I began following Jesus after my first child was born. God grew me in my faith right alongside my children as they grew up in church. I started serving in pre-school, children, and youth ministries until God had me step out a couple years ago when I agreed to be part of a women’s writing team for a study on Psalm 46:10. I would be jumping in the deep end without my floaties, and trusting God with His plans for me.
I have no problems talking to strangers, or oversharing for that matter. But one of the hardest parts of the study was the moment I had to stand up and publicly give a little insight into myself. Now mind you, I am typically comfortable speaking in front of large groups of children or teenagers, but these were women: Godly women, women of all ages, backgrounds, gifts, wisdom, and status in our church and community. When I got up on that stage, I was physically shaking and terrified. I heard it in my unsteady voice. The enemy was on full attack mode and whispering all sorts of doubts and telling me how unqualified I was to speak to others. I persevered, and what you are about to read, was what I read aloud to a full room of ladies whose eyes were parked on me.
About 7 years ago, I was in a bad place and stayed there for some time. I felt alone, I had health issues, and feelings of failure for quitting my job as a Jr. High science teacher, and at the bottom of my spiral down I was on the verge of ending my 20 year marriage. Thankfully, I sought help. At the conclusion of my very first session with a Christian counselor he told me these 3 things about myself:
- I have Mommy issues
- I have abandonment issues
- I didn’t have a voice.
The first two were well realized, and self diagnosed years before. However, I wrestled with that last one for a while. I didn’t have a voice? How is that possible? I didn’t keep things in, I’m an open book. But I soon realized that for most of my life I wasn’t being heard, or not by the people that mattered most. I began writing then as part of my therapy. It didn’t start out great either. There was some ugly crying, ripping up papers, and what I like to call “serious butt time.” A nice way to put it is that a whole lot of time, and work has gone into the transformation and healing I have experienced.
But you know what? I found my voice in writing. I found that despite my ADHD tendencies, I could focus when I dove into pen what started out in a old partially used cheap spiral notebook. I found that I naturally began writing to my audience of ONE. My therapeutic writing, pouring my guts out morphed into prayers and meditation and lessons from God.
My intimacy with the Lord has grown exponentially over the years. Early each morning my time with God isn’t just a luxury, or a box to check on my Christian to-do list. Plain and simple, it is hard work, takes time, but it is worth all of the effort and has become a daily necessity for me. Why? Because HE hears me. He always has time for me. He extends grace. He created me and loves me beyond measure. He is mine and I am His. He will never leave me, nor abandon me. Jesus is all I need.
To be continued…Finding My Voice (conclusion)
After my obedience in posting I’m back, I was prompted to make an entry every day until God tells me to stop with the daily submission for public viewing. I want to keep it short, so tomorrow check back to read the closing of this public testimony. Have a blessed day, and know that you are not alone.