God with Skin on {Amazing Guest Post by Mandy Mianecki}

I love this post! I think you will to. Mandy Mianecki is a homeschooling mom of four, married for 12 years to Mark, her Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome. She is learning to invite Jesus in to redeem her mess each day and to ONLY take on the things  with Skin On. Follow her on Twitter.  Find her on Facebook.

Scathing, bitter words from my inbox suck the whole of my breath away.

Accusation. Condemnation. Lies.

And these from a once-dear friend, a sweet sister in Christ.

Momentary paralysis flips 180 degrees into over-responsibility. Thoughts fire through my brain like angry bees swarming their victim. Is there any truth to this? Maybe I should have… Now I have to explain… How could she say… Can she really believe….

And yet.

I know I have not misbehaved. I have meticulously, intentionally chosen my recent words and actions to reflect kindess and truth.

My brief reply expresses a gentle assertion that I am not coming from where she assumes I am.

Another torrent of vitriol. Three messages in her series.

It renders me silent.

Which is really for the best. My knees kiss carpeted floor, and my tears beseech the Comforter.

Katie says to let her go, to guard my heart, among other wise things. And better yet: Entrust her to the Lord.

How that lifts my spirit.

Too soon to be coincidence, I stumble upon Mary DeMuth’s blog for the first time, where she posts this prayer :

“God, thank You for ______________. You know I love that person. But I choose to release _____________ in Your hands. Bring _____________ back into my life at Your choosing. Or not. But whatever happens, don’t let me get stuck back there. Today, please help me live in anticipation for the new friendships You have for me. And remind me that I will see ____________ in heaven someday, where our friendship will be beautiful and free. Amen.”

Grace! A turning point.

I let my friend go, entrust her to God, who is infinitely wiser than me.  Oh, how I still love her.  But He loves her more, and better.

He shows me that He tasks us humans with being Him-with-skin-on. That is, we are to reflect His love so that others will better grasp its wild depth.

How clear it is that my friendship was not doing so. Rather, it clouded me with confusion. Shame. Anger. And more.

By contrast, He holds out to me my dear friend, Katie. Her care runs so deeply I can almost feel His arms around me, Him whispering gentle: This is friendship. See how I love you?

In His faithfulness, He springs up fruit in a friendship whose roots are deeply planted. He selects mighty, uplifting women to show up and speak words of truth and life to me—and stick around.

“See, I set before you today life and prosperity, [or] death and destruction. For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you…” –Deuteronomy 30:15-16

I choose life!  And it steals my breath in a whole new way.

 

 

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