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You know that scene in a really good movie, the part where bits and pieces of the story thus far are now coming together to reveal an even greater storyline? The moment that feels like a sparkler lighting up in your mind, where there is zipping and the beep-bop-boop of computing information; where all the blips of events along the way have grown radiant as a line appears and starts connecting a more magnificent version of the saga?

This is my life, right now.

I’m stuck in that moment – the wonder moment – where all the struggles and battles in my life actually make a bit of sense. Like, realizing I was specifically designed to counter those particular assaults. No one else. It had to be me.

I am convinced that I was created with the exact ingredients necessary to triumph over those life events.

My kettle, filled with a passion for life, is steaming with excitement as I continue writing a book about it. Thirty eight years and I am finally able to see the gleaming, red ribbons of hope and help, weaving themselves throughout my journey.

They had been there all along. We are trained to have faith in the absence of seeing. And we do. But when the day comes, that our Creator allows you a glimpse into what He had been doing all along…Whoa.

I am both humbled and extremely excited to *finally* write about it. Finally.  I really believed  I was writing about my rough journey of faith. It kinda seemed like another wounded warriors tale; the sojourning pilgrims uphill battle that left her content with continual shrapnel and just happy to be alive.

Smile. Blink. Blink. Smile.

I’ve been writing this book for almost two years now. Then, just the other day, my eyes opened to the larger story – the one that grew the Grinch’s smile from ear to ear; my posture ascended in my chair and the hair on my arms stood up.

Of course. It had to be me. Because of who I am.

We’ve heard it said before: there is no one on earth the same as you. It starts with our name; it identifies us in our home. Then we go off to school and our name becomes merely a spec among many specs, sounding similar to and identical to many  others.

We become lost in a sea of faces.

As we get older, dissolution settles in and we assume a number:  Social Security number, driver’s license number, marriage license number and student ID number. We follow along within family rules, under school rules, under community leadership; trying to just fit in.

Going against the flow of cultural fusion is considered rebellion. We hear whispers of black sheep and prodigal. 

But here’s what lies in the balance: what if our differences, our individuality, was created intentionally for greater unity among us? What if we actually celebrated our unique design and learned how to live out from the passion and purpose that lies within us?

When your voice rises, as you speak about injustice; when your volume increases when you share your story; when your mind percolates while you are creating or doing the work you love – there it is. There you are.

This is your holy ground. This cannot be silenced and this cannot be discounted because THIS is you – fully alive.

So, this book I’m writing, was – until a week ago – a story of survival. Because the reality is, I have survived much: loneliness of single-motherhood, insecurity of poor self-esteem, assault of cancer on my child’s life, losing it all and a church whose “hands and feet of Jesus” kicked me to the curb and closed its doors on me. This book was going to be an “I’m still standing!” message, ending with a shimmer of hope for anyone who is struggling to keep believing in God.

But what my story is now – now that I know, now that I’ve seen the ribbons tieing it all together – is a life filled with fearless moments; a raised voice, high volume and permeated passion. And it was out of these moments that I was truly thriving. The struggles, the painful circumstances and the poor choices along the way were never my defining moments, they were the distractions to the wild and passionate girl I was created to live freely as.

matriarch

The biggest battle we are faced with, is to constantly fight in defense of  who we really are. My cry is that we never lose sight of the wonder of who we really are and we fiercely fight to protect our identity.

We fight against lies, so we can live out who we really are: HONEST. 

We fight against fear, so we can live out who we really are: HOPEFUL.

We fight against division, so we can live out who we really are: UNITED.

we fight against indifference, so we can live out who we really are: LOVING.

The search for my identity and the vicious fight that ensued to protect it, has been one of the greatest treasure hunts I have ever encountered. It almost took me out, twice. But the wealth of becoming aligned with myself and the empowerment to live fully and wholly alive, has been worth every scar.

And I wish the same for you.

Here’s to fighting FOR something good.

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