Today is my son's birthday. He is now three. A simple uneventful milestone but to me, something more. You see, when I first learned of his arrival, my specific words to God were 'put him back where he came from' - full island dialect. I had an inkling but not yet a definitive that something was possibly there but it was not a part of the plan...not mine anyway. I figured a few months but he arrived a week later. I nearly aborted the whole plan. I DID NOT sign up for this I practically screamed in my mind. Fast forward three years later and instead of the one child God told me about I now have four. 5, 3, 2 & 2. Yep, my house is cray - we also have eleven animals. But here is the kicker...I am living my best life. I will tell my story but my acceptance of God's plan for my life came with three years of the most difficult, confusing and costly of my entire 42 years here on earth. It cost me more than I anticipated or even thought I had in me and along the way I did lose some things that I am unsure I will get back. I had to change, evolve, morph into what God needed me to be in order to do what He needed me to do. There were times where the struggle between the two - who I was and who I was becoming - was just too much but it was in those times that He literally held me up and became my arms and legs to keep going until my strength returned. It was a constant mental, physical, emotional toll. I once, actually several times, have asked God why I always had to fight for everything - everything! I didn't realize that it was because I would later have to be the fight for ones that could not fight for themselves and whom no one was putting themselves on the line to fight for whilst fighting within myself and for myself whilst being up against a big opponent that has and still claims so many.
The concept of Vialue, and it's counterpart Vialogue, has been on my heart for almost 10 years. Real conversations with people, believers specifically, having real struggles while living real life. I thought that being in God's will meant smooth sailing but that is far from the truth. Very much so. You then may begin to question whether or not you heard correctly, or if you are doing the right thing or even if you are being ignored, not heard, and not seen by the One whose love for you is unmatched or even truly fathomable. Questions such as 'why would You allow this?' pelt your mind and thoughts especially when things seem cruel and unfair. 'Why me? Isn't there someone else more qualified?' or, for me, 'Isn't there someone else who actually wants to do this?' But I knew. I knew why He chose me and I know who He made me - whether or not I wanted to acknowledge it or be it.
The main thing that I had going for me with which to fight was relationship. I knew who God was, and had always been to me and that was indisputable. I knew what He told me and I knew to walk ahead in that Word no matter what. Even when it seems everything and everyone was against me, I had no doubt what He put in me; for me it was really a fight to put my will into submission because comfort was way easier. To put it clearly - I just didn't want to do it and did not ask for it either. I actually reminded Him of this continually in the first year, year and a half.
So, out of the fire came many things. One of which is for others to know that they are not alone. Christians have a tendency to gloss over or brush aside difficulties but that ostracizes those who are going through really hard times. Maybe having real conversations can encourage, engage and connect us - and better yet, prepare others so that their faith and fight won't fail. Another, strangely, is seeing others go after the very thing that they were put on this earth to do. I say strangely because I would not want anyone to go through what I did - it was so hard and as strong as I am, I just did not know at times if I was strong enough...but another thing that God did for me was connect me to others who were where I was, not situationally but internally and that was a life line. I knew I had to do the same because life can sometimes be too much - too much pressure, too much trauma, too many hits, too much weight. But you don't have to let it crush you. Don't let it crush you because you don't have to look far to see that there is just too much at stake. There are others depending on your survival, they need you to survive.