It was my 1st grade year, and the 1st time my singing talent was discovered. Fortunate for me, as I shook in my boots all the way to center stage, the lights blinded me to the point that I couldn’t see how many eyes were waiting for me.
I stood there, I think in a cute ‘lil dress and rain boots, belting out,
“Raindrops keep fallin’ on my head. But that doesn’t mean my eyes will soon be turnin’ red, cryin’s not for me, ‘NO,'”
The second verse I pulled out an umbrella and did a lil choreographed dance. At least this is the way I remember it.
“Cryin’s not for me, ‘NO,’
‘Cause I’m never gonna stop the rain by complainin’
Because I’m free, nothin’s worryin’ me.”
The stage made me a hypocrite that night, even though I didn’t know what a hypocrite was. The truth is, I was not free. And I worried and cried through blue-eyes-turned-red a LOT. They weren’t cute, lil ole raindrops falling on my head. They were more like marble-loaded mud pies.
First, there was the patch I had to wear for my stigmatism, along with big thick lenses for my weak eyes. Then there were the teasing kids in a new school, mean ones, telling me my mom walked and talked funny, chanting “Four Eyes” jingles from across the playground. The one kid who did like me was a stinky boy, and he liked me so much that I spent recesses running from him, begging him to stop trying to kiss me. Inside the walls of my home, were new and taboo realities, harsh ones. Ones I didn’t understand, and made my stomach hurt almost all the time.
The mud-pies kept falling, and I’d guessed it was gravity’s fault.
But I can’t share this muddy story from my past without mentioning the umbrella. It was strong. It was all I had to keep from falling down and dying right then and there. It was the decision to put my faith in Jesus Christ. That umbrella didn’t keep me from getting wet or hurt, but it assured me that God was present, protecting me in ways I couldn’t comprehend.
I won’t pretend that becoming a Christian that year changed everything. The junk ensued…worsened even. I didn’t understand why God allowed the bad stuff to happen, and I told Him so. And for the record, I still don’t understand it. He never stopped making Himself known to me, though, and giving me the faith I needed to keep searching for a greater promise and a greater love than anything this world could provide for me.
True freedom isn’t about being brave enough or positive enough. It’s about holding on to Christ through all circumstances, letting Him be my Protector, my Joy…my very Life. As I walk step by step under the umbrella of His unfailing love, then and only then can I genuinely belt out, “Because I’m free, nothin’s worryin’ me.”
“You have made known to me the path of life;
You will fill me with joy in Your presence,
With eternal pleasures at Your right hand.”
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