Something New

The dawn is rising. Something new and fresh and pure is being birthed. Formed in the depths of the soil of my soul, new life is growing.

In the agonizing quiet of the darkness, in the midst of tears of sorrow and pain - a work was being done. A toiling of the hard and broken soil, dry ground was breaking. Revealing deep rooted places of fragmented identity, pain, lies, and loss - God was intricately working to turn a fully broken narrative into the most beautiful, whole redemptive narrative.

Much like the signs of a desolate, grey winter are fading into Spring - light is giving way for me. The sun is shining in a way that it hasn’t in years. Hope fills the crevices of my whole self in a natural, instinctive way that would previously take discipline and concerted effort.

Seven years ago yesterday, I stood with my mom and watched her gasp her last few breaths on this earth. Preceding those days were some of the darkest and most confusing days I had ever encountered. I couldn’t reconcile the up close view of my mom’s 50 year old body slowly breaking down until there was nothing but a shell left in front of me. And, yet, the spirit within my mom would ONLY respond to prayer and worship music. The only words spoken by my mom in the last few weeks were the repeated name of “Jesus” and the lyrics to the song, “Revelation Song” - a song that spoke of heaven and the power of God.

I couldn’t wrap my mind around her inability to be cognitively aware of anything other than these moments related to the Jesus she had faith in. Yet, the comfort and reminder it brought was that though hell itself was celebrating on behalf of the pain we were experiencing - heaven was on our side and would conquer in bringing my mom safely home to be with God forever.

As I reflect over the last 12 years of my life - dating back to my father’s sudden and accidental death at a young age - it has - more than ever - become clear to me that a war has been raging. The war for my life, my mind, and my very soul was raging.

There is so much to this story to tell, but the last two years have been the final culmination of a  deconstruction of everything I have known for God to begin to rebuild and restore to whole causing my life to be truly reflective of His redemptive purposes.

All along this journey, there have been marked moments of healing, hope, restoration - so many battles won. But the war would rage on. I would retreat, and have relief - and then another battle would begin.

Beyond the sorrow and pain has been the depression and anxiety. For 12 years I have battled chronic anxiety and depression. About 6 months ago, God spoke clearly and gave me an image of a war between heaven and hell. Hold steady, He said. You have fought well. You need now to only be still. It’s almost over. I’m about to finish this off.

I knew at that moment that something was about to change and a new season was coming.

Since then, I have had a handful of the worst episodes of panic attacks and suicidal thoughts. It has been despairingly dark. But God...

In the warring midst of the battles over the last 12 years, God kept extending invitations to go deeper beyond the surface. Do you want to be whole, He would ask? Let’s do the work. Digging past all of the surface circumstances, trials, and even sometimes good seasons - it was a deep work of the soul - of roots being dug up. And new seeds being planted.

The work to be healthy is worth it. That fight you have been fighting for your health, physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually is WORTH it. Every battle, every painful lesson or discovery, every change needing to be implemented, every doctor you are meeting, even medication you may need to take. Every scripture you memorize, every prayer you pray, every fight to see God in the midst of it. It is WORTH it. Because, you see, as you are fighting in the natural - He is fighting in the supernatural and He reminds you - I am fighting for YOU and with YOU.

No matter how dark and silent it gets, no matter how dense and suffocating the air may feel as you so desperately try to breath in and out - I have learned God is present.

There are so many words that filter through my mind. Trying so hard to place them together in a way that would best map out this journey of mine over the last 12 years. The eloquence or refined words often seem out of reach. The full story will one day come together and tumbling out.

But I have to speak for these March moments where, in seasons past, my journals were filled with desperate hope, fighting weariness, and small moments of joy —- I’m standing more free and full of joy than I have been in my life. The hope that fills me is overflowing. It didn’t come with religiosity, spouting faith-filled rhetoric for the sake of pretense. And it didn’t come with emotionally driven glass half full, false wishful hoping for a change to eventually come. It came in the accepting the hard and painful invitation to fight in the war of my soul, mind, and spirit. God said, will you, because I will. And I said okay to the journey.

You guys, the sun is shining and I’m dancing like the weight has been lifted because it truly has. Something new and fresh and pure is being birthed. 

But I have to speak for these March moments where, in seasons past, my journals were filled with desperate hope, fighting weariness, and small moments of joy —- I’m standing more free and full of joy than I have been in my life. The hope that fills me is overflowing. It didn’t come with religiosity, spouting faith-filled rhetoric for the sake of pretense. And it didn’t come with emotionally driven glass half full, false wishful hoping for a change to eventually come. It came in the accepting the hard and painful invitation to fight in the war of my soul, mind, and spirit. God said, will you, because I will. And I said okay to the journey.

You guys, the sun is shining and I’m dancing like the weight has been lifted because it truly has.

 

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