Wednesday, January 25, 2012

HEROES - Fitz's Part 1

Okay, so it's no secret to anyone that I love Shaun, Lori & their kids.
They probably know it better than anyone, because I try to make sure these kinds of things don't go unsaid.

However, I figured I would share some of the reasons why they are my heroes.
(I was going to post them both in one, but that was becoming REALLY long, so this will be a 2 part post).


Shaun was on staff at Master's Commission my first year; & has been a pastor, mentor & source of encouragement since day 1 of my life in Kansas City. (Actually, I didn't like him the first day I met, maybe since day 2)

Shaun is compassionate. In fact, I would say he is the most compassionate person I know. He doesn't feel for you, he feels WITH you. He has kindness in his eyes & his heart bleeds when he speaks.
He is one of the most genuine people I know.

I have had a lot of amazing leaders in my life, but there is something very different about Shaun.
He is the first male leader I trusted to let be in my life (who wasn't already in it) since Junior High. I didn't ever tell him anything about what I had gone through, but he knew how to love me through all of it anyway.

There have been a lot of instances where Shaun has encouraged me, prayed with me, made me cry, & kicked my butt when I was being a punk.

There is one particular instance that literally changed the way I lived my life...

The night of my first year graduation some majorly hurtful things all came rushing to the surface.
You ever have one of those moments where something you thought you were "over" just hits you?
I had a moment. A big moment... Shaun "just happened" to be there in that moment.

I had just finished singing my last song, and honestly it was awful. I was starting to cry and everyone was pity affirming me (haha); not knowing my crying had nothing to do with the song. Shaun came over to me knowing there was something more, and put his arms around me. I spent a good solid 30 minutes just sobbing. I couldn't say anything at all, and all I could feel was pain. He didn't say anything for the longest time; he just cried with me.

Then he began praying for me, & I honestly don't remember most of the prayer. I do remember him saying negative things that had been spoken over me by other people and replacing them with truth.

Then he repeatedly asked God to show me how valuable I was. To this day I can hear him saying over and over again, "You're so valuable, Melissa".

That was a pivotal moment for me.
I wouldn't dare say that I wasn't loved or hadn't had that love expressed to me all my life, but I don't recall the specific word "valuable" being spoken over me. That word was extremely significant for a lot of reasons.
I always knew I was called by God, I knew I loved Him, I knew He loved me...but I didn't believe I was valued.
This was the first time I truly HEARD & BELIEVED it.

I had been believing the lies that the negative voices & circumstances had spoken for years without even realizing.
He didn't rush anything, he let God take His time with me in that moment, and that moment literally changed my life.

I didn't think, talk or act the same after. I have never again questioned my value to God. Never.

Heroes don't have to be bulletproof;
in fact, the best kind of heroes are the ones who bleed with you.

[...Just wait until I tell ya about Lori...] be continued...

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