A Life of Compromise: A Foreword
Last updated: 06 Jun 2020 18:36
A Foreword on Keeping It Real
I have two desires. And let me not over-spiritualize that statement. I want to publish Christian theological and doctrinal books on the one hand. On the other hand, when I speak about emotional and traumatic things, I also want to cuss. Therein lies the rub. If I cuss in a book, I will not be considered for publishing from a Christian publisher. If I don’t cuss in writing a book when describing something that is both emotional and traumatic, then what I am writing about would feel inauthentic.
I say, inauthentic because when I am reliving these terrible moments, all I want to do is cuss, spit, scream, cry, roll up in a ball and go to sleep for the rest of the day. If I am frank, I want to turn comforts from the past, such as pornography and … Well, that is it. For the vast majority of my life, porn has been my idol of comfort. Indeed, it did not comfort me, but I kept going back nonetheless.
So, cussing and porn. Pain and abuse. Perversion and wickedness. All of that is not life abundant that Christ promised but fits the mold of suffering that God promises when you follow His Son.
But what happens the suffering is just too much. Everybody’s tolerance and definition of suffering are going to differ, maybe a little. So everybody’s tolerance is going to vary greatly.
I hope that this memoir helps me deal with what is real, embrace what is real, where was God in it, and the best part: that the conclusion is not wrapped up in a pretty little bow. Nah, life is better, but it is still a struggle. Maybe the quantity and quality of evil that have been done to me far outweigh the good that I have ever experienced, including my wife and three kids.
All of that would be quite true if it were not for God. No, God did not make my life better or less sufferable. He is just there. God is with me. The prophet Isaiah called him Immanuel. The prophet Ezekiel called the city being built, Jehovah-Shammah, that is, “The Lord is there.” In other words, God is there in my past. God is there in my abuse. God is there in my pain and loss. God was always there with me.
And when the heavens and the earth fade away, God will still be with me.
That is the promise I am banking on. Only because that is all, I got.
Here’s my prayer: Lord, give me real words to express this pain, sadness, confusion, and grief that I feel. God, help me not to hide behind anger. Amen.