Is the action of being truthful dishonorable to those in whom one is discussing if their actions are less than honorable? Before I can proceed in writing my story I feel I must abate this question that’s tugging at me and creating such doubt…
I am besides myself, I’m nervous yet absolutely ecstatic about getting my story out there and pointing people to the answer: Jesus! I am preparing myself on this journey by getting in the word every day at least a chapter a day, which doesn’t sound like much but it is something I can commit to. I’m still new to all of this, every time I’d read my bible I’d just flip around different areas and break it into fragments, discovering that (other than Jesus) my favorite person is Paul. He was so bold, so courageous, so humble, such a different man than who he used to be before Christ came into his life. He describes himself as “less than the least of all the saints” (Ephesians 3:8) and “the chief of sinners” (1 Timothy 1:15). Love this guy. He was such a bad man before, known then as ‘Saul’ who “made havoc of the church, entering every house and dragged men and women off to prison,” (Acts 8:3). A few months back I felt God lead me to read the book of Acts, and continued reading to see the transformation Paul made and learn from his teachings and discipleship. On a side note, how different the American church is from what scripture tells us in Acts 2:40-47! A building we choose to devote our time (usually an hour, once a week) based on the type of music that’s played, where the best childcare is, what preacher gives us the best message, with a dogged incessant demand for more money to spend on debts, lighting, building maintenance, hiring the best bands… and we hop around trying different one’s to fit our every need and expectation. Don’t even get me started on churches in the South! But I digress, more on that soon.
ANYWAYS, since I’ve been consistent in reading the word I landed today on Ephesians 6. Before I even opened my bible this morning I had the same doubt which has kept me from blogging (I will begin writing my book when I can afford a computer, estimated sometime this November) which is the whole “honor your father and your mother” commandment. The first description that pops up on Dictionary.com for “honor” is honesty, fairness, or integrity in one’s beliefs and actions. In my heart to honor is to respect someone, to show credit and hold them in a high regard. If I am honest and fair I am also truthful. If the person is not respectable, not good, and not fair how can I honor them? It now becomes an internal issue, there is nothing good I can say about my mother so I do not discuss her, and I do not discuss with her. I haven’t spoken to her in seven years (except a try-out or two on Facebook). I have been faced with the issues of forgiving and honoring her since I became a Christian. How can I forgive someone who isn’t sorry? How can I honor someone who is entirely dishonorable? I’ve been a follower of Christ since December of 2014. It wasn’t until March of 2016 this year that I made a list for God of all those I hadn’t forgiven, the reason I held the grudge, how they made me feel for what they did or didn’t do, then the reason I was choosing to forgive them. I wasn’t forgiving to accept or condone their behavior, I was forgiving to free myself from the pain and suffering attached to bitter unforgiveness. It was truly incredible what happened in my heart after I read each name aloud to God and told Him things like “I am not condoning their behavior, but I am choosing to forgive (person’s name) because I want to be free of the anger, bitterness and resentment I have in my heart. I trust You to deal with this person justly and fairly, something I cannot do. For you have said ‘Vengeance is Mine’ (Romans 12:19) and I leave that with You, God.” At the end of the list I had my name, the hardest one I had to forgive. It wasn’t easy and it wasn’t pretty, but I have been free ever since of the anger and acrid hatred I had toward those on my list. Many and most I will never see or speak to again, but now they don’t have any power over me, for I am free.
Back to my mother… I have forgiven her but will likely never speak to her again. There are so many reasons, so many things that all added up to leave us sadly not on speaking terms. If I tell this to you, dear friend, am I committing sin? Am I dishonoring her by telling you stories of my past? My only intention is to reach others out there who have seen what I’ve seen, are going through what I’ve been through, are considering making mistakes that are bigger than life, mistakes that forbear one from eternal life which can only be found in Jesus Christ. I’ve been praying and speculating on this for so long, but feel if I truly am purposed to lead others to Christ by sharing my story I cannot avoid it. I request that you, dear reader, pray for me, that I will abide in the Lord and be fearless and bold in sharing my past, for edification and not for deleterious influence. Let me know your thoughts! For God has given me a heart for the lost, I have such turmoil over women and girls out there who don’t have the Lord. If I am honest and my intentions are to make use of my sufferings to bring the lost to the Kingdom of God, surely the truth of my upbringing is not sin. And if I am to obey Him first I need to remember “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me” Matthew 10:37.