It’s been 27 years ago but I remember it like it was yesterday. I was a 25 year old single parent, trying to raise two young boys on my own. To this point I felt like a complete and utter failure. I fell into that deep, dark hole of depression and I just didn’t want to be here any longer. One night I got my brother and his high school girlfriend to watch the boys and I went out and got drunk. Alcohol and depression are a deadly combination, and I came home and seriously considered ending it all. I was sitting there on rock bottom, and as Tony Evans said, “Sometimes God lets you hit rock bottom so that you will discover that He is the rock at the bottom.” (Story here on pp.40-42) That night, the very one that Satan thought he had me, God came to my rescue. Through a series of events He revealed himself to me, and over time began to fill my life with more hope and purpose than I ever dreamed possible.
Friends, you don’t have to tell me sometimes life gets hard. Try looking at the corner of your living room every day, here where I have my quiet time, and see your youngest son’s remains sitting in an urn; or try coming home from work only to see the love of your life laying in bed, feeling so weak she can hardly move. Sometimes I just feel like screaming, but then I come here each morning and sit in the presence of God, and He reminds me of all the times He has been there for me; how He once saved my life, literally, and how He WILL be here through EVERY challenging moment of my life. This morning I woke up around 4 am and the first thought that came in my mind were the words, “I am the Lord your God, I will uphold you with my mighty right hand.” I assume those thoughts came from Isaiah 41:10, but I know it was my God, knowing my thoughts, reminding me that He is here, and this is NOT how my story will end.
Depression is an ugly monster that so many people battle. Let me encourage those of you struggling, to seek help and seek it immediately. Do not allow yourself to be left alone with your thoughts, because when you are feeling depressed, you are not thinking clearly, and you may end up making a decision that you cannot take back. I look in the corner at the urn that was once an amazing young man, with an entire life ahead of him. (Here is his tribute video). We had all just had a birthday dinner with him less than two hours before he took his life. He was loved by so many of us, yet he had fallen victim to this ugly disease, and it stole something very precious from us all, but most of all robbed him of a lifetime of experiencing all the amazing things God had planned for his future.
As this saying in the picture states, “At any given moment you have the power to say this is not how my story is going to end.” Since December 31, 2008 the Lord has given me this platform to share my life with you. Many of you have been reading my story as it has unfolded, and have seen first hand how amazing our God has been in our lives. You have witnessed the tragedies, and watched God pull us from the ashes time and time again. Isaiah 40:31 says, “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” That has been our story, and WILL continue to be our story, because we KNOW, beyond a shadow of a doubt, just how amazing our God is, and I can’t wait to show you ALL the amazing things He has planned for our future. (Jeremiah 29:11)
One thing you need to know is, God loves you more that you can possibly comprehend. He created you for a purpose, and has an amazing future planned just for you. What I learned is, where we mess up is when we try to write our own story, instead of letting God be the Author. But when we learn to simply live the life He has planned for us, it can be so amazing. I once wanted my life to end, but when I gave my life to Christ, and handed the pen to Him, my story began to have life, and an abundant one at that (John 10:10). For the past 27 years I have experienced an amazing journey, and want nothing more than for you to do the same. Jesus is standing at the door knocking (Revelation 3:20), the question is, will you let Him in? Trust me when I say, that is one door you will want to open!
From my heart to yours!