I am starting fresh. I haven't written for a while, and there are lots of reasons for that. But, lately, I feel led to start sharing again. However, I don't want to share in a way that is self-serving or in a way that disrespects the privacy of my family. I have come to realize that is not what I want. And, really, those aren't the reasons I decided to start writing on a more personal level.
When I first decided to start sharing our testimony, I made a promise to myself and to God that it would be to glorify Him. I pray that in some ways, I did that. But I know that in other ways, I fell short. My intentions were mostly good, but they were also clouded with motivations that weren't entirely pure. When I realized that was happening, I stopped writing.
But I know now that I have to stop letting fear hold me back. If this is really what God wants me to do, then I need to just do it and trust. Even if that means someone won't like what I have to say. Even if it means someone will slap a label on me.
Honestly, I still don't know what all of this means and if it means anything, but I wanted a clean slate and that includes making sure we are all on the same page.
This blog has talked a lot about God. It has talked about prayer. I have even mentioned Satan (gasp!). But I have also written a lot of His and Him and He and thrown a whole lot of other capital letters out there that may have distracted from the fact that most of the time, I was really talking about Jesus.
It feels good to write it. If I am being honest, as more people read my blog, I wrote around that name. I did it in a way that made me feel like I wasn't denying my faith, yet I realize now that no matter how I creatively hinted at my faith, I wasn't exactly telling the whole story. Because, friends, Jesus is the story.
A few months ago, I decided to write a personal essay for a mainstream parenting magazine about my pregnancy experience with Brooklyn. It wasn't hard to write, especially since that is what I do for a living. As I wrote the essay, I purposely left out the details of my faith because as a journalist, I knew I had to write for my audience. So, instead, I focused on the mothering aspect of my experience. I wrote about the pain of Brooklyn's diagnosis and only briefly mentioned that my faith helped me get through it all.
After I finished writing the essay, I wasn't happy with it. I shared it with my Mom and even let her friend read it so I could get some real feedback. Yet even as I waited to hear their reactions, something in me knew I was never going to submit that essay. At first, I convinced myself that it wasn't good enough. Then I decided it would be exploiting my family. But now, after much prayer, I know that the reason that story fell short is because I left out the main character. I no longer want to do that.
Just to be clear -- Jesus is my Savior. He is the reason I have a testimony to share. He is the reason I have hope and joy and love in the midst of my heartache. He is the main character in my story, so He will be showing up here -- on this blog -- more often.
I know this might make some of you squirm in your seat a little. It might make you uncomfortable. It might make you roll your eyes or make assumptions about me and my life. But I can't let fear or rejection hold me back from what I think I am supposed to be doing here.
I don't pretend to know all the answers. I certainly don't pretend to be perfect. But I do have Jesus, and if there is one thing I can say for certain, He is all I need. My hope -- no, my prayer -- is that I'll get to tell you about that some time.