My sentimental journey

An ordinary girl's walk with an extraordinary God.

The Avenger

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superman-295328__340Having two boys and a husband that love action movies like Marvel cinematic films narrowed my chances of seeing a chick flick down, next to nil, in the presence of these three. Which, by the way is absolutely fine with me. I thoroughly enjoyed being with them, having a shared experience completely devoid of, “if you can’t beat them, join them” mentality. The movies were action packed and full of adventure, good vs evil; with good ultimately prevailing. But, hands down being in the company of my family was impossible to beat!

Kevin and I occasionally carry on the tradition of an action packed movie night; even though the boys are not much part of the event these days. Presently, we have added a few chick flicks to our viewing selection… possibly to your amazement, Kevin enjoys some of them as well. My husband what a hero!

Speaking of hero’s, Jesus our True conquering Hero, paid the ultimate price on the cross for our sin and shame. His word tells us, “He took the punishment, and that made us whole. Through His bruises we get healed. We’re all like sheep who’ve wandered off and gotten lost. We’ve all done our own thing, gone our own way. And God has piled all our sins, everything we’ve done wrong, on Him”.  How refreshing, load lifting and brimming with hope that never disappoints.

Recently, after going to see the ” Avengers Endgame” my morning devotion had me land on Jeremiah 51, which at the time seemed random. However, it did not take long to see why my choice was not random at all… but rather quite divine. The words leaped off the page grabbing my attention far greater than any adrenaline driven movie moment. Right there in verses 34-37 was a thrilling life changing revelation, “Then I, God step in and say, I’m on your side, taking up your cause, I’m your Avenger !” Wow friends! How epic and reassuring… good triumphing over evil, hope cascading over despair, delivering the knockout punch to the enemies that loomed over us. All the while, washing away injustices with a love that is undeniable. A tangible, palatable victory, far removed from the bad taste that was left in our mouth’s by guilt or embarrassment. This overcoming conquering king is in our corner 24/7, never sleeping or slumbering… even when you cannot feel Him. That is truly and “End Game” changer!

God pleads our case, rights our wrongs, restores what has been devoured and loves us so fiercely; championing for our peace, salvation and joy. What is our role in this glorious package? Simply receive it free of charge, your admission has already been paid for.
I have had the joy of seeing fresh areas of God’s redemption in my life recently. One significant area involved spearheading a last minute planning for my high school 40th year reunion. On a whim, and being my first rodeo in regards to planning a reunion, it sounded like fun. None of this could not have been done without my two delightful sidekicks Janet and Judi, who were gracious enough to come along for the wild ride. To be truthful, I am surprised we were able to pull it off not only in the short amount time, lackluster funds and potentially a low turnout; but also staying on task amidst all our laughter and lively conversations we had during our planning sessions. One thing we were confident about, no matter how it was to play out on reunion night, we would have fun connecting with our classmates and each other.

Yet through all the laughter and joy and encouragement these two brought, my heart had some trepidation beyond the normal reunion jitters one might experience.  For my heart was carrying a dark secret, one I had only shared with a hand full of people since it happened over 40yrs ago.  In my heart I knew that I needed to share what happened to me in the safety of their friendship. It was imperative so that I could continue my healing journey upward and into a place of greater freedom and victory. And in doing so I was embraced with deep love and support from both of them… my apprehensions melted away and my heart was greatly comforted.

Now moving ahead, though difficult, I feel it is important to share my story not in a place of sorrow and victimhood but of victory. God’s word says, “They have overcome (conquered )him by the blood of the lamb and the word of their testimony.” So in that truth I can now share that I was raped during my senior year by a fellow student. For years I wrestled with shame, guilt and sorrow trying to bury my trauma so I could face each day pretending with all my might that life was normal. Adding to the difficultly was never being able to tell my parents about being sexually assaulted, which left me feeling alone, and with no one standing in my corner defending me. For somewhere in the depths of my broken and shattered soul I felt responsible. It took me years with the Lord’s help and love of others to unpack the truth of that dreadful night… that it was never my fault ever. Though that person apologized after the event, it was a long bumpy road before I arrived at true forgiveness. I’ve realized along the way, that in order for a person to be able to abuse another human in any way shape or form, is out of such brokenness that only God can truly heal them. I hope and pray he has found the freedom and peace God longs to give him.

God in His unfailing love has redeemed the areas of sexual abuse that go far beyond that one painful night in Dec. of 1978 to a place of healing, peace and joy.

