I fell into a slump on my kitchen table, tears streaming down my face. I was overwhelmed by the experiences and trials of the previous 10 months. I’d lived through the biggest storm of my life and now, God was calling me to use them to reach another.
I cried out to God, for all those who were hurting. I asked him to reach them, heal them & give them a new beginning with him. I told him I was ready to be used in whatever way he called- I just wanted to see their freedom from pain. I wasn’t praying for anyone in particular- simply for those who were living through the darkest part of life. I wanted so badly to take away what they were feeling. My very soul was being torn with empathy for them.
The night before this, I’d spent with a friend of a friend, who had recently separated from her husband. I watched, as she clung to the worldly things we tend to rely on for satisfaction when our world falls apart. She wanted the attention of another man- someone to help her feel that she was worthy, that she had the ability to create the “wow” factor amongst the men she met.
Beneath the surface, what she really wanted, was someone to hold her and tell her that she was beautiful and that she didn’t deserve the pain she was enduring. She wanted to know that it was okay to grieve for the man she really wanted. It hurt me so very deeply to see she didn’t realise this.
As I sat with her the next morning, I listened to her talking out all that she was feeling. I could feel all the hurt that she was experiencing, after all, I’d recently lived through the same scenario myself. She was feeling completely rejected, shattered and fearful of the future. I understood these feelings and assured her that each day, each hour even, was one step closer to happiness again.
She questioned me about my own recovery. I told her that I both loved and hated the time of separation from my husband.
I hated the pain I lived with. I hated the uncertainty of the situation. I hated being a young, single mother. I hated that I was the only person to get up to two screaming children in the middle of the night. I resented my husband for leaving me to handle such a huge responsibility while he slept all night in his own bed.
I hated that I had to rely on government benefits to make it financially for my kids- there was initially such shame in living this way. I hated that I had no one to communicate with when I was feeling scared, anxious or simply, down.
I hated that my friends were only just getting married and I’d lived through a marriage, babies & now Divorce. I hated that they didn’t understand my situation. There was so much that I hated, I could have gone on and on and possibly not stopped. But I didn’t, I had so much else to focus on.
I spoke softly and began telling her about the transformation my life had taken. I told her that the God of all knew what my life would entail. He knew I’d hit this point in my life, he knew I’d experience this pain and he was ready. He had my family and friends ready to support me- spiritually, emotionally & financially. There were so many blessings despite the pain and I went on to tell her of those.
My parents owned the house I lived in and I was able to rent from them. They also had shares they’d actually forgotten about and sold them to buy me a cheap car. I was given money and hampers filled with nappies, wipes and bottles for my babies. I had meals cooked for my family & I. I had begun accepting government benefits- yes, it shook my pride, but I was being provided for and God was breaking through my judgemental attitude and showing me we are all equal below the surface of finances and worldly possessions.
I had people praying for me that I’d never even met before. I was completely moved by the way God was providing for me.
On an emotional and spiritual level I saw God at work like I’d never seen before. Before my husband had walked out, I’d arranged a counselling session with a local counsellor to discuss issues related to post-natal depression. At the time, I was told there would be a three week wait before I could begin. By the time the three weeks had rolled around, my husband had told me he was leaving and I had so much else to discuss with my counsellor.
I also made contact with a dating agency for Christians, explaining that in no way was I ready for dating, but I was in search of a support group for people in my situation. By chance, the person I spoke to had met the leader of a DivorceCare group only two days previously and referred me onto him.
All along God had my recovery planned, I’d been blessed, loved and most amazingly, had come to realise that I was completely worthy in God’s eyes. I was his, I was special and no one could love me the way he did. I had such a sense of peace sharing this with my friend’s friend.
I could feel myself smile from within as I spoke, the peace God had granted me becoming so real once more. She asked me many questions about this God I knew. I answered all that I could, praying that God would take over and speak the words he wanted spoken.
Both of us were challenged in some way that morning. The shattered soul before me was challenged to experience a love she’d never known previously and I was challenged to bring before God, all those that were hurting.
As a sat alone at my kitchen table I cried the deepest of prayers. Peace swept over me as I felt that in fact, I wasn’t alone. I felt a hand touch my right shoulder as I prayed. I wasn’t fearful, I was filled with peace and smiled as I realised that again, my God was ready for my burdened soul.
Reflecting back on that moment, I thank God that he never leaves us in utter despair. I thank him that he knows our whole life and provides all our needs. I thank him that he can use a shattered soul like mine for the purpose of showing others who he is and how amazing his love can be when we allow ourselves to accept it.
I pray as I type this, that all who need that love get to experience it. This would be my greatest prayer answered.
Dear one, the words, "God had my recovery planned" lit up your sharing! It also was a light that swept through my past, up to my present! Praise such a wonderful and wise God, who can lead us through pain, hurt and rejection; Right into His loving arms and family. Thank you for sharing! You are blessed.