Thursday, February 16, 2012

With Gavel in Hand

To continue along the vain of my last post on judging, I'm going to share a very personal story with you.  One that dramatically impacted my life and transformed me. I pray that this post is a catalyst for your life as well.

Growing up, my mother was sick with Crohn's Disease.  She suffered tremendous pain and many times humiliation during the course of my young life and passed away when I was 19.  Growing up, mine was not a happy home.  Mom was heavily medicated and I knew that had changed her personality.  But, I was relieved when she died, as I was now free of her anger and hostility toward me.

When I was 16, my father left us to be with his long-time girlfriend. I guess because ours was such a love/hate relationship, I subconsciously blamed my mother. The day we buried her, I buried her in my heart as well.  I never again went to the cemetery or gave her much thought.


I'm born again, spirit-filled, ministering God's Word, and receiving and learning to give Love for the first time in my life.

And at that time, I would drive my children 45 minutes to their school and come back home. On this daily drive, I would pass the exit on the parkway for the cemetery where my mother was buried, but never gave her much thought. Until, The Holy Spirit started to impress upon me to go to the cemetery.  Go to the cemetery? What on earth for?  Well, this can't be God!!! 

This went on for months, making my drive to and from the school very difficult because every time I passed that exit, I could hear in my heart, "Go to the cemetery". The Holy Spirit is gentle and patient, but He is also very persistent. I didn't want to go to the cemetery. I didn't want to face whatever it was The LORD wanted me to face. What would be the point?  I had already forgiven her, so I couldn't imagine anything good coming from it, so I stubbornly apposed to the idea.

After months of disobeying God's leading, I finally surrendered to His will. One bright morning after dropping the children off at school, I got off the exit to the cemetery. After obtaining the location of her grave, I ever-so-slowly drove to it. I left the safety-zone of my car and walked with my Bible and journal to her grave. OK. Now what? Now what am I supposed to do? 

Eventually, I sat crossed-legged on her grave facing the head stone. I just kept reading it over and over. "Mary L. Weiss, Wife of Charles E. Weiss, etc., etc." I opened my journal and started writing - questioning God as to why I was here.

I lifted my head, and for the umpteenth time, I reread the headstone. Suddenly, WIFE OF, was illuminated as if in neon lights. In that instant, I broke.

Sobbing near hysteria, I realized I had judged my mother for my father's leaving us. In that instant, The Spirit of Truth illuminated my mind and soul. I was convicted that what I perceived as truth was far from it. That misconception had altered me, altered my life. What I perceived to be true, wasn't. I had judged wrongfully. I blamed Mom for something that she wasn't responsible for.  And I did so for many years.

In that one supernatural instant, I knew that I knew, how wrong I was. You see, my father was not only an alcoholic, but a very sexually perverse man. She was a victim just as much as I was. More so, because she had to lie in bed next to him every night. Suddenly, in that God-ordained moment, I was conscious of how horrible their marriage must have been for her, what she must have endured. God allowed me to see through her eyes.  There was no consoling me.  It was a private moment of facing real truth and repenting between Mom, God, and myself.

That morning I spoke to my mom for the first time since her death, begging her forgiveness. As a result, in that same instant, I was filled with love for my mom. A love I had never, ever felt before. And that love has never wained since then. As a matter of fact, just days before she died, I sat bedside in the hospital. For the first time in my life I heard words  from my mother - which at that point in time that meant nothing to me - "I love you".  I sat stone-cold and didn't even respond.  But, in the miraculous moment at the cemetery, I not only begged her forgiveness, I kept proclaiming my love for her.

Hours later, I left her grave, but she has never again left my heart. I was forgiven. I was free. And I know Mom was freed as well from the judgmental soul tie I had to her.

However, judging is not without consequence.
Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. ~ John 7:1  And it was.

Years later, I reaped what I had sowed (Galatians 6:7)  I sowed judgement and now I reaped it back upon myself. A family member judged me for something she perceived my motives to be during a very painful, family situation. The consequences of that almost caused me to lose my sanity. Literally. Words, like a curse on me, were spoken of me and finally to me. I was now the one judged on appearances, just as I had done with my mother so many years before. It's a spiritual law, if you judge, you will be judged in kind.

So, I've been on both sides of judgements and t's exremely painful no matter which side you are on. Judgements are powerful forces of a demonic nature that can alter the path of our lives unless Jesus intervenes.

I'm eternally grateful to Jesus for the powerful inner healing I received all those years ago - on a morning God ordained and orchestrated.  And grateful for the lessons learned in being judged in return. As painful as it was for me, it was a life lesson I, obviously, needed to learn. But, it was salt upon my wounds of sorrow. By being judged in return - a lesson The Holy Spirit was years in making - dramatically drove the point home. But, He was right here to tenderly pick me up off the floor and hold me until it was all worked through. Both parties had to forgive, both parties had to be forgiven.

Remember, "Well, this can't be from God", was my thoughts while being nudged  to the cemetery? That was my perception of truth in that moment. But, in declaring my argument, I was making a judgment against God. Just the opposite was true. It most certainly was from God!  And I'm eternally grateful for His Love and Mercy toward me and that I am forgiven of that as well!

Love and Mercy are waiting for you, should this ever be a situation in your life. God is Gracious and oh, so Merciful.  May He walk you through inner healing if you require it. As painful as it might be in that moment, it will become, as it did for me, one of the highlights of your life.

Because of Him and Unto Him,
This story was shared over on Tell Me a Story. Please drop by and read other true-life stories. 


Kim said...

Beautiful story - thank you for sharing your heart.

Diane Ronzino said...

Thanks for taking the time to read it, Kim.

Betty said...

You did tell me in time you would share some of your life story...words cannot tell you how much I know this took to reveal not just to me but to whoever reads your post.

