Raging Seas, Relentless Savior
Just a few days ago, one of the largest waves that I have ever personally encountered hit me.
I had seen the waters getting rough, and no matter how hard I prayed for God to calm the storm I saw headed my way, it was still coming. My eyes were glued to the radar and my heart raced as it continued making its way in. I was its destination, and it surely arrived.
I wanted to be ready for the wave, but I wasn't. I wanted to keep my feet planted in the sand, but I didn't. I couldn't. The wave was too heavy.
The second this wave hit me, I lost every ounce of physical, mental, and emotional strength that I had. It took me off my feet immediately and I went down under. I let it carry me because I wanted it to. I wanted to drown because the pain this wave caused was so unreal, like nothing I have ever experienced before. I was immediately broken in places within that I did not even know existed. I felt so weak, and I refused to even try to find the strength to swim back to dry land because I refused to accept that I had the strength.
And as this wave washed over me, I realized that the water wasn't filling my lungs. I wasn't drowning like I so desperately wanted to because God wouldn't let me.
"Swim, Emily Lauren. Rise above. Come to the surface and swim, My daughter."
I heard the voice of God, but I did not listen. My response sounded a little like, "Are you serious, God? I'm drowning in pain, I'm so incredibly weak, and You want me to swim?? NO!" I honestly didn't want to hear anything at all- from anyone. Swimming out of this wave was the last thing on my mind. I wanted to sink in it just as far down as my heart had.
Fortunately, though, God wouldn't let me.
"I refuse to let you drown, darling Emily. If you're not willing to find the strength to swim, then I'll send lifeguards your way to pull you to the surface. I'll save you, you'll see. I'm coming.
And guess what? He did just that. I was His destination, and He surely arrived.
Usually it only takes a lifeguard or two to pull someone out of the water. For me, though, it took much more than that. God knew this. He also knew that it would take time, and lots of it. Thank goodness He's patient.
I'm not drowning anymore, but I still haven't reached dry land yet. I don't expect to reach dry land any time soon. But I'm okay with that because I've realized a handful of Truths within the past few days.
1) No matter how broken my heart may be, each of its pieces are rooted in Truth. And it will be this Truth that pulls those pieces back together and weaves it back into something new, whole, and beautiful again.
2) I'm swimming in waters of faith, hope, and healing. God is most certainly my Lifeguard. And you know what? He's swimming with me.
3) Healing is in His hands. The cycle of healing takes time. There is no "suggested time" for how long it takes in order to fully heal. There are different types of pain, brokenness, and suffering in the world. Pain truly has no epitome. But healing has an absolute perfect Epitome, and it is the Healer himself who is just that and more.
4) We have two choices to make when pain washes over us. We can wallow in it and make ourselves miserable by asking questions that we'll probably never have the answers to, OR we can hold onto our faith a little tighter, accept that what we know is enough, and realize that our faith is truly the only thing that can remain strong enough within us to pull ourselves out of any size wave of pain that may wash over us. I have chosen the latter, and I hope you will also.
5) The last thing God wants you to do is wear a mask. I'm tired of telling people I'm "Great!" when I'm completely shattered on the inside. Be open, be honest, be real. Just like you would want your friends to tell you when they're hurting so you can help them, they want the same from you. Wearing the mask will make you miserable, and it's exactly what Satan wants you to do. Take off the mask and embrace community like you've never embraced it before. The people in my community are the lifeguards that God sent to pull me back to the surface. And let me tell you, I have experienced the true meaning of this wonderful gift in full.
Accept your faith ladies, and swim in it. Swim in the sea of His love. Let your faith be your guide and your God be your anchor. And whatever you do, don't let go.
We were never promised that our lives would be easy, so don't expect it.
True discipleship comes with a cost, and you must be willing to pay whatever cost comes your way. Your faith is priceless, please don't let go of it.
Fight through this and know that God is fighting with you. God is fighting for you, and He wants nothing but the best for you- whether it seems like it or not.
The reason Whole Magazine exists is to lead broken women to wholeness through Jesus Christ. And guess what? I am a broken woman with a broken heart, and I am seeking wholeness through Jesus Christ. This is raw because this is me at my most vulnerable, and I am on the same exact journey that you are.
"Here I am, God. Take ME. Send ME!"
I've made one promise to myself that I'll never break, and it is this:
Wherever the Spirit of God leads me is wherever I'll go- always.
Desire the things that God desires for you.
Walk with Him.
Swim with Him.
Do life with Him.
You ARE strong, and you WILL get through this.
We are daughters of the King. Fight for the One who makes your heart sing.
Hold on tight.
And let your faith shine bright.
Walk in His Grace no matter what you may face- today, tomorrow, and always.
"I am leaving you with a gift--peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don't be troubled or afraid." -John 14:27, NLT
Written by Emily Lauren Townsend
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