I am chosen. I am loved. I have a God-given purpose in this world. These are things I should have complete confidence in because The Lord has proven them to me a thousand times. I should, but last week, I didn’t. Up until Sunday morning, I’d been feeling extra lonely, second rate, and even more burdensome. I’ve struggled with these dark thoughts for my entire life. They ring in my ears each time my parents unintentionally take the stress of my daily care out on me or when someone incredibly important to me makes me feel like I’m second fiddle in their life. Both happened at the same time last week, and opened the window to the cold whispers always waiting to paralyze me. The condemning voices that I try so hard to guard against managed to worm their way back into my head. You’re never gonna be anyone’s first choice. Your book isn’t gonna really help anybody. You’re just a lot of work. I stopped writing or working on anything productive, and spent the next few days combating my thoughts by trying to talk with God about my feelings of inferiority and reading the Word, but mostly hiding from them and just binge watching Jane the Virgin. It helped a little because the central character is a struggling writer with deep convictions of faith. I can completely relate to her many moments of self doubt and desire to hear “Be brave” from a strong and devoted love.
Then, as I went to my iPad to turn on the Livestream for Sunday service at Highlands Church, I mumbled, “Lord, please tell me something…” And like He so often does, Jesus immediately answered me with a song. Tears splattered everywhere as I sang “Graves Into Gardens” (lyric video below) along with the worship team. With the first verse (written out below), He reminded me that He chose me first, before anyone else in my life. His Love and desire for me is the one that really matters because it determines every other thing. It will never wain or be overshadowed by the dream of something or someone better.
I searched the world
But it couldn’t fill me
Man’s empty praise and treasures that fade
Are never enough
Then You came along
And put me back together
And every desire is now satisfied
Here in Your love (hey)
And the very next song also reminded me that even when I feel the most disabled, Jesus will never fail me. I couldn’t help but cry again through the first verse of “Yes I will”:
I count on one thing
The same God that never fails
Will not fail me now
You won’t fail me now
In the waiting
The same God who’s never late
Is working all things out
You’re working all things out
As if it wasn’t clear enough, the day’s message was about the purpose in our work. Once again, God reminded me that my circumstances, suffering, and limitations all have a purpose. They refine my character, so I can become more like Jesus and give more people hope. My work is sharing my story so people can see Grace in the broken, imperfect pieces and then helping them find the courage to the same for others. With that said, I’m excited and grateful to tell you the Kickstater for publishing my memoir, Rolling in Grace has met its goal with four days to go! I feel like God granted me a miracle just to make sure I’m listening.
Speaking of miracles, I’m going to take a leap of faith and say I believe God intends to do more with this book than I can even imagine, so if you’d still like to donate before 11:59 on Sunday, November 15, 2020, it would be a blessing. The extra funds would allow me to spread the word and order more copies to give away. I’m am amazed and humbled by the outpouring of love and support I’ve received for this project and I pray it’s a profound blessing for all who read it.