Sunday, February 24, 2013

Thoughts From Year Four: Dying To Self

"When you are forgotten or neglected or purposely set at naught, and you sting and hurt with the insult or the oversight, but your heart is happy, being counted worthy to suffer for Christ--that is dying to self. When your good is evil spoken of, when your wishes are crossed, your advise disregarded, your opinions ridiculed and you refuse to let your anger rise in your heart, or even defend yourself, but take it all in patient loving silence--that is dying to self. When you lovingly and patiently bear any disorder, any irregularity, or any annoyance; when you can stand face to face with waste, folly, extravagance, spiritual insensibility, and endure as Jesus endured it--that is dying to self. When you are content with any food, any offering, any raiment, any climate, any society, any attitude, any interruption by the Will of God--that is dying to self. When you never care to refer to yourself in conversation, or to record your own good works, or itch after commendation; when you can truly love to be unknown--that is dying to self. When you see your brother prosper and have his needs met and can honestly rejoice with him in spirit and feel no envy nor question God, while in your own needs are far greater in desperate circumstances--that is dying to self. When you can receive correction well outwardly, finding no rebellion or resentment rising up within your heart--that is dying to self." --Unknown

This quote applies to ANY situation. But in my current situation, I think of it as in terms of my pain.
I wouldn't think that dying to self would apply to my health issues before I read this quote. But the depth that it goes in explaining WHAT dying to self really is reminds me that it really does apply to my situation.
There have been many times where my pain, and my suffering has been forgotten. There have been many times where the closest of friends have forgotten about it. I usually didn't let it bother me. I mean, if you saw me in person, even if you saw me every day, you'd never know I was hurting. It doesn't usually show on my face. And I used to never talk about it with anyone. So of course the few people who knew would forget. And I never blamed them.
The only time when I was put off by people forgetting me was when I looked at other people.
Whenever someone gets just a cold or something that passes within a few weeks, others would always be more caring and understanding towards that person. The people who just get a cold are not so easily forgotten as the ones who have had health issues for a long period of time.
That used to really get me. And sometimes still does.
Of course, this world and society is unfair in things.
They cater to people who don't "need" it anymore and forget the people who have real needs. Perhaps this is me knowing too many people who have health issues and who are often forgotten.
But I have to remind myself that this is part of dying to self. Being forgotten is dying to self.

It is this quote, which was written above
" When you see your brother prosper and have his needs met and can honestly rejoice with him in spirit and feel no envy nor question God, while in your own needs are far greater in desperate circumstances--that is dying to self." That really strikes me every time.
I have learned to deal with being forgotten and have learned to rejoice in it. I'm far from perfect in it, and sometimes it still bothers me. But I've learned that it's okay not to be doesn't matter who sees you and thinks "oh, they're really tough to still come to work since they're hurting really bad". No one is ever going to think that, because no one will ever understand. And you know what? That's okay. You don't have to have people who are always there. People will forget you and that's okay. Humans are far from perfect.
What matters is that God sees you. And He fully Understands what you are feeling and going through. No one else has to. He approves that you are trying your best to work through your health issues. To your Heavenly Father you will never be forgotten.
He sees you when you realize you've been forgotten. He sees you when you are suffering. He knows. He remembers. And He cares.
And in the end, that's all that really matters.
There is no guarantee that people will remember your suffering and needs. Often times we are forgotten. And God doesn't call us to be bitter over it. But He calls us to die to self through it.

 God Bless,

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Each And Every Day

"I am setting sail today
Dark skies tainted in gray.
I can feel my boat on unsteady waters,
As it rocks and totters
I know the strong current will soon be rippling underneath
And I know I must keep calm and breath
I can smell the rain
I can anticipate the pain
I can hear the booming thunder above
But I know it's only the shout of love.
Afar I look at the waves building up towards me
And I wonder how many more storms there will be.
I know I could sigh and cry over these long days
I know I could curse the heavens as this storm stays.
But I must not look at the waves
Because this is the storm I must daily brave
And when these waves become overwhelming for too long
Upward I will look to Him who is strong
When the rain begins to fall
Upward to my Salvation I will call
When the water pours into my small boat
Upward I will look to Him who keeps it afloat.
For my Salvation is greater than every storm
My Salvation is the One who keeps me alive and warm
And as I lay down weary and wet to rest
I will never cease to feel completely blessed.
For in this storm I am not alone
Each and every day my Salvation comes down from the Holy Throne."

God Bless, 

Friday, February 15, 2013

Some Nights Never Leave You

It's hard to believe it's been almost 5 years since my sister ran away from home.
It is never easy to think of that morning. 5 years later and that memory still never ceases to make tears come into my eyes.
I have always hated that I was the one to wake up at 4 AM and see my sister sneaking out of my room.
Sometimes I wish I had not been such a selfish little girl. The only reason I had stayed up watching her through the mirror's reflection was because I thought she was taking my brush somewhere.
I never thought she was leaving leaving.
I can see her form so clearly in my mind, gathering her things in the bathroom.
And when she left the room to put things into her car I ran out.
My heart was racing.
I was so afraid.
My sister was leaving and I had caught her.
I remember telling my parents that my sister was leaving and they scrambled out of bed.
Before I knew it we were downstairs.
My dad sat in his chair with his computer, his face solemn.
I sat nervously on the couch.
My sister returned and didn't talk to us.
Dad asked questions about what she was doing.
Where she was going.
She didn't answer many.
Dad let her leave
I went into my room.
I cried so hard that night.
My mum told me to sleep that night.
But all I know is that it took a long, long time to finally cry myself to sleep.

It's five years later and these are the flashes of memories that still haunt me. These are the memories that still keep me awake and crying on the hard nights along with every other bad memory with my sister and sister-in-laws. Which happen to be more than with anyone else in the world.
Tears still fill my eyes when I think of her.
And five years later I realize that some nights never leave you.

God Bless,

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Memories of the Sister I Once Thought I Had

"There she is again
Simply the shadow of an old friend
Watching, unaware of the memories she's making
Lurking, oblivious to the memories she's tainting.
She's there in the good and the bad
Comforting us when we were sad.
She's there when we were happy,
Laughing when times were all but crappy.
And at last she was there to break our hearts
In the end she only teared us apart.
Now for years she's been gone
Leaving us wondering what went wrong
But here she stays imbedded in my mind
Much too easy to find.

If only these were things I could erase
And these memories were left without a trace.
If only the ones we loved the most
Were not the ones who made us too ashamed to boast.
If only the ones we missed the most
were the ones who held us close
If only the ones who hurt us and made us last
Aren't just faceless ghosts buried in our past
If only we could push them away
If only they would not stay."

God Bless,