“In these pages I tell secrets about…myself because I believe that it is not only more honest but vastly more interesting than to pretend that I have no such secrets to tell. I not only have my secrets, I am my secrets. And you are your secrets.”
I read a post today by Ann @ Holy Experience. It tugged at my soul. She wrote a post called, "Of blogging, secrets, porn and truth." The post started me thinking about why I blog, why don't I just write my thoughts down in a journal unseen by the world? I use to, I wrote a lot about life, thoughts, and the real truth on a blog site unseen by anyone. It held my deepest desires, shame, fears, thoughts. Quiet different that most of the post I put up. My children may read them someday when I am gone, I wonder what they will think of me? Will they see a hypocrite? Will they be astonished at some of the things I wrote?
I started blogging the months before my first son was born. The last trimester was hard, isolating, quiet, fearful, and many people wanted to know the trials for the day. I blogged, but didn't publish. Then our son was born and it was fun to post pictures, anecdotes, life's change, and the growing of our family. The Christmas letters, the pictures, the posts, all show a story of our wonderful reality. Yet, they are only brief, important moments in our 24 hour day. The posts most of the time represent the good, the fun, the happy fore-thoughts. They don't often record, the bad, the sinful, the real 23 other hours in our day - the fights, the mis-spoken words, the selfish actions, the struggles and hardships of... life.
I have many secrets, I would love to say living the Christian life is easy and perfect, but that is so untrue. The quest to die daily to self and serve others is marred with dirt, drudgery, daily sacrifice, deep rooted shame of old, and depression. However, when I allow my mind to face the cross, the torturous cross of humiliation, humanness, & the horrifying reality that brought us hope - I realize that this life isn't about me, its about glorifying God. Ephesians chapter 1 reminds that, "Jesus is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins."
Hmm... so in an effort to be real, this week was hard, it marked another week of stressful accounting work that never seems to end, household chores that aren't finished until the wee hours of night, and an audit looming overhead. I'm not a morning person so I stay up late and awaken with my children, hardly time for a personal quiet, uninterrupted quiet time, I dream of early morning coffee with a prayer bench and intimate times with the Lord. Instead I settle on weary hours of night, quick and impersonal reads through the Psalms or 2 Samuel. All it would take is sacrifice, but I've yet to conquer my selfish sleepy flesh. I said goodbye to a coworker of 8 years and am anxious about what work-life will mean without him - he will be missed! One child is sick and waking in the night, another is going through a defiant stage. I struggle to daily point my children to the Lord, to play with them instead of them "playing" with me. My to do list only gets longer and the days seem shorter. I feel totally overwhelmed most days as I fall into bed!
However, my life is overflowing!
::I have electricity, unlike many of my Texas co-workers.
:: The Lord 9 1/2 years ago, unbeknown to me at the time, provided a job that would allow me to raise my children within the walls of our home while helping bare the burden of life's expenses. The Lord's plan for the last 5 years has been to mold our minds; teaching us character instead of providing the "way out" we were longing for.
:: I have money in the bank, unlike many Texans who can no longer stay in hotels and are camping out in gas station parking lots. I wish I could drive over and offer a room while they wait.
:: I have the Lord's spirit dwelling in me, daily forgiving my shortcomings and prompting me to "get up" and try all over again.
:: I have a husband who models unconditional love - modeling after Christ Himself.
:: I have an irresistible joy that is found in brief moments of time that spill over into seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, years, lifetimes, and beyond.
:: I'm not content with where I am and desire to change from the inside out, isn't that what holiness is all about - looking more like Jesus?
I am blessed, as a Christian I'm not sheltered from life's difficult circumstances, but I am blessed because in spite of life's difficulties the Lord chooses to teach, mold, change character, challenge, & maybe inspire others that the Christian life is all there is between heaven and hell. One path leads to isolation, the other changes the DNA of who you are and allows you to see this life through the eyes of another... our Father who, "was and is and is to come" who is the "first and last" who created the "heavens and the earth!" “ The God who knew our sins were stronger than we are, but who blotted them out (Psalms 65:3), so we could be real and naked and honest and find Agape, Unconditional love in Him.
See, if the Lord sheltered Christian's from the world - if He took away all trials, temptations, and terrors - then Christian's would be weak and God wouldn't have an army of strong leaders eager to model Himself to this lost world. We also wouldn't know the joy that is found in having Faith. There are no words to express what its like to trust solely in the One who created life -- what a day it will be when I can see my Father face to face and thank Him for the trials and lessons learned. I'm thankful that He hasn't taken the hard and rough things away - for those trials are like silver being refined in the furnace - they are purifying: molding and shaping me into a better wife and mother and sister and daughter and friend.