Woke up this morning quite late for work. Was still groggy and dizzy when I got out of bed. Had to work late last night. I popped up my laptop and checked my emails hoping for Seth Godin’s reply to my inquiry for my new website ProLinchpin.
To my surprise I got an email from a woman in India (I have her permission to repost this by the way) For her security and anonymity, I changed her name to Valerie.
This is Valerie from INDIA. I am going through a lot of disturbance in my life right now.Decision making is hard.I am from a Christian family.Me my parents and a younger brother.Everybody at home is very spiritual,God fearing and are born again.I can’t be a part of them.I feel very hard to even sit and talk with my family.
I am into hospitality industry I work for 5 star hotels where I am surrounded by very well to do people and I have to live high standards.Now my family is a average middle class family and me even wearing high heels and jeans is a problem now they don’t say this a lot but I do have to listen to this when it comes all together from my dad.I also have traveled. I had been to United Kingdom and United States for 1 year each so I know it’s a different culture.
But now that I am here at home it is difficult for me to leave in my family because they including my younger brother taunt me in family prayer and say devil is working through me, in the family.I have to work shifts in my hotel.Hotel jobs are physically really hard and I need peace so that I can work in the hotel at my best. I lived away from family so I accept my life is not disciplined I wake up late and so do not do family breakfast I am most of the time with my laptop and talk less with them.My family lives isolated they don’t mingle with any one as they say that they are away from sinful worldly people and I am not like this I love meeting people I love going out I love making friends.Trust me I even do not have friends or best friend because I keep changing places because of work, still they say I listen to my friends more than them.
Now my work life where I happen to spend 10hrs of my day is totally opposite to my family life.Sean I have seen my family struggling and I do not want to live middle class life and I love my job,I have super big dreams and I want to achieve my goals.Is it a sin then to dream big? I can’t live like this Sean.In two different worlds.
I can’t act fake at home.My family go to church 4 times a week that too our church goes on for 3 hrs.they get up at 3 am and pray for 2 to 3 hrs.They do bible study for 3 to 4 hrs everyday after they come home from work and my brother from college.Sean I cannot do all this really.So I am not doing this so they think there is Satan in me and I am a curse on the family. Now I accept I am a big spender it is just because I got to live life that I could not in poor INDIA in my average family.I happened to see things that I never would have imagined to see in INDIA and I ate and drank stuff that I would not have in INDIA.
So they think I am a sinner so God has not helped me in saving and has brought me to this level where I have nothing. I do not have a refrigerator at home no washing machine and living outside INDIA I know the comforts in life.So I can’t struggle at home so they tell me you are not a family and you have satan in you and thst’ why I am interested in worldy comforts and things.I drink beer with my colleges sometimes which is not acceptable in INDIA or in my family and I smoke cigarette sometimes which my parents do not know if they know they will throw me out of the family. No body comes to our house or we go out somewhere.It’s just family time or Bible at all times or even on television we watch GOD tv.No entertainment whatsoever.
Today I am writing this to you because I wanted to commit suicide.Sean I can’t take my own people calling me Satan and curse over the family.I know and accept I am somewhere wrong but living upgraded standards is it wrong? I am 24 yrs old and they want me to get married soon I did not meet the right guy yet if I do not find anyone in 2 yrs they will arrange my marriage with a Christian guy who I do not know or have seen it’s an INDIAN tradition.
I do not know what to do just I think to slit my wrist and end my life I cant live like a beggar and say sitting at home with a Bible that God will provide when you do not put any efforts to achieve anything. I do not have any finance I am going to join a good property on 2nd Aug but today my dad said you are not going do any job stay home and we parents will decide because shifts are not acceptable at my home. This job is very important to me because thanks to God’s grace i get jobs quickly in this recession period and in INDIA it’s hard. I don’t know what to do because I don’t want to disobey my parents as it says in the Bible not to but I cannot live life like this too.
Sean please advice.I am so confused.
My heart was broken. This is real. This is the reality of life. And some people are being pushed down hard. I did not wait for a moment to pass and went on to write a reply. Here’s what I told her:
My heart goes out to you, really. I cannot even begin to imagine what you’re going through right now. I’ve read all of your email and I understand that this is about you and your family and how you’re finding it so hard to adjust to them all the while wanting to honor God in what He has commanded us about our parents.
Living with family is tough. And your family is making it harder for you. It’s definitely not a sin if you go to church once a week – but you tell me that they go more than once. It’s also not a sin if you don’t have Bible study – but they do it everyday. It seems that they are very zealous for their faith but it’s in the wrong place. Their faith doesn’t seem to be in God – it seems to be in their religion.
I go to church once a week. I do Bible study once a week. But even if I don’t I am not sinning against God because I have my personal quiet time with Him everyday – because I want to know Him more. I also drink wine and beer with my family and friends. There is definitely nothing wrong with it.
DO NOT BELIEVE THE LIES. You are not in any way, the devil. You are a daughter of the Living God, a princess of His realm. Know His truths. Read His Word. don’t let the lies from your family affect you. On the other hand, keep on honoring your parents to the extent that they are honoring God’s Word. If they are already disobeying or are out of bounds of what the Bible says, then you are no longer obligated to obey them on that area because there is a higher authority than them – God.
And all the time you have to know God and what He has to say in every decision and in every command your parents would give you so that you will not sin against God. You can never sin against anybody – even your parents. You only sin against God. So it’s Him you have to know and fear. Read His Word. He will be the one to bless you.
Have faith. Suicide is never an option.
Life is a gift. Do not reject it. Fear God. Love God. Know God. That is what’s important.
Suffering is temporary. Suicide is permanent. Do not give up. I am praying for you.
My heart goes out to you Valerie. Please do keep in touch with me. You can contact me real-time via Yahoo messenger if you have one or skype or twitter. I’ll reply to you as soon as I can everytime.
May God bless you and give you mercy and grace
– Sean Si
Then I prayed.
I asked God for mercy and grace to come upon her. That’s all we can do sometimes. I let God be God. I also asked some of my friends to help me pray for her. Then I waited on God.
I went to work and checked my email in the office.
I went and had lunch with my officemate.
And when I came back – I finally got a response from her. Praise God!
This is what she said:
What a relief to see your reply.Thank you seriously at this point where I can’t discuss my problems with anyone.I did not talk to my father and brother today,did not feel like they were having their morning family prayer after breakfast I did not go.Anyways I read your mail and now I know what is missing READING THE WORD OF GOD.In your mail more than once you have mentioned to read the word of God.I will be consistent in reading my BIBLE.
Thank you Sean your mail means a lot for me.I will be in touch with you.
And indeed reading the Word of God is such a big thing to miss in life.
There are so many people around the world facing these kinds of problems. Real people. Real problems. And they need God. They need someone to talk to and get advice from. We have a mission.
I praise God for such a privilege and opportunity to help this woman. It is such a joy and wonder to do the mission I was ordained for. To change the lives of people for my Lord and Master in life Jesus Christ! To God be all the glory!