Saturday, October 22, 2011


So from my last post...a wonderful conversation did happen. So much better than expected. :) All I can say for now is that God is good. God is in control. And I learned some new details about our 'situation' that I didn't know about before. It's helps to be informed. Surely I'll post if anything major happens, but for now, some good communication about it is enough.

Monday, October 17, 2011

How to handle a difficult thing of the past... "READ AT YOUR OWN RISK" This is a long and heavy post. Beware.

The title of this post is exactly what I'm writing about today... What do you do when something bad from almost 20 years ago keeps coming back to haunt you? It's not a recent thing...20 years is a long time.  I won't refer to this in the 3rd person b/c this is me. It's personal. In many ways, I'm an 'open book' and have no problem sharing my life with people. This is one of the more tough things to share, but I think it's important. I've gone through rounds and rounds of forgiveness, shedding resentment & bitterness and reminding myself that God sees all. And I know HE will handle this. So whats wrong with me?? Why won't this just go away? I can't even express all that happened, but I can say that it's bad enough to keep coming back around to mess with me. I think of myself as a God fearing, Jesus loving, wife and mom in a christian household, and I'm finding that I'm certainly not immune to the sting of when God allows bad things to happen to believers. Even 20 years later...there is still pain. So I'm asking, 'God, whats up with this?' What is the purpose in you allowing this? I know you were there. I know you saw me and I know you love me. And I thought I dealt with this already. So why? Your Word says in Romans 8:28 "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them."  So Lord, please show me how this is working together for my good?

There are lots of people involved...and this would probably mess people up if I give too many details here. I'm not doing this to 'mess people up' at all but to protect whoever I can...and to see if peace and rest might finally come to my heart and mind regarding this issue.  I'm by no means trying to be the person to execute the consequences of sin...thats clearly not my job. But I'm also having a hard time knowing there has been literally NO justice or remorse for a bad thing that happened....20 years me and possibly others. But what do I do?! Get over it? Move on? Or finally speak up and do what I can? I shouldn't say 'finally speak up'...I'm not really the keep it all hidden kind of girl. Although growing up, this was a kind of 'sweep it under the rug and maybe it will go away' situation, there have been people who I opened up to and shared my experience with. This brought tons of relief to just be able to get it all out and not carry this burden alone. Thank you to all who know, and were just good listeners. I also ask that if you do know, please don't post that you know. I won't be writing names or titles, to keep some level of decency. But keeping it all on the "DL" isn't working for me anymore for some reason.

I realize this may not make much sense without me actually telling you what here it is. When I was 9 years old a man in my family sexually molested me. More than once. He didn't come out and confess what he had done, but he got caught. Someone asked and I told on him. I know that in the grand scheme of things, there are so many worse things that could've happened to me and there are countless girls and women who go through this, and worse,  all the time. Does it make it any less serious? Any less painful? Any less significant to me? No. I write that part mainly to remind myself that it is was a significant part of my life. This was something that greatly affected me and changed something in my being. My enemy likes to mock my pain by saying 'are you still whining about this same thing even 20 years later?!' Or 'why don't you just get over this....move was the past....what could you do about it's too late." Lord help me and give me wisdom.

Twenty years later you'd think an issue is long gone in the past right? So why is it then, that after all my forgiveness and classes for my 'heart issues' I'm still feeling such a pit in my stomach? Why did I feel like I was about to throw up when I thought about it this morning? Why do I feel like I'm contributing to and allowing the danger and risk of others being hurt, if I don't speak up, now, after so much time? I don't know. Maybe it's because I am supposed to say or do something. Even now. Maybe I will spare someone from being hurt if I just open my mouth. Who knows if he might try it again....or has already tried it again. Maybe he wouldn't do it again. But maybe he would.  Is it worth the risk?? No way.

I've been thinking of myself in others' shoes so much lately....probably because I have my own kids now. If I didn't know that I was friends with someone who molested a child, and my kids were around him.....would I be ok with that? Wouldn't I want someone to tell me? Wouldn't I want to be warned? And not only my children, but would absolutely want to reconsider my own friendship with him! Wouldn't I think the man should be in jail for his actions or at least some sort of major counselling?  So that's what's heavy on my shoulders right now. Adults and kids are hanging out around him in complete confidence that he's just a great guy. Safe and trustworthy.  Now again, I want to say that EVERYONE has issues....everyone falls short...sins...messes up....but I can't help but recognize that this is a big deal and has major consequences....right?! I'm trying hard to not to crucify him, yet acknowledge that christian or not, family or not,  there's something really wrong here!

