Monday, February 11, 2013

I Am What I Am....

Once upon a time I was a goofy crazy little child with chubby knees, big brown eyes, and a sense of adventure and imagination that never slowed down from the moment my eyes burst open until the minute I finally fell asleep.  I wasn't a pretty little girl in frilly dresses, but if you needed to find a lizard or a snake, there was a good chance I might have a spare one in my pocket, or at least knew a good spot to find some.

If a food fight was needed in the school cafeteria, I was your girl! I wasn't afraid to go fishing with the boys, since I could bait my own hook AND take the fish off with no problem, but I wasn't dumb enough to bite the head off the fish to join Jimmy and Rusty's fishing club either. I may have been the brother MY brother always wanted...except I was a sister.

But by the grace of God I am what I am!

For a while, I was a very awkward band geek that could play the bass clarinet despite having a mouthful of braces, and a very large white-girl fro that my Mom swore was "adorable".  (I have pictures. Don't make me share them.)  I had this weird new body with no operators manual and no clue what to do with all these...curves... and emotions.  So I covered them with T-shirts and jeans, and just kept being that crazy, goofy child inside, but knowing that I couldn't stay that little child broke my heart a little, and I needed something to ease that pain.

  But by the grace of God I am what I am!

I didn't know those words then.  I may have read them, but they didn't really speak to me like they do now.  

Some time later, I awoke to find myself married with a couple of kids.  "Worthless." "Ugly." "Ridiculous." When you hear them enough you begin to believe them.  Turns out he has a problem with lying.  

But by the grace of God I am what I am!

Then in another stop along the timeline of my life, I find myself surrounded by beautiful people, except they don't know their own worth.  Like me, they're broken.  "Queer." "Fag." "Homo." They've heard it all.  They know you don't approve, so they put up a shell.  Inside they are dying to know the truth, that they are wonderfully and beautifully made in the image and likeness of their Creator. Just like you. Just like me.  My best friend wears a mustache to hide the scar on his lip where he was beaten in the face for trying to feel beautiful. I'd love to go back to that time and yell with them from the rooftops: 

 But by the grace of God I am what I am!

Through the times when a bottle was my friend, and the times when I had no joy left in my soul save the tiniest micro-dot of love. In the times when I was completely alone and scared and learning to care for myself again.  As I nursed my wounded soul back to health and started looking, tentatively at first, into the mirror, I began to learn the truth about myself:

   But by the grace of God I am what I am.

I spent a few minutes of "quality time" with the Creator when my heart stopped.  Just long enough to feel the most perfect, complete, flawless, all-encompassing, forgiving, rejuvenating, renewing, joyful Love that ever existed. Love so intense in that one moment that it's enough to last forever!    

Now I can hold my head high because I don't just think I'm loved.  I KNOW that I am the beloved child of my doting Heavenly Parent! Lizards and perms and braces, and sadness and brokenness and all!  Loved!  

All that I was.  All that I am.  All that I will EVER be is a gift of grace from God.      

...and his grace to me has not been ineffective..."- 1 Cor. 15         

1 comment:

  1. True joy comes from feeling pain. The deeper the pain the greater the joy. As we say, you can't have the resurrection without the cross. Lovely writing!