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The Secrets We Keep…

(About a 4 min read…)


I spent months building a hand-crafted and mill worked Cheval mirror for my first wife’s birthday… I spent late nights and numerous days carefully pouring my heart into what I believed to be a visual piece of me… to give to her…


I should have known better… but I was young and naïve… I came home early that day… my boss and co-workers were excited to hear how it would unfold… some of them had lended me their expertise where my skill level lacked in woodworking…


I carried my gift into the house in 3 pieces… up to the corner of our room and assembled it there… she was gone and I was expecting her home at anytime… I was very excited…

I tried my best attempt at a beautiful bow around it and placed flowers in front of it… I placed a hand-drawn card on top… I wanted to make it just right… it was her birthday after all…


I heard the door open and I found myself giddy with excitement like a 3 yr old playing hide and seek… I could hear her footsteps coming up the stairs and a low muttering coming from the hall… the door slowly opened and I said “happy birthday!!” And sang her that oh so familiar annual ballad… “happy birthday to you… happy birthday to you… happy bir—-“ she covered her ears and screamed “Shut Up Shut Up Shut Up!”… she started cussing and threw her purse at me… a bit stunned I asked what was wrong… I thought… maybe she had a bad day… she stormed over towards my birthday presentation… it stood about as tall as I was… she turned to me and said “what is this crap?!… her words cut me… I responded with “I made this for you”… I had used imported woods… carved and hand-finished it with great care and attention to detail… but she stood there with dark and cold eyes… and… no response… it was very demonic…


I was trying hard to control my feelings… I didn’t have time to think… in what seemed like a split second… she pushed me to the side screaming “I HATE flowers!! “… and kicked the vases against the wall… petals and water flew through the air… as glass shards covered the floor… she grabbed the card and looked me in the eyes and proceeded tenaciously ripping it into small pieces… without even opening it…she then turned to the mirror and surprisingly picked it up and smashed it over my head…


Disoriented, I fell to my knees… and then everything went black… I woke up shaking from shock… a cold hand kept slapping me repetitively across the face and blood was everywhere… she grabbed my face… her touch stung… I heard her say “get up you wimp, you’ve got a mess to clean.”…


I was in shock… but livid… my heart was crushed… but I couldn’t allow myself to fight a woman… especially the woman I made a vow to just 5 years earlier to love and protect above myself… I didn’t want to be “that guy”… I didn’t want to be… my dad…


So I took a min and slowly got my balance… walked calmly to the bathroom to assess my damage… she followed me yelling and screaming… I tuned it out… her voice became a dull murmur as I carefully picked the glass shards from my face and neck… treated them… calmly grabbed the garbage can and a broom… I swept up the shattered mirror like it was my heart on the floor, and put it in the garbage… I wondered to myself “will this ever change?“


This went on for the next 16 years… hidden violence… constant cover up… I was embarrassed… humiliated… and believed that her behavior was my fault… I felt trapped…

One thing I know for certain is that we all have secrets… things that we feel would hurt our reputation or cause us unwanted grief…


The enemy looks for ways to trap us with the fear of failure… exposure… embarrassment… and many other condemning things… but the good news is that Jesus doesn’t condemn us… there is freedom in living a life in the open… the Apostle Paul encouraged us to live in a way that’s worthy of our calling…and to live above reproach… so we can focus on what matters instead of a life of covering up and living a lie…


Thanks again for reading this through… may you grow in the knowledge of God because it’s the truth that you know that sets you free.


Until next time.


Michael





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