Updated: Aug 1, 2022
Memories are wonderful, often bittersweet reflections on past experiences and events. Now, as I am growing older, when I am walking through a significant life experience like Ray’s marriage proposal to me in 2020, our subsequent wedding, and most recently, the twins’ graduations from high school, I try very hard to “hyper focus” on the things I see, smell and mostly feel. I want to be as present as possible because I know that beginning the very next day, these important events will be a memory and I will want to remember. Sometimes I long for just a brief moment of rocking my babies again or reliving a fun memory with a grandparent who has now passed on from this earthly life. Throwing that birthday party for the boys or sitting in my Mamaw’s sewing room as a little girl.
Of course, there are times in my past that I would not really want to revisit, but occasionally maybe I need to draw from them too. Often, there is much we can learn from the past. Maybe just having survived a particular trial can strengthen you to help weather a future storm, or maybe your ability to share it with others might be an encouragement to someone.
I do not know what wonderful memories you have experienced, lessons you have learned, or scars you have endured. I really only know my own. I know that my life has been made richer by wonderful family and friends over the years and I know that I am stronger from hardships that I battled back from. Some of my experiences have included a happy home growing up with two great parents who raised me in a Christian home, successful high school, college, and law school years.
However, over a decade ago, it seemed like my entire world exploded when my marriage suddenly and unexpectedly ended, and I had no control in it and no ability to save it. My twin boys were not quite three years old, and my heart broke as much for them as for myself. Undeniably, it was a difficult time for me and them. My whole plan for life was taken out of my hands, and it was really painful. Oddly, I can still remember the carpet fibers as I cried into the floor of the corner of my closet the morning that he left. At that moment, I did not feel anything would ever be okay again, let alone “good.” And yet, eventually, it was. I will not tell you that the path was not long because it was. I will not tell you that I did not hurt, because I did. It was often hard and lonely. However, over those years, I learned that good things came. I experienced holidays, trips, birthdays, and even just special every day moments with those babies who became toddlers who were soon wild little boys who became preteens and then teenagers and now have just graduated from high school. Sometimes the days were really long, but the years were short. I am not sure at what things were better, but I can tell you that things did improve from those moments on the floor of my closet. There was no one time that really stands out to me, and in fact, while, 12 years later, I felt confident enough to approach the stranger who is now my husband, and tell him of the HOPE that he could have that things would be okay and even good for him again, I will admit that I still had healing to do even all those years after my own divorce. And I continue to need healing for various past hurts and scars, but I am so much farther along than I was. Praise the Lord, right? Do not lose HOPE even when your days are darkest.
Do not think that your best days are behind you, that whatever you are going through now is going to be the end of you. We serve an amazing, loving and merciful God. Talk to Him and tell Him your fears and hurts. “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”(Deuteronomy 31:6, Hebrews 13:5). Whatever battles you fight or tragedies you endure in this life, please do not lose HOPE for tomorrow.
We are promised His presence in whatever we face. The Lord will be out in front of you fighting for you, not against you (Deuteronomy 31:8, Romans 8:31). Do not forget Romans 8:28 which says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
And just when you think things could not be much better, even greater things can happen. Solomon writes in Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” God has a plan for each of us and He is good. That is all for today, but I plan to resume more on this next week. Thanks so much for reading!
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