Today's blog will be a very personal blog for me. I hope my words can bring hope to someone. Decisions we make to love someone who cannot not love us back are never in vain. Love is always a good choice, no matter the outcome.
I recently saw the movie I Can Only Imagine. This movie gave me a glimpse into my late husband's life as a child and teenager growing up. He too suffered domestic violence, both physical and mental abuse at the hands of his father. I spent alot of time crying the other night but I was also reminded I had not loved in vain.
Without spoiling the movie for you, there is a scene where the main character flips through his journal and it reveals an old, monster-type character slumped over with his eyes closed. Next to the monster is a young grown man, wrapping his arms around this monster and comforting him. This scene lasted for less than 30 seconds but it has been burned into my brain and I can't help but cry as I type this now.
In that picture, I saw myself loving my late husband, Jeff. He too was a monster of sorts. He had grown so tired of being two people I believe. He tried so hard to overcome the mental illness that plagued him and keep the monster hidden from me, yet he could not. I too have loved a monster. It was never easy and I did suffer for it. In fact, I was abused myself during our marriage. I know why Jeff did these things now, I have known for quite some time what he would not tell me then. I can only imagine what it must have been like to carry that monster around, never knowing when it may surface; never knowing what it might do.
Jesus knew Jeff had a monster too, a monster he could not control and He still loved him just as I did. He longed to heal Jeff and take his monster but Jeff would not give it to Him. I do not believe he knew how. I have been reminded over and over that the love I gave Jeff was not in vain. In fact, I believe it kept him alive so much longer. I am in no way giving Jeff an excuse for his actions nor his abuse; what I am saying is the choice to love is never in vain. My husband made the choice to end his life on June 14th, 2014. I believe he did this because he could no longer stand to see what his monster did to other people, what it had been doing to other people for more than 20 years. My husband knew Jesus and I know Jesus welcomed him that night and the monster could not follow him. There are no monsters in Heaven.
I am so thankful that one day I will see Jeff again. I will see a new person, a person without a monster. I person who is not two people but one whole person. I want to encourage those of you who have loved people with monsters that even though you may not be able to be with them, you have not loved in vain. There is still a real person there who desires to be free of their monster. Jesus is the only one who can save them from their monster. If you are the one with the monster and if you know I am speaking to you, Jesus is the only one who can save you. He is the only one who can put you back together. He is the only one who can salvage your relationships. Jesus loves you and only He can heal you! Do not take your life as my late husband did! There is still hope while you live!
To the ones who have suffered at the hands of a monster, Jesus can heal you too. He has healed me! He can show you the why if you will but ask. Healing will not be easy but it will be worth it! Do not hold on to anger or bitterness, they will destroy you just as they destroyed the one who abused and misused you. Jesus is the only one who can salvage your heart! He loves you so very much! There is still hope while you live!
Yes, I loved a monster and Jesus loved my monster too. My love and the love of Jesus is never in vain. His love as already won and that is all that matters! Monsters don't win in the end!
1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV; And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
**If you want to know more of my story, please see my book The Road Less Traveled: A Story of Love, Pain, Hope and Everything In-Between. My book is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iTunes and Audible.com.