Very timely read as we continue on today in our workshop with grieving, how to help those who grieve over any kind of pain. Memories are ever present as I sit and soaked it all in and then to read your post. I've told you before you inspire me to blog from a redeemed heart.

There is a beautiful song called, Mercy Walked In by Gordon Mote that has played in my head all day. So very thankful before the Lord that we are sisters in Christ. that Mercy walked into our lives, broken vessels ready to take into our souls the beautiful light of Jesus Christ.

Blessing my sister, I know others will be inspired too as they read.

Lolita said...

So powerful, so moving and so inspiring. You are a gift of a friend and you are being ministered by the Holy Spirit for greater work. God bless you, Diane as you follow God's leading.

I wrote a very long comment for this one, Diane. I was on my third paragraph when I accidentally pressed something and gone it all went and no more undoing. Anyway, perhaps I was "making a sermon"..... a fond quote we say to the Lithurgist who adds a piece over the sermon. But I might send you an e-mail of my own experience and it is about forgiveness.

Diane Ronzino said...

Yes, Betty, this is only one small segment of all that Mercy has done in my life. I have many stories like this. That is why I'm writing my memoir - it's not your typical memoir, but one in which I share all Jesus has done for me and my family. I write in truth and as accurate as I remember the facts to be. There is no fiction, no embelishing. The stories are true. To God be the glory!

Maybe one day we will meet and can sit and share our various stories over a cup of tea. I'm sure you have many of your own. And I'd love to be able to praise The Lord with you.

I am grateful as well for our sisterhood and friendship! And I will most definitely look up Mercy Walked. Love the title.

Diane Ronzino said...

Thank you, Lolita, my friend, for your kind words of encouragement.

I'm sorry all you wrote disappeared. I can't tell you how many times that happens to me. It's so frustrating. When you get a chance please email me with your story. I'd love to hear what Jesus has done in your life as well.

We surely all are sisters of Grace. Hallelujah!

Judi S. Coleman said...

Diane--Just found your blog on-line as I am looking for other blogs to share with my blog followers. Thank you for your writing and ministering to others! I hope you'll also check out my blog and consider adding it to your blog list: Blessings to you!!

Diane Ronzino said...

Hi Judi! Welcome to my little corner in the blog world! I'm glad you found me. I would love to share your blog. I went to your blog briefly, but I will be back. There is so much to read. I look forward to reading your story and getting to know you.

Please check out Pain Won't Beat Me listed on the right side under Others Who Encourage, Etc. Martha has become a dear, praying friend in the battle with pain. I hope you will become part of our circle who prays for one another.

Shannon Woodward said...

Diane, it took me ten years to visit my mother's grave after her suicide. But I had a break-through when I finally went, and it was seeing her name that did it. How beautiful the Lord is for drawing us to those moments our soul most needs!

Thank you for sharing your story. And thank you for the kind words you left on my blog. :) God bless you!

Pam said...

I read a true story awhile back that reminds me of how God moved in your heart. I don't remember all the details, but it was a situation similar to yours, where the only memories of the mother were filled with cruelty and anger. Then the adult child had a dream of the mother as a child... free and innocent, playing in a river. Later the mom was painting with watercolors, and colors streamed around her as she sang. In this dream, the adult child saw her mother for the first time as one who had been abused herself, and that this portrayal was how she had once been... young and innocent and full of creativity. Needless to say, the dream changed the adult child's heart similarly to yours... showing her how God saw her mom...

God's love is so amazing... thanks for sharing.

Diane Ronzino said...


Diane Ronzino said...

OH, Shannon, I'm sorry about your mom. It's amazing that God used the names...that's really something. Thanks for stopping by.

Martha Herden said...

Such words of truth-nothing spared, straight from the Heart and how glorious your healing has been with the Lord guiding you every step of the way.

I wonder why Mothers & Daughters tend to have such hurt-filled times-and I easily relate to your sharing. We all have our own story-I found myself standing at the bedside of my Mom-knowing her time was short. She had been in a coma and suddenly was wide awake! Talking would not come from her as tubes were in her throat, but oh my how she SPOKE with her eyes and SMILE. I wanted nothing at that split second but to have PEACE with my Mom and a lot of healing was flying between us. She raised her hand, motioning me toward her, almost Willing me toward her face. Suddenly she gently kissed my cheek- it was the FIRST time I could ever recall being kissed by my Mom!

I knew all was well-we both did and as I turned to leave, her hand lifted from the bed and she gently waved goodbye to me. That moment will stay with me forever.

God bless you Diane for sharing such a powerful healing lesson.

Diane Ronzino said...

Thank you for sharing your story as well, Martha. I'm so happy for you to have had that loving time with your mother. What a gift from your Father!

A Joyful Noise said...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful and yet painful story at "Tell Me a Story" Blog Hop. I loved the fact that forgiveness was a two way street. So sorry about the judgement you received. May the bonds of Judgement that have been shackled upon you, be lifted and truth revealed. May God grant you peace in all situations.

A Joyful Noise said...

I am so very happy that you are writing your memoirs. This will bless many as they are posted and finally formed into a book.

Diane Ronzino said...

Joyful Noise, thank you for stopping by to read and leaving your kind comments. The LORD has granted me much peace, which I'm so grateful for. I appreciate your speaking words of life over me.

And thank you for the forum to be able to share our true-life stories that will bless, encourage, and build others up in the faith.

And thanks for an encouraging word about my memoir! I hope you will come back. I think we have a few things in common according to your profile. God bless you!

Saleslady371 said...

This is very powerful. I love the way the Holy Spirit led you to the cemetary for such a powerful healing. This is a great message. Thank you for your visit; so glad I found you!

Diane Ronzino said...

Welcome, Saleslady! Thank you for coming by to read. I'm glad as well...