Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Through My Eyes - a short film and my story for His glory

This is a short film produced by the King Brothers and is a much watch. I am so blessed by these young men for putting this piece together. It speaks volumes and speaks it well. If you know me in person you know homelessness is a subject very near to my heart and if you really know me you know why.... You may want to grab a larger cup of coffee or tea because, well let's just say this may be a long one.

This video blesses me immensely because I understand first hand the heart of the homeless. Although this video is scripted and acted, for countless number of people it is their every day existence. Day in day out, night fall to day break this is how they live. They have no respite, they have no resources and they have no hope, but GOD.

I watched this short film with a catch in my throat, knowing all too well; but for the grace of God this story, this tale, the young man in this narrative could have been either one my sons. How do I know this? Because we as a family have experienced a homeless lifestyle. We are part of a culture that is called the "hidden homeless". While we do not live outside, under a bridge or in a park, we are legally and technically considered homeless. We, our family of 6, reside in a modest 1 bedroom weekly living facility. It is not much, but it is where we lay our heads, it is where we call home, for now.

Like the young man in the film we understand what it is like to be looked at with judging eyes. What did they do? How did they get in this position? Are they this or are they that? We've experienced the rejection and side-eyed glances and double takes when people realize our situation. We've heard the "wise counsel" that charges us with perhaps there is hidden sin in your lives when what they are really seeking is for some small insight that would confirm what they "already knew" in their "spirits", and then getting angry when there was nothing to tell. No secret sin, no lack of faith, not wild story to tell other than life happens and it actually happens to Christians too. Sadly people only choose to see you from a distant perception and place of judgement until they draw closer to hear your story, to experience life through your eyes.

You see at one point we had it all, my husband had an awesome job and we lived in an amazing home but in an instant life can change. With the blink of an eye a job can end, a door can close, an opportunity can be lost. When this happens all that remains is the shell of a life of that once was. I can still recall with acute clarity and detail the feeling of facing my worst fears head on as I turned the corner to pull into our driveway to see the glaring orange stickers on our windows, on our doors, the menacing locks barring us from ever crossing that threshold again. I remember the cry that escaped my lips, the tears that escaped my eyes like waterfalls cascading down my face. I remember the cold panic that gripped my heart and then I remembered my children. I turned to look at them seeing the hurt and hopelessness that had in an instant washed the childhood glow of joy away replacing it with fear and angst of their now uncertain future.

Yes, I remember the day it was over, the day our life as we knew it changed, the moment we went from living in a home to driving around in our van trying to figure out where we could park to lay our heads.

I remember the call from friends offering to take us in. I remember going from friends to family to the van again. I remember as a family sleeping in a corner on the floor of a friends home until the next door opened. I remember the awful feeling of having no hope, the feeling of being forsaken by the God we loved and served . I remember the looks of brokenness and desperation upon my children's faces as they faced the pain and fear of not understanding how a faithful God could allow us to go through this. I remember the nights of pillows soaked with tears, the days of absolute bleakness and shame over situations that we had no control over.

But I also remember the words of life "He" whispered to my soul, 4 simple words, I Have Remembered You.  Those 4 words have carried me from that day to this one knowing that He is yet faithful.

When I watched this video my heart sang hallelujah because this was not the testimony of my sons. Despite our hardships, and our small living quarters, true to His word He has remembered us. I fully understand that in the midst of our Job like trials it could have easily gone another way. My children could have easily become bitter, turned their backs on God and their faith but they held on. It drew them closer to God, deeper into His word as they daily searched for promises of restoration, healing and the day of our coming out. They pressed in seeking His face through intercession. I saw their prayer lives blossom and their callings and gifts come into maturation. I saw their faithfulness of rising early Sunday mornings after our van died and said it's final good-byes, to be on a bus by 6am so they cold be on time for the 9am service. I saw them come home exhausted arriving home well past 10pm on Wednesday nights after faithfully attending youth service and riding the bus home. I saw them press hard to finish school and graduate. I saw them reap the rewards of their labor as each of my sons, the oldest graduating last year and the second graduating this past June, stood on the stage addressing their respective graduating classes as they gave their commencement speeches. Yes despite everything they had to endure they made it and I sit in awe of the things God has done. This week I am especially in awe of our God and His majesty. My oldest son is wrapping up his first internship with a ministry in the northwest and preparing to return to college on the west coast where he is studying and pursuing his calling as a worship pastor. This morning my second son begin registering for classes at our local college where he plans to attend this semester before transferring to the same college his brother attends. He will be perusing his calling as a youth pastor.

