Whispersfrommyheart's Blog

Archive for the ‘Emotional Baggage Department’ Category

Every little girl dreams of the day, when she will walk down the aisle to say, “I do.” Each year, when April rolls around, I remember my day as if it happened yesterday; instead of 25 years ago.

The sky was overcast on the morning of April 12th, 1986. I jumped out of bed and ran over to the window.

“Please let it be sunny!” I prayed, and pulled back the shade.

I was slightly disappointed to see rain falling to the ground, but I wasn’t going to let that dampen the excitement in my heart. Today was the day I had waited for my whole life…I was getting married.

As a little girl, I used to dress up in my mothers wedding gown.  I would stand in front of the mirror, admiring the dress, and how grown up I felt, and daydream about my “Prince Charming” riding up, and sweeping me off of my feet. We would be so in love, and we, along with a house full of children, would live happily ever after.

I was the last one, in my family of 4 girls, and two boys, to tie the knot. I hadn’t planned on waiting until I was 25 to marry; life just happened that way.  But today, I was overjoyed to be getting married. My romantic, childhood fantasies blended with the reality of the day as the clock continued to tick the minutes away. I busied myself getting ready; making sure everything was perfect. As I looked into the mirror, all my fears vanished because I knew “who” I would soon be; I would be his wife. My heart overflowed as I pulled my gown from its protective bag and stepped into my very own wedding dress. Butterflies filled my stomach when the Best Man pulled up to escort me to the church and, on the way, I breathed a prayer of thanksgiving that God had given me this day.  My memories of that day have not faded with time; my special day, filled with well wishers, food, gifts, and festivities; each moment is forever imprinted on my mind.

No one ever plans to fail. When I married, I thought it would be forever, but the life I had imagined was not meant to be. Three and a half years after my wedding, I walked away with two small boys, and one on the way.

As I stand, looking out of the window, on this 12th day of April, 2005, I am amazed at the similarities of these two days, so many years apart. The sky is overcast; rain has drizzled throughout most of the day, and the wind is cold.

“Next year would be 25 years together.” I think to myself.

Every year that passes marks another year for what might have been, and every year, I wonder, did I make the right choice?  Thankfully,  all I need to do is look at my three boys to see the answer. “Yes, you did the right thing.”

God did not call me to live the life of an abused wife. Most women, in abusive relationships, never find the strength to leave. Their children grow up witnessing the devastation and their daughters grow up to marry abusers. My children did not grow up watching their father abuse their mother. They didn’t endure his anger. I took them away from fear and raised them in an atmosphere of love. Together, with the help of our Father in heaven, we broke the cycle of abuse.

Next year, I know the same thoughts and feelings will invade my memory. I’ll fondly recall the anticipation I had all those years ago. But as the day wears on, I’ll hear the heart of Father God whisper,

“This is the Anniversary to remember My child; the day I led you out from the Land of Egypt” and my heart will be assured once again; the journey I have chosen for my boys and me has been well worth the cost.

Proverbs 22:6
“Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.” (NKJ)

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Courtesy of PhotoBucket

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No longer is my name to be

“Survivor” any more;

For I have long since been redeemed

My life has been restored.

 

And I no longer will be seen

As one whose grief is worn;

Like medals from a battle won

For which my heart has mourned.

 

And shame no longer has the right

To claim me as its own;

Disgrace, dishonor are replaced

With Love, He has atoned.

 

And hate no longer covers me

Within its evil shroud;

Weighing down my heart and soul

To keep my spirit bowed.

 

For when I claimed Survivorship

My heart believed the lie;

That grief and shame were evidence

Of what my past implied.

 

But Jesus came and set me free

Then showed me what was true;

“Survivor” kept me victimized

And kept my heart askew.

 

And as He taught me how to live

As one who’s overcome;

Instead of holding to the past

I now hold to the One.

Pain.

Sorrow.

Heartache.

Tears.

Many of us have experienced these things at one time or another during our lifetime.

We’ve prayed, and have not received an answer. We have confessed our faith, and then experienced loss during our first trimester; the child we so desperately wanted. We’ve believed, and watched our spouse lose their battle with cancer.

Every day, throughout the entire world, people suffer. Most of us turn our eyes heavenward and ask the question; “Why?”

“Why me?”

