My joy is boundless
My soul knows its worth.
~Up in Arms by United
Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness.
Let the whole world know what he has done.~~Psalm 105:1 NLT
On February 11, 2015, God finished with His usual patient work with me and pressed heavily on my mind and heart that I HAD to get out of my marriage. It might have had something to do with Zelena claiming the defense of his actions on being demon possessed (don’t worry, he said he got better).
As I looked back over the months I found I had a lot to process. Heading into the anniversary I wasn’t really sure how I’d be feeling. I braced myself for bad emotions. But now that it’s passed, I see that it wasn’t the struggle I thought it’d be that day. Yeah, there was a bit of emotion, but definitely not the overwhelming ones I feared.
There were a lot of people who helped me out during that time. I’d love to name names, but that whole “demon possessed” comment still makes me nervous enough that I won’t. Suffice to say I’m very grateful to all those who helped and prayed and supported.
The year was filled with a lot of ups and downs, a lot of terrifying moments, a lot of concern. There are still a lot of those. As long as Zelena’s around I suppose there will be. But a year out, things are a lot better. I’ve lived, maybe not through the worst of it, but I have lived through all the things I thought I wouldn’t. I turned out to be much stronger than I thought I was.
I have learned that God is not even what I thought He was last year at this time. There is a depth to Him that we often deny in our desire to make Him more like us. It’s a depth I’m not sure I’ll ever understand.
I’ve learned to take life moment by moment, to listen to God’s promptings, to fight for what is right, to understand the plight of the marginalized both in and outside the church.
I’ve offended a lot of people, I’m sure. I don’t candy coat anything I say, I just don’t know how. But I’ve learned that not all people are where I am nor can they see the world through the eyes of those who have been pushed aside in favor of the criminal and the perpetrator. It’s OK, but at the same time I won’t back down. I cannot be silent as people who are damaged by “Christians” are relegated to second class citizen in the church.
I’ve become a whole lot more liberal than I was, a lot more egalitarian, far more questioning, a ton more confrontational, and goodness forbid I think the marginalized might be hurt by your teaching because you are going to hear from me. 🙂
In releasing me from bondage to my husband, God has released me from bondage to fear and doubt and confusion and chaos. I’m still working on those things, 21 years under his control, and 25 years prior to that under my parents’ abuse is a lot. But God has shown Himself faithful time and again. I am grateful to the friends who hear His voice and follow through. They are an encouragement to me.
Well, I started this entry five times on the 11th. I set it aside until today. It was a good break. I’d love to say I found further God’s will for my life or some deep spiritual insight to pass along, but I just processed.
I do know one thing He wants, and that is that I not be silent. So, whether it’s via this blog or speaking out in conversation, I will continue to try to get the truth to as many people who will listen or who need to hear that they are not alone. Just this past weekend I met two more women who were/are in abusive relationships. I just shared my story and they shared theirs. One had been outside the church, one is in the church, and still in her relationship. It discourages me and prods me along simultaneously.
Like I said at the beginning of this journey, I’m just stupid enough to be the one who does this while everyone else is content with silence and the status quo.
This coming year I plan to continue to offend people with the truth, question those who have claimed a place of authority, critically examine every sermon I hear, and, hopefully, I will be able to help others see that this abuse, this cruelty, it’s not God, it’s man. Hopefully I can help people hold on to their faith when all around them all they see are “Christians” who are abusive and cruel and unsympathetic.