In response to a comment in my last posting:
How has staying away from people who have hurt me been working out for me?
Its difficult because you still live in the same community. Its difficult when you hear gossip that is STILL going on about you after 7 months or so.
And it takes quite a bit of prayer to keep my heart in a place where I am submitting to God and His heart for EVERYone, including those who have betrayed me.
Its very difficult.
It is a broken thing.
It should've never happened.
But, it did. It did happen and it continues to happen in the body of Christ.
It is a place where God seems to walk His disciples through at some point.
Kind of like the underground railroad, those who have paved the trail before, go back and get people and take them on the journey.
Jesus does the same thing with those who follow Him. He first paved the trail, and now He is taking His truest followers into the depths and turmoils of His life and teaching them how to continue to keep the faith and never lose heart rather.... expanding the heart to be something of a God thing.
My heart is terribly broken for the loss of everything I've ever known. I am beyond blessed to even have the few friendships that have lasted this long.
I have been kissed by the one who has betrayed me. Not once, not twice, but three times. I have been rejected by leaders. I have been made a keeper of the vineyards. Dark but lovely.
Who would have thought that God could love someone like me?
Thats why I walk the path that so many pilgrims have walked before me - and my tears join those of the saints on the beaten road that Jesus calls those He loves to walk.
And I am dearly humiliated.
It is NOT easy to continuesly be told that part of it is my fault. It is not easy to have people look on you like you're the black sheep of the bunch. It is not easy when the so called church critics you for your ideas and your passions and condemns you for caring about things beyond the walls of the building.
Its merely working out by the grace of God.
And a continual level of forgiveness in my heart towards these people. And that is not easily kept. Just so everyone knows. I just have to remember not to grow tired of doing the right thing.
Be joyful always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks.
Now to actually continue in that day by day.