I grew up in the Church. Went through confirmation in middle school. Accepted Jesus into my heart when I was 8 years old. I did that over the phone when my second grade teacher called me and asked if I had been saved. Earlier in the day I was baptised at church. I told her no and she proceeded to tell me how to ask Jesus into my heart.
Since that day I’ve been a born again Christian. Back then I knew that it meant my heart was safe. That after death I would go to Heaven but besides that I didn’t really think it all out. As I grew older I realized that although I grew up in the church, and grew up with Christian friends, I was different. I had a different back story. My mom was a single mom and we lived right about the poverty line. To this day I dislike scalloped potatoes because for a while that is what we ate every single night. Things changed when my mother married my (step)dad and I found out what living in a home with two parents was like. However, things learned and obtained in childhood affect you in ways that you don’t even realize.
I grew up in the church but I was always jealous of those I called friends. They had two parents and went to private school (I didn’t want to go to private school… I was just jealous because they had money and I didn’t). I write this because I was in a bit of a unique situation- I wore glasses of the impoverished but lived in a world that was pretty normal. Prior to becoming a Christian I would talk to my mom about God. I knew He existed even though my mom wasn’t religious at the time. That’s the interesting thing about kids- they know so much and are so wise. They can see past the walls adults throw up and children see the world as it really is.
As I watch Fae learn about being a horse I notice how she has picked up on things Julie does and assumes they are normal. For example, Julie was a very attentive mom and whenever Fae would lay down Julie stopped what she was doing and would just stand over her. Fae does the same thing whenever another horse lays down. She goes over to them and just stands there. Fae was born with a wonderful mentality and she is a thinker. She is smart as well and I am so thankful that she is who she is.
I digress. The reason I mention Fae is that she knows she is loved for who she is. She also assumes that the ritual we do every single day is what should be done every day. She whinnies at me if I take to long to bring her out. Lexy, my white horse, knows she is the first one out. For Lexy a routine means safety and trust. For Lexy messing with her routine gives her an anxiety attack. I try to keep things as structured as possible for them because I want them to know that they are safe. Julie trusts me too and the other two trust me because she trusts me.
I’m writing about trust because being a Christian is all about trusting your non quantifiable senses. God is there, I know He is even though I cannot directly see Him or speak to Him. He is so beyond my “grown up” senses that I have to trust in Him. I have fought Him in regards to what my life is supposed to be about. God gave me the ability to love others and the ability to observe and think and write. I have been struggling with accepting the fact that God wants me to be who He created me to be; not who I think He wants me to be. I would say that my life is full of everyday miracles. When I pray for strength I am given opportunities to learn how to be strong. When I pray teach me to focus on You, Oh Lord, I am given circumstances where I have to trust.
In high school I would say I was a Christian but I didn’t really know what that meant. To me I thought I had to be loud and in peoples’ face about it. I was seeking God out but I wasn’t understanding what it meant to be a Christ Follower. Maybe it was because I was trying to overcompensate for the scars and secrets in my life. Maybe I was trying to drown out the whispers satan was saying to me. Maybe I was confused.
I’m still confused and confounded and uncertain in a lot of things. I am still worried about my future but I have learned that trusting God means letting going of the fear and the nervousness. During this past year I prayed that God would keep Fae safe and that God wouldn’t let Julie die. I prayed that God would keep Julie from aborting. During that time though I began to realize something: God wouldn’t have brought me this far if He was going to snatch it all away. I’m in the process of reading Job and I just read Chapter 10 specifically verses 13-17. To paraphrase Job is pretty much saying “God, I don’t know what I did wrong but please forgive me and please forget I exist. Let me die in peace. I don’t know what I did wrong, I don’t know what I did to offend you but please tell me and please forgive me. Please just let me be.” I can relate to those pleadings. I have thought them myself. I have said God, I think it is my time now. Just let me be free of my body. I have contemplated suicide. I have considered swallowing poison.
He reminds me that my life is not my own. He reminds me that I pray for Him to show me how to be strong and how to have courage. I pray that I would be a light in a dark world. I pray that I would be able to understand those who are in pain. The truth is, I need to experience pain in order for me to know it. I know that I am strong in Jesus. I know who I am. I am a writer, a horseback rider, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a dreamer and most importantly I am a CHRISTIAN. For a while I tossed away that last description. The title to this post is about me returning to the mentality of God first, everything else second. I started January 2014 with a lot of uncertainties. I also started 2014 with trusting God completely. He hasn’t let me down. In fact He has exceeded so many of my expectations. Yes, I feel like He makes me sweat before He changes my life for the better but I know He will always come through.
I’m sorry, this post is going on longer than anticipated. I have one last thought though. I have narcolepsy. I used to pray that God would heal it and that He would make me whole. I used to ask that He would overcome it and change who I was. Then I realized something. I’m thankful that I have narcolepsy. It has given me a unique view of the world and it forces me to relax and slow down and enjoy life. It makes me human. It also means I’m in a constant state of sleep deprivation which means I’m naturally more creative. Yes, narcolepsy has its downsides but overall I am thankful for all of the scars I bear. They make me who I am. I also choose to accept that they are there but I don’t dwell on them. Maybe that is the most important thing. Accepting that God has created me to be who I am because He knows I am capable of overcoming the obstacles in my way.
As I continue to travel on this path God has set before me I know there will be a lot of uncertainties that I will face. I also know that God will provide me with the tools I need to overcome those obstacles. Right now, I feel I am being called to write a story or two. Who knows if that is what my long-term calling will be but I know that God will always provide me with what I need. Even if I didn’t realize I needed it. Whether or not you are a Christian know that you have a purpose and that the things you have encountered have helped you become who you are.
What is one thing you hope to further your knowledge of in 2014?