God in Action

Learning to Count It All Joy

I need to preface this article with the fact that I actually wrote it back on February 25, 2017. One month later, on March 25, I was mauled by a dog and seriously injured.  I will save the full story of that incident for a future article, but the short story is that I had emergency surgery on both arms and have been doing occupational therapy for the last couple of months.  The fingers on my left hand aren’t fully functional, so on June 26 I am having additional surgery.  I have at least two months of recovery ahead of me still.

I can’t help but think that God spoke to me and had me write this article to remind me ahead of time that He has been and always will be there in my most dire circumstances. He knew that soon I would need a supercharged sense of my faith and His presence.

Written on February 25, 2017:

Driving home from work the other day the song “Dear Younger Me” by MercyMe came on the radio. I have sung that song so many times and agreed with the lyrics.

But tonight was different.  Tonight, Jesus gave me a revelation – in the middle of a song in the middle of the road.

I broke. Right there in the car Jesus ministered to me. 

If I had never experienced pain and suffering in my life, I would have never had a need or been able to experience the profound love of Father God.

If I had never experienced the pain, heartbreak and anger of divorce in my early 20’s, I would have never been able to experience the true peace that only Jesus brings when we lay down our burdens at His feet. When I just couldn’t hold onto the anger anymore, I asked Jesus to take it from me. He did.

If I had never suffered the abuse in my second marriage, I wouldn’t have gotten to experience the divine angelic intervention that saved my life as my husband strangled me in the garage.  A neighbor and an angel intervened.

Through my mistakes and painful experiences full of bad choices far from God, Jesus pursued me. When I cried out Jesus was there!

It was Jesus who rescued me from what could have been a lifetime of bitterness and anger. It was Jesus who rescued me from death.

Eleven years ago, God aligned the lives of two very different people living states apart. A year later, it was Jesus who saved my life and that of our daughter when she was born 6 weeks early – perfectly healthy.  My husband feared he would lose us.  I had 80% placenta abrubtio.  My OB had never seen it so severe.  She was amazed that Bailey and I both survived.

I owe everything in my life to the unfailing grace of God. And as I look back over the last 20+ years, I see his merciful hand rescuing me over and over and over.

I wouldn’t be who I am today if I hadn’t gone through the trials of my past. I wouldn’t have a testimony that could help a young mother, a battered wife, or a friend stuck in the cycle of blinding anger toward a former spouse. I wouldn’t be able to share how Jesus is right there with them through the mess. I wouldn’t be able to offer them a glimpse of the peace to come, to increase their faith and hope.

I thank God for the trials of my life. I wouldn’t know the joy and peace that I hold tightly to today, if I hadn’t first experience the despair.  Three times I have come close to death.  I know my work here on earth isn’t finished.

I am still ALIVE!

 

Image Credit: YouVersion Bible App