Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Greatest Mistake... A Guest Post from Jhen of From Here To Eterntiy

I am continuing with guest posts from bloggers who have not only a passion for photography, but a love for Jesus.  I am honored to have Jhen From Here To Eternity posting.  After reading her post be sure to click over and visit her. 

I wrote post after post trying to put together my faith journey.  But I truly found myself writing a book that I know most of you have little time in your precious days to read.  So I would lean back in my chair and ask "how on earth do I document my faith journey in an entertaining, heart wrenching, and to the point post."  And I'm not sure I ever got my answer.

So I wanted to go back through my blog posts to recap my Faith journey and I came upon this entry, that sums up everything my heart has been in communication with My Jesus.  It was my most precious post that I wrote on December 31, 2010, exactly a year to the date that I slept in the home that had held the hearts of seven boys I called mine.  This is what I had to say...

Today has nothing too exciting in store for me.  And I'm ok with that.  This time last year my heart was in turmoil.  And I'm about to go back and address it. 

You might have heard a mention or two about the events that took place last year that caused my world to go spinning.  Or so it seemed to me.  But its been a year since I made the greatest mistake of my life.

I let fear win. Their faces are so vivid in my memory and I dread the day when they're gone.  Most times I try to repress it because the pain is still so real.  I'll admit, with each day, the pain pierced a little less, but some days, days when I would least expect, the pain hurt beyond my control and I would just weep. 

I had grown to love seven beautiful hearts that belonged to seven handsome boys.  Jon and I were given the job to provide a loving, family oriented home to children who's parents couldn't or wouldn't take care of them.  It seemed like our dream job.  We were paid to be full time stay at home parents.   And it was perfect.  But time allowed my enemy to creep in and instill a tiny seed of fear that would grow and one day sprout its ugly head.   

We weren't perfect at our job.  And I could list many regrets (yes, I will openly and honestly say that I have regrets).  But I LOVE those boys.  And after the birth of my daughter, all I wanted to do was go back home and be with them, as one BIG LOVING FAMILY.  But it was then FEAR took over and I couldn't handle it. 

I believe I had post-partum blues.  I'm sure many can relate.  Not quiet diagnosed as depression, but a temporary state when sorrow takes over and nothing to little can console it.  I buried my daughter and myself deep into our room wanting no one near.  I watched episodes of 19 Kids and Counting to distract myself from the little whispers of fear I was hearing.  I would just sit, rock my newborn baby, and cry.  And honestly, I grew angry at every little voice I heard from the boys in my home.  I wanted them gone. 

I begged and pleaded for Jon to take me away.  To rescue me.  I was desperate for help.  So, what he thought was best, Jon listened to my cries and drove me and our new bundle the 20+ hours to California, leaving behind 7 very confused and broken hearted souls.  We had just a few minutes to say goodbyes and they were stripped from our lives and our ability to communicate seems held on by only the prayers of my heart.   

And on that long drive back, it hit me.  I MADE A MISTAKE!  I had let the whispers of FEAR grow loud enough that the Voice of TRUTH couldn't be heard.  And so marked the first day of 2010.  It was downhill from there.  The pain in my heart only fueled the GUILT that I would feel.  And that guilt would be my greatest obstacle this past year!   

And that obstacle still stands before me as I welcome the day that rings in 2011.  A fresh year with many memories of my past running as fast as they can to cross over with me.   

Some memories are lovely.  Like the day we all went out driving through the city trying to find a park with a lake.  And after 4 hours of driving around a city 20 minutes wide, we found it only to be too tired to enjoy it.  But the laughter, songs, and terrible belting noises coming out of our 17 year old, made it one of the greatest days of my life.   

And some memories, not so much lovely.  But I've trucked on.  And the consequences for my choice will leave a few battle scars.  Scars that will show great pain with Beautiful Healing.   

And although I can stand before you and say "Hello, My name is Jhen and I've abandoned a child (or seven)..."  I can finish it with "... but I've been forgiven."   

I may never know if the boys will ever forgive me.  Some may, some wont.  And I have to learn to be ok with that.  And I have fought this year with the greatest fight in me yet.  I have been beaten, bruised, and torn down by the words spoken about me and the whispers spoken to me, but I am not dead.  And in that, I can see that the strength in me is not that of my own.  I gave up.  I thew in the towel, laid flat on my face before the enemy and said "You're right, I'm guilty.  I did a bad thing."  But someone took a step and stood between me as I laid battered and torn and spared my life.  And as the enemy retreated, I was held.  And I wept.  And I continue to weep.  But in my tears I can see joy.  I can see the beauty starting to shine through and each day, I'm finding Love and Grace.   

And I can tell you that the Greatest Mistake of My Life is being transformed into beautiful new choices of good.  I can't take back what I did.  I can't fix it.  But I can, instead, move forward and allow My God to take a mistake and make it into something Beautiful!  

You can read other guest posts in this series


Casey Martinez said...

Beautiful post by a beautiful person. Love the picture and words of no guilt summing up this post. It reminds me of the verse, "there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." I love how God can turn our hurts and past mistakes into beauty....beauty from ashes. I have a lot of that in my past. Love this Jhen!

Alexandra said...

This was fabulous.

So many times in my past, I have let fear win.

Since I have decided to no longer let that happen, I know tell my friends and children, "if you make a decision solely based on fear, then that is NOT a good decision."

Excellent post, don't know how I found you, but feel right at home here.

The internet is wonderful.

Warren Baldwin said...

I've read Jhen's blog, and appreciate her photography.

Providing care in a children's home can be very emotionally taxing (my parents did it years back, while still raising 3 of their own kids). God is shaping you for something else.

katy said...

This post broke my heart. I can so relate to Jhen in letting fear win. I think that we all can, especially when it comes to fear for our children as mothers.

I am also learning to trust in the Lord to help me move past my mistakes and let go of what others may think of me. Thanks for being real and vulnerable, Jhen.

Amber - as always I love your blog! I don't always comment, but I do love your posts. :) Can't wait until you all come visit KY next.

Ashley Sisk said...

This post broke my heart....and I guess I see that I'm not alone. I think we're all consumed by that feat from time to time and we spend the rest of our lives making peace with it. Thank you so much for sharing Jhen. Once again, you amaze me.

Courtney K. said...

I love Jhen and her blog. Her posts are always so honest and heartfelt. Beautiful words.

Rosie Nixon Fluerty said...

I don't know if I can even put into words the way I feel after reading this. My heart goes out to Jhen but I can see that through this the Lord has given her wisdom and as Casey says He's not condemned her. He's taught her so much through the experience and has given her precious life skills that have been life changing. "All things work together for GOOD for them that LOVE The Lord"

Jhen.Stark said...

Thanks you so much for letting me share! And thank you everyone for your words of encouragement! Jesus Heals. Jesus Saves. And Jesus Name be praised!

Unknown said...

I remember this post well, and I am glad it is being shared again. Such a powerful message...