God is a gracious, merciful and generous God who loves his children in both our darkest times and in those times of great joy. Seventeen years ago, I was working two jobs, earning my masters degree, and trying to care for my disabled mother. If you follow my blog, then you know that my own health challenges were thrown into the mix as well. I was working as a Christian High School history teacher but the salary was modest so I had to acquire a second job at a large chain department store. It felt as if everyone were taking a piece from my soul and leaving me drained and empty. Additionally, my health had begun to spiral downward and my depression spiked.
Several things are true about a very strong person. They can handle many things at once and they are expert jugglers of life’s problems. Others look toward them for guidance, strength and support. A strong person is extremely hard to cause to fall completely because they have had plenty of practice in falling and getting back up…just one more time. However, when a person of great strength finally succumbs to the burdens of life that same stubborn persistence that kept him up convinces him to stay down. It is excruciatingly difficult to convince this person of strength to get back up! Satan loves to take a strong Christian out because everyone who looked to them is also wounded.
Seventeen years ago, I fell and did not want to get back up. Oh, I knew I had the strength to brush myself off and begin once again but I had zero desire to do it. My breaking point was the mere thought that God had turned his back on me and that all my life’s sufferings and challenges were without purpose. My hope was completely gone and I actively tried to leave this world. It was an incredibly dark and desperate time in my life and in the lives of all those who loved me. I had to quit my second job at the department store as my mental, emotional, and spiritual stability depended upon reducing the number of people/places drawing upon my spirit.
Leaving that hospital for the final time, I had promised God and my family that I would never try to take my life again. I promised God that I would wait to go home until he decided it was time but I pled with him in earnest agony for him to reveal two critical things to me. I needed to know there was purpose to my physical, spiritual, and emotional suffering. I needed to know how the pieces fit together and I needed him to reveal, at least in part, how my pain, my family’s pain, and my friend’s pain fit. He has blessed me over and again in answer to that prayer. I pursue my God and his will for my life in earnest because that is the ONLY place where purpose can be discovered. I had also asked a secondary prayer. I had asked God to show me examples of godly men in this world. No, I was not interested in using God as a matchmaker but I needed to see that godly men, men pursuing God’s will for their lives, existed. He has also blessed me in revealing not only many good men but also many godly, good women as well. I use ‘good’ as a human descriptive as God tells us no human is ‘good’. Only God, himself, is capable of being good. Nevertheless, he has overwhelmed my life with so many loving, godly people and I am extremely grateful for His continuing diligence in answering those prayers in an affirmative nature.
Today, December 19, 2016, I received a letter from a class action suit against the large chain department store where I had worked during that dark time in my life. I had no clue this suit even existed and had zero expectation of receiving any kind of money. Today, I opened a check for $500! I live in modest means so this amount of money is akin to thousands to me and its timely arrival just before Christmas was no less than miraculous. My greatest joy is born of giving so to receive this money enabled me to give to others. God knows my heart; he knows what brings me joy and happiness. He put a plan into motion 17 years ago, that would allow me to gift to others. He is beyond good to me and I am deeply humbled by his awesome generosity. It may not seem like a miracle to some of you but I assure you that this IS a miracle and I will be eternally grateful to my Father for giving me the gift of giving. Thank you Jesus for loving me in my darkest hour and planning ahead when I did not want a future! Wow, I am completely blown away. I had to share this miracle with all of you because even when we believe our lives are spiraling out of control, God has us in his loving embrace. He has each of our steps in his care, if we choose to trust him. Merry Christmas and a very, very Blessed New Year!