|Zoe M. McCarthy|
Do you taste like vanilla or cocoa–bitter?
Do you act like pure sugar—sickly sweet?
Do you come across like oil—too slick?
Do you bear up like salt—preserved?
Do you feel like udder milk—squeezed?
Do you feel like an egg—born yesterday?
When my sister gives her testimony, she brings a story basket with all the above ingredients. She quotes Romans 8:28. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Then based on Randy Alcorn’s article “There Is No Pointless Suffering,” she says:
“Almost everything that goes into a cake tastes terrible. But a delicious metamorphosis takes place when these ingredients are skillfully measured and mixed then baked at the perfect temperature. The final product is good!
“Our trials and apparent tragedies taste bitter to us. However, no translation of Romans 8:28 says ‘each thing by itself is good,’ but ‘all things work together for good,’ and not on their own, but under God’s sovereign hand. Every experience God gives us is the perfect preparation for the future only He can see.”
Then my sister relates how God orchestrated her life from abuse to the other side where God gave her a new name. From victim to survivor.
Ultimately, the big question for my sister was Jesus’ question to the invalid of 38 years that He approached beside the pool at Bethesda, “Do you want to get well?” (NIV) Or, “Wilt thou be made whole?” (KJV)
Was my sister’s journey under God’s orchestration easy? No.
At three and a half, she was abused. She felt abandoned, she screamed inside, and she “exploded.” Then she felt God say, “You’ll always have a Father in heaven.”
Undergoing the abuse by a different perpetrator much of her young life, she stuffed the memories. In her twenties, she slogged through a period of depression.
Later, she began to realize the life she had lived was not the life she had believed it to be. “Denial. Self-brainwashing.”
She was in therapy for ten years. The betrayal of her perpetrator was the hardest to deal with. “One minute I’d want to explode and shatter every piece of glass to communicate what I felt, and the next I’d want to implode until there was not one cell left of me.”
God never let go of her, even when she didn’t like Him, obeyed Him only because He was more powerful than she was, and struggled to study the Bible when she didn’t want to because it brought horrifying flashbacks. God stayed with her. He spoke to her in dreams and once appeared in a powerful show of light when she was awake.
Besides the abuse, my sister had three miscarriages, and her youngest daughter is a special-needs child. In spite of her trials, she has enjoyed much success in her life, before and after therapy. She has also served in a long-term children’s ministry and ministered to other women.
My sister ends her testimony, relating her ability to forgive and making these statements:
“God didn’t just make the best of a bad situation. Rather, he intended all along to use evil for ultimate good.”
“God has a plan, the ability to carry it out, and the loving kindness to do it not only for His glory but our good.”
If you are feeling like a one-ingredient cake, listen to Jesus’ question to you. “Do you want to get well?” If yes, let Him make you whole.
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|About the Author|
Learn more about Zoe M. McCarthy at her website: http://zoemmccarthy.com
Jilted by the latest of her father’s choices of “real men,” Cisney Baldwin rashly accepts an invitation to spend Thanksgiving weekend with a sympathetic colleague and his family. Nick LeCrone is a man too much her opposite to interest her and too mild-mannered to make her overbearing father’s “list.” Now, Cisney fears Nick wants to take advantage of her vulnerable state over the holiday. Boy, is she wrong.
Nick wants little to do with Cisney. She drives him crazy with all her sticky notes and quirks. He extended an invitation because he felt sorry for her. Now he’s stuck, and to make matters worse, his family thinks she’s his perfect match. He’ll do what he can to keep his distance, but there’s just one problem—he’s starting to believe Cisney’s magnetism is stronger than he can resist.
Purchase links for Calculated Risk: http://zoemmccarthy.com/books