Chapter Twenty One:
The nightmares still came not as long or as hard as before, but they still came, nightmares that were really memories, memories of something that had happened long ago, something more painful than being shot. Sienna and Kelsea bout lived with those scars, scars that no child should have to endure, scars that could not be seen physically but they left something dark and scary inside them. It had taken a long time for either of them to move beyond those scars and enjoy life, enjoy childhood.
The monster had stolen something Sienna could never get back, her innocence! She know looked at the day she was to get married with dread. She wanted to date, she wanted to marry, marry Chad she loved him with her whole heart, but there were things even he did not know, she had told him some, but not everything. Some things were just too hard for her to talk about, but somehow with the Grace of God Sienna was moving on, Kelsea was as well, but for some reason those scars seemed to run deeper for her.
Sienna had used dance to help her escape the memories for many years, for Kelsea it was writing, but for both of them it was more than just a means of escape their creativity was a gift from God, one that they were going to use for his glory, but now more than for dance Sienna’s heart was being led to missionary work. One did not have to preclude the other of course, but she really felt her heart was in Africa, and she knew that with the Lord’s help she could reach out and help children there, because that is where she felt her heart was at the most.
Sienna knew that if it was meant to be the Lord would lead her to that passion, he would make a way for her to make it to Africa. She may have to work twice as hard to prove herself being a young lady in a wheelchair, but she would show the world just how capable she was. If Joni could do it, why couldn’t she?
“Sienna are you okay? I have been trying to get your attention for the past twenty minutes.” Kelsea said.
“Sorry Kels… I was lost in thought.”
“Sienna you were more than lost in thought, you were crying, are you okay?”
“Yeah I was just thinking that’s all.”
“Are you sure you don’t want to talk about it?”
“I don’t know Kels… I don’t want to upset you.”
“Sienna you know that you can’t always protect me from being upset.”
“I know…I was just thinking about my wedding day, and how I wished things would be different.”
“That you would still be a virgin when you got married? I know you are scared about that, Sienna I am too.”
“It’s just not fair.”
“I know Sienna, I agree, it’s not fair, it’s evil. You told me once God is not the one to make the evil in the world, but if it is allowed in our life, he will use it in some way.”
“I know Kels, but right now I am not so sure.”
“Sienna when you get married it’s really not going to matter, everything will be new, you will still be experiencing something for the first time, because you are not being forced into this.”
“I know Kels, I just really wish this had never happened to us.”
“I know Sienna and you have been through a lot, but you know what your faith is not shaking, plenty of people are going to look up to you. I know many already do, including myself.”
After Kelsea giving Sienna the encouragement and comfort she needed she felt better. Sienna had been upset, funny how something that happened ten years before her being shot upset her more than the fact that she was shot and paralyzed upset her.
Sienna knew forgiveness was not going to be easy, and it was not happening overnight, but she also knew it was necessary. She needed to completely forgive the monster who had raped her and Kelsea as children that did not mean she did not want him to see justice, it just meant he was no longer going to have the control over her that she did. Jesus had better things planned for her and she was more than thankful for that.
After spending some time in thought and prayer Sienna opened her Bible to Ephesians 1 letting the words of the Lord fill her heart, and letting true forgiveness enter in.
Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King
1 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two of his disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and just as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 3 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here shortly.’”
4 They went and found a colt outside in the street, tied at a doorway. As they untied it, 5 some people standing there asked, “What are you doing, untying that colt?” 6 They answered as Jesus had told them to, and the people let them go. 7 When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it. 8 Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. 9 Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted,
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”[b]
10 “Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!”
“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
11 Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple courts. He looked around at everything, but since it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the Twelve.
Jesus Curses a Fig Tree and Clears the Temple Courts
12 The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. 13 Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. 14 Then he said to the tree, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard him say it.
15 On reaching Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple courts and began driving out those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves, 16 and would not allow anyone to carry merchandise through the temple courts. 17 And as he taught them, he said, “Is it not written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’[c]? But you have made it ‘a den of robbers.’[d]”
18 The chief priests and the teachers of the law heard this and began looking for a way to kill him, for they feared him, because the whole crowd was amazed at his teaching.
19 When evening came, Jesus and his disciples[e] went out of the city.
20 In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. 21 Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!”
22 “Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “Truly[f] I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”  [g]
The Authority of Jesus Questioned
27 They arrived again in Jerusalem, and while Jesus was walking in the temple courts, the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders came to him. 28 “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you authority to do this?”
29 Jesus replied, “I will ask you one question. Answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I am doing these things. 30 John’s baptism—was it from heaven, or of human origin? Tell me!”
31 They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will ask, ‘Then why didn’t you believe him?’ 32 But if we say, ‘Of human origin’ …” (They feared the people, for everyone held that John really was a prophet.)
33 So they answered Jesus, “We don’t know.”
Jesus said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.”
“Thank you Kels.”
“For allowing me to vent to you, for saying the things I needed to hear, and simply for being the great sister you are.”
“Sienna you are a great sister yourself and you have done more than your fair share for me. I don’t know what I would do without you.”
“I don’t know what I would do without you either.”
“Sienna I am the one who owes you a thanks.”
“Because despite the way I treated you after you were shot, you didn’t let me shut you out, and you didn’t let me shut down. I would have went into that dark shell if it were not for you.”
Sienna knew that it was her Faith and her family that had got her this far. The good Lord had carried her through the darkest moments, when things seemed to be the toughest, but Sienna had made it and would continue to make it with the grace of God, and she would forgive with the Grace of God.
Lord I owe you thanks for the family and the friends I have been blessed with, I thank you that you have given me the ability to forgive those who hurt me the most. I know that I could not have done any of this without the good Lord, and I am thankful for all he has given me. I owe you many thanks and praise thank you Lord for giving me all you have given me. I do not know where I would be without you and the truth is I do not even want to think about that.
Sienna always put the Lord first because she knew that serving the good Lord was the most important thing she could do with her life, he was the one who got her through the darkest moments and she would continue to live for the Lord as long as he gave her breath. She was not going to let the things that life threw at her stop her from living for the Lord.
“Sienna you’re lost in thought again.” Kelsea said, trying to get her sister for the second time in a day.
“I was just having a little talk with the Lord, thanking the Lord for what he has done for me, and for the people he has placed in my life. I know I am truly blessed and I have a lot to thank the Lord for.”
“I know Sienna, we all do. I am glad you are okay, I was a bit worried, but I know that the Lord has you, and you can get through anything.”
“But for the Grace of God, there go I.”
“Amen to that Sienna, it’s but for God’s grace any of us get through the difficult times in life.”