You ever have one of those moments when you realize something, and wonder why on earth it took you so long to figure it out? I had one today - actually a couple, one led into the other.
I'm part of the team planning sessions for the National Youth Gathering in Ottawa next summer, and we spent last night and all of today brainstorming for it. One of the other people brought up a speaker he had heard once, named Dan Allendar, who has a book called "To be Told". Basically it sounds like it's about being at peace with the story of your life, and seeing the good that's come from the bad. It really affected me, just the way he said it, and later when we were praying, I was kind of mulling it over, and something hit me.
I know that I feel called to tell my story at Survivor, and I've come to terms with the fact that that's what I'm going to do, but I haven't liked the idea. I guess I've felt somehow like that would be self-promoting somehow. But the fact of it is that it would be God-promoting! My story is basically about how I was sexually and verbally/emotionally abused, and how God is healing me from the burden of that pain. My story is about what He's done for me, and why on earth would I NOT want to share that? And that led in to why am I so worried about what to say? There's a verse where Jesus tells the disciples to not worry about what to say, because He will give them the words. I KNOW that, I just forgot. I just make me shake my head...sigh.
Anyway, I'm going to tell my story, and I'm excited about it, cause God is using me to bring Him glory, so that's darn well what I'm going to do! And I'm not feeling quite so nauseous about it either, which is nice. And praise God for cool Christians who you learn stuff from - He's really blessed me with a great bunch of people to hang around with, work with and learn from. And you know what? I'm happy with my life, and with who I am, and I wouldn't be who I am if I hadn't gone through all that crap - God has brought good from bad and I'm not going to be so shy about sharing that fact from now on.
The song that was running through my head was "My Redeemer Lives", in particular the lines that goes: "My shame He's taken away, my pain is healed in His name, I believe". It's such a joyful song, and a lot of the time I get so busy I forget to be joyful, you know? And considering how much I have to be joyful about, that's kind of sad!
So those are my new goals - to be more open about what God has done for me, and to be more joyful about the life that He's blessed me with. Yay God!