So if I confront this and ask them to either refrain from having people with kids around or to do something to show they care...or make some sort of move... the worst case scenario might be that my family lies, denies, and disowns me. Surely they would hate me or at least disregard the issue as in years past.  Best case scenario is this man breaks down before the Lord Jesus and confesses his need for Him. Repents, is saved, transformed and renewed. Is that even realistic? Oh how I long for that to happen...and truly for his sake. I've prayed countless times for this...and for years, but maybe it will take something like a real confrontation to be brought to his knees before God...'at the end of your rope,' so to speak. He is definitly not at the end of his least the last 20 years his life hasn't reflected that.

My husband has been wonderful in walking through this with me and reminding me that it is important and that this process in my heart is expected and ok. In so many ways, he has totally represented Jesus and so many times he has shown me the Father's heart during this. I'm so grateful to have him. He's been gentle and understanding when we've been intimate... the times I made him stop when I'd get the creepy feeling that he's doing something wrong to me, only to realize that it's because something this other man did when I hadn't even hit puberty. Knowing that it should be right and ok, and even a holy thing from God, but in the moment it felt so wrong and bad. My husband was kind and let me cry. He held me until I could calm down and hug him back. That's a good man.

Today I woke up thinking about my 3 daughters and how quickly they're growing and how much I love them. How I get anxious at the thought of  any harm coming to them. Of my responsibility to protect and care for them with everything inside me. And to bring them up in the ways of the Lord. That's alot to handle, no? I'm learning to give them over to God regularly and trust that our Father is good and loves them so much more than I do. Then I thought 'God loves everyone way more than any human to human love.'

I have personal history with a man who has a serious issue in his past. He's not alone in it, I know. Tons of men deal with this but I'm not refering to them. I'm refering to the 1 man who was supposed to be a caretaker for me and he hurt me. This is a big sin issue....a crime even. It is dangerous and a risk of causing major pain to people. This person doesn't claim to believe in God at all so I have a place in my heart that says 'well, what should I expect? He is serving his father after all.' But I'm having a much harder time with the christian in the family who knew soon after the violation and didn't do much to protect me and keep me from harm. I was still at risk physically, emotionally and spiritually. No matter how much affection, gifts and "love"  there was, there was always that mixture of 'but if you love me so much, then why aren't you protecting me? Why won't you help me and take me  away from this?'

We both remained in the family. I had no choice. There was a jesuit priest guy who "counseled" me for a little while after this came out, but unfortunatly it was a joke. No healing happend for me. No repentance happend on 'his' part. I remember a quick apology one day at a park where we were all supposed to go for a meeting. It felt much more like a 'I'm sorry....that I got found out,' more than 'I'm so sorry about what I did to you. I'm sorry I have caused you pain. I will get real help to deal with this. What can I do to help you through this?'

Around the age 18, I was in a room where I overheard this man actually call me an a**hole to another family member. Nothing at all meritted this kind of expression about me and I realized that this man didn't have an ounce of care in him. There was truly no remorse at all for his actions which was why it was easy enough for him to continue on in his life like nothing ever happened. For years, in fear I went along acting too like nothing happened. But I just couldn't anymore. Something wrong did happen.

So here I am, 20 years later wondering how to handle this delicate situation? Since he is a family member who has remained "in the family" this whole time, how do I handle this? I'm no longer willing or able to greet him and treat him like a loved and honored family member. I can't and won't let my daughters be around him. Even the thought of him thinking of my girls makes me want to die. So how on earth can I continue to interact with my family knowing there's such a secret that most people in the family don't even know about? How can it be that a dangerous and sick man is hanging out and having a great life and attending family functions and nobody knows this serious thing about him? How can other people with young kids bring their family around think he's just such a great guy?? It's because that christian family member has covered for him all these years. And there's my issue....  

Someone please help me out on this.  I know as believers, we are called to many forgiveness, mercy, compassion,  and love. But does that mean there are no consequences of sin? No protection against harm? No priorities???! So you see now that my issue is just as much for the man who violated me, as for the 'christian' who did nothing to defend me or protect me. Possibly more so.  People, including myself, make mistakes ALL the time. I understand myself to be a sinner saved by the grace of God alone. I'm not claiming to be all wise and without fault myself at all. And I've been told that 'you never know how you'd handle a situation, until you're in it yourself.' But I feel like I can honestly say that if a child in my family....either a daughter, neice, cousin, granddaughter was in a situation like I was, and I had the power to remove the child from the situation,  I would NEVER allow them to remain unprotected and vulnerable no matter what. It's not a superhero mentality is it?? Isn't it just normal to want to protect the young and helpless? Isn't it instilled in us?

