July 09, 2010

Testimony of a Man, Part 2

Maybe you know someone who claims to have been robbed of their childhood; or maybe you are one of those people yourself. I remember much of my childhood, and there were many happy parts, but there was also a lot of pain and unhappiness.

It is difficult to remember the actual timeline of events in my life sometimes. No one in my family seems to remember anything the same way. My parents were separated when I was two years old, so it seems strange for me to even think of the two of them together. I know there was a lot of anger, bitterness, and distrust involved between my parents afterwards, and I felt like I took a lot of their misdirected pain in the form of some vengeful chess game in which I was a pawn or a bargaining chip. Suffice to say, I have never really been able to develop a holistic true picture of the events of my earliest life that both of my parents can agree on.

It is pretty significant to look back and not remember much fondness as a child. I know there was some there, but I just can't remember much of it. What complicated issues for me as a young boy was that I found myself in two families with new step-parents who, in my mind, became more important than me in the lives of my real parents. I learned to think very little of myself, and my identity was lost in the ocean of insecurities that I began to base my life on.

Maybe you can relate to some of this - or all of it. It took me a long time to come to grips with some of this, but there several things I finally learned when I was able to face my insecurities and surrender them to Christ. In all truth, this is ongoing and has been developing my whole life, but it took me nearly 30 years to come to this point. Here is what I learned:

1. God made me on purpose and holds my identity in His hand. My identity has never been entrusted to my hands. The harder I tried to identify myself, the further I wandered from who He was waiting to reveal me as. (For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10)

2. God always provided for me the love and encouragement I needed at every step of my journey. I could not always see it, and sometimes it seemed very small, but looking back, I see where I could not have survived without it. (God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1; The Lord leads, protects, restores, gives rest...for His names sake. Psalm 23; Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:7)

3. Nothing could take my worth away from me, because God gave it to me by virtue of my being made, and He holds it. (I am Created in God's Image Genesis 1: 26-31, Psalm 8; My Life worth is in Christ, Christ is my life, Colossians 3:1-3)

This may seem odd to be at the beginning of my testimony. I obviously did not realize these things between the ages of 2 and 7; but nevertheless, this is the testimony of the beginning of my life. I hope this may be an encouragement to you in some way, or at the very least, you may celebrate in God's goodness with me.He is incomparably good and satisfying. I look forward to sharing more with you. God bless.

With you for His glory