Tomorrow marks a milestone that I never thought I would acknowledge... and yet here I am, and I want to acknowledge it.
One year ago I was given what to me was the most devastating, rock bottom, painful, life-altering news.
Today I've read through my journal entries on that day, the days leading up to it and the days after.
I've read words that I wrote expressing pain, fear, hurt, betrayal and brokenness.
But I've also read words that I wrote expressing hope, faith, strength, trust and a determination to be led by the Spirit of God rather than the "letter of the law" or my feelings. I read words God spoke to me, Bible verses he led me to or reminded me of. And I read prophetic encouragement given to me by others, written and recorded in hope and faith.
And as I read through it all I am so encouraged. I see God's guiding hand and comfort then, I see it now and I see His closeness and grace over every step of the journey.
Two days after the news I wrote a email to a friend... And at the time I felt to print it and tuck it away in my journal because I felt like some of what I had written were words that I was declaring in hope and in faith. In essence I was prophesying over my own future. I was speaking out what I felt in my spirit in the midst of the hardest trial of my life.
Below are excerpts from that email:
"I'm journaling the journey as I believe I'm going to learn keys and learn understanding that will one day provide a roadmap for others...I'm finding my way in the dark with God as my light and His Word as my lamp. I see that one day I'll be passing on a torch to others who are walking in the dark, who don't know the way forward."
"We can each only be led by the Spirit of God and for me He says to hold fast, to run this race with endurance, to know that my faith is being tested and I will come forth as gold and with gold."
"If I come out stronger in Him, I win. How I respond is what matters. When my eyes are on Him I find strength and peace. When I take my eyes off Him and look at the situation I can end up feeling like I'm drowning in despair and I see no hope."
"He is still a God that resurrects and the very nature of resurrection is that something had to have died. I'm believing and hoping for a resurrection and to see a restoration of what was stolen, broken and lost."
A year later I look back at what I wrote and I see that ** I ** have been (and still am being) resurrected.
I see that so much of what was stolen from me over the years, so much of what was broken in me and so much of what I lost over the years has been and is being restored to me.
I see so much gold. I see so much to be thankful for.
And so I acknowledge this one year milestone because not only have I survived a whole year but I have also discovered I can THRIVE in a life that is so different to what I imagined, so different to what I had hoped for, so different to what I had planned and yet... It is good because God really is good.
For life sake.... Grow through your pain.