So because my family doesn't know about the 'issue,' I'm finding myself in that either "go along with life and try to avoid 'him' as much as possible" or say something. I've gone this long without blasting it to anyone who is around during family functions, or whenever I hear about kids being around him, but it's getting more and more difficult to sit quietly about it. The 'christian' to this day also seems to be living life like nothing happened and seems to want the benefits of life like nothing happened. But I can't live like that anymore. Either I cut relationship with this family member, which I totally don't want to do,  or I confront them about this...again. As a believer, I'd want to just confront {in love and humility} this person and hope that something great would come from it.  Is it better to just avoid confrontation, let happen whatever will, and not risk being hated by my family?

Also to make clear, I have already approached both the 'christian' and the offender about all of this before. I have told them both that because of the love of Jesus and forgiveness and mercy of the cross for me, I also am able to forgive them. I feel like the offense to me personally is being handled sufficiently by Jesus, and now my issue is the continued risk of danger and carelessness on their part to others.

Ah. So there it is. This is what's been running through my mind all day. I felt there might be someone who could identify with this and might help them not feel like they're alone in the struggle. move foward with 'a talk' or not...

If you have something regarding this post that you'd like to talk to me about privately, please email me @  Thanks!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Rambling about how I'm starting to hate cleaning....

So I'm just wondering how in the world I will ever get my house in order. I mean, today, Theo and I were so set on cleaning and organizing and finally putting order to things. We were psyched up! And to put things in perspective, we did just move here, like 2 months ago and we're not totally settled. Not everything has it's place yet and we don't even have a washer and dryer. So we have mountains of laundry everywhere. Which is absolutly crazy. I mean, the mini chaos in my house is somewhat normal {right?!} but it drives me up the wall! Plus my 3 sweet kids are awesome, but maaaaan...they can make a mess! It's about 10 seconds after they wake up in the morning. And this is what I hear when I say, "clean up time, before mommy loses it!"..."mama, it's just soooo hard to clean all of this"...or..."I'm just so tired mom!" Holy smokes...if they only knew what I had to deal with! I mean, should I actually get rid of their toys?! I've totally thought about it and definitly threatened it...{I know...sorry} but geez, there has to be a better way. And half the time, Stella says, "yeah mom, that's a good idea. We should give all our toys away to the poor chocolate kids in Haiti." Hmmm.....yeah so thats a tricky one.

Besides about them dishes?! They take foreeeeever to do! And as much as we would like to do them right after we use them....we just don't. And sometimes they pile up...which drives us crazy too. And today...I have to stand at the sink for literally an hour and a half washing each thing. Crazy right?! I know. One of the truly lovely things about living in the states. Dishwashers. Well, maybe they have dishwashers here, but I haven't seen one. Maybe it's just for the mexican bourgeois??

Anyways, I'm not as bad as Theo in handling the tornado of toys, dishes and laundry all over our house. I definitly don't like it, and my kids know that when I start to look the the 'crazy lady' they better start singing 'clean up, clean up, everybody do your share' song and putting things away. Or maybe when I just hold up a wooden spoon! But Theo...he gets this glaze over his eyes. When it gets to 'that point' it seems he just shuts down. The mess of random things everywhere causes a total 'Theo system failure.' It's kinda funny actually. But not so funny when it's time to actually do something about it. My man will pick up things and just move them. Not actually put them where they belong. He just seems to shuffle things around and make them look a touch more organized. But it's all still out...not put away. And he's totally excited about how he helped out. And it's bad news if I come in and ask 'so what did you do?' What?! I just organized all this laundry! Organized? Why did you "organize" the laundry?? ha, oh man. That's just a little insight to how 'we' handle the chaos in our house sometimes. I know you wanted to know all of that, right?!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Only the beginning...

