First, I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of prayers and understanding, after my last blog post sharing some of the hellish events my family has endured recently.
Unfortunately, due to the length of the post, I didn’t have much room to celebrate the positive and uplifting things God is doing in our lives, despite the suffering.
I wrote to many of you directly and insisted that we really are doing “okay”–and that we’ve found the peace that surpasses understanding has come through in a supernatural way.
But I’ve been meaning to turn those feelings of gratitude into a fleshed-out blogpost for awhile. So here we go…
#1. We’re “okay” because this isn’t the first time we’ve dealt with something really, really hard. When my second child was born, I struggled with crushing insomnia and suicidal thoughts as a result of postpartum anxiety/depression. At the time, I thought I’d never get through it. I couldn’t imagine anything worse. But–now–I can see God’s hand at work through the whole thing. He led me through a deep darkness which I never would have chosen for myself, but it taught me some lessons (about control and submission and idolatry and faith) that I may not have been willing to learn without the pain. Looking back, I’m exceedingly grateful for the losses I’ve had to endure, which have helped to prepare me for future suffering.
#2. We’re “okay” because we know that our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against unseen forces in the spiritual realm… and we’re not the Commanders in charge. All we need to do is obey orders–making one choice to glorify God at a time–and He handles the bulk of the strategizing and mobilizing. When we get overwhelmed or depressed or angry or defeated, we simply need to repent of trying to do God’s job and get back into formation. We are being used BY HIM; not the other way around. The only time we need to panic is when we start (wrongly) believing God needs us to strategize and mobilize HIM.
#3. We’re “okay” because God has graciously surrounded us with like-minded brothers/sisters, to remind us that WE ARE NOT ALONE. Just when we’re tempted to believe the entire world has gone insane, God gives us a Present in the form of Soul Mates…
I’m not talking about romantic lovers or someone we find physically attractive.
I’m talking about people who speak our spiritual language and already hold the same values/beliefs we do, without having to start at the beginning and explain ourselves in a tedious and exhausting kind of way. These are people with whom the conversation is easy because they just “get” us. Or, they write something and share it at the perfect time, bringing instant relief, because it sums up everything we’ve been trying to say ourselves.
The number of Soul Mates God has revealed to me the last few weeks has been incredible, and I can’t even begin to highlight all of them.
But I’ll collect just a teeny, tiny list of articles, interviews, and videos which have encouraged me lately. They have reminded me that there are still intelligent, Justice-minded, Truth-loving humans of all colors, shapes, ages, and backgrounds fighting the same fight:
-Darrel B. Harrison and Virgil Walker (of the Just Thinking podcast). This is an interview conducted by George Lawson, discussing the Reformed view of Race, Justice, and the Gospel. (Spoiler: The video features three black men agreeing that “race” is a pseudo-scientific construct, and people should find a more biblical way to discuss “racism.”)
-Center for Biblical Unity. This new group was brought to my attention by Alisa Childers (who also deserves recognition as a Soul Mate). The Center for Biblical Unity strives to bring the conversation of Justice back to Christ, in whom we find our only hope of true reconciliation.
–Peter Heck has been a good friend of my family’s for a long time, and you should follow his column on Disrn. He has written a lot of good things lately, but I especially appreciated this article “A Humble Request For Those of Us Who Believe Black Lives Matter.”
–Rochadd Hendrix and Samuel Sey are two brothers in Christ whose Facebook pages I found thanks to their interaction on Darrel B. Harrison’s page (see above). You can see an example of one of Rochadd’s posts by clicking here. And one of Samuel’s is highlighted here.
Anonymous Berkeley professor. Apparently I don’t need to know a person’s name, age, or gender to resonate with their message. Let’s be honest, we don’t even know if the author of this post REALLY IS a professor in the history department at Berkeley. But doesn’t matter very much to me. This is still the best thing I’ve read in a long time: Click Here for the Open Letter.
Matt Walsh’s article, We are Not United. In this article, Matt talks about the huge divide between various groups within the United States, which doesn’t sound encouraging at first. But it’s actually nice to hear someone else is noticing this problem, and it makes me feel better about intentionally focusing on MY TRIBE and wasting less time trying to build bridges toward people who aren’t interested. Just because someone is a fellow citizen of the United States does not mean I must subject myself to their evil philosophies and marinate in any selfish, backward religious practices. Feminists and Critical Theorists and Activists and Leftists might as well live on another planet. Thus, I agree with Matt that I will not be an ally of anyone who believes gender is a construct and monuments should be destroyed and healthcare involves women killing their preborn babies, etc…
Natasha Crain: This article warning Christians of the ways Critical Theory is taking over the Church was originally published on Natasha’s website. But it has been down for several days, and her IT personnel suspects a cyber attack. If you want to read it–and I highly recommend it–you can find the text in this Facebook note.
–A Huge Number of Personal Friends/Family, who have engaged with me in much-needed Soul Conversations recently. I don’t want to embarass anyone. But I’ve been blessed lately by Jason and Lisa, Chris, Bethany, Tabby/Megan/Marla (my sisters in Christ and in flesh!), Kyrsti, the elders at my church, Grandma Turbo, Pkarlgh (and all of his many personas/pseudonyms), and of course my dad, John, and my husband, Luke. All of you have been there to offer just a little bit of understanding when being understood is what I craved the most.
It’s because of all these people and all these Truths that I can honestly say: I’m okay! Not that I will be okay someday, when this or that works out the way I want… But I am okay RIGHT NOW, to the glory of God.
A wish a sincere thanks to everyone who is allowing the Holy Spirit to work in their hearts and has therefore become an indispensable part of my Community…my Tribe…the Body of Christ…the Family of God…
All honor and praise and power be His!