I have paced back and forth for days wondering if I was supposed to share this story with you all. It isn’t just my story and so I wasn’t sure what to do, but you should hear it.
I’m not going to share all of the details. I’m sure some of you who are reading this may know already what’s been going on, but because it’s not just my story, I’m only going to share the part I know.
I hit rock bottom the other day. It was bad. I was hopeless. I was scared. I cried for hours and days. I couldn’t hold it together. My heart had been broken and like any (wo)man I reacted with my emotions.
In my emotional breakdown, of course I was angry. I had been treated unfairly. It wasn’t my fault. I didn’t do anything wrong. I just reacted to what they did.
God didn’t go along with that.
For so long I had sought from others what I should have been seeking from God. I never really understood the sacrifice He made for me. I didn’t really know who He was and how much He loved me.
I spent all day Sunday listening to sermons I had missed, reading the bible, listening to praise music. I just wanted to know that He was there for me. I had felt so alone and so abandoned. I needed Him. Yes, He was my last resort and that wasn’t right, but I hit rock bottom and I needed Him.
And He was there.
Soon my anger was gone. I began to memorize bible verses, something I have never been able to do until this week/weekend. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t do it, but then as I sat and listened to Him I began to experience His wisdom. Not only did I memorize my first bible verse Romans 8:28, but I now I have a few more too.
Romans 8:28 In all things God works for the good of those who love him.
Psalm 34:4 I sought the Lord and he answered and delivered me from all my fears.
Exodus 14:14 The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.
Psalm 46:10 Be still and know that I am God.
Do you feel Him yet? He gave me each of those verses because He knew exactly what I needed.
What I learned was that I should never base my performance on someone else’s. I am to be who He called me to be because of Him. And I cannot do anything without Him. Anything.
I have screwed up so many times. I have held onto anger and resentment and bitterness for years. I have read all the books there are to read about being a good Christian. I have known in my mind what to do, but my heart has been hard and calloused for years.
I had to get here though, to this icky place, so I could see just how amazing He was. He has changed my heart. And He did it pretty quickly. I wish I could share in more detail what that looked like and what that felt like, but it happened so fast that I don’t even know if people who know me believe it.
I am not the same person I was last week. That I know.
I even wake up each day thinking that it was just a phase. Just my mind playing tricks on me. But it’s not. I am a new creation. And if you think that God can’t, well, just take a look over here. He can. I’m proof He can.
I don’t know what’s going to happen in the next day or month or year. I have absolutely no guarantees, well, maybe just one. I know that He loves me. And I know that He hears me. And I know that when my heart hurts, His does too. But most of all, I know that if I have Him I don’t want for anything else. I know who my Father is and I know how much He loves me. And I know that I love Him above everything else. Because if He can give me chance after chance and forgive me even when I don’t deserve it, even when I’m not sorry. If He can do that for me, well, then I know there’s nothing I wouldn’t do for Him.
He has broken every chain that has held me down for so long. He has forgiven me and I know it. He has washed me white as snow and holds nothing against me. He has filled me with his Holy Spirit and His wisdom and knowledge. He has filled me with His love. And I just want to share it with everyone.
I believe in God’s perfect timing and I don’t believe that it is any coincidence that we are in Holy week. He is the God of impossible. I mean, He defeated death. It took a long time for me to come to Him and admit all of my faults to Him, I don’t want that for anyone. It’s only been a few days of this, but this, what He’s done for me, this is living. I pray that this week each of you will feel Him, know Him, experience Him, taste Him, love Him. I pray that you bring whatever it is to Him and let Him take it. Don’t waste another minute being angry or consumed by anything other than love and I promise you, when you realize just how loved you are, you will love. When you see just how forgiven you are, you will forgive.
John 4:19 We love because he first loved us.
We can’t give what we don’t understand. And until you realize what He did for you and me on that cross nothing else will matter. My prayer for you is that you realize. Even if you don’t think you deserve it. Even if you haven’t believed it before. Just realize.
Because remember, He died for you too.