Saturday, August 24, 2013
One Year Ago Today
One year ago today - I had just learned a week earlier that my father-in-law was diagnosed with terminal cancer. When I first got together with his son 20 years ago, Mom and Dad both took me into their home. For 20 years they treated me as their own daughter, knowing I didn't have parents of my own. For 20 years they'd supported me, loved me, looked out for me. And now he was dying.
One year ago, I lived by the motto "Never trust, never love, never cry." I'd lived by that motto for 30 years. And yet, I found myself turning to someone... crying on his shoulder in the middle of the road, and asking him to take me to see my father-in-law in the hospital.
One year ago today - we went, we saw, we visited. On the drive home, this friend and I were talking, and he mentioned that he still had to write his sermon for that Sunday. I quite jokingly told him I'd write it for him.
Now you must understand me one year ago - I did not go to church other than Christmas, Easter, and the occasional special occasion. I donned black capes and lit candles in my front yard just to make people wonder about me. I studied tarot and runes and astrology and numerology. While I was a Christian, I was not an active one - instead, spent my time between studying different religions and rituals and beliefs, and dressing up like a vampire and writing stories of such.
So, for me to suggest writing a sermon? Well, I think we both found it a bit humorous. And that's when he did it - he unintentionally issued a challenge by telling me he'd really love to see what I could come up with in a sermon. Of course, he was equally jesting in saying this.
But... that night... One year ago today - I sat down at my computer, created a new blog, and wrote my first "sermon."
It's hard to believe that this one unintentionally issued challenge could have changed my life so much in such a small amount of time. I started going to church more often. I stopped studying everything occult, and focused my attention on Biblical studies. I started asking questions and really trying to determine what I believe and why. I started praying. I started desiring and working on a relationship with Christ.
My motto - it pretty much flew out the window. While I am still hesitant on the idea of trusting others, caring about others, and letting them see me cry - I'm no longer bound to the laws which kept me locked within myself for so many years.
My father-in-law - he was told a 1 year and 1 week ago that he had cancer, and that it was terminal, and that he had 6 months to a year to live. He's still kickin'.
This friend of mine - he moved away... a couple states away. And while it's taken me a long time of fighting feelings of betrayal, he's remained a true and patient friend. Not only did he awaken something spiritual within me through his challenge one year ago, but within this past year, he has taught me the meaning of friendship and trust. He is the reason that motto I once lived by is no longer.
And I have gained so many new friends in my quest to gain a better understanding and better relationship with God. Many of these friends are bloggers - they're people I interact with usually daily, sharing stories of how we've grown and what we believe and why. Sharing tears and hardships. Sometimes having some wonderful debates (out-right fights) over theology. I can't imagine my life without this community of Christian bloggers/friends.
I am having a rather emotional morning as I look back on the past year. Yes, it has definitely had its downs. And it's had its ups. It has been an intense year of growth (and of realizing just how immature I am). And I am grateful for every moment.
Thank you Lord. For all you've given me, for all you've shown me, for the wonderful people you've directed into my life to help teach me, for every bump and twist in the road... I thank you.
To my amazing friend who started this craziness... I thought I'd know exactly what to say by the time I made it to this part of the post... but words fail me. All I can say is thank you. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you.
To all the friends I have made along the way... thank you for your continued support, encouragement, and love. I have enjoyed reading your work, and having each of you make me think. May the Lord continue to bless you all.
And with that... Happy Anniversary to Sermons from a Psycho! :-)