From my heart to yours

Lately, I have had quite a bit on my mind – on my heart.  The depth of it all is overwhelming.  As I consider it, I am not quite certain where to begin…  I will begin, at the feet of the One who saved me.  This past Sunday was Resurrection Sunday.  We celebrated the Resurrection of Jesus.  Of course, you cannot celebrate His Resurrection, without first recognizing how He came to the place where He would need to rise from the dead in the first place.  A tragic story.  I know we are supposed to celebrate, and rejoice that He is alive for evermore!  But, that is a thing that I simply cannot do.  When I consider how unjustly He was treated, and the fact that He died just for me.  Who am I?  I am no one.  Yet, He loved me enough to endure the pain and suffering of the cross.  Time and again, I fail Him, I am so unworthy – but He loves me anyway.  Someone put it this way: “We are all Barabas.”  Jesus literally took Barabas’ place on Calvary’s cross, and died in his stead.  Barabas was a thief, a murderer – he should have died.  Yet, he was granted another chance.  What happened to him after being granted that second opportunity?  Did he continue to steal, cheat, lie, murder?  Or was his life changed?  What did he feel, knowing that an innocent man, our savior, took his place, and died in his stead?  The same as us, I suppose.  Maybe he took it for granted after a short period of time like so many of us.  So often we are so consumed with ourselves, that we cannot see anything, or anyone else about us.  We do not look with our spiritual eyes at the bigger picture.  We do not see the full story.  We pain Him.  Oh, how we must pain Him.  He who died for us.  From my heart to yours, do you recognize the chance that we have been given?  This life that has been breathed into our nostrils!  How can we continue to pain Him?  He loved us even before we loved Him.  He loved us while we were yet lost in sin.  He loved us enough to lay down His life.

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I struggle at times, loving my neighbor.  Forgiving those that mistreat me, despitefully use me.  How can I?  When my Savior was on the cross, did He not say, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”  Did He not still love us?  Even when I mess up, and I hurt Him, does He not still love me?  When I make His going to the cross all in vain, does He not still love me?  Love.  Is that not the greatest of the fruits of the spirit?  Is that not the greatest of all of His commandments?  Love.  “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”  How many times do I fail Him?  “Though I speak in the tongues of men and of angels and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.”  Lord, let not my praise become such a noise in Your ears.  Let me have love in my heart.

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Yes, I have been hurt.  Yes, I have been wounded.  Yes, there are still those that come against me, and it hurts.  But let me forgive.  Let me love my enemies.  Let me walk in life, love, and liberty.  Let me not hold anger, bitterness, or animosity in my heart.  Let my heart be pure.  I want to walk in liberty.  I hurt.  No one sees the suffering, no one sees the pain.  When they attack my character, it pains me so!  But let me walk in forgiveness and love.  Help my heart to be pure.  From my heart to theirs, let there be love, and grace.

When I think about my past, as it has been creeping up on me so much lately, preventing me from moving on, I know that I must forgive, and forget.  The apology will never come.  I will never get the closure that I seek.  The closure will only come from He holds all power in His hands.  The pain that I don’t want to feel, I must.  The heartache that I try to avoid is unavoidable.  I never thought that I would face life alone.  I never wanted to either.  Now, however, it seems as though it is my fate.  I recall when I was young, watching Juanita Bynum on the television with my mom before school.  She was in a pink suit, and she had said, “Some people are called to be single.  You wonder why none of you relationships are working out – you are called to the single life.”  I remember thinking, Oh God, don’t let that happen to me!  But now, after two failed marriages, I wonder if that is me.  Those words echo in my head: “called to the single life.”  All of my friends, women over the age of 50, are single.  Some are divorced, some never been married, some in a long-term relationship, but none are married.  I wonder, am I marked?  Of course, now, I do not feel as though I am even “marriageable.”  (If that is even a word: marriageable.  Who would marry me?  I have been divorced twice.  I have three kids.  All from first marriage, but still.  I mean, yeah, I am a tad sad at the idea of being alone for the remainder of my existence.  I mean, I am only 30!!  Turning 31 this year, but who’s counting…

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Our pastor talks about his and wife being focused on the ministry of “reconciliation.”  Reconciling marriages, reconciling relationships, reconciling families, reconciling people back to Christ.  Pretty all encompassing, right?  This always stings me.  Why?  Because it gives me the idea that I should hold out hope that my marriage will be reconciled.  Of course last time it was reconciled, look what happened.  And, in counseling with Pastor, and his wife, they told me that I should let go, move on.  Why can’t I allow myself to actually do it?  Is it love?  Is it control?  The need for closure?  The fact that I just don’t understand? Security?  Why?  He doesn’t love me.  So, why can’t I let go.  The way he left me, the way he treated me even while we were together, why can’t I move on?

I haven’t spoken to my eldest sister in nearly 3 years.  I haven’t spoken to my mother in ?? Well, it will be a year at some point this year.  Why?  Well, with my mother, I just got tired of all of her crap.  I guess I’m not quite over the abuse, the lies, the molesting my child.  You know, that stuff isn’t too easy to overcome.  Then, there is my sister.  What can I say about her?  She mistreated me, talked bad about me – even to my own husband, at my own home.  After never being a real sister to me in the first place, it was like, too easy to just cut her off.  Do I feel bad?  No, it’s like she never existed.  She doesn’t.  She, nor her mother exists.  They are awful!  But that does not coincide with that Godly love, and forgiveness, right?  Forgiveness and reconciliation…  Two topics for me to ponder…

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