To give back (someone or something that was lost or taken); to return (someone or something); to put or bring (something) back into existence or use; to return (something) to an earlier or original condition by repairing it, cleaning it, etc.
I walked into Clark’s office and was broken, tattered and completely TORN! I needed Jesus. I needed a friend. I needed to be restored. May God bless the life of this man that helped me get through it! Forever thankful. He said AGAIN–what is it that you are here for? What is your focus? I said these three things. I need to focus on restoration, identity and letting go!
Here we can begin the process of restoration. Except from “Rebuilt: Beginning the Ending”
A little reminder on my wrist. I cherish this little bracelet, that says in script the one thing that will never fail – L O V E! Which now makes the only permanent mark I have and I am more than okay with that. There are things that I have done far worse than this and are erasable by the power of His blood.
In order to be restored – LOVE must cover us. Several times in experiencing brokenness, we had come to recognize that we had lost this at some point. This causes heartbreak, pain and loss. We end up spending so much time running from life because we are grieving. No one likes to grieve but it is necessary to pass through any form of loss. We lose validation, trust, friends, family, finances, opportunities and so many other sources that we had at one point heavily relied upon.
I know that in my writings I can be very raw and perhaps many will not approve. But this is my story. This was a mandate to release the words in this book. As I found healing, so will many others. This is my testimony that I am sharing with those that I know need to hear it. The scars that I thought would mark me in the worst way became testimonies of how God continuously came through for me.
I will repeat the words of a new covenant brother in Christ as he encouraged me and shared, “Only one who is restored can be a restorer. That’s why it had to be you,” Apostle Femi Adun.
Listen… the world is not perfect and neither shall we ever be. That is why we ALL need a savior. But when you are broken, you need the healer! You need the helper to cover you. That is what I found. In hurting people, in hurting myself and putting such a huge dent in my sphere I had to know that there was something and someone that I could turn to FIRST! I am thankful that my immediate family had received me…they were hurt but they received me. I am thankful that God led me to good friends and counselors to breathe back life into me. There is nothing wrong with seeking help! We need that! And if you feel like you’re going crazy then seek professional help too! Whatever it takes to get you to wholeness, use it! Don’t feel bad about that for one minute. I had professional counseling for two years. I seek counsel STILL from trusted mentors and others that I know are stronger in areas that I lack. This is all a matter of perception. Seeking counsel doesn’t mean you are crazy, it means you consciously recognize you need help.
This way when you bounce back you will see how you are going to be a strong source for others too. God uses all these situations to strengthen us that we may live a victorious life. The love that He demonstrated for us to get there is the door we walk through to begin that restoration process. I am eternally gratefully that I came to truly embrace and understand the love of God during a time like this.
Your expectation for restoration will not just come from people. They will not be all of it for you. It is just a help. They are not perfect. We all fall short. I will never be everything for someone and they will never be everything for me. God will be everything for EVERYONE. With all our broken pieces we come together to be made whole.
Let’s not lose sight of this truth.
Because His love is greater!
Every time we put that love into the hands and trust of others, we give them the power to destroy us… and if you love them enough you can trust that they won’t. The reality is that it will happen when people do not meet all of our expectations.
This message that I share is not geared to the one that is righteous, the one that has it all together, the one that already won the battle and is standing valiantly and triumphantly. Everyone has their own story of how they conquered. This is for the one that is seeking validation and understanding just as I did! This is for the one that needs to be restored right now or needs that constant reminder.
If you were broken, torn, rejected, abandoned, sinful, hurtful, angry, tormented, hated, afraid, depressed, dying, cheated on, lied to or betrayed then this message is for you. This pain can hit the heights especially when it is done by those closest to us and we are standing there asking, “WHY? Why God?”
I lived that life. I was not perfect and I am not ashamed to share what God has freed me from. I suffered with many addictions and struggles and that left me to search for comfort in every other place that was apart from the ways of God. Yes—even AS a Christian because I was also one that was hurt by Christians! I rebelled. I didn’t know how to cope and accept that they too needed redemption. I came from a very dark past and when I got to the church instead of things getting lighter for me they got darker.
You know for too long we allow people to manipulate, criticize and destroy us. The enemy will use anyone to do that with you. Be free of that manipulating and critical spirit! Don’t give room or permission for someone to bombard you with their own personal convictions, ways of doing things and rules—seek God for that! You are different and will have another means of doing things that work best for you. And it will be right, when you do it God’s way!
I remember one day sitting in a church and hearing the preacher share on forgiveness. I sat there in uncontrollable tears once again as he looked me square in the eye summarizing these words, “Forgive them, because it will only allow you the freedom to forgive yourself. You are there so that God can use that opportunity to display His love.”
They also are not perfect and I had to find a way to love those that hurt me as well. This is a part of us maturing in our walk with the Lord. That piece will need to be strengthened for us as well. Or we will be year after year carrying pains and becoming bitter for things we have done or what was done to us. We must let go.
I needed to recover from all the hurt that everyone in all my life had caused me. I needed love, forgiveness and that redemptive power that only Christ could bring me in a perfect way.
I have been through men. I have been through the drugs. I have been through the alcohol. I have been through the suicide thoughts and attempts. I have been through the running. I have been through the carousing. I have been through all of that and yes in the church I did all of that too. But God set me apart. God snatched me from living that type of life. He freed me and forgave me. Now I live for Him. I live a life of recovery.
Who is to say I would not fall again? Could I? Certainly! We all can be susceptible. But I am not pressing for that, cultivating that, entertaining that or living for that. Changes were made in my life whether I wanted them or not. All vulnerabilities are surrendered to God. That is a must.
I want a happy family—in Christ.
I want my children to love and respect me—in Christ.
I want my husband to love me unconditionally—in Christ.
I want my brothers and sisters to see me as integral—in Christ.
And so I canceled out everything that was a hindrance. It has been one of the deepest years in my life now. I DON’T want to mess that up for anyone—most importantly, myself. Because the one that it impacted the most was ME! I don’t want to hurt or hinder my relationship with God. I came this far and I am going to remain in His presence.
Just as David wrote in Psalm 51:4, “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight; so you are right in your verdict and justified when you judge.”
We are not going back! I am not going back. I do remember rock bottom!!! But I also remember meeting Jesus Christ, my rock, my fortress, my savior and my deliver RIGHT AT THAT BOTTOM. I am able to be thankful and grateful for His saving strength. I am okay with admitting that I am weak. I am okay with admitting where I need to be strengthened. If I was not weak, I would never be able to experience the strength of God. And that is what I see evident in my life now. That is what counts. Because of the love of God.
He recovered us to get us into recovery!
“New Day New Me Recovery Journal” by Mike Shea