When my daughter was in grade school, another student made an allegation against me that was not true.
My sweet daughter became so upset after hearing the words, that she made sure everyone knew it was a lie. She wanted to defend me because she loved me. Anger was her initial reaction, followed by tears and a phone call from the principal asking me to come in and help settle the disagreement…
When you put yourself out there on social media, you have to be prepared for some backlash from time to time.
I know this and yet, I am never prepared.
This week, when I received not one but two comments on something I posted~
~initially my heart became angry, and then sad.
I knew they weren’t attacking me personally, they were making fun of my relationship with Christ, and it bothered me to my core. I didn’t want to defend “me” or even my post~ I wanted to defend Christ because I knew that what they said was not truth. I wish my simple, inadequate words could somehow convey all He has done in my life. He is everything to me.
I was told to grow up, and informed that my life was depressing if Christ was my entire validation.
Maybe today you are reading this and thinking those very same thoughts. I know that there is no way for Charisse to convince you otherwise, but I know God can. Even if you don’t believe it.
My life is anything but depressing, because He is real in my life.
Every time I have felt lost and alone, He showed me that I wasn’t. He never left my side and He always made a way out. His undeniable breakthrough into the sorrows I have helplessly clung to have been little miracles in my life time and time again. To have joy when you think there is no joy to be found. To have peace when your situation is daunting and the world around you is a mess. To have comfort through every diagnosis or loss of a loved one. To have a weight lifted from you that you were sure would drown you in sorrow. To be known when you feel like you don’t even know yourself. To have Someone love and forgive you no matter what you do, or have done, or might do.
To have a relationship with a perfect God Who gave His life for you.
Yes, my identity is in Jesus. Yes He is real in my life. Yes, every single thing my eye beholds is a blessing from His hands. That is my truth.
I have pondered all of this and come to the conclusion that there are people who refuse to believe such a relationship can exist~or choose to believe it, but fear holds them back from defending it.
People who have learned how to mask pain. How to push away negative feelings by staying busy or finding a cause to work for, a charity to give to or a medication to make it all better. I guarantee if you sit still long enough you will realize that there is something missing deep down in your soul. The pretense of a strong identity and self worth cannot cover up the void that dwells in the deep, innermost parts of your being. We are a generation of people that look for joy in everything around us so that we don’t have to face our inner emptiness, and then with a plastered on smile of pretend confidence we try to convince ourselves and others that we have it all together.
Until Christ becomes your Redeemer, there will always be an emptiness. He is the only one who can fill it. My words can never fully illustrate the majesty and glory of being fully known and loved by Jesus. Knowing Him and being known of Him is the life He always intended for you.
And then there are those who claim to believe this. They hear the mockery this world throws at the very One who took their sins upon Himself when He died on the cross, yet refuse to acknowledge that the world’s view and allegations couldn’t be further from the truth. Fear triumphs over faith. The world’s perception of them becomes more important than the beautiful perfection of a relationship with Christ. Allow me to give you a truth to hold on to~ it’s a lot easier defending someone you deeply love than defending yourself and the more love you have for that person, the easier it becomes to defend them. Fear becomes present when we lose sight of Who it is we are defending.
The situation with my daughter and her classmates was quickly resolved. The student admitted to lying and justice was momentarily restored. Was that the last time something like that has ever happened? No. And because of social media, I am sure things like that will continue to happen. But my daughter’s love for me that day triumphed over any concerns she had on how she was perceived~ and I will never forget that.
Today I want you to know truth because I love you, but more importantly because God loves you. Because I want you to experience the love of God in your own heart. In the middle of your hurts and in the middle of your happiness. To know a true and lasting joy that cannot be explained with the mere words of my pen. A joy unspeakable and full of glory.
That’s what I want for you.
The incredible, sacrificial love of Jesus~
the only validation of our existence.
I Peter 1:3-9
© 2020 HOLDING HOPE