Chelsea’s Story Part 3: Fire and Forgiveness

Have been enjoying reading my friend, Chelsea’s, REAL life story? I know I have thoroughly enjoyed writing it! What an honor to be entrusted with such a task! The grace and mercy of God is evident everywhere you look, even in a life that seems to be full of nothing but tragedy and sadness. If you missed Part 1 and Part 2, be sure to get caught up before reading Part 3 in today’s post. Be blessed as you read the continuation of Chelsea’s story and remember to share it with friends! Thank you for reading!

In Part 2 of Chelsea’s story, we read how Chelsea’s beloved grandfather suddenly passed away. Now we find Chelsea living in a single parent home with her 3 siblings, fending for themselves entirely. Fast forward one month after the funeral, yet another tragedy strikes. Chelsea’s mother was awakened by the family dog in the middle of the night. Their house was on fire! They all escaped the fire, thanks only to the dog.

“If not for her, we would not be here today.”

Unfortunately, Chelsea’s dogs and cats died in the house fire. She still gets choked up and sad when she talks of this. Chelsea has a sweet spot in her heart for her animals, just as she does for everyone who is in her life. I often wonder how such kindness and love can come from a person who has endured such hardness and sadness in her life.

Chelsea recalls this time in her life:

“Now we were homeless. My grandma offered for us to live with her, but she only had a small two bedroom apartment. We couldn’t afford to pay for a place to live, so we had to divide the family. I lived with one aunt, my sister with another. My mom lived with my gram and my brothers lived with friends. We got to see each other on weekends. I hated living with my aunt.”

Do you remember how the kids at school would make fun of Chelsea for being overweight and ugly? She was also ridiculed at home. Her aunt would tell her she was fat and shouldn’t eat so much.

“I cried myself to sleep every night.”

Have you experienced an overcritical family member? Was/is your mother or grandmother constantly telling you to watch what you eat? Calling you fat or “heavy?” Ugh…I hate that word, “heavy!” “Warning” you about your “problem” area? Mothers and other female family members: please stop this. You are NOT doing your daughter a favor by being “honest.” You’re being a you-know-what. Period. By being overcritical of your daughter’s appearance, you are creating an insecure, paranoid, self-depreciating woman. Just please stop. Like Thumper told Bambi, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” What if, just WHAT IF, mothers started modeling themselves after the Proverbs 31 chick? Proverbs 31:26-27:

“She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.”

thumper can't say something nice

When Chelsea’s dad started coming around again, she was very suspicious of his motives. She thought he was coming around for money or something. For Easter, he brought them all presents, attempting to make up for not being there for them.

“I pretended I hated the presents, but at night I would sleep with the stuffed bunny he got me. I wished everything would be normal again.” 

Soon, Chelsea, her mother, siblings and father all moved into a new place together. Chelsea was still very leery of her father’s motives and what was going to happen. Her trust had been broken and she was still hurting from her father’s abandonment. During this time, Chelsea’s father tried mending fences with his children. He drove them to school every day. He turned a blind eye when Chelsea stole his cigarettes. He even allowed she and her friend to smoke because he didn’t want to tell her no and make her more angry with him.

One night, while Chelsea’s mother was at work, her dad called her in from playing outside. She says she looked at him, said “No,” and walked away. She didn’t have to listen to him! When she finally went inside, her dad yelled at her for disobeying him. Beside herself with anger, her true feelings came gushing out…

“When you left us, you gave up your parental right to me. You have no authority over me anymore. That hurt him and I knew it would.”

A few days later, Chelsea’s dad came to her room and they had a long talk. He spoke from his heart for the first time in a very long time. He sincerely apologized for not being the dad she needed and for not being there for her.

“That night, I was Daddy’s girl again. I was still a little hurt, but I was able to forgive him.”_67091638_hug2

Forgiveness. Have you tried it? It clears away the bitterness and sets you free. Forgiveness is NOT a feeling. It’s a decision you make. Who do you need to forgive today? Forgiveness is not for the person who has hurt you, it’s for you. I’ve even written an entire post about my experience with forgiveness. Click here to read it when you’re done with this post. You’ll be glad you did. And, here’s what the Word says:

Matthew 16:5 “But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”forgive1

Forgiveness is a pretty important thing. Just sayin.’ You better forgive…that is all.

As you continue reading about Chelsea’s life, you will see that forgiving her father was just one incident where forgiveness was needed. There are times in her life where she seeks forgiveness for herself, from others and even must ask for and receive forgiveness.

Tomorrow we will delve more deeply into Chelsea’s life. She’s growing older now and meets the man of her dreams. Another tragedy strikes her family, a baby is born, an affair, divorce, more abuse, and more loss. But don’t worry, this story has a happy ending! Keep reading and share with your friends! You don’t know who’s life will be touched by Chelsea’s!

If you’ve been touched by this story, please tell me. It matters to the women who are being so brave in sharing their precious lives with you. YOU matter to Chelsea. She wants you to find hope and healing through her story. So please, contact me at the email address below. All correspondences are confidential.

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