My Life Through Music: Parts 4 and 5

An Essay By Damaris Ann // 1/19/2018

It was like a movie
When I first met you
The moment moved me
I still remember
Your soul of beauty
It stole me away, away

The first few months of the year that I turned 18 were like magic. In February my courtship became official, and I felt like I was floating on clouds. Life was all sunshine and roses to me.
Richer or poorer
Better or worse
Could we be together
Could we make it work
If love is patient
And if love is kind
Oh God, give me a sign

I was totally wrapped up in my relationship. I tried to continue in my spiritual growth, to keep holding onto my faith. I was humbled by the earthly love I was feeling. Things were so perfect, and flowing so smoothly. I caught myself thinking that it was too good to be true.
You've got me thinking
This is love
That I’m feeling
This is love
I believe it
Darling, I promise
To hold you gently
And still be the strongest
I’m yours completely
No matter what comes our way
I’ll love you til the end of my days
Til the end of my days

Two weeks and two days after I turned 18 he flew down here, surprised me, and popped the big question. Of course I said yes. I was very happy, and everything felt so new and indescribable. I remember laying wide awake that first night, feeling the ring on my finger. It felt perfect, like a fairytale. After two days of being engaged my fiancé, Dad, older brother and I all loaded up into my mom's Jetta. We hit the road to meet my future in-laws (for the first time!) and attend a conference near where they all lived. It was overwhelming and yet wonderful at the same time.
Could've never imagined
We’d find each other
A classic romantic
Of unlikely lovers
Some kind of magic
How two can turn into one, to one
For rich or poor
Better or worse
We’ll be together
Yeah, we’ll make it work
Love is patient
I know love is kind
Thank God I saw the sign

It was surreal and terrifying all at once. After four and a half days of engagement I was meeting my fiancé's parents, siblings (at least, some of his siblings), cousins, aunt and uncle, and a countless amount of his friends. I became especially close to his sister (you could say it was sister-love at first sight), and we spent a lot of time together while I was in the area. His siblings took me down town where we walked around the place he had grown up. We went hiking one evening, and then I was able to meet his two best friends at an ice cream shop. I had never had so much fun all at once. I remember going to bed in the top bunk of my future-sister-in-law's room and thanking God for His blessings and for my continual growth.
Run, run, run, run with me
As one, one, one, we will dream
Of a beautiful love mystery
So run, run, run, run with me
This is love
That I’m feeling
This is love
I believe it
Darling, I promise
To hold you gently
And still be the strongest
I’m yours completely
No matter what comes our way
I’ll love you til the end of my days
Til the end of my days

Once I was back in my home state and settled in we began working on wedding plans. Being 2,000 miles apart made things a little difficult, but it was sweet nonetheless. But that changed. He wound up moving down to my neighborhood and getting a job. It made wedding planning much easier, and it was wonderful to have time together face to face instead of over text or phone calls. Things continued to go smoothly, and we were able to fly up to visit his family for a week towards the end of July. It was once we got back that we realized things were a little off.
It started out small, just a minor disagreement on a church issue. As things progressed we realized we hadn't discussed things prior to engagement as fully as we thought we had. We came to understand that our disagreement was irreconcilable, and so we parted ways. Though I believe there were no hard feelings on either side it was still a painful parting. It's difficult to watch your own life crumble before your eyes.
I once was lost in darkest night
Yet thought I knew the way
The sin that promised joy and life
Had led me to the grave
I had no hope that You would own
A rebel to Your will
And if You had not loved me first
I would refuse You still

I was actually devastated. I fell back to the weak way of questioning my faith. Asking God why He had taken my relationship away. I was plunged into depression, and doubting every conviction I had ever had. I had done everything right: saving myself for marriage, not dating around. I didn't deserve this pain and loss. But then I was reminded of what I still had.
But as I ran my hell-bound race
Indifferent to the cost
You looked upon my helpless state
And led me to the cross
And I beheld God’s love displayed
You suffered in my place
You bore the wrath reserved for me
Now all I know is grace

In the midst of my anger and depression the Lord showed me that this was not the end. He allowed this because of His love for me, and even though I could not see the steps ahead of me, He was there. He knew my pain, and He was there. I fell upon my knees one day and cried out for my faith. "God, I want to trust You. I want to give You my future. Let me be genuine, Lord; let me be genuine." I wanted God to guide my heart, and most of all, I didn't want my prayers to be empty words. I wanted my heart to be in the right place. Once again, a peace that passes all understanding washed over me.
Hallelujah! All I have is Christ
Hallelujah! Jesus is my life
Now, Lord, I would be Yours alone
And live so all might see
The strength to follow Your commands
Could never come from me

I knew God was at work, and even though I still struggled with my depression I knew that I could trust my Savior. He had proven Himself, time and time again, and I knew that it was worth it to follow Him.
Oh Father, use my ransomed life
In any way You choose
And let my song forever be
My only boast is You
Hallelujah! All I have is Christ
Hallelujah! Jesus is my life

I decided that I wanted to live in the knowledge that if I lost everything in life and still had Christ, I would have lost nothing. I wanted to say with the apostle Paul, “Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord...” Life and love can be a confusing and tricky mess at times, but in the end? Worth it. Every bit.

Comments

Hallelujah! All I have is

Hallelujah! All I have is Christ
Hallelujah! Jesus is my life

This is one of my favorite songs; I didn't know the first one, but you led me along with your story. When I began to read "All I Have Is Christ", it became even more real to me, knowing that we can hold on to our only life through the midst of pain, and that he is truly all we have! I have been inspired as you've taken us on this journey, and hope that sometime you'll write more. Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting these. They've been so encouraging.

Libby | Sat, 01/20/2018

“The gospel alone is the power of God unto salvation.
Therefore, suffer, yes. Be misunderstood, yes. Be shamed, yes. But do not be ashamed. For the joy set before you, take up your cross, follow Jesus, be shamed and despise the shame!" -- John Piper

Thank you so much, sweet

Thank you so much, sweet girl. It's been my favorite song ever sonce I heard it for the first time nearly two years ago, when Johanna sang it at the cabin. :) it is both convicting and encouraging to me.
Thank you so much for all of your comments. I was anxious almost to the point of deleting this chapter, but now I'm glad I went ahead and posted it. <3

Damaris Ann | Sat, 01/20/2018

I don’t thrive off of chaos: chaos thrives off of me.

This is the best chapter yet.

This is the best chapter yet. It is so so beautiful--I am so thankful that you came through the dark valley! The song matched this one so perfectly. I almost wanted to tear up at the heart you had to just do what was right. Isn't it so good to reflect and to be a few years ahead of where you once was, and looking back and knowing how far God has brought you?
You're almost 20...wow, I remember the days when I looked up to the 15 year olds on this site, and now, I am way older than that...
Damaris, <3.

Lucy Anne | Tue, 01/23/2018

"It is not the length of life, but the depth of life." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thank you!

Oh Megan, thank you! You are so encouraging.
It really is a blessing to be able to look back and see what God has done. The bigger picture is so much more lovely than the tiny, close-up details we are able to see in the moment.
Wow, yes; we're almost twenty. This June will mark 4 years of membership for me, and I am SO grateful for all of the input, encouragement, critiques, and over-all love and help I've received from everyone here. It's been quite a journey, and I hope I can be as wonderful to our younger/newer members as you and the "older" members have been to me. <3

Damaris Ann | Tue, 01/23/2018

I don’t thrive off of chaos: chaos thrives off of me.

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