I asked God what would He want me to share here today. My mind is full of "surrender" themes as the column on the "Finding Freedom Through Surrender" is live.
For some reason, I keep coming back to two books by two different entertainers in the Christian circles. Both are very gifted in song and both have a past with at least a tinge of scandal attached to their name.
One difference between them is one I carried such a grudge, the other, not so much.
I remember even before I was a Christian I was critical of Amy Grant. I can't pinpoint it really, perhaps I perceived her looking too close to the world. Besides her music, I just didn't see much that set her apart from anyone else. Maybe I should have thought on that more. Yet when her marriage crumbled and I remembered watching The Nashville Network with her former husband breaking down in tears as he hosted the show and wore his heart on his sleeve, I made a vow that her music would never be a part of my life. I judged her in a heartbeat.
Sandi Patty was a voice I didn't really know until after I was a Christian. What a voice. There is no version like her Star Spangled Banner. None. I remember hearing a bit about her marriage breaking up and some scuttlebutt about it, yet I never batted an eye.
A year or more I read her book, Broken in the Back Row. She was quite candid about many things, including family issues that included a divorce and the reason behind it. Sandi Patty's music was never banned from my house.
I have no idea why I'm meant to post on this, I have nothing profound or "a ha" to offer you, but in obedience, I'm posting it. I don't get why I judged one so harshly and not the other, without truly knowing their backgrounds or them personally.
I read a few months ago, Amy Grant's book, Mosaic: Pieces of My Life So Far. Again, it was out of obedience. My ban on her felt steadfast. As I turned the pages, I felt grace take over. Again, I don't know her whole story. But I felt God's gentle tug tell me, let this grudge go. As I continued reading I saw love, compassion and mercy pour out. Not mine, hers! Her and her husband, by reading, seem to be extremely compassionate and giving people to an extent I doubt I'll ever reach. I remain humbled by the lessons I learned about myself through that book.
Last year I went to Women of Faith and heard Sandi share more of her story with an update. I was riveted because I know what it's like to be married to someone who had a wife before me. Although circumstances are a little different, Sandi shared that her step children's mom was quite ill. At the same time, I knew my step children's mom was not feeling great and I had been praying for her. In Sandi's story, the mom was healed by promotion to heaven. Sandi wrote and sang a song in memory. Can you imagine a dry eye in that place? Can you imagine serving so sacrificially to someone who shared such an intimate place in your love's life? It was a humbling testimony.
Anyway, I don't know why I act the way I do and treat one person different than the other. I can recommend both these books and I can say this---I don't know the difference, but I know what I need to see everything the same as God. Grace.
Have you visited Christian Women Take Root? The Narrow Gate Invites girls are not only involved in the social networking site with fantastic groups to join but the main site called Take Root and Write. Open House and regular columns are going on this week, check it all out. We'll see you there...and hey---if you have a blog, Take Root has a blog roll. Give your blog some exposure and be associated with a quality Christian site!
Julie Arduini is a surrendered writer with her own blog, http://thesurrenderedscribe.blogspot.com/. A graduate of the Christian Writers Guild, she blogs for the Christian Writers Forum Sundays as the mommy blogger. She is active with FaithWriters and has several writings ready to publish in different books and anthologies in 2008-09. To get to know her better, read her interview by Lynda Schab at:http://www.faithreaders.com/featured-author-details.php?id=33%20To contact Julie, please use the e mail provided in our profile.