(an open letter from the woman who has been the subject of my recent updates)
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
By now you know I made my decision. I’m trying to hold on to what I gained instead of everything I just lost. I just wanted to write this letter to thank you all for your support.
This is a trying time as I learn to live in opposites. I was raised opposite, felt opposite, and thought opposite from what God had intended.
- Where I once SUBMITTED, I must now REBEL (to Demonic Male leaders and their followers). Where I once REBELLED, I must now SUBMIT (to God and His people).
- What I once CLUNG to (Satan, Sin, Darkness, and the Dark Community), I must now REJECT. What I once REJECTED (God, a Holy walk, kindness, love, a Christian Community), I must now CLING to — Romans 12:9
- What was once FORBIDDEN (Love, Emotion, Compassion, Forgiveness, Peace, God Himself), I must now ALLOW and EMBRACE. What I once ALLOWED and EMBRACED (Anger, Abuse, Demonic Control, Death, and Darkness), I must now FORBID.
- And most importantly, what I once HATED (God, being a part of a Christian Community, anything Holy, the concept of Love itself), I must now LOVE and EMBRACE. What I once EMBRACED, I must now run from (Satan, being part of a Dark Community, Evil itself).
I may not respond appropriately, at first, to your kindness. I may not say the right things or in the right order. I might not understand the things that are everyday knowledge to most of you because they are new to me. I might respond to a punch with familiarity but cower from a hug with literal fear, tears, and trembling.
But, having said all this, I THANK YOU!
I thank you for being there.
I thank you for your time.
I thank you for praying.
I thank you for your tears…though they still kinda creep me out lol.
I thank you for your giving.
I thank you for your display of Love…though I still kinda cling to the corner
I was raised in a community that has its own traditions, rituals, language and culture. So, it has been kind of interesting learning about God, love and you Outsiders. Let me share a bit of what I’ve learned or experienced so far:
- I enjoy holding the Forbidden Book (Bible).
- Panera Bread has the best Cinnamon rolls ever! Pastor Dude [her nickname for her pastor; mine is Mind Dude] let me pick my OWN treat. He didn’t order what he thought I should have or speak for me. He even cleaned MY tray when I went to go clean his.
- Eye contact is expected here, not forbidden like it was at my home; but I still can’t do it more than like 2 seconds.
I learned that swearing in front of Pastor Dude is apparently taboo.
- I learned I don’t have to bow when a man enters the room out here and I’m allowed to eat at the table.
Allow me to share one more thing:
One chick came up to me and said, “I feel bad because your life was so bad and mine was so good growing up.” I told her that’s the dumbest thing I ever heard. It seems to be a contest for who came from the worst environment or family. I assure you I’d win if that were the case.
If you came from a good family, don’t see it as, “Oh, now I can’t connect, can’t understand where they’re coming from.” Instead see it as, “Now, I can show them where they’re going.”
I had to have a Pastor’s wife SHOW me a different kind of hug because I never had been held/hugged like that before. Had she not come from a good place she couldn’t have done that for me.
People seem to think, “I have to know what it feels like to drown, before I can teach people to swim.” Uh no. If I’m drowning I don’t want someone who knows how to drown. I want someone who knows how to stay afloat. That’s who I want to help me. People from good families to teach me how to love, act, etc. And people who came from bad families who can teach me how to overcome, forgive, etc.
You all can teach something. You all can help someone. Some of you will connect from where a person came from; give them the comfort of knowing you understand. Some will be able to reach a person where they’re at, to see in to what is happening to them right now. And others will be able to show people where they could go if they follow God and be an example of a future goal.
I just wanted to write this letter to thank you all. One day I will be able to respond in kind to your affection-sharing behavior. One day I will be able to reflect back all that is being shown to me and share with another. But for now, all I can say is thank you.
(Pastor Jim – praising the Lord for everything shared above!)