I am so excited about my week of celebrations, but more than the exuberance I feel on the inside, my heart is overflowing with gratitude. You see, I've been reflecting over the last decade of my life for the past few weeks, and if I never knew that God's hand and favor were upon my life, I definitely know now. During my twenties, life hit me extremely hard and I believed that I wouldn't make it through. Without God...let's just say I would not be typing this post today. Oh, but God!!
Over the past 10 years I have been challenged in every area that I'm preparing to celebrate next week. I believe I'll testify...
In motherhood, I was challenged when my oldest son was diagnosed with Hydrocephalus as an infant. For the first two years of his life, the hospital had basically become our home. I thought I'd lose my son, but God has completely healed him. I was further challenged when, after three years of hoping to conceive, my husband and I had no success. Just when I'd given up on having more children, the Lord opened my womb and has since blessed us with two sons.
Marriage has definitely had its challenges. Just two years ago, my husband and I were contemplating divorce. We came so close to calling it quits. But God restored our relationship, and did not allow us to go asunder. Now we're stronger than ever, and committed to continuously grow in love.
If you follow the blog or my column in EEW Magazine, then you know about some of the challenges I've faced. Life for me has not at all been a crystal stair. I've battled deep depression, loss of identity, suicidal thoughts, sexual immorality, addictions, insecurity, low self-esteem, brokenness, hopelessness...and the list could go on, and on, and on. But you know what? God has delivered me; healed me; set me free; restored me; validated me; given me new identity and purpose...and again, the list could go on, and on.
Nothing but the grace of God...
My heart is so full right now, because I know what could have been, and what probably should have been...but God. He's so merciful; He's so loving; He's so faithful.
When it looked like my life would fall to pieces, God said No, my child; I will hold you up with my right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)
When it seemed that the enemy would destroy me with everything that came against me, God said No, my child; these weapons won't prosper against you. (Isaiah 54:17)
When all my strength had gone, and I thought I'd faint, God said No, my child. My strength is perfect in your weakness; my grace is all you need. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
When I thought I'd die in my sorrow, God said, No, my child. You will not die, but live and proclaim what I have done. (Psalm 118:17)
When I believed that my marriage would fail, God said, No, my child; nothing will separate what I have put together. (Mark 10:9)
When I thought my son's sickness would overtake him, God said, No, my child; with Jesus' stripes, he is healed. (Isaiah 53:5)
When I was convinced that nothing good was meant for my life, God said, No, my child; I have good plans for you. (Jeremiah 29:11)
For every negative, God gave me a positive affirmation through His word. Oh, how I love Him! He took the worst of my life, and turned it into something beautiful. I am so grateful for all that He's done, and I'm even more thankful for the fact that He's going to continue to perfect everything that concerns me...and you. (Psalm 138:8)
Just as He has shown Himself strong and mighty in my life, He will show Himself strong and mighty in your life. I don't care how bad it seems, God, the All-Powerful One, is able to make it better. I am a living witness! So don't you dare be discouraged. Lift up your head; lift up your praise; lift up your prayers; lift up your worship; and the King of glory will come in. He will come in, and heal; He will come in, and restore; He will come in, and deliver; He will come in, and make all things new.
That's reason enough to celebrate. Glory to God!