So today was our 3rd Sunday of hosting home church here at our house in Mexico. It was awesome. This is a totally unofficial thing. We just decided to meet here and invite God to be with us because we were missing that close knit community that does church and life together. Sean & Trisha and their family joined us for home church 2 weeks ago and after church, we prayed and asked God to bring us a worship leader so we didn't have to use a cd player, and I secretly asked for someone with some skill. :)  So that Sunday after church our family walked down to the beach and this non-Mexican family walks up to us and introduces themselves. Nic and Michelle and their 3 kids had just moved down from Canada about a week prior and only live about 2 minutes drive from us! After some small talk and getting to know eachother a bit, we invited them to join us next Sunday at our house for home church. They said that before the move, they were looking into home churches because they were really interested in that! Nic also let us know he was a worship leader and would love to help out. :) God is so good.

Today during worship, a man walked up to our gate so I walked out to meet him. His name was Alex and I realized he had 3 young kids by his side. He said he didn't have any money or food and wanted some food for his kids. He told me they've been homeless for a while and sometimes stay in shelters when they can. I could smell the alcohol on him.  He asked for money to get to the next town and money for some more food for later. He said they had been sleeping on the beach for a few nights now and he didnt have consistent work. I looked passed him and around the corner and saw a woman, {who she later told me is not his wife, but his 'legal partner' or something like that}, and 2 more kids. All 5 kids are theirs and they've been 'together' for 8 years. I went in and quickly explained the situation and we all, as a church, gave them some money and we gave them food in a bag. At first when I asked if they would like to come in the gate, he said no. But after we gave them money and food, he agreed. Before we knew it, we all were praying for them and sharing the gospel for hours. At one point this man was bent down and in tears. He said the first time we all layed hands and prayed for them, he felt a very strange and powerful sensation. He was a drug addict and when he 'shoots up' he feels an intense strength and power and feels like he can fight all men off with his bare hands. When we prayed, he said he felt a similar feeling only twice as much...and without the desire to destroy anything. He was feeling a surge of the Holy Spirit through his body!

With tears in his eyes, he said that he's encountered other christians before but that he always felt very judged and felt alot of discrimination. He's never been invited in the doorway of a house and offered food with love. he said something was different about this meeting. There was no discrimination or judgement.  He opened up to us all about some of his past with drugs and alcohol. He voluntarily poured out the contents of what was in his "Fanta" orange soda bottle, which he told us was spiked with alcohol, and recognized that he needs God in his life and that God will help him change.

Their 5 kids came inside and were playing with our kids. Their little girls were all dressed up in my kids' princess dresses and tiaras...playing kitchen and playing sidewalk chalk outside. Alex said as they were walking outside, he heard the sound of our worship in the house and said, "that's where we'll find help," and so he came to our house. What a testimony of the Spirit of God!

What a blessing this was. To keep my guard up for this adult mexican man who just showed up at our gate, then to bring my guard down so his kids could come in and play with mine...and enjoy the toys we had and feel some love. Those kids received so much affection while here. Between Lynette and Holly {the 2 teen girls} and the moms, the little ones were filled up with love and joy. The mom came in the gate reluctantly at first. You could see reservation in her. As we prayed for her and time passed, her demeanor became much softer and open. She even came inside the house with me for a moment to see her kids playing. She told me that they were staying in a room every once in a while offered by another church not far from here.

After a few hours of ministering to this family. It was time for lunch and everyone was hungry! {This family was obviously hungry way before lunch time!} We're doing potluck style after church, and we obviously weren't expecting this other family, but what a blessing it was to feed them. To trust the Lord to multiply our food...and to see our kids all sitting and eating together was awesome. To see my clean and "put together" kids sharing their toys with somewhat dirty and not so put together see the gratitude in the parents when we made our kids serve them their meals. What a refreshing thing to experience after so much time in a comfort-at-all-costs culture and mindset. Now that's what I call church! :) Also, Alex and his family will be coming here to church next week. Praying for deliverance and true transformation from the Lord.

We also met a woman and her daughter yesterday while at Punta Banda. Debbie and Lynette bought a table from us and we invited them for home church. Lynette goes to school close to our house so it was easy to explain where we live. I was filled with joy during church as Debbie expressed how her heart has felt like a desert since she hasn't been to church in so long. The pastor of the small church she was attending, resigned and most of the people left. She felt isolated and alone and was really wanting a solid church for Lynette, her 16 year old daughter who was also a believer. It was so powerful to remind her that God hasn't forgotten her and knows exactly where they are at.

This is only the beginning. Only day 3 of our little home church and I'm reminded of Matthew 18:20 "For where two or three gather together as my followers, I am there among them."

Thank you Jesus for your goodness and loving kindness. I will never stop thanking you for your mercy and love. Continue to lead us and teach us. We want to know you and love you more. Amen.