Tuesday, May 17, 2011

i looked, and found, a
celebrate recovery group close by.
the Christian version of AA. for me,
when i attend a meeting, i go to do
WORK. on myself. my struggles. my
bent to addictions of performance and
praise and pain pills. i call it doing
BUSINESS.

this night,
there was a new woman in
the group so we went around to
introduce ourselves. the circle came
to me.

hi! i'm ann.
an addict. and
probably, like each of you,
genuinely broken by life,
and my human bent to
fix things on my own terms.

sharing started.
my name is....., and i am
a shoplifter, with many convictions
behind me. i need prayer as i get
ready to go before the judge with my
latest offense.

next:
i am an alcoholic,
among other things. i am
really struggling. every night,
God says to me, "go to bed
with your husband."
but i like this t.v. program. or...
i'm not tired. or...i just don't want to.
God keeps calling me, and i keep resisting.

my name is lindsay (not real name).
i'm an addict with an anger problem.
pregnant, and very impatient with my
three year old daughter. my husband
comes in from work. blood-shot eyes.
tense. exhausted. not always very nice,
either. i need prayer. i just know how
hard it is going to be when this baby comes,
and i'll also have a toddler running around.

it is quiet.
earnest. big, black boots
of fear and failure and terror start
rolling around. stomping.
making noise inside our heads. telling us
to be quiet. that the great shame that
owns us needs to stay inside us.

my name is rosie. i'm an alcoholic. i've hooked
up with EHARMONY because i don't want to
be alone the rest of my life, but then i keep
asking myself if any guy will want me if they
know of the gay relationships in my past.
tears glistening in her eyes.

all of us so broken that we cannot
imagine even holding the mildest judgement
toward each other in the circle.

a tiny seam of light flickers. the whisper
that deliverance can be ours. God promises...if
we fully grasp that we are POWERLESS in and of
ourselves...and look to Him, the ONLY Power greater
than ourselves...then we can find hope. we are all enslaved, and Jesus,
beautiful and pure, listens. to our ragged, raw breathing
slicing through the thick enslavement of ourselves.

well, i am ann.
i flew to a speaking date
last week, and instead of
receiving my negotiated fee with
the speakers' bureau, the sponsor coldly handed
me a check that was just pitance for my
flying across the country to speak. i
was rushed out of the large church,
tears streaming down my face. stunned.
hurt. no, devastated. i'm struggling financially,
but worse was the feeling that i wasn't worthy
of my assignment. never once, in my thirty-plus year
career of speaking and writing, had this happened.
i feel like a worm. no good. as with
others, tears began to balance on the lids of my
eyes, and i was trying to hold onto them. to NOT
reveal how deep this wound felt.

psalm 91:1, 2, 4, 14, 15
"He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty....
He will cover you with His feathers, and
under His wings you will find refuge;
His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart...
I will deliver him and honor him..."

keep marching, warriors.
do not let fatigue and failure
lure you to hopelessness.
the Son shines for us. the warmth
healing our deepest hurts and failures.

ann kiemel anderson

9 comments:

Tanya said...

Beautiful.

Baby Paige said...

Hi Aunty Ann,
I always enjoy reading your posts... I want so badly be closer but it is nice that the internet can at least give us little updates.

Tasha

Donna said...

Oh Ann, I so love your blogs. I struggle too, but with food as an addiction. Your words and transparency encourage me to keep on, marching forward, and remind me that I was meant for more than this.
Thank you Ann.

Janet said...

You were the first Christian author I read when I was saved in 1983. Your writing encouraged and inspired me then.

Today, you posting encouraged and inspired me again.

Elaine said...

Ann, thank you for your transparency, you are a blessing to those of us who struggle. I think Jim Copple says it very well, so I will quote him here..."Oh, what if the Kingdom of God were truly the Kingdom of God? Reconciliation, vision, hope, healing, forgiveness, open hand, tolerance, inclusion, love, justice and why is it we have to spend so much time convincing the institutions established in the name of that Kingdom that this is the way of the Kingdom"? - Jim Copple

Kelly said...

Ann,
Your honest broken life showed me how to live my broken life in a transparent way. As a little girl mom read aloud "I'm out to change my World" and your story of Buster inspired a young girl to look through different lenses at the people around her and let God teach her how to love them. I've returned to that book over and over again. I recently read it aloud to my children.

I thank the Lord for you and the passionate way you live your life for Christ.
Kelly

al5254 said...

Ann, We are so sorry that you needed to bear the painful experience at that speaking engagement. God knows about it and is going to make it back to you. Just this morning we finished reading STRUGGLING FOR WHOLENESS that you and your sister Jan wrote back in 1986. We would read several chapters before going to bed at night & while riding home from spending time with my 88 yr old parents. We laughed and cried as God used your stories to move us closer to Him. You have a wonderful ministry. You are a gift of God to us.
Al & Rose Yoder

RoseAnne Coleman said...

Sometimes while drowning in the floods of humiliation, a tiny bubble of oxygen rises to the surface of my pain and exhales:"I understand." You were not the only one escorted from the venue that rejected you. That you were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name puts you in the company of many broken folks who have confronted the reasons they are truly grateful for the empty tomb and shiny men reminding us of Jesus' calling us from and sending us forth. Blessings, Ma'am.

barb said...

"all of us so broken that we cannot
imagine even holding the mildest judgement
toward each other in the circle.

a tiny seam of light flickers. the whisper
that deliverance can be ours. God promises...if
we fully grasp that we are POWERLESS in and of
ourselves...and look to Him, the ONLY Power greater
than ourselves...then we can find hope. we are all enslaved, and Jesus,
beautiful and pure, listens. to our ragged, raw breathing
slicing through the thick enslavement of ourselves."

"keep marching, warriors.
do not let fatigue and failure
lure you to hopelessness.
the Son shines for us. the warmth
healing our deepest hurts and failures."

Another moment in time when after reading your blog I'm so thoroughly speechless and wanting to sit in the healing presence of your words that minister life to my heart.