Last night I was cleaning and organizing photo albums from my entire life. Many albums had fallen apart so I was putting the pictures into new albums. I came across so many memories that I was crying and laughing at the same time and occasionally sent snapshots to my kids. Those photos showed me a beautiful life.
This morning I decided to own my entirety. I designed business cards for myself which include my contact info, my website, Pawtucket Poetry information, and my picture. This is a first for me because I tend to keep my circles of friends separate-people of faith apart from poetry people, contacts from the past separate from my most recent contacts. It has been an identity crisis for me. Today that came to an end.
It’s perfect timing as today is the last day of my 52nd year of life. The struggle ends today.
I joined a woman’s bible study group a couple of weeks ago and it is wonderful to be connected with “my people.” In the past that would have meant “Christians” but now it means women who’ve walked the same streets as I have, who’ve suffered and endured the same hardships, and who’ve found a reason to seek Jesus without compromising their individuality and without erasing their identities.
The thing about these women, that’s different from every bible study group I have ever attended, is that they do not judge!!! This is a monumental, foundational expectation for me. Yes, that means the importance of this is huge yet it is the basis of everything I stand on. In my life experiences I have found that people who love people don’t love Jesus and people that love Jesus don’t really love people because they judge them.
I’m excited already after the first week’s study of Sarah. I’ve always known her story but never have I ever considered it the way I do now. You see, God gave them (Abraham and Sarah) a promise that they would be parents of a nation yet in their old age they had not yet conceived a child. They laughed at the voice of God and took matters into their own hands. They suffered because of their own doings. Here’s the kicker- God knew they would and he still had a plan to make his promise come true. God forgave their shortcomings, and still used them to fulfill his purpose for them.
This lesson showed me that God is not finished with me yet. I, like Sarah, took matters into my own hands and suffered as well. Recently, as in about 5 years ago, I felt like I had failed God in the worst possible way. I couldn’t stand myself for the choices I had made in life. Slowly, I worked through the damage and worked at rebuilding my… well, my entire existence until I got to the point I’m at now.
I like who I am. I think I am the best version of me there has ever been. I’ve accomplished great things and now, well, now I’m ready for something more. Now I have a fresh understanding of life and people, which, as stated earlier, is non-judgmental. And now I’m ready to look at my past mistakes and realize they were also for a purpose. That purpose I don’t know yet, but I am looking forward to seeing what it is.
Tomorrow is my 52nd birthday and the start of a beautiful journey. I expect to be posting more often with these revelations.