Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Real, Raw, Ravishing Love


At fourteen, I willingly opened the door of my apartment to a thirty-six-year-old drug dealer -- and he raped me.  At fifteen I was arrested for shoplifting. By seventeen I had been in drug rehab --twice.  At nineteen, I left my three-year-old son with my mother and moved to Michigan, then Washington, DC, and didn’t return home for four months. At twenty, I joined the ARMY, signed up for six years, yet served less than three before chaptering out. By twenty-two I was pregnant, out of wedlock, for the second time.  In March 2008 I received a DUI, and in December 2011, I was nearly kicked out of law school for my “failure to disclose.”

Even just this morning, I awoke, asked the Lord for an opportunity to bless someone, and he snapped back with that same unnerving response as always: “Start with treating your own mother right.”

I raise my voice on Sunday mornings over things of great import like misplaced socks and spilled cheerios -- and then head off to teach Sunday school.

At times, I’ve wished people were dead and, on occasion, I’ve wished it was me. 

 Secrets.

Secrets isolate.

Secrets imprison.

Secrets intimidate.

Secrets sit in the dark, smoky corners of our lives, reminding us who we “really are.”

But secrets lie.

They hide in darkness -- terrified of Light; because they’re fearful we may catch a glimpse of what they really are: empty suits, paper tigers, tin gods.

I freely tell you all those ugly things about me (and believe me, there is more) because I’ve discovered that my identity doesn’t lie in any mistakes I’ve made, or will make.

I’ll never forget the first time I read the quote, “Be kind; for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”  

True, that.

Everyone, even the people who have hurt us, or more likely, especially the people who have hurt us, are wrestling with their own pains, longings, desires, fears, failures, secrets and sin.

Whether you have told one white lie, stolen money, hated or murdered, you have something in common with every human being in existence: you’re desperately in need of a Savior.

And that is our great equalizer.

My secrets don’t haunt me. I don’t hide from them, and I genuinely don’t care what you think about them. Why should I? My identity does not rest in them, or in your opinion of them, but rather in the traces of grace that they leave behind.

The last thing our world needs is more Christians pretending. Pretending to have it all together, pretending to be good, to be pious, or to be anything other than a mere vessel of His mercy. Christianity is not about behavior modification, but is all about throwing ourselves headlong into his consuming, yet tender, embrace.

John Piper says it like this:

“I think it is virtually impossible to honestly say that knowing God, as God intends to be known by his people in the new covenant, simply means mental awareness or understanding or acquaintance with God.

Not in a million years is that what “knowing God” means here.

This is the knowing of a lover, not a scholar. A scholar can be a lover. But a scholar—or a pastor—doesn’t know God until he is a lover.

You can know about God by research; but until the researcher is ravished by what he sees, he doesn’t know God for who he really is. And that is one great reason why many pastors can become so impure. They don’t know God—the true, massive, glorious, gracious, biblical God.

The humble intimacy and brokenhearted ecstasy—giving fire to the facts—is not there.”

We have no reason to sugarcoat our lives, or to put up facades; for the one opinion that truly matters, already knows our innermost being, and He loves us anyway.

If we, as Christians, would rip off our masks and start getting real, raw, and unadulterated about who we are and where we have come from, then maybe, people would no longer look at us and simply see another self-righteous, hypocritical person, claiming to have all the answers to their ills -- but instead, maybe, just maybe, through our fears, they'd see His strength; through our mourning, His gladness; through our despair, His peace, and through our ashes, they would begin to see His ravishing beauty. 

9 comments:

  1. Wow. That was beautiful. It's only when we reveal what we think are ugly reasons for people to hate us that we really give them the chance to show how much they love and care for us and are faithful. The Truth will set you free. I hope you can reconcile with Mom :). God bless!

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  2. God bless you and yours Morgan!

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  3. Morgan(love your name by the way. I think that my Son and his wife who are days away from having a girl are going to name her Kennedy. Anyhoo..) Thank you soo much for being transparent. I love what you said about knowing God. It is amazing to me that someone can say that they have a personal relationship with Jesus and yet never spend anytime talking to him, reading about him or acknowledging him in their lives. You go Gurl! ^5

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  4. Thank you so much for sharing this with us Morgan. It takes a strong person to put them selves out there like that, but I'm doing so it will hopefully inspire someone who may be struggling with their own demons. You have come so far in your healing process & have shown everybody what the meaning of being a "Christian" is really about. Stay strong, all scars fade with time :)

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  5. THank you all so much for taking the time to read my blog and to leave a comment. Your words encourage me so much. THank you a million times, thank you.

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  6. Posted this on your fb, but wanted to do it here as well:

    That is an absolutely crazy story. A couple years ago I pretty much hit rock bottom when I was flat broke with a nasty STD. I remained pretty lost for another year, then my eyes slowly started to open. I finally started reading the Bible in Jaunary and accepted Christ in April. Since then, God has been moving in my life in a big way and I'm really excited to see what's coming!!!

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  7. It seems to me many people unconsciously assume Christ is stupid, that He can't see why you do what you do. Of course He can: He loves you all the more for continuing to try, in spite of everything. In my view, he has far less use for those who judge--who in so doing distance themselves from others and from God--than for those who hurt honestly, and yet try sincerely.

    I remember telling a barmaid a couple months ago with a world of trouble that nobody else has it figured out either, and if they pretend they do, they are lying both to you and to themselves.

    Do your best, and remember that you ARE understood and forgiven.

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  8. How I Got My Lover Back {eboehispellcaster@gmail.com}...

    What a wonderful and a straight forward spell caster that has brought back joy and happiness into my life after i saw a post on how he helped a lady called Nicole Morgan; i decided to contact him for help, when i told this God sent man Dr Eboehi on how my lover left me for 2 years without calling nor texting me, When i shared this my sad experience with Dr Eboehi he said everything would be okay within 3 days i was like am i sure what this man is saying is real, So i decided to give him a try and at first i was thinking he was a scam and i taught he was like other spell casters who come online to add pain to people's life not knowing there feelings but to make money, this great man Dr Eboehi is never like that because he is for good and to make people happy with the one they love, am just so happy, Even before the 3 days i just got a call from a man who has left me for 2 years saying that he his sorry and that he wants me back to his life i was so happy, He invited me for a dinner which i met with him there and we both talked, he said he wants to prove that he would never leave me for any other lady he engaged me and also made me had access to all his account am so happy all thanks goes to this great man Dr Eboehi a man who has brought back joy to my life, friends that need help in getting their lover's back i would advice you contact Dr Eboehi via email: { eboehispellcaster@gmail.com } because he is the right man to help you get your problem solved.

    Thanks... Stacy Donald

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