“For a brief moment I forsook you, but with great compassion I will gather you. In an outburst of anger I hid My face from you for a moment, but with everlasting lovingkindness I will have compassion on you,” Says the Lord your Redeemer.” – Isaiah 54: 7-8
“For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, but My lovingkindness will not be removed from you, and My covenant of peace will not be shaken,” Says the Lord who has compassion on you.” – Isaiah 54:10
Excerpt from yesterday’s post in case you missed it. [For the next two years, I got through my days at work, my time with my daughter and school by living for the moments when I could drink. I didn’t drink at home and I never missed work, I drank on certain days of the week and every-other-weekend when she was away with her dad. On those “free” days, I drank to black out most nights. I was in so much pain I couldn’t stand being sober unless I was doing something fun with my daughter. I hated everything about being an adult because I had never been prepared for being an adult. I was miserable but I didn’t want to disappoint anyone so I made sure to have these neat compartments so that my friends and family didn’t know how much pain I was in and that I was drowning.]
In 2010, we started to occasionally attend church with my family. Even though I didn’t want anything to do with God, I wanted my daughter to know God. We lived about 40 minutes away from this church but it was worth the drive on Sunday’s to have the connection with my family. I was still hurting so badly and I didn’t know how to tell them but being around them relieved some pain. We started to get more involved in small groups and the kids programs and my heart was softening. I hadn’t quit drinking and most Sunday’s I left church in tears, but God was working.
By 2011, we were really involved at church. Every Sunday night, I would beg God to step in a fix my life. I needed to quit drinking. I needed to end a significant relationship. I needed to get my finances in order. I needed God. And every Sunday God would say no. You see, God wanted my life, I just wanted a quick fix. I knew He could sweep away all my junk and I would be fine but He knew I needed healing and I didn’t want that. I wanted to keep my pain because at this point, it was a friend. I was terrified of trusting Him because I blamed Him for so much that I just felt He was mean.
In April of 2011 I was arrested for a suspicion of a DUI. This rocked my world. I was terrified and so full of shame that I could barely breathe. I spent hours at a time crying when I was alone. I craved being alone so that I could just get swallowed up into the darkness. I was embarrassed and terrified I would lose my daughter. I felt like the worst person on the planet, the lowest of the low. I continued to beg God to fix everything and He continued to say no. I knew what He wanted and I was ridiculously scared to trust Him. I didn’t quit drinking at this time but I did quit drinking and driving. Having another arrest was not an option.
By November of 2011, my health was feeling the effect of the alcohol. On November 9, I was in the ER feeling like I was having a heartache or a stroke. I couldn’t remember huge pieces of my life. I couldn’t read a simple paragraph. I didn’t remember driving to work. In the end, I was having a massive panic attack and my heart was acting abnormally. After some tests the next day, the doctor called and told me that my heart was starting to harden in one corner and that it was due to how I was living. She was very cold and sober and just told me straight out that I was killing myself and that if I didn’t stop, my health would continue to decline. I was beyond terrified. The last thing I wanted to do was actually die.
I laid in bed, crying and crying out to God and He spoke to me clearly. He told me that I no longer had access to Him until I gave Him my life. He was turning away from me! You see, in order for me to give Him my life, I had to quit drinking, quit living recklessly, end a relationship and hardest of all…trust Him. I couldn’t grasp any of that and especially not the trusting Him. I laid in bed all day crying and sleeping. And then it happened, I realized I had no other choice.
In one swift movement, somewhat like ripping off the band-aid, I asked God to give me the strength to do all that I needed to do and that yes, I would give Him my life. Laying in bed, I made the phone call that ended the relationship I was in and said that I could have absolutely no contact again. I promised God to never have another drink. I begged God to help me get all of my finances in order and to be able to face the mess. And in that moment, God, in His amazing grace and love, swooped in and released me from darkness. It felt like when there is a power outage for a few hours and then the lights come back on. There is relief and joy mixed together with excitement and thankfulness. I had no idea what God was going to do and I didn’t care, I was feeling a peace I don’t think I had ever felt in my entire life. God was real and He was never going to leave me or forsake me. For a moment, He turned His face away and then, He redeemed me.
So, four years later, He’s allowed me to publish a book, build a blog, start a non-profit organization and best of all, He’s become my best friend and loving Father. I haven’t had a drop of alcohol and I haven’t spoken to anyone from that past life ever again. I’ve been able to face the pain of loss and grief and see how God was present all along. I’ve been able to walk with people as they leave addiction and show them how amazing God is and how much He loves them. I’ve been privileged to pray for hundreds of people. I live my life as a missionary in a foreign land because my home is with God and for right now, this is my journey. It’s amazing!
You can never go wrong with God. Never. He’s faithful always and He’s totally in love with you. If you need someone to talk to or you need a prayer partner, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.