In my 20's and early 30's my I was employed as a full time actress. That meant, of coarse, a lot of waiting tables and working over-night shifts at the radio stations that have been my home since I was 15. It also meant a lot of commercial voice overs and some on camera work in television commercials.
Actors make serious money does commercials and they are not easy to land. The best commercials are national commercials, not just because your friends from college know you're not tanking, but because they pay REALLY well. The pay what's called residuals which means as long as it's running ANYWHERE in the world, YOU get a check. Awesome!
My first national television commercial was for Chrysler. I played a modern day Rosie the Riveter. My job was to check under the hood of a new Sebring as it rolled off the line, use the rivet gun, shine the hood and give it the "thumbs up" as it drives away to it's brilliant future. I was so excited because I knew that spot would run all over the country (any maybe in other countries) for at least a solid year. It was THE commercial. That meant great big checks for me and my family for many months to come. Thank you, Jesus!
About a month after the shoot, I got a letter in the mail telling me that I was cut from the commercial. Apparently, they did a test of the commercial. They aired two different versions for a group of people to find out which one they liked better. One version showed a car being designed, built, perfected, polished off by yours-truly and driven off the a cheery future as someone fab new car. The other had the car being designed, built, perfected and crashed and crashed and crashed again.
The test group preferred seeing the car cash 9-1 over seeing it polished and drive into the horizon.
The moral of the story, is not "don't let your kids grow up to be actors". It is that people in this broken fallen world crave destruction. It's unpopular to be whole and healed and joyful. Drama is part of the human condition. We crave it. Part of the Healing Season, for me, and maybe for you, is to welcome wholeness as a friend and not a stranger.
I have live so long in brokenness and I know how much it hurts to have people ask simple daily questions like "How ya doin'?" and want to run and hide because the answer would have been "I'm awful. I suck. Please just don't ask, okay?"
And yet will almost all answer "Good. How are you?" and give the other person the same chance to prove a big fat leir. Just being honest. Just being honest.
At one point a couple of years after the tornado I had a great job. I was the Music Direct of 104.3 WOMC, one of the finest radio station in the United States and I up and quit my job and went to work at Starbucks (a mighty fine company in it's own right) because I just wanted to able to say "I'm not okay." and go home it the answer to the question "How are you?" wasn't REALLY "I'm good."
Those were hard years. Those were tearful years. I didn't know Jesus yet and I was so hopeless. It brought me to a point, eventually where God took mercy and saved me. Bless His holy name. I was a shell of a person.
The Lord filled the empty void in my chest a couple of weeks ago. I still feel it. I'm filled up. That is a miracle and I need to mark it. God is great and mighty to save. If someone asked me how I am right now, the answer would be, "Great. I'm really really good."
I have to wonder what life will look like for me as a restored person, though. I think of being cut from that commercial because people would rather see something crash that be driven down a sunlight road. I have spent almost a decade crashing and then I got saved and lost a TON of friends. I have a brand new perspective today that I did even just a few weeks back, because I am not living with a "crash" in the center of my chest. It feels and is just great. I notice, though that people were far more inclined to read this daily journey, at the beginning. When I was short of breath and panicking, people were very interest. It is kind of like a gawker delay on the freeway.
I refuse to lay on the ground and bleed to death. I refuse to crave attention so deeply that I accept anything less than healing. This is the Season. THIS is! I declare it over myself and my struggles. I declare it for you, too. Today is the day. If not now, when?
If it means that fewer people want to watch, listen, read, hang-out with, me...so be it. Narrow is the gate.
I have lived in this world long enough to see what our culture thinks is interest. Sex, abuse, destruction of marriage. Look at reality t.v. I am claiming a new reality. I claim health, peace, holiness, restoration. That's what Jesus gave to us. It's what He died for and I refuse to live like His death and most importantly His resurrection is meaningless. It means EVERYTHING!
Lord, I thank you for your victory. I thank you for your victory on the cross and your victory in my life. I stand in awe of you and your mighty power. I know that you can do anything and everything and I promise you to tell the story of what you have done for me. I will not hide they healing power that you have. Help me to understand you more. Help me to hold onto your truth and the truth of who I am in you, even in the most dazzling of worldly situations. Fix my eyes on you and your kingdom. Train my thoughts to yours and my ways to your ways. Thank you for what you've done and what you continue to do. Give me the chance to share that hope with someone who needs you today. Live in me. I give you an all access pass, Lord. Jesus, remove from my mind any inkling of what others my think of me and replace it with a firm conviction to make you proud and to make you known.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will.