Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Christ Overcomes Darkness

I really have no idea where to even start with this post. I'm not even sure why I am writing it. Actually yes I am, writing has always been a form of therapy for me, free therapy, lol I sit here and find myself praying as type, seeking the Lord with every word. I have no idea who reads this blog, if anyone does. Okay actually I do know of one person, Hi Care :-) Love you sister!!

I remember starting this blog 4 years ago as a way of keeping track of my adoption. What a blessing it is to have a way to go back and revisit the amazing journey the Lord took me on to bring my sweet Isaiah home. Though I have been hit and miss the last two years (hello post adoption, nursing school craziness) I could never bring myself to take the blog down. I knew I wanted to keep writing but I knew the Lord would show me when it was time. Guess what............it's time :-)

Every year after the new year is rung in, the holidays are over, decorations are packed up, I find myself reflecting on the past year and anticipating what the Lord has in store for me in the coming year. It seems like for the past few years there have always been one or two big experiences that have grown me in my faith and allowed me to see the Lord in a way I hadn't before. In 2009 I went through a divorce, in 2010 I graduated LPN school and started the adoption process, in 2011 Noah and I moved in with my mom, sister and her kids into a lovely home the Lord provided as well as saw my sweet Isaiah's face for the first time when I got his referral, in 2012 I traveled to Ethiopia twice and brought my sweet boy home as well as suffered through a horrible health condition that the Lord later healed me of, in 2013 I started RN school and traveled to Haiti on a medical mission trip where I was rebaptised and rededicated my life to Jesus. When 2014 rolled around I was so excited. I knew I would be graduating nursing school and I couldn't wait, but you see 2014 was nothing like I could have ever expected. Truthfully this year, specifically the last 6 months have been some of the darkest times of my life. I have experienced a season of spiritual attack, brokenness, sadness and loss while also experiencing Jesus in a way that I have never experienced Him before.

Without sharing specifics because this story is not just mine to share, I have lost relationship with my sister, my niece and two nephews as well as now have a very strained relationship with my dad. I have almost lost my home, I experienced the worst financial crisis I could have ever imagined, one that I am still trying to dig myself out of, my truck has broken down numerous times, I failed my last quarter of nursing school which caused me to have to repeat a class and graduate 3 months late, causing me to lose a job that had been offered to me. After graduating the Lord blessed me with a job working as a RN in the ER of a local hospital but I soon lost that job because I failed my nursing boards. I have watched my oldest son sit and cry at the loss of contact with his cousins. My health has been strained due to stress and at times I have just sat and cried, not understanding why any of this has happened.

You know what though, you know the saying Jesus will meet you just where you are? Ya'll it is so true. He was there when I needed groceries but didn't know how I was going to afford them, He provided Kroger gift cards through friends, He was there when my power steering went out in my truck and it was going to cost over $600 to fix, He provided a guy from church who fixed it for free, He was there when I asked Him "why" He allowed me to fail my last quarter of school, He put a woman in my path that had also failed her last class, she didn't know Jesus and we had many opportunities to talk and I shared the Gospel with her, He was there when I failed my boards and lost my nursing job. He provided the money to allow me to retake my boards and He provided an LPN job for me while I study and prepare to retake the boards. He was there when I needed to get away from all the stress of everything and He provided a way for the boys and I to travel North for the weekend to spend time with one of my dear friends and her family, a refreshing weekend that my weary soul needed. He was there when the boys and I found ourselves in search of a new church to call home. He provided an incredible church home and body of believers that have loved us and welcomed us with open arms. He was there as I cried to Him that I needed help, to please help me. He sent me a community group of people that have not only become friends, but who I consider family. The woman in the group encourage me with scripture, prayer and encouraging text messages through out the week and the men are investing in my boys weekly, at times just by living out the Gospel to them and showing them how men of God are to live. My boys have met and formed sweet friendships with the kids at our church and community group and the Lord has shown me through a sweet friend who's husband passed away earlier this year, that my season of singleness has a purpose, and that purpose has been to come alongside my sweet friend and encourage her as she now finds herself a single momma to her three precious little ones. He was there when the bills were piled sky high and my bank account was in the negative. He provided those who wanted to come alongside me, giving of their time and some of their finances to help bring me out of the hole I had found myself in. Then there were the many nights where I laid in bed crying out to Him for comfort, peace and His presence. He was there, every single time, embracing me, loving me, laying specific scripture on my heart, and reminding me He had a purpose for my pain.

Ever since I decided to follow Christ, I have always prayed that my life would reflect more of Him and less of me. I wanted people to see my life and see our Great Savior, Jesus Christ. I wanted people to see how the light of Christ overcomes any amount of darkness we could ever experience. Through salvation our lives are transformed, we begin to see ourselves as God sees us. Dead in our sins, but alive in Christ, redeemed, restored and loved by a Mighty God who loved us so much that He gave His one and only son so that we could spend eternity with Him forever in Heaven. The Lord has been so kind these last few months in how He has cared for the boys and I and at times has left me speechless (which if you know me, you know that doesn't happen often) at just how much He is in the details of my life, big and small. The biggest blessing from this season has been the numerous times my Father in Heaven has been glorified through my suffering. I have been told so many times recently through face to face conversations, text messages and Facebook messages how my strength and faith through turmoil has encouraged someone, caused someone to look at themselves and realize how they don't rely enough on the Lord. I have been told that people don't know how I have made it through, and that has allowed me to tell of my Great Savior and how without Him and the hope I have in Him, I would surely be in a corner crying but, because the battle has already been won on the Cross I can walk in faith toward the future, knowing that even though I have no idea what the future holds, I know WHO holds my future and that gives me the peace that surpasses anything I will endure on this earth and what a JOY it is to know that through my suffering, Jesus is being glorified.

I'll leave you with one of many encouraging words that have ministered to me these last few months..........."One of the best things you can do to worship God is simply to accept where you are and what He's doing for you RIGHT NOW" ~ Priscilla Shirer

Psalm 27 "I remain confident of this, I will see the goodness of the Lord, in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord"

Stay tuned ya'll, the Lord is slowly giving me words to say and I can't wait to see what He does through this little ole blog of mine :-) Have a happy and blessed Thanksgiving!!

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