“What have I done to deserve this?”

“Why is God punishing me?”

Each of us has had these thoughts enter our mind. It is part of human nature to want an answer for the things that bring us such pain. To validate it and to give it purpose. We do not want our suffering to go unnoticed.

But is God the cause?

Has God orchestrated events that create pain just to teach us a lesson? Would he cause heartache in order for us to grow? I believe God is very much aware of the circumstances that touch our lives, and he allows them to happen. I don’t pretend to understand the reason fully, but I will attempt to offer some explanation.

We live in a world that is fallen from the original glory in which God created it to be. Because of sin, even the earth groans underneath its weight. As long as this is true, there will continue to be symptoms of sin; i.e. sorrow, pain, heartache and tears.

Our world will continue to fall apart. Our hopes will continue to be shattered. We will experience death and destruction in various forms until God calls us home, where the stains of this world can no longer touch us, or, Jesus comes back, and the corruptible puts on the incorruptible.

God never promised us a life free from sorrow or pain. What he did promise is that he would always be with us. He promised to be there in the bad times, just as he is in the good. We can count on him.

Jesus reminds us we are not of this world. The symptoms of this world may touch our lives—such as the loss of a baby during pregnancy, or in my case, rape and molestation—however, those symptoms do not have the right to touch our soul.

Forgive.

Forgiveness goes both ways. God forgives us as we forgive him. I know it sounds weird to say, “God, I forgive you,” but, in our unanswered questions is the emotion of anger. We hold anger toward God because he did not protect us from pain. Our anger rages for the loss we have experienced. In that anger is ill will. We feel like God owes us something and we’re angry because he doesn’t pay up. Forgiveness relinquishes that “right of repayment” we feel we are owed for our suffering.

Romans 8:28 reminds us that God causes all things to work together for good to all who love him and are called according to his purpose” (NKJV)

The pain we experience, though it feels like the end of the world, is not the end. It is the beginning of the rest of your faith walk. It is at this cross road, if you chose to walk forward, that your faith, rooted and grounded in a faith that could only be possible by the things you suffered.

Are you still holding on to God?

Have you entrusted your future to his hands?

If you aren’t there yet, don’t worry. There are still processes you have to go through, emotions you need to vent, but in the end, where will you go?

One verse resonated with me through the years of my struggle.

“Where else can we go, LORD, for you have the words of life.”

Peter uttered those words after following Jesus became hard to take; after the crowds, disillusioned by his words, abandoned him. Jesus asked the twelve, “And what about you?” (See John 6:60-68).

He still asks the same question today.

It’s just not fair!

How often have you said that? Me, I’ve said it so often I own the copyright! Not really, I’ve just said it many times in my life, especially when life became hard.

Why is it that things in life can be going along just fine, and suddenly, one thing goes wrong, like too much month at the end of your money, or the loss of a job and not being albe to pay the bills. I’ve experienced both quite recently.

The very first thought to run the gambit of my mind is how unfair life has been to me, (I have a masters degree in the college of hard knocks, and working on my Ph.D. in strugglenomics). I question why God allows me to continue to squeak out a living throughout life—I’ve been a single mother to three boys since October 1989 and life hasn’t been very easy raising three boys alone. I question why God wouldn’t help me rise above the poverty line. I question why everyone I know seems to be doing well and I continue to struggle just to make ends meet.

Why me?

That’s another question that worms its way into my thoughts. Why is it always me?

When I’m in the middle of a particular hardship, it’s hard to see past the turmoil to the other side. I can’t see the strength and character this particular trial will produce because I’m wrapped up in the here and now. I’m focused on the problem I am facing and not on what that problem will accomplish in the spiritual realm.

Let’s face it, no one likes to face difficulties. Wouldn’t we rather have life happen to us with ease, with little discomfort and have every day filled with happiness? Of course we would, but life isn’t like that, is it?

No. It sure isn’t.

Life is full of struggles that won’t seem very fair, and it will continue to be so. God allows hardships in our lives to strengthen our walk with him. To break our dependence on things, and turn our dependence onto him and him alone. Trails are never to punish us, but to prove us—to provide evidence of our faith in God.

If you or someone you know is facing a tough situation right now, hold on! And remember, God is still in control. He is faithful and will not leave you on your own. He delights in watching your faith and character develop.

