If I’m going to take on this new adventure of writing and blogging then, I’m going to do it my way; real truth, vulnerable, raw and transparent. Not just the good times and mountain-top views of my life and my walk with God but, the door slamming, heart breaking moments that refine my faith, that make me stronger and gentler at the same time, the moments that bring God glory because the only way I survived them was by his God’s grace and through His miraculous power! So hold on ladies and gentlemen, it’s going to get “real” up in here 😉
I have walked through some small rain storms in my days, as I’m sure you have, but I have also bunkered down in some crazy tornado storms that tried to rip me apart, storms that tore at my family, my relationships, my faith, and my self worth; the unbelievable kind of storms that leave you stunned, asking “what just happened”. Perhaps you intimately know these kinds of storms as well? They are defining, they make you dig deep and choose what you are going to believe as truth in your life. For me personally, it comes down to my faith; the personal promises of God’s Word, that He loves me, that He will never abandon me, that He will never forsake me, that He will protect me, that His grace is sufficient in my weakness. Ah, even writing those promises brings a peace over my heart and the tension from my current battles are lightened.
If I’m honest, I would vulnerably tell you that the past few months have been brutally painful for me. That the bitter sting of family betrayals and the hurtful decisions of others seized my heart and threw me into a depression and a state of fear and pity like I have never known. I questioned every thought and decision I had every made, I questioned my self worth, and my faith. My sadness and pain felt like a darkness around me that was so thick, I could not feel Jesus anymore. The encouragement of loving friends and family fell to the floor of my darkness and disbelief. I became a bitter, short tempered crying mess, and my husband and children suffered the most. I’m so very sad for that.
But, the good news is God is faithful to restore his beloved sons and daughters. I’ve had some dark days of self-doubt in my life but, my sweet Jesus came through my darkness with a fire, an amazing refining fire, filled with hope, and love, and best of all JOY! I thank my closest prayer warrior friends for standing beside me and lifting me up in prayer when I could no longer bear to stand alone. Your are treasures! Here is the biggest beauty that came out of my recent struggles; joy and hope are found in thankfulness. Jesus never promised us an easy, problem free life – he promised us eternal life; found through his death on the cross, and that gives us reason to rejoice and hold to the hope found in Him.
Dear friend, if you’re in the midst of a little rainstorm or a big ‘ole tornado, I encourage you to search for God’s gifts, for the evidences of His grace in your life. Look around you and whisper a small thanksgiving to Him, it’s amazing the healing it brings. When we look at our life searching for the blessings, we can’t help but be satisfied, content, even joyful. As the storms rage on in our lives, we are more steadfast and hopeful in the midst of them. All of a sudden we can actually sing praises like David did in the midst of his battles. The amazing Psalms, read them! They were a healing balm over my heart, and I think they will give you great encouragement. God loves you dear friend, He is transforming us into the image of His Son, he is refining us and turning our ashes into true beauty, oh there is such great hope and joy in that 🙂
“I am always aware of the Lord’s presence; he is near, and nothing can shake me. And so I am thankful and glad, and I feel completely secure, because you protect me from the power of death. I have served you faithfully, and you will not abandon me to the world of the dead. You will show me the path that leads to life; your presence fills me with joy and brings me pleasure forever.” Psalm 16:8-11