In retrospect I suppose I should have seen the truth all along. Yet most of the time I don’t recognize truth, even if it is in plain view. You hear people say that truth is relevant to the circumstance; I can only tell you in this case the truth would have set me free if I could have only recognized it for what it was.
Naturally, I did not and thus the entire reason I’m journeying down memory lane.
Going back to the beginning where I am young, innocent and free, if there really is such a time. I can see that I was detached and in my own private world of make-believe for a good part of my childhood. Making friends was a really hard thing for me to do and so I did not have very many.
I often turned inward dreaming up imaginary castles with handsome knights and beautiful princesses. I played an enchanted princess in cascading mountains plush and green, cool rippling water brooks running through beautiful flower laden meadows.
Often I would take my imagination soaring high up in the clouds with the eagles that kept watch over the valley floors or down below running wild and free with the mustang stallions across unending plains.
Clearly, as you can see, I was never bored.
One day, I don’t recall exactly which one. I only remember the cold drizzling rain beating against the window pane and the sad melancholy feeling it swept into the room. A day that kept me confined within the four walls of my room.
On this day my world would forever change. This was the first day I had two friends come to join me in my imaginary world. I should have thought it strange and been terrified. I didn’t and that early lapse in judgment would eventually cost me more than I could ever repay.
On the surface my friends and I played well together, but the other two, not so much especially with each other. There always seemed to be an underlying animosity between the two and I would catch them, shooting angry glares at each other when they thought I wasn’t looking.
I was really too little to understand what was going on between the two. In my mind they were adventurers like me and they were funny, smart and so very alluring.
During the course of the next few years as I matured from a really small child into a young adult the adventures my friends and I had changed as well. In the process of growing up we all stayed relatively the same age and basically the same size, even though until now I never noticed it. Neither did I notice that when I starting rejecting some of one friend’s ideals he began to grow bigger and a bit stronger. By contrast the stronger and bigger one friend grew the smaller the other one became.
He wasn’t much fun anyway and always seemed to have an objection to every suggestion made. This is probably the reason for the animosity between the two. Naturally, I took the side of fun and adventure and had no qualms about throwing caution to the wind.
Looking back from this point of time I see why he had always objected but I will get to that part a little later.
You might be wondering just who the two friends are and I intend to tell you. I just think you need to know the details, well some of them anyway. The devils in the details; so I’ve heard, I’m really inclined to believe it now considering.
As time slipped by and ideas changed, my one friend wanted to venture out more and more and do things that were daring and bold. In my childhood I saw this as noble and brave, so as I grew older I trusted him completely. My other smaller, gentler friend, well let’s just say he was inclined less and less to join us and so there came a sad day when he decided to part company with us.
I couldn’t blame him really, although I threw a pretty good temper tantrum at the time, screaming things at him better left unthought-of and absolutely unsaid. I was angry and hurt, rejection oozing from me like a cancer seeking to squeeze the life right out of me.
The last words he said to me were: “I’m always here when you need me, call me and I will come” In my anger I screamed at him “Who cares, just go away and never come back”
Boy how I regretted those words, words that are really hard to eat later on, much less swallow.
Now with my one friend gone that left me plenty of time to play with the other one. I was thrilled because I saw us in fairy tale lands with fairy tale creatures; he, on the other hand had different ideas.
The best way I can describe him is moody and conniving. He was devious all right but not really to the point of being obvious. It seemed it was there in a subtle way sneaking to the surface when it served a purpose.
Always up for an adventure; I didn’t see the slippery slope that I had begun to travel on. Oh the sun didn’t seem to be as bright or the skies as blue, but that had been true since the day my other friend had gone away.
One thing for sure was that this friend was starting to get big really quick. Now that we were alone his suggestions for fun seemed to stretch over into the zone of no, we really shouldn’t do that, far more often than not. I, however followed eagerly and blindly much to his delight.
I followed every suggestion without fear or thought and so begin the journey of regret. If he said it or thought it up my response was “let’s do it” Before I knew it the little girl innocence was traded for a big girl façade. The implications of which would stretch far into my adulthood bringing shame and heartache for years to come.
As my friend grew larger and stronger I nicknamed him “the giant”, to which he laughed and hooted, roaring with glee. The bigger he grew the more he took over until one day my entire identity was wrapped fully into what he had coaxed me all along to become. Looking in the mirror sometimes I would catch a glance of myself with haunting innocent eyes staring at me from underneath heavily laden lashes of guilt and remorse. But it was only a rare glimpse and usually brief.
Whatever I had become had now overtaken who I should have been.
What started as an imaginary land full of fun and adventure had become a nightmare living and breathing in reality. My friend with whom I had laughed and played had become cruel and mean. He would suggest things I knew were wrong and yet because I trusted him implicitly I caved and went along with him.
