Have you ever looked around and just asked yourself “How did I get here?” Maybe your life hasn’t played out the way you planned it to. That’s perfectly okay, especially if you’ve given your life to Christ. I’ve come to realize that there is such a beauty in crumbled plans since God is the ultimate Creator and no one can top His infinite wisdom. So it’s always best to embrace His plan for our life, and remember that as Alpha and Omega, He knows our end from our beginning.
- (Age 17; Senior year of high school; DEAD in my sins; crowd-follower; people-pleaser)
- (Age 19; post-pregnancy; Lost my hair due to the medicines I was on in the hospital! This picture shows how deep I was in sin. The passion marks on my neck makes it so evident. I was disobedient. I was in a bad place.)
- (Age 23; married; Alive in Christ; This picture was taken in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It was there that I received my wing name Restored. I was in a Christian sorority at the time and I didn’t know the weight behind that name.)
- (Age 26; single; Living to please God; Pursuing purpose!)
I was 21-years-old when I gave my life to Christ! Before I surrendered, my life was in such a mess and I didn’t even realize the danger that I was in. I was bound and I thought I was free! That’s how the enemy gets you though! I loved my chains more than I loved God. Clearly my heart was far from Him. But on the night I surrendered my life to Christ, things changed. After believing all that Christ did for me, I was ready to live in obedience to God and follow Him. I wanted to know who I was in His eyes and the life He’d predestined for me. Since I was living in sin and the conviction was hitting me so strong, I told my boyfriend that I couldn’t keep living that way. I was ready to venture out, even if it meant leaving him behind. But he surrendered his life to Christ and we got married not too long after that!
Three months after saying “I do”, I ended up in the hospital fighting for my life. I was scheduled to have an appendectomy on a cold morning in December. I remember the ride to the hospital with my grandpa and mom. I just knew I was going to be okay! But after being discharged the following day with a high fever, low blood pressure and a high heart rate, I was in for a surprise. For Christmas I was in so much pain to the point that I didn’t want to do anything but lie around and take pain meds. Thank God my then-husband knew something was wrong. I was transported to the hospital via ambulance where the doctors discovered that my body was over 80% septic. I was taken down for an emergency surgery and later placed in ICU. I was later airlifted to another hospital for better care. I was admitted to the other hospital on December 31st, 2011 and I stayed in ICU over a month. The entire hospitalization lasted a total of 7 months with two short breaks. It was a tough time for me, as well as for my family. On top of that, the doctors literally gave up on me as if everything was out of their hands and there was nothing else that they could possibly do. Can you imagine someone telling you that your child isn’t going to make it and it’s time to call in the family? My mom wasn’t having it! She was a woman of strength and faith and she refused to believe that I was going to die. I recovered and I remember her standing over me telling me to repeat three times, “By Jesus’ stripes, I am healed.” I had tubes everywhere–my mouth and my nose. I had to mumble the words the best way that I could. She stood over me with tears in her eyes but I knew she believed those very words.
After being released from the hospital the second time, I came home with a hole in my stomach. I had to wear a colostomy bag and briefs and I was also confined to my bed for a while. I wasn’t defecating as a normal person. Nothing was passing all the way through to my bottom so it all went into the bag. In all of that, I was 98 pounds, nothing but bones literally. I had to build my strength up and I had a walker and a wheelchair to help me get around.
A year later (July 2013) I was scheduled to have my colostomy reversed, which required skin to be grafted from my leg to help close my stomach. The surgery was a success because that night after the surgery, I had my first bowel movement from my bottom in over a year! I was one happy camper.
Less than a month later, my then-husband and I decided to part ways. But after we divorced I knew life wasn’t going to stop and I had to get myself together and move forward. I moved to Georgia for a new start for me and my son. A year after moving, my mom passed away! I know that He allows all things to happen for a reason and I truly believe that everything will work out for my good!
The question is “How did I get here?” Four words come to mind: GREAT IS THY FAITHFULNESS! Even when I was living in total rebellion to Him, He saw fit to save me! He’s saved me from the hands of death. Even in my walk with Him, He has delivered me from things that I’ve gotten myself into. There have been moments that I’ve stepped outside of God’s will due to my own ignorance and oftentimes disobedience. But time after time He has extended His hand to help me back up. It’s not because of me! It’s all because of Him. I got to the place that I am today because of Him, His strength, His Word…just Him in general! Great is Thy faithfulness! I should be dead right now…BUT GOD!
I pray that you can realize you’ve gotten to where you are today because of Him! I’m sure He’s saved you from things that were meant to claim your life, as He has with me! What better way to honor Him and show Him graditude than to live in obedience to Him? There is so much peace, protection, and provision in Him.
He could’ve allowed me to die in my sins and I would’ve landed straight in hell, a place I’m sure none of us want to live for eternity. Instead, He extended His love, grace, and mercy to me. He’s comtinuing to show me that He can give me way more than what the world offers! In Him there is freedom. In Him there is joy! In Him, I can receive all that I need! You can too! You first have to make the decision to reach out and take hold of His hand and walk with Him. Receive His forgiveness and receive His love! He has great things in store for you!
Great is Thy faithfulness!