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Monday, September 5, 2016

Telling My Story

 Maya Angelou once said that "there is no agony like bearing an untold story inside of you." For many years, the untold story of my life was hidden and, quite frankly, I wanted it to stay that way. While I had always wanted to be an author, the story of my life was one I had no intention of telling. Creating imaginative plots and characters was fun and interesting to long as it didn't involve my own journey. For the most part, I succeeded very well in separating these two realities. But just a few years ago, I became acutely aware of the agony of holding such a story inside. In the past, I had always gravitated to the stories of others who were willing to share their pain so that it might prove a healing and inspiring testimony to others in the world. For as many examples as I had read, somehow it didn't translate to my own life. That is, until the spring of 2014. Thus, this blog was born. 
 For the last two years, I have used this forum to share my thoughts, struggles, and portions of my story to hopefully encourage and inspire others. However, I have never fully shared some of the details of my story...largely because I was saving them for the possible book I would write on this topic later on. Due to some unforeseen changes in my life and some opportunities that came up shortly afterward, it appears as though publishing this story may be quite far off in my future. In the meantime, I feel as though there are people out there who need to hear my journey in greater detail. So...I have decided to pull from portions of my book draft and will be sharing my story in depth in the days to come. 
 I want this story to deeply touch those who read it.  Mine is the story of a life on the other side of the door. A darkness held deep within the human soul - a heart bound by the fear and lies of its own making. It is the describing of a journey that led though "the valley of the shadow of death" (Ps. 23:4), through the pain of loss and grief, through the powerful grip of unforgiveness, and through the heartbreak of self-discovery. But it is, more importantly, a story of redemption and healing, of how I came to embrace love and learn to live abundantly following the painful circumstances of my past. It is one that, while it began in darkness, ended in the Light. Though it started with the door of my heart closed tightly, shut from the embrace of life on the outside, it ends with it open wide - a welcome invitation to all who come and are willing to enter in. 
 In stepping from my life on the other side of the door, it has become obvious to me how many people are still being held by their own despair - something I know about all too well. You may be one of these individuals, or you may know someone who is. Either way, I hope you'll come with me and together, we can discover a place of hope and healing that is only found in the live-giving grace of the Savior. In the days to come, as I share my story, may you find a message of wholeness - one that is so needed in the broken world in which we live. Above all, I trust that you will be pointed to the One whose truth delivered me and who brings meaning to the life of all who come to know Him.