A few years ago I wrote a post entitled, I Hate My Story. I encourage you to read it. I read it again before I wrote this and it brought good tears to my eyes. It is about “forgiving God”.
For years I hated my story. Recently, a friend sent me a link to a new book called, When You Don’t Like Your Story by Sharon Jaynes. I haven’t read it, but it does sound good. When she sent it, I thought, “You know what, I don’t like my story and I doubt I ever will, but I don’t hate my story any longer.” I was so thankful for this prompt that revealed this new truth to me.
Earlier that same day I had sat with two people at different times as they shared very hard personal things happening in their lives. I was so thankful to be able to sit with these precious women and love on them. As I contemplated this, I became thankful for my story. I am not glad about the decisions I made and if I had a do over, I would happily change a few scenes. But I no longer hate it. Because of my story I have the capacity to sit in messy complicated places with others fully in grace—without judgement. It is a beautiful thing to be able to sit with someone and pour out grace after they have been rejected and shamed by others.
Our hard messy stories expand our capacity to walk in grace.
I now trust the Lord more than I ever have before. I have my abortion story, which I have told countless times now (I remember when God called me to tell it and how fearful I was). But that is only a part of my story. A lot of life has happened since I was in college—27 years of life (yikes, I just kind of told my age). Our life is made up of more than a single event. There is so much I could share and perhaps one day I will. But what I do know through it all is that my God continues to show up again and again and He is faithful. And the things the enemy may have meant for evil or to cause harm, the Lord continues to turn around and say, “No, this isn’t meant for harm, but it is meant for good and to take you into deeper relationship and deeper trust in Me.”
I still hate the sin. I hate that I won’t see my daughter lost to abortion until I get to heaven. I hate that I caused pain to people I love. I hate that others caused pain. Just like Jesus, I hate the sin, but I don’t hate the story. He is in the story.
Jesus hates sin and sin was the catalyst to the greatest story—the story of redemption. It is because of His story, that we can be ok with our story. He’s ok with our story—after all He approved the final edit.
He never approves of sin but we have free will and we have choices. What He does approve of is what He will turn around from it if we give Him the story and let Him finish it. It takes courage to turn our story over to Him for the final edits. We often think we can write a better story.
Will you listen to the Lord today? If you were like me and hate your story, He has something He wants to say:
My beloved daughter/son, will you give it to me? Will you give me your heartache, your pain, your suffering? Will you trust me with the final edits? Will you trust me to finish the story? Will you let go and surrender trusting in my goodness? I am trustworthy. Do you believe me? I know how hard this has been and the road you are walking seems too difficult, steep, and treacherous for you. I won’t let you fall. Hold my hand. I’m holding onto you. I always have been. I see you. I know you hate your story, but that is only because you haven’t seen the ending. Let me write the ending for you. Let me lead you. The things on this path will lead you to a beautiful place full of joy and acceptance and glory. You already see the fruit of the steps you’ve taken with me. Keep walking with me as I weave a beautiful story of redemption, grace, and mercy. The final edit will be worth it.
Dear Heavenly Father, we place all the beauty, pain, heartache, wrong choices, every part of our story in your hands. We trust your ever faithful fingers to hold on tightly as we let go and let you write the rest of the story. Lord, may none of it be wasted. Use it all for your glory, every page, every word. We trust every stroke of your heavenly pen dipped in the blood of Jesus Christ to turn our mess into a beautiful story of redemption and grace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.