Maybe God DOES have something special for you to do... just as Jeremiah 29 promises!
"‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’" Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)
My husband Don and I have had the privilege of raising eight kids together over the past 20 years. They are grown now and out of the house … mostly. I think because of our history and because we are a blended family, we always wondered: Could God use us again? We know He loves us and we know He forgives us, but to USE us to encourage and bless others? Maybe we missed out on that window.
But interestingly, as each of the kids has begun to step into their own giftedness over the last couple of years, we have drawn closer together. We all — first individually and then corporately — began to say, "Maybe God DOES have something special for US to do."
And so we began to share our family’s story whenever we had the opportunity. The opportunities came in little ways at first, and then we had the incredible honor of sharing our family and our family’s story on the stage at Women of Faith.
When I was invited to be part of Women of Faith about 10 years ago, it was the beginning of some tremendous healing for me, and really for our whole family. At the time, we were emotionally bruised by some life choices.
Truthfully, after my first appearance with Women of Faith, I didn’t expect to be invited back. I expected judgment but found grace. Because of the love shown to our entire family, we gradually stopped feeling like castoffs relegated to the "island of misfit toys."
We began to believe that we, too, had a purpose and that God truly had a plan just for us, a plan to give us "a future and a hope," just as today’s key Scripture says: "‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope’" (Jeremiah 29:11).
Part of our healing as a family has come through our common love of music. Music has always been a cornerstone of our family and has been for multiple generations, so it just seems natural for us to gravitate to song as the mode to share our story.
Although our vehicle of connection is music, every family can discover what unites them. And when we come together to do something we love, in spite of our fractured past, we can all experience God’s good plan for us.
Recently a dear friend summed it up by saying, "Your family’s story is heard in the undercurrent of your song!" I know what they mean. When we sing, It is Well With My Soul, we feel the truth of it in every fiber of our beings.
Every time our family comes together to share God’s love through music, my soul gets a little more "well" as I think about what He has brought us through and the love He shows us every single day.
We feel privileged and blessed to be able to share our crazy beautiful blended mess of a family and by doing so we share the song of our story. The anchor of all of it is simply knowing how much God truly loves us … bruises and all!
Lord, thank You for Your unfailing love that never gives up on me. On those days when I wonder if You can use me, please remind me that You have a plan and a purpose for my life. Help me raise my voice to sing the song of my story. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
"But I have spared you for a purpose — to show you my power and to spread my fame throughout the earth." Exodus 9:16 (NLT)
"Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning." Lamentations 3:23 (NLT)
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Can you identify a previously challenging situation in your life that has become a blessing? How can you use your experience to encourage others?