I thought I would dig into the past for today's entry. This was a journal entry from about four years ago. It was the first time I began to talk to God honestly about my past and my struggles. From this time, God has begun to work in my life and I'm so thankful for the things He has done - although it has not always been easy!
(For those of you who read this and think you are missing something, I have offered to share more of my story in an article I wrote, but you will have ask for it and give me your e-mail.)
Why, God? Why did you let it happen? Why do I look out at others who laugh and talk with smiles on their faces, and why does my heart cry? You say You love me, but would anyone let this happen to someone they love? Where were You? What were you doing when someone took this child aside to hurt, to use for their own sick needs? Do You not hear my pain, can You not see what this has done to me? Is there any hope? Will the pain ever go away? Why God? No one will love me now; there will be nothing the same. I have to carry this forever. People look at me different if they know. “Oh, there is that girl.” What am I to You – a piece of garbage lying on the street?
Why, God? Why did you let it happen? Why do I hear others laugh and play in the sunshine, and I sit in the dark? What did I do? Why would you do this to me? I sit in the garbage thrown at the side of the road. Is that what I am? All day people tease me, talk behind their hands. “He must have done a really big sin against God.” “I wonder what his parents did that God would judge them with a blind child?” Why would You judge me before I even knew how to look for milk at my mother’s breast? You say You see Your people and carry their sorrows, but where are You? I can’t see You anywhere.
Time heals all wounds, they say. No, it does not. It heals some. Some fade. Some things I learn to compensate for. I learn to go on. But some wounds never heal. I try to walk knowing God loves me, that He has forgiven me, washed me, and I am His. There are days I do fine, days I forget the pain for a moment. Then a shadow and searing pain fills my heart again. Where, oh where were You, God? You say to walk with You now and trust You. Trust a God who did not keep me safe before when I was even too small to keep myself safe?! How, Lord? How am I to trust You now? Why? I need an answer to why. Under all, it sits unanswered. People try to fill me with nice answers. None of them are nice. None of them even touch my pain. I need to hear from You. Why did You let it happen? Oh God, how am I to follow You when I can not trust You?
God, where are You? I sit all day in the dirt, hoping no one will kick me today. Hoping people see me. Perhaps pity will move them to give me a coin, something for bread. This is what I am - a blind, dirty beggar. Why, oh God, why me? What did I do that you would do this to me? Years and years of darkness, ridicule, pity, scorn and no end in sight. Never to know love; at the best only pity. No future, no real past either. Just one long day of sitting with the other garbage on the side of the road.
Again comes the pain. God, I know I have no right to demand answers from You. I know You are God and I am just Your child. Your thoughts are above mine and Your ways higher than mine, but Father, why? You say You know the future. Why did You let this happen to me if You knew I was going to follow You? Why did You let me be hurt? Why did You not stop all those horrible things that happened to me if You knew I would be Yours? I don’t understand.
Then one day, a crowd goes by. New voices. They stop in front of me. “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he should be born blind?” Not again. Not a lesson again! Does anyone see me down here in the dirt? I do have ears. How could this be fair judgment for my sins - I was not even born yet! What could I have done to deserve this? I was too small. Wait. What is that answer? A new one? “Neither this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was in order that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
What? Oh yuck, now what? Mud on my eyes? A gentle voice, but why this? Is this some sort of a cruel joke? “Go and wash.” What am I – just garbage that people do these things to me? Wash. Yes, wash that mud off. Then I will feel better. Wait! I see light. I see more than light, I see water, a pool, people!! I see!!!
You chose me before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before You. In love, You predestined me to adoption … to the praise of the glory of Your grace which You freely bestowed on us. The reason I am chosen and made a child is to show Your glory. Is there in that perhaps an answer – maybe one I do not understand or always appreciate, but still an answer? Maybe You let us go through horrible things and suffer before we come to You so you can show your glory. Maybe You show it in two ways, first in choosing me from out of the garbage to be called Your child, and secondly, in transforming me into Your likeness.
I hear the echo of the man blind from birth. Jesus said that he was not blind because of his or his parent's sin, but so that God's glory could be shown. And it was shown. But that says nothing about the man before that great moment when he gets his sight and goes bounding around in great happiness. How many years did he suffer blind? How much did he hurt when he sat and heard the other kids playing stick ball in the streets, and how many insults did he get tossed at him?
Did he suffer?
Of course he did. But nothing is said about that. It is for Your glory.
See, now that we are Christians, we say happily, "Do anything with our lives for Your glory." But should I not have the same attitude for my life before You? Do You not have a right to do anything with my life before I knew You for Your glory? I do not understand all the time how You are glorified in things, but I don't know if that is important at all. I do know it is my job to glorify You, and if You choose to be glorified in my life in ways that I may not have chosen myself, that is ok. How much glory could You really have if I say, "You can be glorified in my life, but only this way or that"? If You can be glorified in it, maybe just to Yourself or whatever, then let it be, and I will be content.
I do not think that this is enough to answer all my questions and all my pain, but perhaps it is something I can offer to You - the hurt, the pain, and the shame - and say, "If You want to have it, then it is for You. Take it and glorify Your name through it. Show through my life that You are a God that can take a piece of human garbage, call me Your child, and make me in Your image - whole and complete."
When the people saw the man who had been born blind, they asked each other if this is him who was blind or not. One answered, "It is him." Others said, "no, it just looks like him." Let me so live that people say, "It can not be her; it must be someone like her. Let my life be one that I can say, 'I do not know everything, but this I do know - I was blind, and now I see'."