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Part III of the Revelation Series

by Jen Shroder 1/12/11

"He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted" ĖJesus (Luke 4:18)

 I tossed and turned all night until I gave up and sat on the patio to watch the dawn, wrapped in a blanket, sipping hot coffee. My heart was so heavy with thoughts of my son joining the military and wondering how I would ever be able to submit to my publishers what I had been wrestling with for months. As my writing changed from political to religious witnessing, I knew I risked being dropped. If someone else told me that events in their life lined up with the woman in Revelation 12, I wouldnít believe them either. What was the point? Nothing would change, why would it have to be told?

It doesnít matter, I know what happened that day.

The only way it was going to gain any notice was if liberals decided to mock me for it, online and off. I work in a huge building where a liberal co-worker makes sure I know heís on to me and my writing, and spreads the news that itís time to check out my latest article.

It doesnít matter, I know what happened that day.

The economy is frail, Iím blessed to still have a job. If I wrote it, I would be making it difficult for employers to keep me, and for what? For something that would devastate me when it happened? I donít want to believe it myself, let alone write about it. I talk myself out of it a dozen times a day. But all I have to do is flash on that day and I know I have to write it. In fact I had written drafts already, but just couldn't submit it.

It doesnít matter, I know what happened that day.

My sons don't believe it and I can't blame them. Since publishing it, a few friends have distanced themselves, I can't blame them either. It's an outrageous testimony and understandably impossible to believe. It's why I rarely mention it to anyone ever.

But it doesnít matter, I know what happened that day. It doesn't matter if I'm ridiculed or lose my job or am ostracized or treated like a loon. It doesn't matter if not one person believes me, I honestly don't see how anyone really could. It just doesn't matter, because I will not go before the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob someday and have to explain why I didn't send it. The God that blessed me so much, that sacrificed Himself to wash me from the mud I was drowning in and gave me back something that I can't even describe. I said it once in church when a pastor invited feedback, I answered, "purity" and he frowned, shook his head a little and rejected it as though we can't really be "pure" again. But we can. Even if at first we get our feet a little dirty as we learn, I think that's why Christ told us to wash each other's feet, to confess one to another and be cleansed, shine His light on it, be free because of what He did. To be free of guilt and shame to a depth in our soul that can't be described. It radically changes us.

But meditating on all this over the last few months caused me to look at my past and realize things about my life that brought me so low. I really was a good representative of all that a modern woman, born and raised in this culture, does wrong. And all that I continue to do wrong. I can get so haughty debating politics, I had improved in confronting educrats about what they are teaching our kids but I'm FAR from having the love of Christ, agape love, for them. I still have so many flaws. There are all kinds of reasons for someone to point at me and criticize.

But it doesn't matter. I know what happened that day.

Those were the thoughts running circles in my mind, combined with the continual imaginings of a mom completely destroyed at the thought of her son captured or disappearing in Afghanistan. Well meaning friends have tried to console me with promises that God would never allow anything to happen to him, but I know different. God does allow us to suffer sometimes, read any newspaper about the Christian martyrs being slaughtered in terrifying ways all over the globe. Why do we think we're exempt again?

These dark thoughts were crushing me as I sipped my coffee, barely paying attention to my surroundings. I was so tired of the pressure that I just wasn't caring any more. Then I saw it. I couldnít believe it. It's the third time in my life that the Lord blessed me with a valentine-type heart. The sun was still on the horizon, the clouds were low, solid and thick. But peeking through, quite distinctly, was blue sky in the shape of heart, much like a cookie cutter but facing a little to the right. It had a glorious ray of the sun crashing through. It was breathtaking and lifted my spirits dramatically. Nothing matters because God is with me. He is so good!

It cracks me up that God would use a valentine to comfort me, because I know that He knows I think theyíre kind of, well, corny. He knows what we think, how we feel, one canít politely hide it from God, so why a heart? Of course it didnít matter, I was greatly comforted and relieved. Nothing matters because God has a plan. He knows what weíre feeling and He cares, but just the same He says, "Trust Me."

A few days later I arrived home from the trip and scrolled down my long list of taped TV shows. I settled on Perry Stone and started to unpack as he was going on about some Hebrew alphabet letter. He was talking about the "shin," holding up a picture of the human heart and comparing it to a valentine "heart" shape. I never noticed before how a sectioned heart had that shape. Stone had a whole thing about our hearts but what caused me to "about fall over" was when he said that the Hebrew "Shin" was the symbol for "Shaddai" one of my favorite names of God, "El Shaddai"! Itís even the link title of my website: "Eloheim, El Shaddai, Yeshua, Adonai" I checked a few websites and what Perry Stone said is true.

God is just so good to me. To all of us. I will never think a valentine heart is corny again. And to wrap it all up, my unknowing son gave me a special heart in a carving when he asked for my blessing to join the military. (spliced in pic, click to enlarge)

God is so good. And I would love nothing more than to hear the laughter of my sons and future grandchildren, laughing at me for the rest of my life for thinking these things. Nothing would sound better to my ears (aside from God's voice). But it doesn't matter, I know what happened that day.

It doesn't matter. because God is so good. All praise and glory are His.


[The above referenced article is temporarily unavailable. I get past the fear but I just know..."Wait" It must have accomplished whatever it needs to for now.]


Revelation 12 Series
(it has taken me a long time to get here)