So I’m just going to start by saying first and foremost. God is good. All of the time. Regardless of our circumstances and the pain we’re in—his goodness is still there, it might not be fully visible at particular moments…but I promise you. It’s there. Now that leads me to say this…this past 4 weeks or so have been nothing short of a roller coaster. And know this, I’ve never been a fan of roller coasters. Maybe itty bitty ones at Disneyland like Splash Mountain and the Matterhorn…but the big, upside down, jar your body and wreck your neck sort of ones. Nope, those have never been my cup of tea. So for reference purposes when I say roller coaster, those neck breaking ones are the kind I’m talking about.
Four weeks ago I was sitting here with my sister talking about life. Real life. God’s grace. Forgiveness. Anger. Sadness. You name it. I was living, breathing and dancing constantly to the song by Big Daddy Weave called I Belong to God. If you haven’t heard it, it’s awesome. Just a few of the lyrics are what really were hitting home for me at this phase of life were this: “no longer bound by fear, no longer found in shame……..I belong to God. I say to the darkness, you do not own me anymore, I belong to God.” Now get ready for it…this is the part that just hit it home, “I’m SO ALIVE with your life in me, now everything within me knows that I belong to God.” Can I just tell you though, satan is alive and well, and in a matter of one short week—that’s only 7 days people, he knew how to not only attack me in difficulties, but he knew how to keep me down for JUST long enough to make me doubt my freedom in Christ and whether I truly belonged to the most high KING.
You see, it all started when I jumped out of my boat of safety if you will….in attempts to swim to shore to be alongside Jesus who I just knew was saying, ‘come…trust me’. I knew it was going to take sheer courage and an utmost opening of my heart. I knew it was going to hurt. And boy did it. It took the most vulnerability I think I’ve had to date which involved sharing the pain that comes from childhood sexual abuse. A pain I would wish upon NO ONE. A pain that has affected me for more than 20 years and I had kept to myself for not only most of my adolescence but all of my adulthood. But can I tell you something? It was in that pain that Jesus met me. It was in that pain he taught me how to forgive my abuser. Which might I add, doesn’t need to wait until we ‘feel ready’. It was in that pain which allowed me to see how deeply this abuse had affected every, single, one of my relationships and especially that with my husband. It has been in that pain that I can look back and still see God’s goodness in my life. Always. But it was also in this pain in the neck roller coaster few weeks that made me long for a drink and self medicate in a way I hadn’t experienced in over a year. I told you satan knew where and how to attack. But I’m here to tell you….once again, the enemy loses. The war isn’t over, that I know. But today, I’m learning to live with and in the pain of these battles through God’s grace and goodness. That’s it. Now, as if that one giant thing wasn’t enough to jump head first into and out of my boat for…I also got the opportunity to attend counseling with my husband for the first time in all of this as we both felt like this is the next step in this journey of healing…which clearly involves more than just me. Even though I have my own set of hurts and pain from my life…I also realize (more than I would like to probably) that I have afflicted him with pains over the years and in the depths of my addiction that believe you me, I wish I could erase. But I can’t. So instead…we walked into the face of fear and the unknown to truly begin the process of restoration for our marriage. He has so patiently and graciously waited until I was in a better place, both spiritually and emotionally to begin this step, and I’m forever grateful to him for not only waiting—but being there so genuinely for me….loving me, in EVERY STEP of this journey. Honestly, I know I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. God most definitely knew what he was doing when he put us together. God’s goodness shows up yet again. So to say it has been a hard…taxing…emotionally excruciating….and painful time in this process of healing is an understatement. BUT, with all that being said, I
stand kneel before you today singing a new song:
Mighty warrior. King of the fight. No matter what I face, you’re by my side. When you don’t give the answers as I cry out to you. I will trust. I will trust. I will trust in YOU. I want what you want Lord and nothing less. When you don’t move those mountains I’m needing you to move, or part the water I wish I could walk through. I will trust. I will trust. I will trust in you. You are my strength and comfort…my steady hand and my firm foundation, the rock on which I stand. Your plans are always GOOD.
I choose to trust in his plans because I know He is always good. I can once again say to the darkness—YOU DO NOT OWN ME ANYMORE. And every time this roller coaster of life happens, because let’s face it…that’s life. UP and down…UP and down…I will search for even the smallest ounce of God’s goodness because I know that even that tiniest bit will get me through and defeat the enemy. Does it take the pain away? No. Does it make it bearable? Yes. Does it make that pain make sense? No. But you know what, I heard something not that long ago that did make a lot of sense to me since my husband is a builder. Someone told me that God wants to in a sense, remodel us…every, single, one of us! So that not only we are able to be fully alive in Him but so that we might have the capacity to overflow onto others with His love. And in order to do that, it takes knocking down walls—which often times means pain or at least taking a look back in history—so that HE can restore us. Rebuild us to be more of what He intended us to be…for you, for me, and more importantly, for HIM and his glory!!! And trust me when I say, he can take the most run-down, stinky, mold infested, rotten house there is a make it beautiful. One. Wall. At. A. Time. I’m a work in progress…we all are…but only if we purpose to allow Him to have even the most precious of walls. Or scariest. Or darkest. He wants them all.
So today, after a seemingly nightmarish roller coaster ride…he’s got a couple more walls of mine knocked down. Which leaves me in eager anticipation of how they’re going to be rebuilt. Restored. Made beautiful. So maybe, just maybe…even the scariest of all roller coasters aren’t so bad after all.