Then came the day that he hurt me and everything I thought I knew came crashing down in a pile of trouble so deep in mind I doubted a miracle could have helped me.
At first I was shocked, you know that similar shocked feeling you get when you’re unexpectedly splashed in the face by cold water at the pool. Panicking I tried to get up and get away from him but he had grown so strong and powerful I could not move. He was shouting obscenities at me, telling me how very little worth I possessed. Like a bitter diatribe, he listed every flaw every fault without mercy. His voice raw and bitter, with the sound of a gavel pounding out order on the judge’s stand, he pronounced judgment over me with vicious and malevolent glee.
What could I say to such visceral truth? He summed up my life in brilliant and torturing accuracy. He was right and as he said there was no way out unless.
Boy, don’t that word unless, drop like a rock on a smooth pond, disturbing the balance of the whole.
The weight of that word was weaving its way into my heart leaving a wake of finality as it finally dawned on me exactly what he was asking.
By this point I just didn’t care anymore.
Like the clicking of a light switch on/off, he became my friend again, smoothing the hair from my face, whispering gentle words of assurance, placing the knife in my shaky hands. His voice smooth as silky butter; “Shhhh, it will be okay, soon you will join me in forever where we will continue our adventures together, just you and me.”
The darkness of my mind screamed he was right, but something was tugging at my heart, more like someone. At the time I was too overcome to recognize just who that someone actually was. I just wanted relief from the pain, the release of the agony that had become a piercing wound upon my weary soul. I longed for joy and laughter in a heart that had become wracked with guilt and shame. A heart where despair sat like curtains upon the windows of my soul and hopelessness warmed my feet like rugs upon the floor.
Slowly as the knife began to rise in my shaky hand I saw a gleam of anticipation spring to my friend’s eyes, a look of gloating arrogance that he had finally captured the prize. The words he spoke were sinister and full of hidden meaning and if I had not known him so well I wouldn’t have recognized them for what they were.
Leaning over barely an audible whisper in my ear he said to me; “You are mine forever, you now belong to me”
Sitting up, a laugh began to rumble deep within him scaring me so badly I dropped the knife. “No, he roared, you will take this final step it’s your purpose, your destiny to belong to me forever.” His hand enclosing mine the struggle began between life and death and for the first time I wanted to live. It had started deep within me like a puff of smoke but it was quickly turning into a full blown flame.
Desperately trying to jerk my hand free while he is desperately driving home the knife, I screamed, “help me, please help me,” and like a blink of an eye, I popped out of that room and was standing in the presence of my now grown up friend that I had not seen in many years.
He looked so radiant and splendid I almost didn’t recognize him. Shuddering I realized I must look like a frightening mess yet he didn’t seem to even notice. For me, the moment of absolute peacefulness he brought with him felt like a balm to my very weary soul. I presently forgot all about the giant in the room trying to kill me as I sank silently to the floor in exhaustion.
A moment later I felt a gentle hand shaking me, softly encouraging me to look at him, which of course brought a rush of shame over me again. How could I have been so blind to have let this friend go away? Here I stood before him awash in a kind of guilt I had never felt before. Surely I deserved death in the presence of such pureness and love.
Leaning over to look me in the eyes he asked me a simple enough question,
“Do you trust me?”
My heart said yes, but my conscience was screaming no. The war that raged within me was following me into this beautiful room and soon I began to shake once more with fear.
Once again, he asked me “Do you trust me?”
In my mind I was weighing the options as only a fool would have done.
The reality is that life was in this room and death was in the next?
Crazy as it sounds it was a choice I had to make. It should have been a no brainer and I have often scolded myself for not choosing quicker, but by this time my giant had a firm hold on my mind and I was contented to let him lead.
Up until this point it hadn’t mattered or so I thought. So the choice I had to make wasn’t as easy as it seemed.
In the end, weary from all the struggles, I said yes, I trust you. Then from somewhere that I haven’t figured out to this day, came a blood curling scream much like an explosion such as I had never heard before and hope to never hear again.
My giant had finally entered the room, bellowing with rage foaming out the mouth in pure unadulterated rage. I started screaming and running when his big hand reached out grabbing me by throat. Yanked up off the floor in a brutal display, I was dangling in his huge hands like a carrot before the presence of my beautiful friend.
In my friends eyes I saw compassion, love and such sorrow that it took my breath away. My giant on the other hand was livid with rage which didn’t seem to faze my other friend one bit. This only enraged my giant more.
Screaming obscenities at my friend he shouted;
“You can’t have her, she’s mine” to which my friend replied, “Ask her who she belongs to”
Transfixed upon the beautiful face of my friend, drinking in the peace I saw there, the only reply I could say was;
“You, I choose you.”
