Be Real {Awesome guest post by Evelynn Mann}

I’m grateful to have Evelyn Mann on Live Uncaged today. She lives in Tampa, FL and is a wife and a mother to her special needs son. She is currently working on her memoir, “A Miracle In My Living Room” sharing the miracle birth and life of her son, Samuel. You can read his Caring Bridge site here.

We have all heard the phrase, “When the rubber meets the road.” I have had many “rubber meets the road” experiences in my life. When I came to know Jesus in my late 20’s. When I gave birth to my special needs son. When I found a lump in my breast.

How do we respond when trials test our faith? When I found out a mass in my breast needed to be biopsied, I would like to say I was confident. I would like to say worry did not sit heavily on my chest. No, I was strong and confident in my faith. No worries here. This was my self-talk. Truth be told, this was not true.

Instead of rising above the fray, I found myself to be in a sea of competing emotions. I was full of concern mixed with worry. A good dose of depression descended upon me. I did not do laundry. I did not eat right. I did not even clean. I could only sit on the couch and be distracted by the internet or TV but the dilemma still loomed. I had bad dreams. I sang “It is well with my soul”. I couldn’t even pray fervently for myself! Is this how a good Christian girl handles a trial?

When my son was in the hospital for several months, someone at church asked me if I was encouraged. My eyes were red from little sleep. I was slumped in my chair, downcast. I considered for a moment, how to respond. If I said I was fine, I would be lying. So, I said, “No” but I felt bad about it. I thought to be a good Christian was to have “joy in all circumstances.” If I wasn’t joyous while my son was in the hospital then my faith was lacking. Most times, I tried to manufacture joy. Put on a smile. Say everything was fine.

Now I was facing a breast biopsy. This time when asked how I was doing, instead of giving an answer I thought was proper, I was honest despite the vulnerability it exposed. “This is hard”, I answered truthfully. With each person I spoke to, I found it was freeing and quite liberating to answer honestly. No sugar coating how I really felt. Why did I think to be a good Christian girl, I had to be perfect in the midst of a trial.

Through this trial, I found when I shared my mess, most everyone related. In reality, we are all a mess. Until I meet Jesus, I won’t be perfect. I am a work in progress. I can hold on to the promise that “…He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Phillipians 1:6 NIV. The Christian walk is still a process…a refining process. I am not there yet but He is holding my hand bringing me closer to Him with each trial.

Q4u: How has God brought you close to Him during a painful trial?

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