Please note that the only glory I want to bring is to God. I am so thankful that He has allowed me to be where I am today. This series is going to serve 2 purposes.
1. To glorify God, I feel like I need to tell it without shame and
2. Hopefully to help someone come back, or decide to come, or decide not to go.
The following words are extremely hard to publish, and I know they will get harder, but here they are- from my heart:
Serving God is not an even thing. Just as I (and most people I know) do not wake up every day extremely bubbly and happy, spiritually I do not wake up every day happy as well. Some days are so exciting to see what God has in store next, some days are spend trying to overcome fear and doubts. All days living for God are better than anything that world has to offer. ANYthing.
Picture a young girl who is overweight, wears glasses, sticks out in all her school pictures as a big dork, has a last name that sounds like a food, and "OH!" she wears skirts all the time, and never ever cuts her hair. That girl was me. (I am not going to say "Oh woe is me." I am just trying to paint a picture of what happened.) Every person has trials, and peer pressure never goes away. (Just ask me how many times my PEERS have PRESSURED me to go to Starbucks lately!) It gets much much worse when you enter the work force, believe me. But that part of the story comes later on. Back to this girl.
So she wears skirts and doesn't cut her hair, and she knows why, but its not in her heart. Others around her have found a devotion to God, and a way to worship Him, that is so peculiar, it is unlike how most other religions worship. She counts the days until school is over for good, and counts the hours everyday until she can go home. Some days she counts the taunts and the jeers and some days gets called ugly, fat, etc over 15 times a day. She tries to make light of the taunts, but somehow that makes it worse, and fuels the fire of her tormentors. She finds solace at church and strives to find a daily prayer life. The push and pull is never ending. One week she is on fire for God, willing to tell all her peers that she meets about the God she serves. The next week she hits rock bottom when she gives in to peer pressure and says a bad word, or hangs out with the wrong crowd again. Every day is a uphill battle to climb, but every few months she falls to the bottom.
There's a boy that suddenly think's she is cool! He notices her! He promises her that she will be popular and in the in crowd, if she will just spend some time with him. Of course she can't tell anyone, not yet... But then he tells everyone what kind of friend she is and what she has done. There she is at rock bottom again.
There's a girl that offers her a drink on the way to school. She refuses. One day she accepts. And thank God, she never gets completely hooked.
There's a camp or a retreat, a special service, and she lays it all on the alter, determined to live for God, only she walks out those double doors and suddenly feels alone. Sometimes the mountain top experience lasts for days, months, a couple years at most. And then the world comes crashing down.
She starts a Bible Club, she meets a boy. She brings people to church, she is climbing higher everyday.
She tries on a pair of pants.
She cuts her hair.
And suddenly she realizes. She had never once been alone. Angels were surrounding her every day through every hallway, and sitting with her in every classroom. They were what gave her the strength to carry on, and God was with her always. He had her wrapped so tightly in His arms the whole time.
But when she cut her hair, she cut loose of all those ties. Suddenly she felt like God set her down and removed all protection she had. Suddenly- she really was totally and completely
~To Be Continued~