His words assaulted her like a series of jabs and uppercuts. She often thought that physical blows would be easier to take. And even though she should have gotten used to it by now, she never really did.
“Did you work out today? Don’t you ever want to look good?”
“What are you wearing? Don’t embarrass me.”
“You look like a freakin’ __________!” (insert derogatory comparison here - homeless person, old lady, boring mom, etc.)
Is this really how Christian husbands were? And it wasn’t only about looks. When, wanting to serve, she took a huge step of faith to be a Sunday School teacher, she was met with, “You’re not qualified; you’re not a teacher!”
She tried hard not to listen, but the constant, careless words sank deep into her soul, regularly beating her down and leaving her confused, hurting, tired and broken. She struggled daily to try to be the good wife and mother, while her love for him died a slow, painful death.
It had been another brutal night as she sat at the computer, aimlessly scrolling through emails, fighting back the tears. A familiar name popped up in her inbox - FaithWriters.com. She always loved writing and participated in their weekly writing challenge
several times, but lately inspiration seemed very far away. Still, she remembered how she enjoyed the site and clicked the link to see what was new.
There were Christian articles of every kind on every subject, from Jesus and the gospel to poetry to world affairs. As she browsed around, there was a stirring inside, that spark of creativity almost snuffed out by the struggle of her daily life. It felt so good, this almost forgotten part of her awakening again. She remembered the dreams she once had of writing, especially to help or instruct others.
Suddenly, the moment was broken. An insidious voice hissed in her ear, ‘you’re not qualified; you’re not a teacher!’ The self-doubt she struggled with about her appearance, her abilities and her attitudes spilled over now into her aspirations. What was she thinking? She couldn’t even help herself right now and she wanted to try to help others?
Embarrassed at getting so caught up, she quickly logged in to remove her email from the list. Why be reminded of another inadequacy? Once in her account, she saw the list of her posted writings. She knew them well, but it seemed like they were written a lifetime ago. Then she saw it - the area where she submitted to have her writing critiqued .
The tears she had been holding back began to flow. How had she forgotten this? This community of Christian Writers
was there to support her, even when others were not. They understood the power of words and used them to help her, not hurt her. Maybe she really was more capable than she had been told all this time. The spark inside her began to ignite.
Words had all but ruined her self-worth, but perhaps they could now be a rescue. Although she had no idea what was to come, she no longer felt alone. And for the first time in a very long time, she had hope, which is the beginning of faith, which is the beginning of everything.