We may have many people who represent Jesus in our lives. We definitely all have a parent and that is the primary way we learn about the parent/child relationship and thus God the Father’s relationship to His children. Many of us, including myself, had at least one parent who was much more representative of the devil than the Lord. For some, this person may have been the only parent in their life period.
When we have a parent that is cruel, scary, or just plain negligent, we get a very skewed picture of our Heavenly Father which can impact our beliefs about Him and our relationship to Him for many years and possibly for our entire lives. In my case I had fear of a ‘lightning’ God who would strike me down at any time if I stepped out of line. It wasn’t about love, it was obedience from fear. I knew the violence and the pain my earthly father was capable of. It was a matter of when, not if, and I transferred that to my Heavenly Father. Knowing that He was ALL powerful, I lived my life in fear of what pain He was able to bring into my life.
I had a pastor also, whom I believe was an excellent representative of or role model for Christ. His teachings have always been impeccable, his life one of integrity and honor. After knowing him for around eight years, I confided in him about my childhood sexual abuse when I decided it was time to work through it with a counselor. He apologized for my pain and never followed up about it. Recently I told him about the rapes. He sent me some verses, emailed me about a teaching he did that he thought would be helpful, and when I called to sincerely ask if I could meet with him concerning my crisis of faith and that I felt like I was drowning, that was the last I heard from him.
In ‘unBelievable cost’ I told you about a very dear friend that was a close and dear Christian sister and mentor who also, abandoned me in this trial. She taught and ministered with so much love and compassion, sacrificing much for others. She listened well, gave of herself, her time, and her money. She has walked in places few others besides Jesus would have walked, following His footsteps for guidance. When my road got bloody, she walked away.
The trail of tears and destruction that is left when people we look up to, respect, admire, want to emulate because we see Jesus in them, fail us so shockingly and so out of character of all we believe them to be, it has the potential to leave us crippled and confused. At the very least it is deeply painful and temporarily damaging. These are times when faithful followers walk away, questioning God, His goodness, and His very existence.
Thankfully, while holding human hands, which I realize ‘all fall short’ I never quit clinging to Holy hands. So, dazed, confused, and questioning? Yes. Willing to give up and walk away? Not a chance. These are the times that call for wrestling with God, seeking His purpose, His will, His direction, His wisdom. (to be cont’d)