30 Day Challenge – Day 8

A moment you felt the most satisfied with your life.

I don’t really get to feel much satisfaction ever. Everything is always tainted. Like people asking me how my Easter went. It was lovely until my father started belittling worship leaders that sing or do sign language, two things that are very important to me personally. I was a worship leader in high school and tried to become one when we moved here, but my attempts were not taken kindly, in fact they were met with cruelty numerous times (not that they had ever been easy to begin with, i always had to fight to even get up there). And the sign language was something i did a bit in junior high and high school that made me feel closer to Him because i have trouble raising my hands in worship, it feels awkward. Being able to speak to Him with my hands felt incredibly freeing and expressive. I even took an ASL class not to long ago with the conservatory where i teach knitting and photography. And apparently these are just two more ways that i disappoint my father.

All my moments of satisfaction are tainted like this. My father threw a tantrum on the way to my sister’s wedding, i don’t feel like i can ever even have a wedding because he would be sure to ruin that moment, too. But the moments that are most satisfying…

Driving to Phoenix to watch Star Trek Insurrection on opening night and feeling complete peace and assurance that yes, i am going to be working on Star Trek someday soon. (Which hasn’t happened.)

Finishing my first triathlon, running through the finish line. (Even though i hadn’t done as well as i had hoped, i finished.)

Having a better-than-expected bike leg in my second triathlon. (I did even worse in my second triathlon than i had in my first, the run was more of a walk because of the change to a hillier course and what i assume is exercise-induced asthma.)

But my most satisfying moments were always found when i was worshiping God and could feel the Holy Spirit moving so powerfully that i felt like i could fly if i tried. Which is really related to that first example, actually. This powerful worship usually happened at church camp (like Glorieta) or a retreat, walking somewhere surrounded by the majesty of God’s creation, but driving to Phoenix in the middle of the night i felt the Spirit moving so powerfully…and that was the last time i remember feeling Him. That was December 11th, 1998, and two weeks later on December 31, 1998, i was at a New Year’s Eve Lock In in Prescott, AZ, and realized that God had gone completely silent. Since then i have had no understanding and felt bereft.

Performance, to me, has always been an expression of worship. I started performing when i was four, i remember the night of my fifth birthday, only vaguely, but i was performing and full of joy. I had prayed to have a larger part in that production and God answered that prayer with a yes. After that i wanted to sing as often as possible, act as often as possible, learn how to play an instrument, etc. I never thought that i was the best or it was about me. It was always an expression of worship, of encouraging others, of giving to others what had once been given to me. And while i was allowed to do that, i felt as if i was in the right place, i was serving God, no matter how hard things got i was where i was meant to be.

And now i don’t have that. I am still attracted to it, but i have been cut down and broken. I don’t know if i could ever get that back. All i have are the ghosts of those moments, now tainted by my father and the others who cut me down (of which there are many members). And i have no idea if there is any hope of ever rebuilding, i certainly don’t feel like it’s possible. In fact, when people ask me to perform now (which, to be honest, is only ever a family member asking me to perform at a family or church function that is very intimate), i’m scared to. I wasn’t as a child, i was never nervous about it. And now i want to run the other direction. I feel like there’s a target painted on me for the whole world to see. And i am ashamed. That i have let them win, that my talents (meager as they were) have slipped away from me, that God does not bless me and use me to His glory anymore. That is why i don’t feel like i can get any satisfaction…because my source of satisfaction was always God. And i knew it, and reveled in it. And now it’s lost.

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