He had indeed remembered us and in spite our circumstances, He has been faithful to us. Like the young man in the video the Word of God changed everything. No our physical circumstances have not changed, our address has not changed, we YET believe GOD, but we have been changed through it.  I can honestly say I would not trade it for the world, it was through this process, this trial and storm that Well Watered Woman was birthed. When I was at my lowest place, my driest spot and my dying place, God met me there. He poured life through His word into my soul restoring me to wholeness, healing my brokenness, and rekindling my faith.  It is here that I have learned to truly live by faith. To seek Him and Him alone, to say though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him. It is here that I have learned the meaning of submitting to His will knowing that He will perfect that which concerns me. God does not allow anything to come upon us without a plan in place and mind. He never allows us to face anything that He has no intention of allowing to work for our good and His glory.  Overseer Eugene Lewis once said "God commissions forerunners in the wilderness so that during their assignment, they won't be frightened by the isolation of being uncommon". I thank God for allowing us to be forerunners, the wilderness experience has been hard but it has been our best experience because it is where we have grown and become strong, it is in this place that I have truly discovered God.

I know with the uncertainty of the job market, the ravishing of the housing market, many are facing the road that we have hard traveled and you have no idea where to turn. You feel hurt, devastated, broken and lost
To you I encourage you to turn to the Father. He is waiting to carry you to the other side. Will there be bumps and pot holes along the way? You bet, but you can rest assured He is still in control and He will not lead you astray.
There are others who are broken at the thought of what will become of their children because of the trials that you are facing. Some have even said if it were not for my children I would end it all, to you I say I can testify that God WILL be a fence around your children. As you continue to keep them bathed in prayer and words of life and hope, He will be a shield and buckler. God WILL use this situation to draw them closer to Himself.

To the woman who feels like you will never come out of your trial, and if you do you won't come out with your right mind, I say yes you will. The word of God says He makes all things beautiful in HIS time. He has a set time for your captivity to be turned and when it is turned you will come out as gold. Psalms 30:5 says For His anger lasts only a moment, but His favor lasts a lifetime, weeping my endure for a night but joy comes in the morning. Not only will you come out with your mind in tact you will come out with joy.

For some that are feeling forsaken and even judged by others because of your trials I remind you of the blind man when the disciples asked who sinned this man or his parents and Jesus said neither sinned. He was born blind that the works of God might be glorified. Like Joseph God will take you from the dungeon the the palace so His will can prevail. Even if it is a trial of your own making know this, God IS and will still keep you, love you and bring you out.

I know others will ask how you can be so sure, how can you still say these things when you are in the midst of your situation. To you, I say, because I know Him. He is not a respecter of persons and He is not a man that lies. I can take Him at His word. He has been faithful through every step of this journey and I know He will see us through to the end. I know because He that begin a good work is faithful to complete it. You can trust Him with your trial.
To the one who feels so alone and has no one to talk to who understands to you I say I am here and I am praying for YOU my friend. You are not alone there are others who have walked this road before you.

Dear Well Watered Women of God, I encourage you today to hold on to God's unchanging hand He will see you through and as always if any of you would like prayer please don't hesitate to let us know, we WILL pray for you. You can send us an email at prayer-team@wellwateredwoman.com

Until next time,


Love Abounds At Home said...

Thank you for sharing the video and your testimony!

TonyR said...

Sandra - Thank you for raising sons with a Christ conscience and desire to see people made whole.