On Wings of Purpose Series

On The Wings of Purpose- EP.1

On The Wings of Purpose- EP.1

Hear it live at: On the Wings of Purpose Podcast
name-questionPeople often wonder how I majored in Biology, mastered in Health Systems Management with a concentration in Health Policy, only to end up teaching English and Critical Reading. Well guess what…. Me too.

For a long time I pondered the same thing. I have only come to one explanation: It was my mother’s fault. She gave me no choice. When she was carrying me, she said, “I want this child to contend with all that I have to say. She will be given a name that encourages the ability to settle an argument. Through this name, she will be forced to study language on a level beyond what I have learned, just to explain who she is….. and as a result she will help me improve my communication.

Just kidding, who does that? You see when my mother named me, she was—unbeknownst to me– preparing me to always engage in analysis and discussion. Bathsheba is a complicated name. Complicated to pronounce. Complicated to explain. And….. apparently….extremely controversial. Let me expound upon this point, I have to always be prepared to have in depth conversations with complete strangers; ones who—by the way—don’t mind prying into the historical context in which my mother came about giving me my name. I’m not sure if much thought processing occurs for the individual on the other side of the handshake, register, stage etc., because my name somewhat provokes a reflex: you know, like a response you don’t really get to think about. It’s a response that creates –as Sir Isaac Newton would state—an equal and opposite reaction.  I say my name politely and I get an equal and opposite reaction.

“ So…..What was your mother thinking when she named you?”
“Do you like your name?”
“Do you know Bathsheba went to hell in the Bible?”
“Do you know the story of Bathsheba in the Bible?”
“Smirk.”
“So how was your first Sunday School lesson?”

I don’t have the luxury of introducing myself with a handshake, smiling and carrying on trivial conversation. No! I can’t network in a room full of hundreds of people, while holding my pinky in the air, pretending the water in my champagne glass is a martini. No. I don’t get to be free to stand around the banquet table without being held hostage by people armed with enormous amounts of misinformation about the biblical character Bathsheba. No.

When meeting new people for the first time, I don’t get to talk about myself or the other person. I end up having to talk about her.

HER.

Bathsheba. The wife of David.

And what makes it worse is that most of the time, I end up trying to clear her name without ever being given the chance to introduce who I am. I would even tolerate it if they knew her complete story instead of focusing on the tragedy that shook her world. I feel bad for her.

She was molested and raped but everyone calls her a whore. I guess that’s what some people assume about me when they first hear my name.

Their misinterpretation of a portion of her life somehow influences the way in which they will think of me. Has that ever happened to you? Has anyone ever judged you based on your name alone? You try and you try to be yourself, but people have the darndest time seeing past the name your parent or parents gave you.

Let me just say, I LOVE MY NAME. No I don’t hate it. I LOVE IT. It’s part of who I am. It makes you so uncomfortable that you have to say things to unseat your discomfort. There is power behind my name and…. There is power behind yours.

What many don’t know is that Bathsheba means daughter of the oath. In other words, it means daughter of promise. I’m a gift. THAT’S what my mother was saying when she named me. And if we should even glance at the story of Bathsheba, we will find that she too was a gift. Of all of the women King David had in his court (as his wives and concubines), Bathsheba was the Queen Bee. She had the power of influence to which point she was able to talk with the King such that her son, King Solomon –only the wisest man in the world—would be able to take the throne. Not his other brothers ; HER son. On top of that, she’s in the lineage of Jesus Christ.

So here I am:  Bathsheba!!!  Please forget about the biblical character for this series, and hear my voice.  The voice of Bathsheba.  I know who I am.  I am a gift and I believe you are as well.

Anyway.  Enough with the introductions…

eagle_lightning_smLet’s dive right in.

When everything fell apart for me in April of 2014, I felt shame.  I thought, “What will perfect Sheba tell people to keep them out of my business?  How will I maintain control of the situation?  Shit.  How would I change my Facebook status without receiving a bunch of phone calls, emails, and comments?

Most of us like to keep people from prying because sometimes others use your information to besmirch your reputation.  That was one of my worries, but on top of that I wondered:  “How on earth could this happen to me?????

I praise God.

I follow Him like I should.

Why would He allow this to happen to good, faithful, Bathsheba?  The truth of the matter is, I never had really understood the grace of God or His unconditional love because I didn’t think I did anything unworthy of Him loving me.  I believed myself righteous, –and because of it, came off pretty self-righteous toward others— but “An imperfect  Christian, because being imperfect is a pre-requisite and necessity for needing to be justified.  You don’t need the blood of Christ if you are sinless.  So, I accepted in my mind that I was sinful, but never really in my heart (If that makes sense).  You understand exactly what I mean if you’re a textbook Christian that tries to dot every “I” and cross every “t”, by following the letter of the law in the Bible.  You try to be perfect, even though your humanity will always deem you as an imperfect being.  You know Christ died for your sins, but still deep down inside, you don’t really think you have any. Behaviors exhibited include: never thinking that you’re wrong, judging others, lack of compassion, being surprised when you do wrong because you don’t believe you’re capable, and stuffing your feelings under everyday church colloquialisms like:  I’m blessed and highly favored.  It’s called false humility.  Yeah, I had that.

Had is key in that last sentence.  When my world turned upside down and I was left trying to decide how to grow up, live, and continue the business I started building, God quickly showed me my inward weaknesses.

Sorry, brief commercial.  If you are believe God’s love is limited to your ability to act and be a certain way then this series will probably make you feel uneasy.  I am not perfect and I shout that from the mountaintops.  I occasionally swear.  I curse people out without using profanity.  I scream in rage while in traffic.  I’m sometimes selfish and think only about myself.  I’m still self-righteous sometimes (I think it’s an Aquarius thing—to always be right that is).  I can be prideful –the one that wears shades inside of buildings.  I am a work-in-progress so I give this warning in advance:  You will see some of that come out in writing, and not purposefully.  Now does that mean, I will be negligent?  No.  By no means will I attempt to misrepresent who God has called us to be.  With that being said, I do not think nor do I believe that you can do whatever you want and still be in the will of God.  Yet, the point is, whether we are in or out of the will of God, He still loves us and I believe will love us back onto the right path as long as we are open….like He did me.

Now, back to the story.  God loved me so much that He did not bring the chaos….but permitted it for me to rely and depend on Him.   I remember posting a quote on Facebook about two weeks before everything happened.  It was something God had said, “Dear Bathsheba, Losing what you have is not the end of the world.  It’s the beginning of a new one.”  I was encouraged to hear it.  Like…wow, a new world?  I thought losing what I had amounted to material things.  “No biggie,” I thought.  God, won’t take people away.  I already went through that with my mother abandoning her children.  My father being who he was and him passing away in 2010.  There was no way God would take me through another storm.

But He did.

On April 6th, I went from being married to single in the blink of an eye, and on April 14th I lost a sister-friend to suicide.

Everything went black and I became a walking zombie….mad as hell at the world.  There were no restrictions on vocabulary, I felt God’s presence but wanted to ignore it, and desire to fall into temptation increased….

 

Until Next time,

Bathsheba

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