Wednesday, November 08, 2006
I feel 100% good about posting this post.
Well it's all out in the open. My Dad has been told everything about my blog. I was never really hiding it to begin with but he doesn't own a computer and doesn't know the first thing about finding my blog, my brother does. My brother has never been a reader of my blog and I never worried about him deciding to read it someday. My Mom has a blog, he reads hers and it links to mine. So, it happened. Again, I honest to goodness was not worried. My brother and I both have stories but obviously mine is much different from his. Of all people in this world, I never imagined that my brother would be the one to be offended by my blog. I really didn't. Well, I was wrong and he shared all of the details with my Dad. Understandably, the news was extremely hard for my Dad to hear. I am not quite sure why he thought it would be beneficial to share the details of my blog with my Dad, but he did. I should have been the bigger person but I failed. As I tried to defend myself to my Dad this evening, I realized it was not working. Somehow I was the bad guy and this is normal for my family. I have been the easy one to blame for many years. Instead of responding, I reacted and shared with my Dad some harsh things my brother has told me about my Dad. That was wrong of me, a very bad mistake. First my Dad feels like crap about me sharing stories from my childhood and I make it worse by telling him that his son has not been true to him either.

Those that do not blog and those that have not read my blog from the beginning have no way of knowing my heart or my purpose. For those of you that blog, you must realize by now that many people think bloggers are weird and insane for using something like the internet for an online journal. But oh well! There are things that I have not shared on this blog, things I will never share. I do feel that I have protected my Dad in many ways AND I am very prayerful about what I divulge. Also, my faithful readers know that I have honored my Dad many times, many times. It's funny because as I have written about my Dad, I have always been able to do it with forgiveness in my heart. However, I will say that we still have many issues in our relationship and sometimes, most of the time, I feel like walking away for good because I no longer want to hurt how I used to hurt. I have been told many times, "Get over it Mandi. It was a long time ago." That statement kills me. If I was letting it rule my life, if I was letting it ruin my marriage, if I was letting it take control of who I am, then I think that statement would be warranted. I am confident and 100% sure when I say, I am not being ruled by my past. You know why? Because I talk about it and I will continue to talk about it until Jesus comes back! Otherwise, that pain was wasted and all those years I learned to fall at the feet of Jesus will mean nothing if I don't share my message of hope. I have had victory in my life and I want to teach other women how they can have the same!

I believe that this has happened for a reason. In many ways I am relieved. I am pretty sure that authors who write books about their life have to deal with the aftermath (family). If you are a preacher or a minister in any way, exposing the past will always expose others. I will not wait for my Dad to be gone from this earth before I feel safe in sharing my story. Can you imagine the people that go on Oprah to come clean or reveal pain from their past? I am sure they are crucified when they return home. Men, Women and children are abused daily. It may be sexual, verbal or emotional. Whatever it is, it's abuse. Then the abuser expects them to keep silent, protect them and not share their story because they don't want to look bad. Well, you don't know my Dad's name and many of you don't even know who I am. You know I live in Texas and my name is Amanda, that's it. But someday you will know me. I will write a book, I will speak to women all over this world and I will tell my story all day.

A very good friend of mine, Cheri, gave me some medicine last night through an email. It was good for my soul, no doubt. I needed it! Something she said really helped me and gave me something to grab a hold of. Here it is.

"Do not compromise your heart, your ministry or what God has called you to do because they can't handle the truth. It's not about THEM, it's about you, who you are and why you are.....Esther spoke out knowing that it could be the death of her, but she was obedient anyway, and God blessed her with Favor in High Places....I believe the same is in store for you. Continue to speak the truth in love and with Godly beauty."

Wow. That's what I am going to do. That's what I have to do because that's what I am called to do. Thank you Cheri! And thank you to my friends who come along and hold me up in prayer. I am so thankful to know that there are people out there that truly KNOW my heart. You are Godly people who know that God has called me to share my story and you embrace it with me. You give me strength and I love each and every one of you. Thank you. This isn't a post for my Dad or my brother or any other family member that may be lurking. This is for my readers and it's for me. I'm sad tonight and I am hurting because I know my Dad is hurting. I just had to get on here and write. That's all I know to do. I haven't seen my niece since she was born and the expectations I had of a relationship with my brother and his fiancee are in question. I don't know if that will continue or happen for quite sometime. I have to stay true to what God is doing in my life and I have to stay true to the teaching and counseling I have received over the years. The thought of family relationships being severed is a painful thing to think about but it's crucial for me to keep my boundaries in place and even make new ones if needed. Boundaries are tough and not fun for anyone to keep in place and especially not fun for others to respect. Our Thanksgiving will be different, our Christmas will be different. It hurts, it sucks, it's just plain awful for everyone but as long as my husband and my babies and my Lord are pleased with me, that's all that matters. This is something I have to remind myself over and over again. Family is the place where you can find the greatest love on earth and unfortunately, the most pain too. Right now, I would like to have the first but the pain runs deep. We need your prayers, we really do.

Thank you for listening my friends. Thank you so, so much.

Lord, you know that if it wasn't for my Dad, I would not know you. Thank you for my Dad kneeling down by the bed with me that day when I was five years old as I prayed a prayer with Pat Robertson on TV to accept Jesus as my Savior. It was Pat's prayer but it was my Dad that got me there. Thank you Lord, thank you.

  posted at 11:12 PM

At 5:52 AM, Anonymous kelly said...