He is with you.

Image

Photo taken in front of Parliament, Hull, Quebec, days after 9/11

You knew him once upon a time, so many years ago; He offered you his friendship but, Dear Daddy, did you know?

One night he led me into hell, with terror to bestow; And stole your daughter’s innocence, Dear Daddy, did you know?

That night I pleaded, terrified, ‘Oh please, don’t make me go’; You said ‘Enough! It’s settled now.’ Dear Daddy, did you know?

I didn’t want to go there but, I went there any way; Endured the pain and agony, Afraid of what you’d say.

I didn’t call when he was done, nor think that you would come; Or want to save your little girl, now broken and undone.

I’ve often wondered through the years, why Daddy didn’t see; The fear that was so obvious, and cries that came from me.

And, how could Daddy never see, His daughter’s soul had died; Behavior, attitudes that changed, was evidence denied?

I’ve held this anger in my heart, since I was only eight; I’ve blamed you dad for everything, and given in to hate.

Realities of what you said that echoed through my mind; Became the ache of memories transcending years of time.

But Daddy there is something else, I want for you to know; Despite the pain and suffering, compassion’s seed has grown.

My Daddy’s Who’s in heaven has redeemed my ruined past; He taught me how to love; forgive, and walk through life at last.

There’s one more thing that you must know, straight from your daughter’s heart; if I’m to bridge this gap at all, today’s the day to start.

I’ve chosen to release you from, responsibilities; That once demanded justice for the shame inside of me.

And with release I now forgive your words from long ago; The secret of my troubled past, Dear Daddy, now you know.

Copyright Oct 2009 ‘Whispers From My Heart‘ By: Cheryl A. Thompson

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When God created the human race, He included the fact that men would one day become the shepherds of little girls.  That relationship, between father and daughter, is an important one.  A father is supposed to be both the provider and protector to his daughter(s).  By his example, he teaches his little girl what the manly value and worth is that is placed on her life.  His actions, as well as, his re-actions to her become the perceptions of the life lessons she will carry into adulthood.    His life is a reflection, an earthly representation, of how her Father in Heaven loves and accepts her.  What she learns from her father here on earth becomes what she will believe about her Heavenly Father.

A little girl trusts her daddy implicitly from the moment she wraps her little fingers around his and understands the concept that he is with her.  To a little girl, her daddy is strong.  She isn’t afraid when he is near.  And, when she does become afraid, he is able to calm her.  When she is sad, he comforts her.  A daughter looks to her father with trusting eyes because she has faith that her daddy loves her, and would do anything within his power to help her.  A father not only represents God as his daughter’s Heavenly Father, but this earthly man also becomes the representation of what kind of a man his little girl will eventually marry.  Interestingly enough, daughters learn a lot from the relationship they have with their father…

In the summer of 1970, my father invited a friend, his wife and their daughters over to our house for dinner.  Somewhere during the course of the evening the oldest daughter asked me to spend the night with her.  I immediately replied that I didn’t want to, and thinking the matter settled, never gave it another thought.  Little did I know, but arrangements had already been made for me to spend the night, and when they were ready to leave my father told me to get my stuff.  I can still recall the look I gave him and the absolute terror that filled my heart.

I don’t want to, I want to stay home.”

I’m not sure what transpired between that statement and what I remember next, but the next scene that plays through my mind is one of me running through the house screaming and crying, begging my father not to make me go.  I assume my behavior embarrassed and angered my father, but the words he said to me that evening became the sentence of a prison term that would last for 35 years.

Stop acting like a baby; you’re going”.

There it was.

I didn’t matter…

That night, while his daughters slept in the bunk above me and his wife asleep across the hall, this so-called friend of my father’s raped me…

The message my little girl heart received that night was, “Cheryl, you don’t count”…

Satan accomplished what he set out to do; he convinced that little girl she wasn’t good enough for her father to care about, much less God.  He succeeded in his attempt to twist her perception of her earthly father, and ultimately, skew the perception of her Heavenly Father.  Satan had successfully separated her from God…

Every one of us needs to have an understanding of who our enemy is and what he is trying to do.  The scriptures tell us that Satan’s main purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy (see John 10:10), and that is exactly what he did in my heart…

From ‘Whispers From My Heart’ Chapter 5