I had a friend send me this quote telling me it was about me:
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen. – Dr. Elizabeth KublerRoss”
I am not beautiful, but I want to be. How do I know know I’m not?
1) When I see my caller ID and I can’t handle talking to the person, I just don’t answer.
2) When well meaning people bring me books about how to die, promises to claim, brochures to read, I’m not even polite. As soon as they leave, I dump the propoganda immediately into the trash When they want to leave it for me to return to them, I just tell them to take them home.
3) I haven’t prayed in 3-4 weeks.
4) I have no interest in “going to church.” Everywhere I go I have to give liver transplant lessons over and over and over. I miss the community. I think there are two missional communities that would allow me to be a child of God rather than a liver patient – Windham Baptist and Southcoast Community church. I miss the community … if I get healthy on a Sunday I will go and worship by trying to sing but won’t get it out. I’ll weep during prayer times.
5) I haven’t read the ancient book I love in a month. I’ve read mysteries, fiction and a world war 1 novel about an amazing hero. I’ve spent the last 25 years reading books somehow about Jesus. Now I read for pleasure and love it.
6) People who come in and tell me God would heal me if I had more faith. They piss me off and I want to toss them out my front door like a scene from an old cartoon.
7) I’m tired. I have a total lack of motivation right now. I am an emotional wreck and can’t even say to things to my kids with tears coming. I snap at the people I love and am mean and stupid.
I want to be beautiful but I am far from it today.
Inspiration? Sure, if you want to be inspired to be a self-centered Jerk!
The only thing I add to my salvation is sin.
No words – just here.
People can read a Chicken Soup for the Soul book if they want inspiration. We don’t need more inspiration.
I’ve got no answers for you, but I appreciate your honesty.
Pastor Scott…I am a friend of someone close to you that forwards super pertinent messages in your blog to me. You see, you and I are going thru similar feelings, just through a dif path. I lost my job (from a bully I might add )…I am so close to losing my home and everything Ive tried is always a closed door. I could go on and on and on about all Ive tried (many jobs, many methods, etc). I see no progress. I continuously wonder about God.
I read your excerpt and youre not going to convince me youre Mr Nasty, sorry. Youre human and I understand all your feelings. To me, losing my job was the same as my life b/c it was all I had. I moved many times so I had few friends as a result, and wasnt married b/c I worked too much. And, its hard to see any hope in finding a job when youre in the game too long.
I still find u motivating b/c 1) youre honest…that alone is a wonderful virtue these days; 2) you still reach out to ur blog and are thankful for what u do have….and I look and say “hes rich”…u have so many friends and people routing for your success/health. 3) U try. Some give up at the word GO.
I could think of a lot more. Ive never met u or heard ur sermons, but think of all the people uve touched when someone from MI like that sings ur praises, even on what u consider a “Im nasty” note.
I hope we both get better days. As Shawshenk redemption said….glowingly…”I hope”. A powerful ending for a man that had been in jail so long. And its what I say for us. I HOPE.
When I was in End Stage Liver Disease I was angry, exhausted, depressed, in pain, and it seemed that no one could fathom what I was going through. My immediate family watched as my health deteriorated and could see the effects that the disease was having on me. But there was a much deeper conflict going on. God was working on bringing me back to Him and He was using this disease as a tool in this effort. As I relied on God more and more, He gave me comfort and peace to accept whatever the outcome might be. I knew that God would take care of me.
Those people that fixate on faith or sin for your condition should read John 9:1-3 (NLT).
1 As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. 2 “Rabbi,” his disciples asked him, “why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents’ sins?”
3 “It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “This happened so the power of God could be seen in him.”
They will realize that God has His own plan and no created thing can know the mind of the Creator.
Scott all of these feelings are within the “normal realm” that I experienced as well. You know what your relationship is with God and that is what matters, I asked God to surround me with His angels especially when I was in the hospital scared and depressed. God always came through for me. While I could never quite see the angels clearly, I could feel that they were always there giving me reassurance.
