When God Closes a Door He Opens Others

Jesus Christ Superstar Mary Magdalene's "I Don't Know How to Love Him"

Duet with John, Ft. Drum, NY, 1984

A little background about the videos - the "Jesus Christ Superstar" clip is of opening night. I had a horrible cold and I had NO VOICE - until I had to sing. It really was a God story. Also - every single time I sang that song, I cried real tears at the end - just like I did here. In rehearsals, no matter when I sang it, I cried. I believe it was my lost heart crying out for the REAL Jesus Christ Superstar.

The second video is a duet with a soldier at Ft. Drum who was leaving the Army the next morning. He had a gorgeous voice, as you can plainly hear even in this less than excellent video. In addition - the mike wasn't working when I first come onto the stage - so if you can hang tight for just a bit, you'll hear it turn on.


This Hub has been weighing heavy – I have hesitated to write it because it seems so self-serving – so self-centered to write it. However, I hope the message becomes clear when I explain why I have a link to two videos of me singing. I know – pathetic one might think. Now that she’s been on T.V. she has that “bug.”

I stand before God as my witness when I tell you the only reason I will ever actually seek the limelight is to promote my not-as-yet-published novel. If you read the Hubpages interview, you’ll see, I no longer seek the limelight.

That was my “old” life. The one where I lived for attention, where I lived for the approval of others. One very dark day in my life, when I had gone to the very bottom of that pit – when I couldn’t see any hope left, my life changed. Here’s an excerpt from a book I wrote years ago – never published – it is the same book that I wrote about in another Hub where I was scammed out of a lot of money by a fake publisher.

Here is the excerpt from the opening of the book:

“Be like-minded, Carol… Know like you know like you know… Believing equals receiving. If you’re not living life abundantly then you are practicing incorrect believing…” I stood there in front of the bathroom mirror, these voices echoing in my head. Anger smoldered deep inside me. I was in complete despair. Hope of finding the happiness I had been seeking my entire life had faded to a black nothingness.

I couldn’t have the man I wanted; he was married, yet I could not let go of him. I couldn’t feel the love I should for my husband no matter how I tried. I was unable to measure up to the only organization that claimed the exclusive true teachings about God. I never found the proper fit no matter how hard I tried.

This was ALL God’s fault. Trembling, with a closed fist held high, I shouted at my reflection in the mirror, “Why God? Why? How could you let this happen to me when all I wanted to do was know you?”

I walked into the dining room, lined up the codeine pills on the table like little tiny soldiers and poured myself a glass of whiskey. I wrote letters to my children telling them how very much I loved them. Bent over as I tried to carefully choose my words, I wept. I was beyond wretched; hopelessness consumed me covering my body like a weighted shroud. How had my life come to this? I needed the pain to stop. Seeing no other way out of this mess, I grabbed a fistful of pills with one hand and with the other lifted the glass full of bitter amber liquid…"

It was after this chapter—excuse the pun—that my life forever changed. A friend called and delayed my actually swallowing the pills. Later, I ended up throwing myself on my face in my bedroom that evening and I asked God to take it all away. I was so weary of trying to “fix” things myself. I was exhausted from trying to run my own life. I had made a horrible mess of things and I wanted God, if there really was a God, to take over my life because I no longer had the strength to go on.

A miracle happened. It didn’t happen in one day, it was a process, but it was an amazingly fast process that led me to a complete deliverance from my almost crippling low self-esteem and my all encompassing need to be approved of by others.

I was no longer depressed – waking each morning trying to figure out what “thing”, what material object, what device could I use to draw attention to myself to possibly help me crawl out of what seemed to be a constant companion. Depression. I was always sad on the inside. I hid it most of the time, but inside I was pretty miserable. And no matter what song I sang, no matter what play I was in, no matter what band I was in and even with the success of our bookings, I was never able to fill the holes in my life. After that evening when I fell on my face, arms outstretched, before God, I gave it all up. And God, true to His Word, true to what He tells us in the Bible, came through.

One of the other things God began to place on my heart after He began this process was that I didn’t need to sing any longer. It was my greatest passion. I lived to sing ever since I was a little child when my mother put me up on the coffee table in front of company and I sang several songs from “My Fair Lady” with the cockney accent to boot. I was in elementary school and I believed I was put on this earth to perform. God had, after all, gifted me with a strong singing voice. But I never gave Him the credit, seeking all the credit for myself.

God was merciful enough to make this the slowest change in my life. I used to have to sing in order to “feel whole.” It was the device I used to make myself “feel better” about myself. I know this all now in retrospect. But God slowly showed me that I wouldn’t need that any longer.

At first I thought that meant I just wouldn’t be in plays, or be the lead singer or be in entertainment programs on military bases. Later on though, it became clear because what used to be as easy for me as breathing, began to become difficult. At one time, when I was lead singer for a band called “Hot Fun” we had bookings one year in advance. In this band, I must have known the words to over 250 songs, and with a moments notice, could sing any one of those songs as if I had rehearsed for weeks.

But after I realized deep in my heart that singing wasn't what would sustain me, as God worked His work, I began to have trouble remembering lyrics.

