America. She changed today. Maybe the reality is, she changed a long time ago from the innocent days I once knew, but this truth is obvious today. I grew up in Oklahoma, in a middle class family that somehow, always seem to have enough and then some. I watched as my parents made good decisions and choices who worked hard for what they wanted. “The American Dream”. I believed in this dream and I too sought it out. I wanted to own my own house, well after paying 30 years of payments. I desired a good job, a loving wife, 2.5 kids, one of each sex, and to be a happy family.
The truth is, it took me 35 years to buy the house that will be mine in 26 and 1/2 years. I have two kids, one of each sex, who don’t talk to me, and, their mother divorced me after she made a huge mistake, but convinced everyone our marriage failed solely due to me. As a result, my biological family doesn’t want to have anything to do with me, so you could say I don’t have the happy family I desired. Many Christmas days have been spent filling the empty stocking with tears.
After years of checking the “Divorced” box on forms I met and then married a Filipino woman. I thought perhaps now I would get the happy family I desired. You know what? There are cynical, greedy, lying family members in all cultures, but the woman I married is the exception to a few members of her own family. I have written about it a few times; my wife lives out God’s definition of love.
After our wedding, I was with her for seven months in the Philippines, until I needed a medical procedure, so I left her there thinking immigration wouldn’t take that long and she would come to America on my heels. There was some delay in the process, but as we were reaching the finish line Covid hit. Another year without her, another moist Christmas day. A lot of crying out to God, and asking, “Why?” The big three set in: Discouragement, Disappointment and yes, even Depression. As I crawled through those dark days way down, deep inside me, was a mustard seed of faith that was whispering, “God knows what He is doing.” In full disclosure, my mind was asking, “Are you sure?”
January 7th, we received an email stating my wife has her long awaited interview with the U.S. embassy in Manila. LIGHT pierced our darkness. I wanted to wait to share this until she was actually here, but someone needs to read these words now. We are hoping we will be together by Valentine’s Day. What a time to reunite our love for each other and for our God who loves us beyond belief.
When my wife is in our home in Oklahoma a new chapter of our lives together will begin. Unfortunately, she will never know the “America” I grew up in. Today, those with money want more, and those who “think” they have power want total control. I sense days may be coming that perhaps will not be comfortable. Standing up for what is true, for what is right could prove to be difficult. There will most likely be a separation of those who have a solid relationship with God from those who were pretending, because in the America I grew up in, it was popular to say you were a “Christian”, but not anymore.
Yes a new chapter will be starting soon in my life, but also a new chapter in the life of America. Our country’s slogan, printed on our currency, may no longer be, “In God We Trust”. Sometimes I wonder who is really holding the pen, writing each chapter. As for my life, I want God to, because whether I understand his ways or not, He does know what He is doing!
8-11 “I don’t think the way you think.
The way you work isn’t the way I work.”
“For as the sky soars high above earth,
so the way I work surpasses the way you work,
and the way I think is beyond the way you think.
Just as rain and snow descend from the skies
and don’t go back until they’ve watered the earth,
Doing their work of making things grow and blossom,
producing seed for farmers and food for the hungry,
So will the words that come out of my mouth
not come back empty-handed.
They’ll do the work I sent them to do,
they’ll complete the assignment I gave them.
Copyright © 2021 Mark Brady. All rights reserved.