restored, I thank God that He brought me to this place.

Here's my verse of the night. If you knew the whole story from tonight than it would blow you away, but I can't type that much!

Ephesians 3:20
Now glory to God! By His mighty power at work within us He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope!!

Help My Unbelief

Have you ever been told by a close friend that you aren't a Christian? If you haven't, let me just save you the suspense and tell you, it isn't the least bit pleasant.

A month ago she could see growth in me, now it is rationalized as 'perhaps those were just times when you were in a good mood.' Seriously??

Let me not misrepresent. What she actually said was "If someone has Jesus in them you can see it, and I can't see it in you."

I feel broken. I feel like our relationship is broken. I feel like no matter how this is resolved, our friendship can never be what it was. Why would I want it to, really? I can't fathom how someone who has walked through the past six months with me could feel that way. I can't understand why on earth she thinks God would tell her I'm not a Christian and leave me thinking I am. That isn't logical. I don't believe God is into tricking people. I don't believe He would allow me to be assured of my salvation only to have someone else reveal to me it's a fluke. But she doesn't hear that. She is convinced that the Holy Spirit has convicted her of this. I love her, though, and am not only crushed by her words, but pained at the loss of relationship.

And because I'm me and satan knows how to attack me, I wonder. I think, could she be right. What if I'm wrong. What if all this time of believing I was growing in my walk was really just in my head. What if.......but that can't be right. I have to believe that what I feel in my heart is true. That I am His child and that I am safe where I am. And then I doubt again. But you know, I believe that even the doubt is a part of my process. I believe that this roller coaster is a part of my process. I believe that I am in the middle of some devastatingly painful healing and it will be a long, hard road. I believe that even if none of my friends make it to the end of this road with me, that He has promised to never leave my side. I believe that on the really bumpy parts, like now, He is carrying me through because I just don't have the strength to walk. And then I doubt again.

Lord I believe, help my unbelief.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Good TImes

Today is my wedding anniversary. Of course, I have been divorced for almost five years, but today still sucks. Wednesday, the 7th, will make nine years since the crazy man broke in my home and assaulted me. The 18th is the seven year anniversary of my miscarriage. Finally, we come to the ninth, my 31st birthday. Birthdays shouldn't really be bad. I just keep thinking, with each one that passes, that I am one year older, that much closer to the end of my life, it's flying by, and I'm still alone.

I have no idea what to do about my ailing friendships. I can't fathom just giving them up, but I also can't fathom how to fix them. As hurt as I am, how much of a friend was I, really, if I am seriously considering closing the door on the relationships after a week of struggle, not even so much as a fight.

My parents are dying.

My pedophile brother is having a daughter.

My thirty two year old sister is having a hysterectomy tomorrow.

I am seven weeks into digging up memories I buried twenty five years ago and still not sure how I will survive the details that will surface over the next several months.

I am spiraling. When I try to sleep my chest tightens and I feel like I can't breathe. When I think, all I can do is cry. I am confused and I am alone. And it sucks to be back in this place.