My Story: Early Married Life

Continuing with my story, my husband and I had a rocky start. We had issues financially, intimately, emotionally, spiritually…the works. I have many regrets. There were many times when we acted out of anger. I became so disillusioned and bitter along with the anger. We were surprised to find out we were expecting a child two months after we were married. Becoming parents, in May 2006, brought out the best in us. Did we do things perfectly with this little bundle? Absolutely not. I would look at her in awe of who she was…it had nothing to do with the environment she was being raised in. Something changed in us over years. We changed. We began to focus more on God and how He brought us together. I saw how He used our little girl to hold us together. We began to stop focusing on our annoying differences and allowed God to shape us. God used my husband to teach me and stretch me beyond who I was. I saw changes in my husband too. I have always felt that I didn’t deserve such a blessing I received in my child. Before she could even talk, this little girl prayed over me…I heard her babble and then say amen. She has taught me lessons about love that I would never know. She also seems to have this childlike knowing of the Lord.
During these years, I still bottled everything up inside and buried my past. I wore a mask of perfection in public. But God called me out of hiding. Between struggles in my various relationships, I also would run into the pastor that I shared a secret with frequently enough that it bothered me. I didn’t serve in my new church in any capacity. I found that church also fueled  my anger in various ways. In May 2010, my husband and I had another baby girl. I got tired of sitting on the sidelines of life and started to get a little more bold. Our church received a different pastor in July that same year and I began to sing in the praise team and serve in other capacities. I realized that this church was too close to the last one. It was too small of a world. I spoke with the new pastor and a trusted friend. My new pastor labeled my past sin as an emotional affair and I knew he was right. God used that moment to open my eyes and deal with things I buried. This is when I experienced a vision of the word TRUST emblazoned in fire. God worked in and through me to bring about a healthy amount of forgiveness in many past relationships. I also felt forgiven by God and recognized that Satan would stop at nothing to keep me down. I began to give thoughts and decisions to Jesus and refuse to let Satan interfere with his lies. I learned from the new pastor that I could also extend grace to people in my life and it helped melt away some of the bitterness and tear down the walls I had built around my heart. I learned more about God’s grace for me and His love…I learned to breathe in Jesus. It is as if I start new each day trying to be what He created me to be. God has used words like trust, intentional, abide and remain to draw me in closer to Him. I had served as a leader and after 11 years of membership, my family has decided to leave the denomination and seek after a Bible teaching church. It was difficult to uproot our kids from what they knew but familiarity and comfort is not worth the risk of my children’s eternity. When our pastor was moved to a different place in July 2015, we stuck it out awhile but it was evident that the Bible was “open to interpretation” and we couldn’t participate in the culture infected mockery any longer. It still bothers us and will probably always bother us on a spiritual level…everything we heard, witnessed, and experienced was just wrong on so many levels. But, God is good and He has led us to another church…strong in teaching God’s Word. They didn’t make excuses, they are transparent about their beliefs, and they don’t apologize for following Jesus. This is life for me now. I feel separated from God right now because of my anger about what He allowed to happen. But, I know He is with me. He understands. He sees the bigger picture and has everything in His hands. I can choose to have a temper tantrum about how things didn’t go the way I hoped and planned or I can choose to just go where He leads day by day, trusting in Him. I still tear up when I think of my past in a sort of mourning but I also know He holds the future and it becomes a reminder that He is who He says He is. It becomes a need for my Savior. It becomes a dying to self and allowing Him to carry me through and develop my character into more of His likeness. 

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