It should be noted that as I set out on this journey, seeking God (and finding Him) I am leaving behind years of bad habits and altogether damaging behavior. I'm not gonna lie, I had some serious fun. Turns out sometimes, serious fun leads to serious consequences. Who knew?
So many times I've asked God, ever so politely, to wave His magic wand and make it easy for me to leave those ways behind. I've asked nicely if He would please just erase the past and overwhelm me with peace and happiness and rainbows as I skipped along the road to recovery. And when He didn't, I'd generally say, "Well, screw it, might as well go my way."
But my way NEVER WORKS. Awhile back, I found myself ending a relationship for the millionth/final time. Oh, wait, no. I found that really, he was ending the relationship, and I was (almost literally) kicking and screaming, begging for another chance. Another chance for what, exactly, I couldn't tell you. To go back in time a few years? To be swept away from God yet again by another guy who didn't believe? To give up everything my heart has desired since I was a litle girl for a man who didn't really love me? Regardless, I was begging for it. I was wide awake, alone, and a little hungover on that man's bed at 5am. He was snoring on the couch. A text came from a friend/angel, telling me to please, just get up and walk away. I told her I wished I had a hand to hold. She told me she wished she could be there, but GOD was.
And the tears that came then...oh my. Not tears of sadness of anger(though those would come too) but tears of absolute relief. It was as though God had put me right in that apartment, in that moment, to tell me it was just TIME. To let me know He missed me, and if I didn't mind, could He possibly show me what REAL love looks like? And while He's at it, could he show me what HE has planned for my life? Plans to give me "a hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11).
And I've felt Him with me every moment since. Even as I struggle to obey Him, He's there. The hardest part now is recognizing that the changes He is making are not quick fixes. I will be no overnight transformation. And I have to be honest, it gets ROUGH. Tough to meet a cute guy in a bar and not revert back to my old scripts and patterns. Tough to receive texts from my ex and not drop the phone and run directly to his house and try to convince us both that another try is not a bad idea. Tough to miss said ex and sit STILL with that feeling, and a million others that circle in my head. Tough to let it hurt without seeking the band-aids and temporary fixes I've used before.
I blocked him from my phone yesterday. In other words, Hell froze over. I am denying one of the people that meant the most to me for so long the right to even communicate with me, because time alone has still not healed me. This is the first thing I've knowingly done, fully aware that it was going to hurt, going to suck, and going to be impossible for me to handle alone. The first thing I gave directly to God, because there's no way I could ever get through it without Him. And He is with me all the time. I can go to him when I'm faltering, when slideshows of the past few years and what I perceived "might have been" with this person (and others) start playing in my mind. He is there. He's not wiping the memories away, or making it easy, but He's there. And I'm starting to see that though in some places it's more obvious, there is not a corner or crack of my life in which I don't need His help.
And I'm so grateful. If I wasn't so painfully aware that He is carrying me, if I thought I could walk alone, I would not be discovering this love the way I am now. I wouldn't trade it for the world.