The night finally came for our 40th year class reunion, the turnout was great and it was a night of joy and personal redemption… fully enjoying my classmates with such love and freedom. My 40 years of wandering in a high school wilderness of memories, now entering a promise land of fresh new beginnings and a satisfying do over. Just like the Joel 2:25-26 (NIV) promises:

“I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten—
the great locust and the young locust,
the other locusts and the locust swarm[a]—
my great army that I sent among you.
You will have plenty to eat, until you are full,
and you will praise the name of the Lord your God,
who has worked wonders for you;
never again will my people be shamed.

Lord, thank you for being our Avenger taking up our cause with love while also desiring freedom for both sides involved in the heartache. We praise you that the pain of yesterday is swallowed up in the victory of today. We praise you that those that put their trust in you will not be put to shame or disappointed. You are by far the best super hero ever!

Skipping school my senior year to enjoy the snow at Glendoveer Golf Course. Portland , Oregon,  Scan0008

 

 

Author: Lisa Thompson Jennings

Hello my name is Lisa,.it would be so delightful to sit down with you swapping life's stories..Reveling in God's goodness,sharing our battles won and those we still are fighting. Finding sacred ground together in heartbreak, redemption , forgiven and blessed hope that promises not to disappoint us. A little about me ... I love God with all my heart stumbling along the way as I do , I talk a lot but still covet listening, Laughter and being creative are not options for my soul would wither with the lack of them. My husband Kevin and I have been married for 27 years and blessed with two boys Derek 22 and Trent 19. It's been 22 years since I worked outside of the home some of those twenty-one years were spent homeschooling, coupon clipping and keeper of the Jennings household. Counting it pure joy to watch our amazing boys turn into outstanding young men.While this earthen vessel laden with cracks and flaws by God's intentional grace and renewed strength made it through. A touch of God's redemption from past misfortunes that included surviving sexual abuse, a failed first marriage, eating disorder, panic attacks, intense gripping fear and crushing low self esteem. Drawn to a God that can right wrongs, bring beauty where ashes once laid ,all the while lovingly speaking His worth and value into weary, parched souls. So that we can not only survive as victims but thrive as a people walking in glorious victory, blazing a trail of freedom for anyone held in chains of injustices, personal failure or loss. So thankful God is all about new beginnings, fresh starts and slates wiped clean.. our past misfortunes merely spring boards of new found hope and deep abounding joy ... it's a privilege to be a fellow sojourner in this path to greater wholeness and liberation. Charles Dickens writes "Reflect on your present blessings every man has many, not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some". Celebrating present and future Heavenly blessings with you

6 thoughts on “The Avenger

  1. What you have shared requires both healing and bravery, precious and beloved Lisa. May God continue to crown you with greater grace and greater victory. You are walking the talk! I love you! ❤️ 🙏❤️

    • Dear friend, You have a tremendous role in helping me walk out my healing in a safe , loving and encouraging manner. Your heart for the hurting does not go unnoticed. I know I stand with countless others who have been blessed with your love that allows tender wounds to heal in an atmosphere of such grace. Love you deeply

  2. Wonderful redemptive and beautiful story, and shared so perfectly. Amazing, I just read this passage in Joel today in my Bible reading…. God is so amazing!

    • My dear friend , Your sweet spirit, love and gift of cheering people on has always been such a comfort. Your tender heart of love is a beautiful reflection of your Heavenly Father, and I along with countless other have the incredible privilege of experiencing that thanks to the gift of you . Thank you for sweet comments my friend and I love when God brings verses to us at the same time . It never ceases to amaze me ! Love you dearly 🙂

  3. Dear Lisa
    This week in church, we are throwing questions for the pastor to answer. I just sent him a question asking where is God when a boy is sexually assaulted by a godly man. God says He is our protector,compassionate Heavenly father and yet stands aloof while the boy’s life has been so damaged as well as the family. How does that child learn to trust God as His father? I will be anxious to hear the answer. I applaud you for being transparent on your journey so you in turn can reach out a loving hand to help others.
    God comforts us in our hour of need so then we can turn to someone else and offer the same. God bless you Lisa as you shine for Him. We don’t have all the answers but He does and will reveal them in His time.

    • Dear Dawn , Thank you for your kind words and thought provoking questions. Your desire to ponder the deep things of God and life is one of the many things I admire about you. The God given beauty of free will and the infliction it causes on those who choose evil is a true juxaposition from God’s heart. I have wrestled many times with your same question Dawn and have had to lay that true mystery at His feet. Comforted that Jesus had cried out “My God , my God , why have You forsaken me ?Why are you so far from helping me ?and from the words of my groaning? Psalms 22:1 He is acquainted with our grief and that brings me tremendous reassurance .As far trusting God I am still learning to build those trust muscles each day. Pressing into His word and character and not my past worldly experiences as a plum line. Thanks again Dawn , I pray you find more peace and resolve in the questions that God always delights in hearing . Blessings and love , Lisa

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