Sunday, August 26, 2012

A Little Self Reflection... and a lot of tears

I did not handle Gideon's situation perfectly. Who could? I have been thinking a lot about people saying things like, "You're so amazing." "You're such an inspiration." etc... And I just want to say... I'm no inspiration. Seriously. It is only God working through me that I am able to make an imprint on anyone's life. I have tried so hard to handle this situation just right, and I did my very best. But I didn't succeed as well as I would've hoped. I hurt people.... I did. And I remember Shiloh and Preacher (like 2 or 3 weeks in a row) saying... "Hurt People, Hurt People" and in those moments, that made me so mad. I was mad because I thought to myself, "I'm a hurt person and I'm not out hurting anyone. I'm not going around throwing my emotional weight around with no thought to anyone else." Boy was I wrong. (Isn't it funny how hindsight is SOOO 20/20??) It is true, I wasn't just throwing my emotional weight around with no thought to anyone else, but I was hurting people. (It can happen you know, you can hurt people even when you are trying so hard not to) ... I thought of an analogy a while ago... Even before Gideon was born...

I am surrounded by a Ring of Fire. This situation is like someone walked around me in a circle, poured gasoline on dry grass, then on January 31 around 3:00pm, threw a match in the path. And WHOOOOSH! Up went the flames. Then as the days and weeks passed, I'm in there being a newbie fire fighter. I had no idea what I was doing. Sometimes I would actively fight, other times I would just sit down and cry and ask God to take it away, other times I would ask people to be there for me. But they weren't allowed to act like there were huge FLAMES in their face. They had to act all normal-like. And everyone tried. Everyone tried so hard to be there for me. They tried so hard to see through the smoke and the flames. They even reached through them sometimes. Everyone tried so hard to help me. So many people cried so many tears for me. So many MORE people prayed so hard for me to be safe inside the fire, to not be just burnt alive. Everyone was doing everything they knew how to do to help me to the best of their own ability.

Some of that, I received well. Some of it, I noticed. But so much more of that I didn't. I couldn't see through the fire and the smoke to see that some of my dearest friends were doing everything they knew how to do to be there for me, just like I asked.

The people that I received well will read this and probably scratch their heads thinking, "Jenny, you did no such thing." But I also think there will be people out there nodding their heads saying, "Yep, that was me. I tried so hard to be there for you, Jenny. I tried so hard to give you everything you needed. I did everything in my power to feel your pain and to comfort you. And what did you do? Reject me. You totally threw my efforts in the trash can. You're exactly right. I reached for you through that hot, burning fire, and you just swatted my hand away. What more could I do?"

And for that, I am truly sorry. I understand that my 'fire' was (and still is sometimes, especially today) very hot. It was (is) a tough situation, and we all did our best. I know that. I'm just sorry that I misinterpreted some of your efforts so badly. Please accept my apology.

In church this morning, Preacher preached on unconditional love. The love that God gives to every single person. The reason he died on the cross for us. And in the Bible, in I Corinthians 13 it says

4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemingly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in truth;
7 Beareth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8 Charity never faileth;

That is how God calls me to love. He wants my love toward other people to suffer long, to be kind, not to envy, not to be puffed up & 'all that,' not to behave ugly-like, not to seek my own, not to be easily provoked, to think no evil, to not rejoice in sin, but to rejoice in truth, to bear all things, to hope in all things, to endure all things, to never fail.

I'm sorry I failed some of you. I'm sorry I swatted at your hand when you reached into my fire out of the kindness of your heart. I'm sorry I didn't recognize your charity when I should've. Please forgive me.

Just a little self-relfection..... and a lot of tears.

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