My giant started screaming in rage, and I found myself being hurled across the floor coming to a bone jarring stop just beyond the wall. Briefly before passing out, I heard words that shook the very foundations of my heart, a conversation between the two that confused me. I heard my beautiful friend say:
“I will take her place, and I will pay her price, you can have me”
Heart beating like a runaway freight train, I tried sitting up but could not. What seemed like hours later in reality were only moments in time. I felt gentle hands reaching down lifting me gently to a sitting position. Looking up my breath caught as I realized my beautiful friend was looking lovingly in my eyes. He said to me;
“I am giving my life for yours, you will be free and forgiven forever. “
No, please don’t give him your life, you don’t deserve to pay for what I have done, he will kill you” I cried. He said;
“I must give it all for you to be truly free.” I must become what you are now, and pay what he requires so you can be totally free. “
Sobbing in anguish, I laid my head on his shoulder and cried gut wrenching sobs. Not but a breath later he sat me up; “It’s time, I must go.” Watching him walk away was so hard to do, everything in me was screaming to tell him I changed my mind, only I would think of the giant and mind numbing fear would overtake me.
The sounds coming from the other room as my giant took the offering of my friend were so heinous I can’t even write it down without shaking.
Seemingly in the blink of an eye it was all over. The sudden silence darkened the room and covered my heart with brokenness and shame.
Sobbing I cried, “Forgive me, forgive me please?”</block quote
For a time and space all was silent and I waited terrified the giant would renege and come for me after all. Then slowly and surely like a veil being lifted off a bride, the radiance of the room suddenly burst forth like sunshine on a rainy morning. Peace like I had never known invaded the room stealing across my heart in wave upon wave. For the first time in a very long time I felt unshackled and free as I opened up my mouth, a deep belly laughing kind of joy came rushing out of me.
Jumping to my feet I felt like dancing, singing and laughing all at the same time, oh the wonderful feeling of peace after a stormy night.
Then, I felt him come into the room, turning around I saw him standing there and I knew that I would be his forever. Once I was blind but now I see. For the first time in my life I saw him for who he really is. All along he had been my friend even when I could not see him. All along he loved me and all along he was waiting for me to patiently come to him.
Running to him he swept me off of my feet and we danced around like two small children, the laughter in his eyes was mesmerizing and sweet.
Hours later he said to me, “Come, there is something you must see” at first I was completely at peace so I didn’t hesitate but as we moved across the room, anxiety started in my heart and I begin to fear. Turning to me he quietly assured me that I had nothing to fear that he would never leave me. Holding my hand we quietly walked across the room.
At first I didn’t understand what I was seeing exactly, or what it was that I was supposed to see. I was a little confused and to be perfectly honest a whole lot terrified. Curiosity eventually winning out I stole across the floor to get a better look. Upon closer inspection my mind couldn’t process what my eyes were actually seeing. I was having difficulty understanding not so much what I was seeing, but actually whom I was seeing.
It was my giant dead on the floor as much as my friend was alive beside me. It was the giant who had troubled me since birth, who had taught me to push the boundaries of what’s right and what’s wrong, the giant who had tried unsuccessfully to take my life. Pushing me closer my friend nudged me to take a better look.
The answer may surprise you or maybe you will already know having taken a similar journey of your own.
So the question is?
Who was my giant?
In a world of make believe and dress up we never realize who or what we conjure up as friends in our minds. What starts out innocent enough becomes sinister and self-serving the longer we stay in it. If we choose to habitually think on anything other than God’s love and forgiveness, we awaken the giant within us, which is in reality that old sin nature that God never intended for us to carry.
We awaken desires for things or people that will take us far outside of the boundaries of God’s love for us. In doing so, we stay out there longer than we ever intended to stay.
Who is my giant?
The reality is actually very simple, the pure matter of fact is that my giant is in fact me.
It is the part of me that lives outside of a covenant relationship with God. It is the sin nature that we are all born with. Sin that starts innocently enough but progresses to gigantic proportions and unknowingly the giant of sin within you begins to grow stronger and larger each day. Until the day comes that you no longer rule over it but it rules over you, bringing with it the choice that every single person has to make.
You will have to choose Christ as your Savior and Redeemer or you will choose your giant facing the eternal consequences of separation from Holy God forever.
Before I leave you I want to ask you a couple of questions, if I may?
- Have you identified your giant?
- What are you going to do with him?
I will admit sometimes I go over to that room just to kick that giant one more time making sure he is really dead, because the one thing I have trouble with is fear. I fear sometimes my giant will awake and I will wake up in his deadly clutches once more. Each time I go over there I feel a gentle arm reach around my shoulder reassuring me that the debt is already paid in full. I really and truly have been set free. I asked him one day why he didn’t move the giant from the room and looking at me with a twinkle in his eyes, winking he said “because dear little daughter the journey has just begun, there are so many wonderful things I must teach you about this giant.”
With a gleam in his eye leaning over to look deeply in my mine he asked me;
“Do you trust me?”
But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
I’m hid with Christ~