In Luke chapter 13: 10-13, we read about a woman who had been bent over by a spirit for 18 years. As I was reading, I was trying to imagine this woman’s circumstance…having only the ground and the dirt as her view. How horrible her walk through life must have been. Then I realized that this has been me so many times in my life. I have allowed satan to have free reign over my mind causing me to drop my head in shame or from a sense of unworthiness. Believing the lies of satan and coming into agreement with him, will only give us a hopeless view of ourselves and our lives. Why do we believe his lies? Why do we choose to give him so much power over us?
For the longest time, I would believe that things in my life were so hard because of a drink or drug. I thought that was the only thing that was causing my life to be terrible. One thing I have learned in sobriety- take away the drink and drug, And life still is hard!
“If I chose to keep my scars, you can, too.”
Jesus whispered those words into my spirit as I was lying in bed one night—thinking too much about things past and wishing they’d just go away. I was a little stunned when He said those words but also comforted. Comforted by the fact that He said “scars” and not “wounds,” meaning healing really is possible; but also, a little uneasy because scars are still visible, and they come with a process and with stories.
Have you ever found yourself at rock bottom? Perhaps your marriage was failing, job interviews were not in your favor, or maybe friends had removed themselves from your life. Basically, your life didn’t look anything like you had imagined it would.
Friends let me tell you, rock bottom is nowhere you want to be. But unfortunately, that is where I found myself a few years ago. Although it is not the ideal place to find yourself-but praise God I was there. Seems absurd, I know, but it literally took me hitting rock bottom to find my way back to the top. I was faithless but God remained faithful.
Out of control
I thought I had it all. I was blessed with a hard-working husband, two healthy children at that time, a top of the ladder job, no mortgage on the new house we lived in, and even a nice car to drive…but you know what? None of those things helped me out of that dark pit I was drowning in. My husband had become distant, I lost that top of the ladder job, I had just had a miscarriage and none of those materialistic things mattered in the long run, because they could not pull me up out of the darkness. If anything, I was feeling like the water was continuing to rise. I called out for help but was too consumed by my own darkness that I did not even realize when God was answering. I was trying to remain in control and in all reality, I was out of control.
I was struggling big time. I finally broke down and stepped out of my comfort zone and found myself across from a pastor who I barely knew. All these recent disappointments had resurfaced hurt from my past. The Pastor suggested that perhaps I never healed fully from the past, I only healed enough to move forward. That opened my eyes to a new world. I guess you could say I was notorious for allowing myself to just forget all the hurt and pain. You know what I am talking about, just shoving it in the back of your mind and hope that you will just forget it.
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”Mark 11:24
I found myself praying a lot! I was not exactly sure what to pray for, I had distanced myself so far from God and any type of religion because I thought I could control my life and I would be able to fix it. But, as a matter of fact, I couldn’t fix it. The main tool in my toolbox was missing-God. I felt ashamed praying to God asking Him to pull me out of darkness when I had pulled away from him.
“if we are faithless, He remains faithful – for He cannot deny Himself”.2Timothy 2:13
Thanks be to God that He didn’t give up on me. He met me right where I was and provided me with the tools I needed to come up out of the darkness. He led me to a church that became my home, He provided me with faithful friends, He led me to a mountain top where I released my hurt, pain, and control. I felt renewed, He was the change in me. My brokenness brought me to God, without the scars from my past I would have never known how deep God’s love is for me. I am not who I was before, I don’t have to fear anymore, and now I see with my eyes wide open.
If you are feeling faithless in your darkness, don’t lose hope! You are never too far gone, God will run to you even when it seems as if everyone else has left you at your worst. I am thankful that God grabbed my hand and pulled me out of my darkness. He knew I couldn’t make the change, so He became the change in me. Thanks
“I will never leave you nor forsake you”.
Read also: Hope, even when…
At this moment when I look outside my window I see a white world covered in snow. There is something magical about it. Yesterday we were driving on a road through a forest. What a beautiful sight to see. The world looks so peaceful and quiet, so different from how it used to be.
Snow is also mentioned in the Bible.
“Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” Isaiah 1:18
What a similarity to the literal sight of snow. While our sins are red as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow. You will be as white as snow, unrecognizable, totally different than before. A beautiful sight to see and peaceful.
The Bible states it very clearly: if we confess with our mouths that Jesus Christ is our Lord, we will be saved. Jesus carried our sins, took our punishment and raised from the death. IN Him we are a new creation. We are washed whiter than snow.
God doesn’t see you in your old self, but covered in Jesus, white as snow. You are made righteous in Him. It is time we start to see ourselves the same way. But often we dig up our past. Often our minds go back to our wrong decisions, the lies we told, the things we shouldn’t have done. But as long as we are focused on our pasts, we can’t enjoy our present.
As far as the east is from the west
God tells us in His word He put our sins away, as far as east is from the west. They will never meet again. God will not rethink about it and neither should we. It is a trick of the devil to keep our minds occupied, letting us feel guilty and shameful over and over again. But God washed us whiter than snow, He forgave you and me, and He wants to move forward with us.
Casting Crowns wrote a beautiful song about this subject:
Here I am Lord and I’m drowning
In your sea of forgetfulness
The chains of yesterday surround me
I yearn for peace and rest
I don’t want to end up where you found me
And it echoes in my mind
Keeps me awake tonight
I know you’ve cast my sin as far
As the east is from the west
And I stand before you now
As though I’ve never sinned
But today I feel like I’m just one mistake away
From you leaving me this way
Jesus, can you show me just how far the east is from the west?
Cause I can’t bear to see the man I’ve been
Rising up in me again
In the arms of your mercy I find rest
You know just how far the east is from the west
From one scarred hand to the other
I know you’ve washed me white
Turned my darkness into light
I need your peace to get me through
To get me through this night
I can’t live by what I feel
About the truth your word reveals
And I’m not holding onto you
But you’re holding onto me
2019 has just started, there is a whole new year ahead of you. Don’t linger on the past but look ahead, trust Gods word, and stretch out to what’s ahead. God promises us that greater things are yet to come. He has good plans for you, a future filled with hope. He wants to give you beauty for ashes and make you a witness for His kingdom.
Read also You are worthy
This is a story about a woman whose name is not mentioned in the Bible. We know so very little about her and yet she is instrumental when it comes to learning a deep lesson about God’s amazing grace.
The story of Rahab is one of the most amazing biblical examples we have of an individual’s faith and of God’s Mercy. Rahab, a Canaanite prostitute who lived in Jericho before the Israelites destroyed the city, is considered one of the most prominent people of faith found in Hebrews 11. The people of Jericho did not believe in God and did not obey Him… but Rahab did believe and acted according to her faith. She received Gods mercy and His grace by her faith.
This is a story about Gomer, the wife of Hosea. Gomer? Should you write about a woman of such ill repute? Well, there is a story in the story…
Death. Death might be the most difficult pain we face on this earth. It’s hard losing those we love, unable to see them or speak with them.
Do you ever have a word or a phrase that keeps coming back to you over and over? An anthem, lesson or truth that the Holy Spirit keeps putting in your path that He wants to solidify in your spirit? I’ve been having a word come up all around me these last weeks. Hope!