I don’t actually know what words to say. I just know that my heart is filled. Bursting at the seems feeling loved, accepted, wanted and down right happy.
See, the devil tells us many lies. The bible says he came to steal, kill and destroy. But he does not need a frontal attack to accomplish that. Simple lies spoken are the fuses to what he makes a ticking bomb. Or even better to him, simple lies will make a powerful army turn away from fear of powerlessness. So every day he attempts to feed us a steady diet of lies. Lies specially designed to attack our very souls.
In Haiti we have nowhere to hide from these lies. Any inadequacy we feel, he will gladly trumpet at every waking moment. Any dark, secret corner of our brain, he will cheerfully expose naked and raw. Any mistrust we have about our own abilities, he will feed and grow until they are a self-consuming monster. He is a life sucker at his very core. And down in Haiti, I feel this is all the more true because we are operating on his turf. So he works overtime to call out any inferiority we might have, so that we will leave. It’s hard to operate in a world like that.
The lies I am fed are a special blend just for me. I hear lies like
You are not a good friend. Nobody likes you. Nobody needs you. If you don’t do things for people, they will leave. You are broken and used. Nobody will want you. Who you are is not good enough. People put up with you, but only because they have to. You will never change. You are not supposed to be here. You are unlovable. You are not following Gods calling. You are selfish. You are lazy. You are not holy enough to be a missionary. You are a poor representation of what it means to be a Christian. You are unloved.
And sometimes when I do not hear them as lies in my own brain, I start holding them as truth and will repeat them to myself whenever something bad happens. Nobody else has to say it. Its just me hearing it and repeating it, like lashing myself with a whip. Often, I do not even know they are lies until someone else calls me out on it. There are even moments in time where nothing people can say will change the way my brain is thinking. I can twist and pervert any good thing they speak into a ferocious blend of lies to pour like hot acid down my own throat. We call it ‘bad head space.’ It is hard to shake. Thankfully, I know the cure. Going to the desert and spending time with God, letting him make his own elixir to calm to storm in me.
Sometimes, however, he speaks through people. Through their words or their actions. This past month has definitely been that. As I was preparing for a work filled fundraiser to raise money so I can return to Haiti, lies crept into my head. “You aren’t supposed to be there,” they said. “You’re in this alone.” And it scared me to think, it might be true. But as if in a flash flood action, people poured out of the woodwork to help me. Volunteering time, money, donations. As we sorted and organized my family stood behind me helping me carry boxes, making and providing food, setting up and cheering me on. Other people from my church or from Journey donated supplies and blessed me as I pulled out of their driveways with a truck full of stuff. And my friends came out and helped me tag, move boxes, hang hundred of clothes and stood in the sun selling with me. I could not ignore them all; they were bashing lies right and left. My family championed behind me and friends came along side of me and together with the community I got a moment of clarity. I am loved.
As people I will never know the names of told me to keep the change, gave me hugs for the kids and dropped off donations after they just bought stuff at the sale, I was restored. Money in my pocket means little, it constantly ebbs and flows. I know I have to keep my money where God can reach it. But something that will stick with me a while is this knowledge that people love me. People support me.
I am not alone.