I have been silent for quite a bit of the past year. It has been one of the strangest years of my life. But I’m not writing this to rehash what has already been said, rather, I’m happy to share with you how this past year has changed me and while I could write a book on this past year alone, here is my small attempt at communicating the transformation I have gone through.
I’ve stepped back and looked at my life, a childless mother, a young caregiver, a victim, a survivor and I’ve asked myself over and over again, “Who am I?”
I’ve felt the weight of Brielle’s loss in a strange, almost surreal, way. Life went on and David and I were left with a gaping hole in our lives. Walking through everyday feeling as if she was only a dream. Asking ourselves if our reality is really real. I’ve dealt with the hard questions of, “Does God really answer my prayers? Does he really care?”
In the fog of my trauma and pain, I decided to pursue new relationships within my church, and signed up for a morning bible class and an evening bible class. I didn’t check the subjects we’d be studying. I didn’t expect much at all. As I sat there during the first class, a study on 2 Timothy (the Entrusted study by Beth Moore), I was shocked with how relevant the study was to my current season in life, but was also shocked at how seriously this church takes their bible studies. They weren’t messing around, these classes expected memorization, homework, deep personal and spiritual growth. We were going to dig in and root out the chaos of our lives and find our calling.
I watched myself transform as I dug into scripture, a true fire igniting within me. I have lived my entire Christian faith filled with questions and seeking answers. I would turn to those around me and receive criticism for even venturing outside of the confines of order, but I have always been spiritual and have felt a deep connection with God, could no one explain to me then why this was? Could no one explain to me my purpose? Could no one guide me and help explain to me the truly, spiritual, almost supernatural, things that have occurred in my life?
No, not one. In my search for answers, I have spent the past six years (previous to Brielle’s conception) in search of a church that felt alive. A place where I could feel God’s presence and see a sincere devotion to God’s calling. I wanted to see Christians who sought to do good and who were transformed by Christ. The unfortunate truth is that our nation, our world, is largely disconnected from it’s spirituality and Christians do not always behave in a Christ like manner. In the church we call this a Form of Godliness.
I walked out of class a month ago, hurriedly walking to my car, when I felt the pull of God’s voice on my heart and mind, “Go back. Go back and ask them to pray over you.”
I swerved, “Uhh, I don’t know about that. That’s weird. That makes me uncomfortable. God, I’ll just send them an email.”
I felt that all familiar pull at my heart, “Go back.”
“Do I have to? This is weird.”
“Go back and ask them to pray for you. Go back.”
I stopped, awkwardly standing in the parking deck, turned around and stormed into the chapel. I grabbed one of the women whom I greatly admire for her candor, she would not mislead me or sugar coat things, I wanted to be corrected, I wanted Godly advice. She grabbed another woman and I another.
They sat me down and gathered around me as I spoke to them of my past, the loss of Brielle, and the conviction on my heart. I asked desperately for discernment as I faced new paths in my life. They placed their hands on me and prayed over me. Praying for freedom from those who have prayed against me. Praying for freedom from my pain and trauma. Praying for discernment, blessings, and healing.
As they spoke, I felt a warmth encircle my head and spread through my brain. I felt it move through my body and felt a weight disappear from my shoulders. I could breathe easier. I could smile easier. My aches and pains, my heartbreak, my world, glowed in a pure sense of happiness and relief. I felt free for the first time in my life.
They directed me towards scriptures that would aid me through this process and I returned home. David was astonished, he had never seen me so carefree. My therapist was happily shocked and my scores for depression, anxiety, and anger have reduced by more than three times.
I happily joked about how ridiculously crazy I sounded. I laughed at how many would mock my crazy spirituality. And I found joy. Over the past three weeks I have watched my life transform into something sincerely beautiful and full of life, joy, and happiness. God has filled me with more joy and blessings than I could imagine. He has revealed to me my calling in life and set me on my path. I have experienced things that I had only read about in the New Testament.
My heart is free. I can begin again. And as I reach the milestone of Brielle’s first birthday, I find myself joyful. I have work to do. I have growing and learning to do. I still have memories that I need to confront and grow from. But I look forward to all of this. I have been given a remarkable gift, I can begin again. My life, my world, is renewed and I can find joy in the knowledge that I can rebuild my life and myself into something beautiful, loving, and filled with happiness.
I say this often, but I have no idea why God has been so good to me. I have no idea why he has kept me safe for all of these years. But I am thankful. I would be lost without him. I look forward to a new year of love and happiness and discovering who I am in Christ. And, while I am not ashamed, I hope I won’t scare you all off. 😉