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I wrote in this chapter about a pivotal point in my story. Today, I found out that Crissy wrote what I will share with you below just one month after I moved in with her. It is beautiful, and I thought you should enjoy it. More than that, hear her message. Get in the trenches with people like me who need you. If you are called to help others, being a trench dweller picks you. I am so grateful for this precious trench-dweller of mine.
Before I share it with you, I want to share the lyrics to a song that Crissy told me later that she listened to over and over many times after dropping me off at my apartment after dinner or a sunset chase. I did not know then, nor can I understand know the love she has for me or the God we share; I am so incredibly lucky.
“And I’m lookin out my car window sittin’ in the pouring rain
Although your house is fifteen miles away, I can still feel your pain
I’ve thought and prayed and worked it through about a hundred times or more
How your soul just cries to everyone to help you get up off the floor
Right now it’s morning, you’re probably sleepin’, totally unaware
of the flood of kisses you hold back by the way that you despair
It ain’t me I’m talking about here, or anybody else you can touch
That’s all I want to say right now, I don’t want to say too much
except Sweet Jesus, roll all over me
Sweet Jesus, roll all over me…
You gotta come down and just set me free”
Remember, the take away here, is to listen to the still small voice and get in the trenches of people who are hurting. You will hurt, you will feel pain deep in your soul (as I think Crissy so beautifully describes) but you might be a part of a crazy, ridiculously amazing story–and because of that have the opportunity to help countless others you will never know.
This is what my sweet friend wrote, just a few weeks after I moved in with her, and days after the beautiful breakdown
In the trenches — October 2008
I’ve often thought of this life as a battle. Sometimes it seems I am winning, other times I want to raise the white flag and call off the whole thing. Somewhere in the middle is where I am today.
I don’t have any military background, but it doesn’t take much imagination to think about how awful the trenches of war must be. Dirty, nasty, bloody….cries of anguish and pain echo through my mind even as I think about it. It’s a place I certainly would never want to find myself, and definitely would never want to ask another to join me. But what if that’s what it took? What if the very thing we need is someone willing to go to the depths with us and pull us out?
I remember the day the Lord laid it on my heart. I remember asking Amy to move in; cautious in my approach and thinking I could pull one over on her by saying it would be temporary. If this was a battle she was in – I was offering air support. Thinking highly of myself, I patted myself on the back and called it a day. I didn’t know the war she was waging. Amy moved in and the battle became near. Still unaware of the immediacy of the situation, I offered to stand guard. She was having nightmares so I thought I could pray and stand outside the door and it would be enough. But the nightmares became worse and they took her away to get some help. When she came back the days in the trenches began. There is something about walking knee deep in the mud and the mire with someone that is life changing. As the terrors unfolded she allowed me to fight along side. As the battle raged she revealed more and more gaping wounds. I never realized that in the ugliness of this life, God could pour out beauty. Maybe that’s what the verse about “beauty for ashes” means. The wickedness of this world, of mankind, is far worse than my feeble mind can comprehend. As I live in the trenches I have come to realize something amazing.
You came here to get in the trenches with us. You came that we might be able to show You all of our gaping wounds and be healed. You showed up in the place of greatest fear, hurt, pain, anguish and ugliness. You lived here with us, and walked among us. Then, in the ultimate fight, when we all should have been struck down by a righteous God…You took our place, received our punishment, and died in our place
Written by Crissy Loughridge, October 2008