GOOD MORNING, friends! Heard the Billy Joel song, Shameless yesterday and that started me thinking about my life. I know that what I’m writing about today doesn’t necessarily correlate to the song but the title is what moved my mind that direction.
SHAMELESS. Sit and soak on that one for a minute. What DOES it mean to live WITHOUT SHAME? I can tell you this….I’m NOT positive. I mean, I KNOW that when we cast ALL our anxiety, cares, worries, past, uglies, mistakes, BIG mistakes, regrets and SO ON onto Jesus…that He heals them ALL…WASHES them ALL CLEAN! I can also tell you I have LOTS of things I regret. Some small and some HEAVY. In fact, so heavy that I don’t have font HEAVY ENOUGH to use to emphasize HOW HEAVY those regrets are. But while I tell you all this, and can also tell you that God has been moving in me to let GO of those past regrets. To ask FORGIVENESS from those I need to seek their forgiveness. To let GO of some bitterness that’s lurking in deep dark corners. (Friends, that’s where bitterness LURKS..it doesn’t WANT to be in the LIGHT…because like fungus it needs dark places to live…light makes it shrivel and die.)
So today, I am sharing a SHAME. It is one that has heavied my heart for many years. At the time I was walking through the midst of it…it almost swallowed me. The dear one I needed to ask their forgiveness…I did that at the beginning of this summer. As SOON as my youngest, Jake, came home from college, he and I sat down and talked. I opened myself to him about the past and he was peaceful and loving and AMAZING. God is truly GOOD because this has been a black place for me all these years.
I have three beautiful children…Josh, who turns 24 today, Jess, who is 22 and Jake, who is 21. So as you can SEE, they are VERY close in age. Josh and Jess are 15 months apart…Jess and Jake are 17 months apart. For a season in my life I was either pregnant, just gave birth or near pregnant. ☺ I stayed home with the kiddos and Mark’s job was NOT a well-paying job at that time. We struggled with money, although we were quite happy with our little family.
When I had Jess, many people would comment…”Poor Josh, he isn’t getting to be a baby!”…and many other comments along those lines. So we managed as well as we could trying to let Josh have his time as a baby and yet be a big brother, too. He stepped into the role quite well (and has been a GREAT big brother his whole life). So wouldn’t you know it…just as SOON as I think I’m kinda getting a little handle on this Momma role, here comes a knuckeball.
☺ We are leaving for a short little vacation to Colorado with Josh and Jess and I haven’t been feeling good. I take a pregnancy test and it is positive. And here begins the darkness…the ATTACK from the enemy. He immediately IMMEDIATELY hits me. Question after question…”What HAVE YOU DONE? POOR MARK, he can barely make enough money for the family NOW. What a BURDEN you are to HIM! What a burden you are putting on the family! Those POOR kids! They won’t get to be BABIES! You aren’t EVEN GOOD at this MOMMA thing and NOW you’re going to have ANOTHER BABY!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?? You are SO INADEQUATE! YOU ARE OVERWHELMED!!” And on and on and on and ON he kept coming at me!! I was believing all the lies he spoke! Friends, the enemy comes to STEAL, KILL AND DESTROY! Don’t forget that! Don’t fall victim to it!! He is a THIEF! And he was on the fast track to crushing me!!
I began talking to Mark (my husband) about having another baby. He was a gem the whole time. He never waivered about the kids or money or anything. He was supportive. But I was hearing the enemy sitting on my shoulder and yelling in my ear….lie after lie…hurt after hurt. So I questioned. I began to think…MAYBE I SHOULDN’T HAVE THIS BABY?? MAYBE I REALLY DO SUCK AT BEING A MAMA? MAYBE THIS BABY WOULD BRING TOO MUCH BURDEN ON OUR FAMILY AS A WHOLE? GOOD LORD, WHAT am I thinking??? But I thought it. It was gaining strength in me. CRAZY, right??? I’m married and THINKING about having an abortion!! WHAT?! Sadly, it is true. But with big regrets come BIGGER moves of GOD.
So we left for vacation(I was 6 wks pregnant) and on the trip, as I slept one night, the Lord spoke to me. He KNEW what was going on inside me. He SPOKE to me as CLEAR as someone sitting at the table and talking with you. The Lord spoke, “Suzanne, you are pregnant with a little boy. You will name him Jacob and he is MINE. He will be a strong warrior and do many mighty works for me. He will be a leader and I will lift him up because he will draw people to me. He will be FULL of life and joy!” WOW!! I woke straight UP…sat up and bed and woke Mark up!! I told him what the Lord had spoken to me about the baby. Mark was half asleep and I think a got a, “That’s great, Honey,” out of him before he rolled over and was snoring again.
So the Lord took this BROKEN, messed up, woman and gave me a gift!! I will let you know that we DID have a little boy and his name IS Jacob. If the Lord names your child, you don’t argue. And I have carried around YEARS of guilt and shame that I even CONSIDERED having an abortion …a life that GOD created and wanted here…has a purpose…and I thought I could “choose.” It was never my choice.
So I don’t live with this GUILT any more! I am shameLESS when it comes to my past regarding Jacob. God is using him in big and mighty ways and I am just BLESSED to sit back and watch. He is God’s, not mine. You may sit back and judge me..if so, go ahead, but God has redeemed me. We ALL have hidden shame and I am sharing mine because it has proven to help my healing. So friends, LET GO of all the JUNK! God is a REDEEMER! Let Him WASH that SHAME off of you!! Praying that in some small way, this story of MY SHAME will help YOU get to a place to let GO of yours!