I’d truly be lying if I tried to say that life over the last months have been easy. The journey has been something I could never have imagined even if I tried. During the whirlwind of life that overtook me when Dad was diagnosed with cancer, and passed away, God stretched me to the point of breaking, yet never allowed me to feel alone. He never allowed me to feel unloved, or hopeless. Rather, in the midst of a raging storm, He nurtured my soul and allowed me to grow.
As I gaze at my “war wall”, I see the reminders of how God cared for me. Messages such as “I can’t but God can” adorn my wall. Reminders of while I am weak, He is strong. Commands to Rejoice in the Lord always jump off the wall at me. Yet, I see one card that was different from the others. Psalm 56:8 You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. You have recorded each one in Your book.” That small note card written in peacock-blue ink speaks volumes to me, because it changed my feelings about the grief and pain I was experiencing. Those three sentences remind me of how much my Father loves me. You see, He wouldn’t keep track of my sorrows, collect my tears, and record each one in His book if my pain didn’t hurt His heart too.
I remember hearing my pastor preach about the purpose of trials in our lives…storms. He said that God uses the storms to draw us closer to Him. It’s all about strengthening our faith. I remember hearing those words during a Wednesday night service just after Dad has passed away, and feeling my eyes well up with tears. As they streaked down my numb cheeks, God spoke to my heart. He told me that this storm had a mighty purpose, and it was about so much more than just loosing my Dad. It was about becoming a missionary…a warrior for Christ. And from that moment forward my life has never been the same.
Gazing at my “war wall”, I see that God even directed the placement of my cards and notes. For just above Psalm 56:8, I see John 15:16, “You did not choose Me but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should remain…” It’s written in a bright green pen. Now I know that green is for growth. Like the young seedlings popping up during this beautiful spring season, I too was going to be growing in my season of life. Growing, going, and bearing fruit.
The chronicles of my walk with God may have changed from blog posts, to snippets on Instagram and Twitter, but something else changed as well. God called me to enter a new means of communication. This digital media was something the girl who grew up back when the library and a typewriter were the only way to research and write. Now, I was entering a new stage of life. Little did I know that it would also be a new way of ministering; going and bearing fruit.
When I couldn’t begin to write down words to describe the way I was feeling, I was able to take pictures of scripture passages in my Bible and notes that I had written to describe what God was showing me. Like most people in this digital age, those pictures were shared on my social media pages. Not at first with a real purpose, other than to say “yep, so this is what I’m doing”. Oh, but mighty God had different plans. The Word of God became more alive than ever before for me. As I posted my thoughts and pictures, other women began commenting on how much they appreciated the information. Then, women started asking questions…they began seeking my teachings about God.
As healing from grief began to envelop my spirit, something even greater took over. Excitement! Excitement that a women who never thought she’d be on mission outside of her church, found herself on mission all around the world. Yep! Right from the comfort of my favorite spot to study, with my Bible, colored pens, and highlighters beside me, I started going on mission for God!
Small thought snippets began to expand to longer observations. Then, came the use of live video feeds for teaching God’s Word and leading Bible study. I found myself excited to be planting seeds, and hearing of how they were growing. One morning I awoke to a message on Instagram from a young woman in Kenya. The next day came a message from a women in South Africa. My spirit leaped for joy! God’s Word was reaching around the world. I was doing what He called me to do, and I was crazy excited while doing it!
God continues to direct my steps each day. He is showing me new ways of communicating and sharing His message and His promises. He has also told me to open up to going out and sharing His word by speaking, and to get that book written He has told me to prepare for years. He’s also convinced me of something else. Even in the darkest, most tumultuous storms, He is with me. My God will never let me go. “…Even the winds and the sea obey Him…” Matthew 8:27 Now it’s time for me to stop arguing with Him regarding the call He has on my life and obey Him.
I’m no longer afraid of where God’s call might lead. He has given me complete peace through my faith in Him. Yes, there are still days when I break down in tears while my spirit is healing from the beating it took during the storm. Yet somehow that doesn’t make me feel bad anymore. My tears are healing, and God cares about them. My spirit is healing, and God cares about it too. Yes, I think I’m learning to “Rejoice in the Lord always…” as Philippians 4:4 says. For even in the greatest storm, I’ve been able to grow. And in that time of growth, I’m able to go and bear fruit. It’s my job given directly from Him. Then He blessed me with the sweetest song deep within my soul. My reward will one day come. “I can almost hear the trumpet. At the Midnight Cry, I’ll be going home.”
Thank You Lord!