Running on Love......and coffee...

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Is This Real Life?

"A lie has speed, but truth has endurance." - Edgar J. Mohn

My parents didn't raise me in a fantasy world where good always wins. In fact, my dad being so involved with and passionate about politics led to my exposure of just how often bad wins and to what extent they will go to get that win. It's absolutely disgusting. 

If you've never had the "pleasure" of knowing someone who will tell an outright lie with all the conviction of the truth and never even blink, then you're either very blessed, very sheltered or, even worse, you're clueless to those around you with this vice. Trust me, I was one of the clueless ones for many years. Coming to terms with the reality of who someone really is - one of the most devastating times in my life. I still bear those scars. Those of you who are blessed, sheltered or clueless, also represent a great majority of my community. That frightens me. Let's not forget about that other set of people who will know something is untrue, but use that lie to their advantage. They aren't any better than the person who spoke the lie. It wouldn't be said if it weren't true, right? If only true things were spoken...

My husband and I are good people. We have worked so hard to give our children a wonderful life with great experiences and an unending exposure to the grace and mercy of our amazing God. We aren't perfect by any means, but we most definitely are not malicious, revengeful or ones to stir the pot and add to unnecessary drama. We just want to live our lives in peace. 

I'm struggling with forgiveness right now. I know that forgiveness is not deserved by me or anyone else, but it was given anyway through Christ Jesus. I know that God calls us to forgive the unforgivable and to love the unlovable, but I can't do it. Let me rephrase that: I can't do it alone. I know I can with God's strength, but, honestly, I am having a hard time even asking for God to help me with this because, dang it, I don't want to do it! Maybe I should just start praying for God to give me the desire to ask for help with forgiving instead of praying for God to give me the desire to forgive. All I know is that I'm heartbroken, disgusted and in a state of shock.

Another thing with which I'm struggling: no good, worthless parents. I am blessed to have parents who love me unconditionally, whose support is unwavering and who would never give up on me, turn on me or hurt me out of their own selfish ambitions. I've experienced more than one worthless parent (not mine, of course) this past week. My heart absolutely breaks for their children. How sad for, not only their children, but for them, as well. Their children will never know the kind of love I know from my parents and those parents are too blind and heartless to feel the love these children have for them, regardless of how worthless they are. To those worthless parents: Don't worry one little second about it - my parents, the rest of this family and I have more love to give to your children than you have for yourself. 

I thank God for my parents and I ask forgiveness for the times I have so stupidly taken them for granted. Jim and Debbie Hardin, you are amazing. Thank you for the constant love and support. Thank you for keeping me in check when I wasn't living the life God wanted me to live. Thank you for loving me through all of the messes I have made in my life and for teaching me to pick myself back up and keep going even when it felt impossible. Thank you for your commitment to Christ and the example it is to my husband, my children, my siblings and myself. No, you aren't perfect, but after what I've witnessed this past week, you're perfect in my eyes. 

I don't even know if anyone reads my blog anymore. I can't blame you if you don't, I definitely won't be winning any blogger of the year awards. If you are reading this, please pray for my family. Please pray that we will be able to forgive the people who have hurt us so badly. Please pray that no amount of power, position, money or corruptness will beat out what is true and right. Please pray for the leadership of this city. Satan has his hand in so much of what they do and say. It should terrify us all. Please pray that we will continue to let God guide us through this mess and that we would always seek to follow His will. Please pray that we will one day be able to forgive. Please pray that God would place a hedge of protection around our children and our family as a whole. Please pray that the people who truly know us and know our hearts will not forget what they know. Please just pray. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Never, Never, Never Give Up

Many of you know that my dad was diagnosed with cancer 3 weeks ago. Stage 4. Definitely not what any of us were expecting. He has had 3 headaches in my entire life and has been sick maybe 4 times! Since then, I have run through every emotion possible. I've been in shock. I've been sad. I've been numb. I've been confused. I've been angry. I've been hopeful. I've been in despair. It's amazing how many things we can feel at once. Today, I'm sad.
I, like my dad, am very adept at hiding when I'm in pain. That is, except from those closest to me (Jack and to a certain degree, my children). I hate this feeling of sadness because it seems so very selfish. I'm sad because my dad is very sick and he's all the way in Wyoming - too far to drop in and check on him. I'm sad because I don't want to lose my daddy. I'm sad because I don't want my children to lose the best Papa Jim that ever existed. I'm sad because I see the sadness and hurt in my children when they talk about him being sick. I'm sad that I can't be with my mom right now. I'm sad because my dad is about to go through hell for a very long time. He's going to hurt, be so very sick, become weak, and all the other things that come along with chemo and radiation. I'm just so very sad. 
I'm also grateful. I'm grateful that my dad is a man of God. I'm grateful that we are a family of faith. I'm grateful that my dad is not one to let anything get him down. I'm grateful that so many people love him - praying people. I'm grateful for the kind hugs and thoughts and words from everyone around me. I'm grateful AND humbled by the encouragement given to me by friends who have had their share of hell themselves, dealing with the diagnosis of cancer and long, hard treatment of their child/grandchild. (Oh, I love that family and boy, does my dad ever love that family, too!) I'm grateful that my dad didn't let stubbornness get in the way of seeking medical help for a "sore throat and ear ache" - Praise the Lord for modern medicine! I'm grateful that I have a strong mother - steadfast and loyal in every way. If y'all only knew all that my mom has been through and put up with over the years - she would definitely get some kind of medal and probably even a cape. She's a true super hero. I'm grateful that my children have more faith in God than many adults ever have in their entire lifetime. I love hearing the fervent prayers of my babies on behalf of their Papa Jim. I'm grateful for my husband. He just loves me through everything, even when my emotions make me a crazy person. I'm grateful that my husband loves my father. I'm grateful that he is not only my husband and best friend, but he is now my brother-in-Christ ( another Praise the Lord! I'm so proud of him!). I'm grateful that my God is bigger than any of this! How much harder would this be if we were not believers in God?! I can't even fathom it. 

When I look at it side by side, I have so much more for which to be grateful than to be sad. We are a strong family. We love the Lord. We love each other. We have been through so much already and I'm sure this won't be the last. One of my dad's favorite quotes is from Winston Churchill. "Never, never, never give up." Well, I won't give up and I can guarantee you that my dad won't either.