So I sang in church choirs or small Christian ensembles. I compensated by holding the music in my hand, and that worked for a bit. But then fear became my companion whenever I sang. I sang in church choirs for years but in 2004 when we moved to Lansing, Michigan I knew, I was hanging up my singing hat. I haven’t sung in a formal setting (Karaoke with the family doesn’t count) since and I don’t miss it – not even a little, not even a smidgeon.

All the while God was showing me another passion in my life. Writing. Sure, I now had my completely restored marriage. I had my children, but the thing that floated my boat for all my life was singing and performing. God was gracious enough to replace it with a longing and passion for writing.

What you may not know about me is that I have a provisional patent pending as well. It has been a God-given idea, a long, long time in the making and one year ago when I presented it to a very successful patent lawyer who only cherry picks his patent projects he took on my case. He not only agreed to write up the patent for me, but he liked the idea so much himself he said he would front me all the money, including the cost of the patent, if I would agree to partner with him. That was a no brainer. Currently, I just found a manufacturer who will make the “invention” and we believe we can sell the idea shortly thereafter. The details however, are another Hub!

God has brought me on quite a journey but I have never been more richly blessed as a result. I will soon be celebrating my 31st anniversary, my son is expected to fly out of Afghanistan after a year there as I write this, we have three gorgeous wonderful grown children and a grandchild I am so in love with, leaving her just about kills me!

I have this cool patent pending that can really be helpful to hospitals and I have a true passion for writing.

I show these two videos because I want to offer you encouragement. In these days and times, some people are truly suffering great losses. I’m not trying to be trite at all when I say, it really is true that “When God closes a door, He opens another.”It happened to me only He opened a bunch of doors!

There are some bottom line criteria however. You must place your faith and trust in Him freely and completely. It’s not an easy thing to do, I promise you, I know this. And then when you do and you open your heart to Jesus Christ as I did, heart, soul, mind and body – you must then continue to dedicate your life to following Him. With those two things – I guarantee you will be blessed. Does it mean you will never suffer any pain in your heart? Not at all. But the promise is, when it all comes crumbling down, He’ll be there ever present, ever loving, holding you securely in His arms. Then He'll open up other doors.

And you’ll know a peace that is inexplicable even during the storms of your life. I have known great sorrow and grief since, but through it all, I had an inner core of peace that has always been unshakable.

So watch these videos and consider trusting Him. Even if it means giving up something. If someone had told me, “If you follow Christ, you’ll stop singing.” I can tell you right now my stubborn butt would have said, “NO WAY ALL BETS ARE OFF!”

But I am here to tell you, even if you have a song and it is taken away – either by God or by God allowing it to be taken, He’ll give you a new one. My new song is writing and a life so filled with God’s blessings that the person standing in front of that mirror who had lined up those pills to end it all is gone completely. I don’t recognize her – I became a new person, inside and out and I never dreamed my life could be so blessed.

If you feel despair, there is hope, I promise you, there is hope! Trust Him and you can and will rise above whatever situation you are in. I did and I never once regretted it.

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Comments 12 comments

Vladimir Uhri profile image

Vladimir Uhri 6 years ago from HubPages, FB

Carol, it touched my heart and wet my eyes.

Thanks.


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 6 years ago

Carol,

I am speechless. Your honesty takes my breath away. You are a magnificent human being Carol. The fact that you have come to know yourself so completely is a tribute to your strength, your intelligence and your deep love for Jesus Christ. Sometimes people like yourself who have such passion and such talent get confused about which road to follow. You have a wonderful voice and you are a gifted writer. Your talent shines through in both. I am happy you found what it is you want to devote yourself to. I am privileged to call you my friend.


C.V.Rajan profile image

C.V.Rajan 6 years ago from Kerala, India

Hi,

There IS something that moves my heart in the first Video. But I could not follow the words of the song. Will you kindly provide the script so that I can appreciate it better?

CV


tom hellert profile image

tom hellert 6 years ago from home

C,

Too bad you're a good singer- AND a good writer- maybe you should write some songs for church- that might be a great combination of your talents.I don't know for sure how to do it but I think you got a better chance than most of us-must be nice to have talent... Use it...C

TH


sherrylou57 profile image

sherrylou57 6 years ago from Riverside

Thank you, Living for Jesus, that is what we do is unto, Jesus.


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 6 years ago from Michigan Author

Vladimir- you made my eyes wet with tears by your comment! I was surprised by it and humbled. I know I keep using that word lately, but it truly humbles me when the comments here are as gracious as yours. Thank you!


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 6 years ago from Michigan Author

Awww Pop! You are TOO Sweet! Thank you dear Poppy!


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 6 years ago from Michigan Author

C.V. - I've been meaning to get the words for you - but I've been on vacation. Then when we get back from this one we're going to soon fly out to see my son in Seattle. But I will TRY to remember to get the words for you! Thank you for leaving your comments!


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 6 years ago from Michigan Author

Thank you Tom - I'm not saying I'll never sing again - but for now - I'm not supposed to - or so I feel. But God may open that door again and then I'll SING! Only if I feel He moves my heart to do so though! Thanks Tom!


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 6 years ago from Michigan Author

And thank YOU Sherilou for stopping by to leave your comments!


viveresperando profile image

viveresperando 5 years ago from A Place Where Nothing Is Real

this is a beautiful write. much emotion into this.


cjv123 profile image

cjv123 5 years ago from Michigan Author

Thank you viveresperando!

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