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Monday, March 02, 2009

My Story Monday--He Came for Me

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Crying myself to sleep at night became my norm at a very young age. Beginning as early as I can remember bedtime brought with it tears. The darkness would overwhelm me as the day's disappointment flooded forth as vivid memories flooded the recesses of my mind. Millions upon millions of tears. Night after night after night. Year after year after year.

Middle school. High school. College. Post college. Marriage. Babies. No good thing removed the overwhelming sadness that shadowed my days with darkness. Not a paralyzing darkness. Just a dulling sadness. One that gave even sunny days a grayish tint.

For most of those years, I begged God to stop the tears. To take away the pain. Remove the haunting memories of failure after failure and the unending disappointments. I tried different rounds of counseling with different pastors. Some helped. Some prayed. Some stared.

The one thing I never did was admit the deepness of my weakness. Even my closest friends and roommates had no idea of the despair that threatened to swallow me up on a regular basis. I was a hold-it-all-together type person. I just didn't know if things could ever be different for me. Or better. I just picked myself up by the bootstraps and continued to survive the race called life.

By my adult years I began to accept this teary, sad state as my own. My lot in life. Where I was called to live. It just was. Had always been. May always be. Resignation set in and hopelessness took over. Oh the lies!

Then I went to a ladies retreat. I asked for prayer, personal ministry. I always ask. I never want to be in a place God is moving and miss anything He would say to me. Never.

Here, a beautiful sister in Christ laid her hands on me and prayed. She prayed many things but I mostly remember one. She, not knowing anything about my life, prayed that "the dark cloud that had always hung over my head would be lifted and my eyes would see clearly and I would live, once and for all, out of the shadows." She prayed that "the nights of crying myself to sleep alone would be no more."

God used her that night to deliver me. He freed me from depression right there. Instantly. On the spot I saw differently. I was different. I felt different. I was changed. Lighter. Clearer. Freer. Victorious.

I still struggle with sadness, loneliness and crying from time to time but I recognize it sooner and view it in a different light. When I feel despair, resignation and hopelessness threaten to overwhelm me, I repent, confessing my lack of hope as a sin.

Even though depression is not ever far from me, it no longer threatens to destroy me. It no longer holds me captive to myself or holds me as a hostage from sharing with others. For you see, God made me stronger that night. In Him. He handed me victory to live. He gave the taste of freedom I needed to no longer settle for a lie. He showed me He heard my cries. He had heard me that night and all the nights before that. He set me on a higher place in Him. He took me from depression to deliverance. He showed me how very much He cares.

He came for me.

"I waited and waited and waited for God. At last he looked; finally he listened. He lifted me out of the ditch, pulled me from deep mud. He stood me up on a solid rock to make sure I wouldn't slip. He taught me how to sing the latest God-song, a praise-song to our God. More and more people are seeing this: they enter the mystery, abandoning themselves to God." Psalm 40:1-3

"The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give (her) a rich and satisfying life." John 10:10


Laura said...

What a beautiful story of how He used another to be His hands and voice for you, Lisa! Sometimes, when we are "holding it all together", I think He is just waiting until we loosen our grip and hold out our hands so He can gift us amazingly, Amen?

He holds you in His hands!


Lora said...

I praise His Name for your awesome testimony Lisa!

Kathryn, Michael and Alex said...

The victory is His...praise the Lord, I love hearing your story and knowing you!!

LisaShaw said...

Often we find that He was in fact there all the time we only needed to surrender and believe that He truly wants to carry our burdens. Praise God for your testimony and the woman whom the LORD flowed through to deliver you.

Isn't our LORD amazing?! Yes He is!

Blessings sister.

Renee said...

We have so much in common regarding things that it is just amazing. It is so comforting to know that God is there and He will never leave us or forsake us no matter what we are going through. Through my darkness I found out things about myself that I probably would not have if I hadn't gone through it! Thankfully He constantly reminds me of His grace and mercy!

Edie said...

Hi Lisa! I came over here to say congratulations to you for writing the winning turtle story at B His Girl. It really was the best.

Then I got captivated by your story here. You had me in tears. I went though a long season of depression but found that the closer I get to God, the less prone I am.

I'm so glad He delivered you.

Rich blessings to you!!

Sandy at God Speaks Today said...

Uh...seriously, long, lost sister o' mine. Did you read my post today, by chance????

This is getting weirder and weirder.

We HAVE to meet in person. For real.


Deanna said...

What a beautiful testimony! I believe in deliverance like that. I can relate to much you wrote!

But praise God Jesus Lives and we Live because of Him! We can smile because of Him! I love the Psalm you included in this post :O)

Nice meeting you!!

Blessings in Him,