Friday, December 18, 2015

My First Love

It's easy to say, "I'm Christian" and easier to talk the talk, but how much harder is it to actually walk the walk? We're all human and I truly believe that we are all connected on such a cosmic level that we don't even realize that even if we seem to fall out of that "Christian box", or {standard way of worshipping God} that nothing can ever separate us from God. But what if we get too sidetracked to the point of not receiving the gifts of God in the 'here and now'? I have learned so much this year in regards to how God works in my life. I noticed that I pray more when I'm struggling with something. I prayed endlessly hearing about my mother's cancer diagnosis. I prayed each time she went through radiation, chemo and all of those grueling operations and procedures to make it all better somehow. I prayed and prayed and prayed. I never prayed so much in my life. When I finally received an answered prayer that Mom was now cancer-free, I thanked God immediately. And then somehow along the way, I forgot to pray. I got 'busy' -- there were things to do, people to see and work to be done. There were many problems that "I" could fix on my own...so I thought.

And then I needed God again.

On the night before my surgery, I started getting a horrible panic attack. My breathing became shallow and my heart rate sounded more like the motor of a Harley Davidson. I grabbed a paper bag so I could breathe into it. That usually helps for whatever reason. And then it hit me: PRAY. I shut the door behind me, lit a few candles and prayed my heart out until tears started streaming down my cheeks. I prayed for God to take my fear and anxiety away and to remind me that my eternal life was much more important than my earthly one. I meditated for quite a bit. I then felt as if someone was pouring water over my head, and onto my shoulders and then into my heart. I felt God. My heartbeat slowed down and I became so calm, that I felt this euphoric sense of awareness. He was with me. I wasn't scared anymore. That night, for the first time in months -- I slept for 8 full hours before I had to wake up and drive off to the hospital. My fear had left and I was actually excited to have this surgery done.

For me, when worldly things distract me, I sometimes forget my first love: God. I forget that He is always here anytime I need help or comfort with anything.  During and after my surgery, I had quite a few complications that put me right back into the hospital a few days later. At one point, I seriously thought I was dying as they carried me out from a ct scan and onto a mobile bed from convulsing and having irregular heartbeats. I had to stay overnight to check for numerous things -- from surgical infections and for heart problems as well as blood clots and pulmonary embolisms. Good God I was a hot mess! And in the midst of all the chaos and fear, I saw God once again.

If God brings you to it, He'll get you through it. And He did.

After all those things had subsided and I was back home convalescing, I learned many things. Thank God for what happened because I would have never realized all that was going on. For starters, I now know that I should never look to people for comfort -- to never rely on people who truly don't care and love you as much as God does. It taught me to never expect anything from anyone because it will only lead to disappointment. Aside from my wife, I became more of a "possible nuisance" to the people closest to my heart without asking them to lift a single finger. Not a simple phone call of "Hey, how are you feeling," or even a visit to see if I needed anything. I didn't want anything. It was far from a pity party -- it was more of a realization. It was as if I had a tooth pulled. "No biggie. She'll get through this." 

And of course I did.

But that's not the point.

Not only was this hysterectomy physically draining and painful for me, but the emotional aspects of having this done meant that my dreams of ever holding a biological child again would never happen for me. But God reassured me that my life here on earth is more than just having a child -- it's more about helping other people and becoming closer with those who appreciate me in their lives, as well as taking me seriously. It's about creating a desired family, to whom I connect with emotionally, spiritually -- not necessarily by blood relation. I think many people hold this false illusion of connectedness with their biological family due to more of an obligation, as opposed to a genuine desire to be in their company. No wonder so many people get depressed during the holidays -- they're expecting the best out of people who don't have their best interest in mind.

The mind can be convinced, but the heart must be won. ~Simon Sinek

And that's just it: no one has ever won my heart over. No one has ever proved their genuineness to me. Why should they? They have their own crosses to bear and lives to live. I get that. But in times of difficulties and possible life-threatening situations, you'd think, or perhaps you'd like your closest klan there to be with you or at least, to have them ask, "Hey, you OK?" I guess it hurts knowing that fact, and at the same time it's a relief to have discovered it as well. No one is guaranteed a lifetime warranty of friendship, love and family. No one is obligated to check up on you or help you in your time of need. If you don't do things from the heart, then it's just all meaningless or done with a strange ulterior motive. And who wants that?

Sometimes letting go can be the most liberating thing you can do. For this reason, I'm closer to God than ever before.

I will never forget my first love again.

“Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” (Revelation 2:4).

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com or join her on Facebook and Twitter. Check out her cooking blog for some of her famous recipes!