When Acquaintances Become Friends and God is just well—God
It starts with saying “hi”. You see them again a few days or weeks later and you say “oh, hi again – I’m sorry but what was your name again? Oh great – so glad to see you again!” No one can explain the connection, but it’s there and yet you don’t think much beyond “that’s a nice person.” You might not see them again for many more weeks or even months, but you see them again and then you say “hi, so good to see you again, let’s have lunch sometime and get better acquainted.”
This is how that very vague bridge between acquaintances and friendship starts. Today was one of those “God” days for me – and it was NOTHING like the above. If you’ve read my previous post, you know that a few days ago a whole family left my church because of me – just me, one person. And yes I feel very bad over that because that’s not what our Lord and Savior wants to see when HE looks down at His children. I did what I could to rectify the situation but I couldn’t stop them from leaving. So this made for a pretty lousy week – and I’ve been feeling down about it since then.
Today I had a lunch date with a gal from church on the worship team at my church. She is an awesome singer and the musician in me wanted to talk music and just get to know another person better at my church (when you’re transgender and walking that fine line at church it can be hard to get to know and make new friends), so we met for pizza today. This morning she let me know she had invited another gal from church to join us, I knew this gal (somewhat) as well and was glad for the opportunity to perhaps make another friend from church – a two-fer!
It was a lot of fun because these women are so full of life and open about their lives, but things got a little difficult when the conversation turned to me because they asked the inevitable questions of how long I’ve been going to our church and when I say less than a year, the next question is “where did you go before?” That’s when I just say “it was my time in the desert” which sometimes works, but the conversation wasn’t ending until it got back to me being hurt by a church in Sacramento but my evasiveness was their clue to just leave it alone (but LOTS of questions behind.) I felt bad because they were very open talking about their own lives and my life was just hiding in the shadows – I didn’t know them well enough to know if it was “safe” to tell them about by history, we were just getting acquainted.
I had to jet out after lunch because I had an appointment to get to, so they had time to talk after I left. This evening as I was just connecting with them letting each one know how I enjoyed our lunch and hoped to do it again that one gal just decided to cut through the crap and tell me that she knew of my history, my website and that she didn’t care one bit. She had been looking for me on Facebook but Googled me and “SURPRISE” found my TransfiguredHearts.com” website. She told the other gal at lunch (again – after I left) because she knew the other gal who was also her friend wouldn’t care either. So when we were basically texting back and forth I asked if we could use that new technology call the “TELEPHONE”. Well, we then talked for almost two hours on the phone getting up to speed, all of it good, all of it a blessing.
So this evening my week turned from horrible to awesome. It’s so easy for me to say “wow, how lucky am I for this timing – life is good!” But I’ve seen God work in my life in crazy, insane ways just in the last year that go WAY beyond mere luck. I’m also a poker player (my story at the final table at the Women’s World Championship during the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas will have to wait.) I know what luck is because there are times in poker when a really bad poker player who doesn’t know that they should fold their hand keeps betting and WINS at the end only because they got LUCKY, not because of skill. MOST times they will lose, but even a broken clock is right twice a day – and that’s LUCK.
Yes, I’m very happy that I suddenly have two new UNEXPECTED “close” friends today. And yes, the fact that we had this “lunch date” wasn’t luck and wasn’t just an accident. I KNOW that because I can trace back to the 4th grade how God had gently nudged me from one direction to another to bring me where I am. Both these women were like “so what” in talking to them this evening. This wasn’t MY plan, they brought it all to me. I NEVER would have told them this soon, but our Lord knew that I would need this, and He delivered two women who have their own stories, their own lives and gladly welcomed my life into theirs.
We serve an awesome God. We are all blessed. I’ve spent most of my life hiding from close relationships and oblivious to what God was doing in my life. I’m ever so thankful that finally now, I can see how He has been in control the entire time. Even more so I hope and pray that you might realize that if God can do something with a person as messed up as me, that He can do amazing things with you if you’ll let Him. He LOVES you every bit as much as He loves me.
This is a verse that is often quoted, but that doesn’t make it nor any less true today… Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” You (nor I) don’t have to understand it all, just TRUST. Sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes you (nor I) want to. But it’s a GOOD thing when we can because it just saves us so much anguish over what “might” happen. Just one more lesson I learned today. You just NEVER know when God will “show up”, yet He is faithful and He does. It’s so easy to throw up your hands and give up in the tough times, I almost did. I almost cancelled my lunch meeting today because I wasn’t “feeling up to it.” I’m thankful to our Lord that not only didn’t I cancel, but that I now have TWO new friends who know me really well (it’s all pretty much here on the site already) and He found a way to turn my pain from this week into unexpected joy! God. Is. Good!!!
Being transgender can be hell, I know. Being a Christian only adds fire (if that’s possible.) At the end of my evening one gal sent me this song, wanted me to know that I wasn’t alone – that they were here for me. I would like to pass this on to you – if you’re feeling alone, you’re not. You’ve got me, so let’s connect. In the meantime, put on your headphones and listen to the words (don’t get all hung up and politically correct on the word “man” because we know you’re not being REAL at that point.) You’re NOT alone. WE are not alone!
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I have a new favorite song! I never heard of it before. I love it!
I’m so happy for you, Laurie. I especially love how you are finding God in the midst of it all. He does so many things that we miss because we aren’t tuned into Him. Now that you are… life is only going to become more meaningful, rich, purposeful and sometimes,it will even be fun!
It’s kind of my new favorite song too. Played it several times today as I was driving around town. Considering I offered to leave the church just three days ago and was affirmed yesterday by new friends that I’m not all alone in this, it was a pretty amazing song to be shared to me.
This is an awesome story — from the pits of despair to the mythical “cloud nine” almost overnight.
It’s kind of ironic; I offered to remove myself as a member of my church the last time my pastor and I had coffee — just so as to not cause strife — and he wouldn’t hear of it. It wonders me what may lay in store for me . . .