Bless your heart. My heart is just bursting for your pain- I can't imagine how hard it is to be in the midst of this situation, but God will carry you through it. You are so strong in Him and He wants you to rejoice in ALL things. So celebrate the wonderful life you have with your husband and children, and the gift of another wonderful child and stand strong. Refuse to allow satan to steal the joy that God has filled your heart and home with. You are so faithful to God's Word and all He has done for you... we are only under attack when the enemy fears us and you have certainly made him fearful by your stand of faith despite circumstances. I truly believe God will honor you for that.

Sorry this is so long, but I look forward to reading your blog everyday and just had to comment this time. I am praying for you.

At 7:15 AM, Blogger {Karla} said...

oh, sweetie -- I am sorry that you are hurting...

I know that when you are in the midst of it, it is hard to see and sounds trite, and I know that you already know this, but the Lord WILL honor you for being obedient to Him.

Keep shining Light on the darkness!!

Prayers and Blessings,

At 11:11 AM, Blogger Christina said...

Ok...I'm crying. Real tears are streaming down my face. I can't tell you how connected I feel to you because I too don't have the ideal relationship with my Dad. What gives me comfort is knowing that my Heavenly Father will never leave nor forsake me. He is my comforter and sustainer. My counsellor, my friend. Keep on keeping on. Keep writing, keep bearing your soul. Your friend Cheri was good medicine for you and you are to us.

Thank you for sharing your heart.

At 11:40 AM, Blogger Dee said...

Still praying ...


At 11:52 AM, Blogger Munchkin Land said...

Good for you, Mandi, good for you!! =)

At 12:17 PM, Anonymous Lela said...

Stay true my friend to your intuition, in order words, God's voice within you. I am blessed by your writings, even though I did not grow up the way you did. I identify with a good many of your challenges as an adult. And I am thankful that you share what you do. It confirms so much for me. I agree with you on the boundary issue; I didn't come to this realization until my late 30's, a few years ago. You are in my prayers.

At 12:42 PM, Blogger Gwen said...

I'm so sorry for your pain. You are strong and you are following the Lord. You will get through this and some good will come out of it. Hold tight to your hubby and babies! God will see you through!

At 12:54 PM, Blogger Paula said...

Amanda, I am so sorry sister. I know you know that God is faithful. He will bring good out of this situation. Whether it is bringing you and your daddy together or not. Sometimes the truth is ugly, but it must be heard. That is where your daddy is at.
You are honoring God by your example and not allowing the enemy to take over. I hope and pray that you, Jeremy, Josiah, Ava Beth and baby Ezekial (he can hear his family) have a most peaceful, relaxing and godly Thanksgiving. That is what you need.

At 1:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate that you are hurting - I started to reply via email with thoughts - but I was not sure it was making sense ;o)) so I deleted it. If you want to talk you know how to reach me.

Here is a quote I like -

"the best thing about the future is it comes just one day at a time."

I tend to think about all the "what ifs" when I am in a not so good place and that saying helps bring into perspective.


At 2:35 PM, Blogger Christy said...

Girl I am speechless - once again I read such strength you have! God is going to give you joy for your journey and in the midst of all of this you will come out the victor not a victim. So many times I have witnessed your blog - I NEVER EVER thought ONCE of honoring my mother in law until I read your blog. I have read your blog many times and you have honored your dad on countless occassions. It gave me hope knowing I could honor and not hate. In spite of the pain my husband went thru as a child and in spite of the fear I have that my son will go thru because of that pain God used you to minister to me. You weren't afraid to tell your story.... No your story didn't bring healing to me, but it was used to minister to someone who couldn't understand because I didn't grow up that way. Everything we go thru is for a reason and a purpose. Although your past is hard to talk about, I am sure there are things you will never tell, God still had his hand on your life, placed a calling and gave you a song to sing.. a song that only YOU can sing, a story that only YOU can minister. God loves your dad. I don't even know your dad and I love your dad. I have no idea what you are all going through but I am praying for you and I hope that each of you can be free from the past, that God can save relationships and restore them to what he'd have them to be. There can be peace and it isn't too late. Wouldn't it be awesome if what the devil meant for evil God turned for good - just in time for the holidays? I pray for healing in your heart. God is doing something beautiful in you!

At 7:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Standing in the gap for you sister!

You are so full of grace & courage.

Bless you.

At 12:05 PM, Anonymous Kathy A. said...

I haven't said anything for a while. I pray for you daily and I ask God for things for you and I ask Him how can I be a blessing to Mandi because I love her so much. I was meant to read this today. I called you the other night to ask you what gift would you like for your shower that would make you feel spoiled?? You answered me but it took forever....when has Mandi spoiled herself and when has she allowed someone to spoil her...well this has been on my mind for several days. I have never met your father but I have read every blog of yours. I have never once felt anything but love for him, because he is your father. Just like your mother, I love her because she is your mother. God thought of us before we were born and nothing God makes is a mistake. What happens in the past, you know God has been there before we were. I respect your father and hopefully someday I can meet him. Your mother and father made a remarkable, beautiful, sweet, kind, loving, awesome woman. Forgiveness goes a long way and it is not one sided or one way. If you look in between the word of forgiveness there is the word GIVE. To forgive either way we have to give something. It is not about anyone but God and you Mandi. You are doing what is right by God and you don't need to be told that. If there are bad feelings, that is when God is pulling on our hearts to go to Him in prayer. You are a mighty woman with gentle strength and because of your boldness,grace in fullness, forgiveness, heart of God, sweetness and hearing ear to God's voice you will be the one that gave your children's grandchildren the heart of God. So spoil yourself with that today. I love you.


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