Don't run from tests and hardships, brothers and sisters. As difficult as they are, you will ultimately find joy in them; if you embrace them, your faith will blossom under pressure and teach you true patience as you endure. And true patience brought on by endurance will equip you to complete the long journey and cross the finish line-mature, complete and wanting nothing.
Thursday, February 9, 2017
A Hiatus, a struggle and the unending depths of His love
I have to share! I simply cannot contain it any longer! It has left me feeling like I might explode if I don’t share the greatness and goodness of the things happening in my life right now. Here goes…we begin with a bit of a back story ;-)
There has been much happening in our home over the course of the last nine months. A lot of spiritual warfare coming at us from many different angles. I have witnessed my children processing through their battles, while I have been fighting my own.
Mine began nine months ago. Many might not know, but Matthew, my husband, was in an accident last May in which he suffered a concussion. For the last nine months we have been dealing with the ongoing effects caused by the trauma he endured that day. It has been messy, scary, heartbreaking and devastating, all to say the least. There were days that I did not know if I could endure another day of what was happening.
The enemy was working overtime in my life to remind me of the past I had escaped. Truly working to take away the amazing blessing of my husband and the gift of our marriage. I was weary. Falling back into old patterns of thinking that I wasn’t good enough, pretty enough or smart enough to trudge through the mess that was becoming my life once again, I wanted nothing more than to give up.
The greater those thoughts became, the further I pushed Jesus away. I became angry at God. I just could not understand why I was experiencing the struggles that were taking place in my life. I wanted answers. I wanted things fixed and back to normal. I wanted my husband and perfect marriage back.
As days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months, my anxiety grew worse, my heart crumbled into smaller pieces, and hopelessness set in in a way I have never known. Ever. But God.
Over the years, but God, has become one of those defining moments when there is a pause in my life and a total shift occurs as God moves in ginormous ways.
About five weeks ago, I began an incredible journey with eight other women through a study of 2 Corinthians. I did not know what this journey would hold, and we are only half way in, but God in His infinite love and grace has moved in my life in ways that I cannot contain any longer.
Several weeks ago, early in the morning as I sat on my bed with my Bible pressed against my chest and tears streaming down my face, I made the decision to invite Jesus into my mess. Deep in my heart, I knew and knew well, that I needed Him. The hurt, the wounds that had cut so deep in my soul and the unbearable pain left me to recognize that if my heart and marriage were going to survive, it would only happen if I invited Him back into the center of it all. And so I did and nothing has been the same.
Each week of this study, God has pressed into the places of my heart and revealed those things that have to go. Those things preventing me from giving my absolute all to Him. Things that I used to love, TV shows I just couldn’t miss, food I love to eat…just don’t bring the satisfaction that they did five weeks ago. The craving I have for Him is so great that when my eyes open each morning, nothing satisfies until I pick up my Bible and spend time with Him. It’s almost crazy! I haven’t felt this way in forever! But what I know, is that He changes everything.
Here’s the thing, my husband hasn’t changed. Our marriage isn’t back to being perfect. It is me that is changing. God is drawing me back into His arms after a hiatus that I chose to take.
I removed Jesus as the foundation of my life and made it my husband. I turned my attention, my needs and wants, my anxiety and placed it all upon his shoulders to carry. It was a load he was not created to carry and the load was too heavy so when the storm came, he crumbled, my foundation crumbled. And the only way to rebuild that foundation was to place it back on the One who loved me enough to give His life for me.
What an amazing lesson to learn. That in my state of hiatus, God didn’t turn His back on me. He pursued me. Lavishly loved me. He drew me back into the unending depths of His love and goodness. He showered me with His grace and lovingly wrapped His arms around me when I invited Him back.
It is crazy how in the most unexpected moments of life, God walks into the room and changes everything!