Listen to me, O coastlands, pay attention, you peoples from far away! The LORD called me before I was born, while I was in my mother's womb he named me. He made my mouth like a sharp sword, in the shadow of his hand he hid me; he made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me away. And he said to me, "You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will be glorified." But I said, "I have labored in vain, I have spent my strength for nothing and vanity; yet surely my cause is with the LORD, and my reward with my God." And now the LORD says, who formed me in the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob back to him, and that Israel might be gathered to him, for I am honored in the sight of the LORD, and my God has become my strength - he says, "It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the survivors of Israel; I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth." Isaiah 49:1-6
First Letter - December 1st
Dear Aunt Elizabeth,
I should never have come home. All's I do is make Momma cry, and Daddy looks at me with the saddest eyes. I am grateful for cousin Jacob bringing me back and his family providing food for the long trip. Please tell them thank you again for me. You and uncle were wonderful and supportive to me. Despite his silence I knew Uncle was thrilled for both of us and was waiting on God's blessing. Here they just think I am an evil girl, giving in to my basest needs, or some say that Joseph forced himself on me. The people in the town say terrible things - even to my face! Joseph is so shy and doesn't say anything when people gossip to his face. It is so hard to live a normal life here.
I am growing bigger every day.This baby is very active and sometimes it is hard to walk. My old school friends won't even look at me. My brother teases me constantly and says horrible things about Joseph. I am stuck between worlds here, living with my parents, judged by people who do not understand, and without anyone to speak up for me. My parents are trying to understand. I know they think I'm crazy and delusional. I have always been close to God but now they see my faithfulness as dangerous.
Will you pray for me? And will you write to me sometime? I would love to hear your sweet voice as it leaps off the paper. I trust God but find myself weaker everyday. Sometimes I find myself crying in frustration and helplessness. So knowing you are praying for me will help me be strong like you, Aunt Elizabeth.