As one who has been there I can only give a bit of advice. Don’t embrace death as some people may suggest, but embrace Gods Will to use you for His glory! Whatever result that may bring.
My heart can feel your pain as I remember each stage that you are in. Except for my coma’s, I can remember everything that happened to me during this dreadful and exhausting disease. I will continue to lift you up in prayer that God might bring you through this and that your experience will provide a powerful testimony for Gods Glory!
Your Friend in Jesus,
Your honesty is good. You are being transparent. We need a heaping dose of this in the Christian community. THANK YOU for being honest. Any others out there who appreciate this??? Can I get a witness please???
Scott, there is nothing I can say that can change what you are going through. YOU are the only one going through it. Well-meaning folks, are just that ~ well-meaning. Wrong? Yes, sometimes. Right? Not always. But still the intentions are good. It is hard to not know what to say, to want to do SOMETHING to help…like write this response, but know that it is just a drop in the bucket of your pain.
It must be incredibly difficult, if not excrutiating, to be waiting and wondering where is God in all of this crap.
You know He is still there. And when you are ready, that Ancient Book will still be there too.
Go easy on yourself. Give yourself a dose of that same grace Jesus dispenses. He knows you are human. Angry. Tired. Sick. It’s okay to be angry.
Thank you again for being honest.
I bet Paul picked his nose and ignored lots of people. Probably wrote some letters that weren’t nearly as cool as those we can read today. Might have stretched the truth about being “content wherever” just a bit, and sat hard on his real feelings about thorns in the flesh. He and the others who wrote those words inspired by our Creator were people like you and me. Not super-Christians, just regular creations who likely would answer in Peter’s words: “Where else would we go?” when pressed for why they keep following Jesus. Life is hard and so beautiful that most of us just can’t let go of the minute that just slipped by.
You inspire me more today than ever, Scott. I really wish it weren’t this way. I talk to God for you from time to time, brother. I pray for His peace for you, me and everyone.
Scott, say what you will about yourself ~ but remember that what God says about you is truth! He calls you the righteousness of God in Christ, He calls you His “segulah” (His special treasure), He calls you His son, child of God, SAINT, His bride, holy in His sight, clean, forgiven, sealed with the Holy Spirit and SO much more. He doesn’t have enough words to tell you what you are! We must not redefine ourselves as anything less.
If our behavior defined who were are, we would all be in trouble. If our behavior during discouraging times, hard times, horrible times, define who were are ~ then let’s all hang it up. The ONLY thing that defines us is the Living Word of God.
REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE, Scottio ~ He stands beside you NO MATTER WHAT!!!!!
and PS ~ I need to remember to let who I am (according to the truth) determine my behavior ~ as opposed to allowing my imperfect behavior to determine what I believe about myself. Like it or not ~ you are awesome!!!!!! xoxoox
i have no idea how i came across your blog but i have been following you ever since you left your church to start something new. then your road took a different turn.
i just want to say that i think you rock! i appreciate your courage to be real and speak truth.
i do not understand why it’s impolite to throw people out of your home who come in and speak lies. i am an eternity away from being perfect but i do not understand why people say the things they do. what were they thinking.
anyways, if you need somebody to rant at in the middle of the night, write me or call me. chances i am up as i live in germany. am on staff on a school for missionary kids.
no closing cliche or sappy saying.
Scott, thank you for your honesty. 5 years ago we stood outside our home and watched it burn to the ground. A well meaning sister in Christ looked at me and said, I don’t know why God would let something like “this” happen to you. I felt sorry for her at that point People try to comfort in their “imperfectness”. I learned what it was like to be stripped of all my belongings, but we had each other. And that was, we all learned, the most precious. I try to imagine myself in your shoes I cant.We have an internal instict to survive. If you never opened your bible again, God doesn’t love you any less. You feel far from Him but He is close to you. He has given you a beautiful gift of relating to people and that is what you are doing. People dont want fluff and bs they want real. You are sharing your raw pain. Thanks Jerk. I loved that movie by the way!