A Life of Compromise: A Foreword
Last updated: 26 Mar 2020 14:54
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. But on the other hand, when I speak about things that are emotional and traumatic, I also want to cuss. Therein lies the rub. If I cuss in a book, I will most certainly not be considered for publishing from a Christian publisher. If I don’t cuss in a book when describing something that are both emotional and traumatic, then what I am writing about would feel inauthenticate.
Inauthenticate because when I am reliving these terrible moments, all I want to do is cuss, spit, scream, and cry and roll up in a ball and go to sleep for the rest of the day. If I am really honest, I want to turn comforts from the past such as pornography and… . Well, that is really it. For the vast majority of my life, porn has been my idol of comfort. Surely, it did not actually comfort me but I kept going back nonetheless.
So, cussing and porn. Pain and abuse. Perversion and wickedness. This is definitely not life abundent that Christ promised but definitely 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 is going to differ, maybe a little. So everybody’s tolerance is going to differ greatly.
I really 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 has been done to me far outweighs the good that I have ever experience: which includes my wife and my three kids.
All of that would be quite true if it was not for God. No, God did not make my life better or less sufferable. He is simply 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 promise I am banking on. Because that is all I got.
So 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.