Thursday, July 28, 2016

because you are not alone

--I may or may not have had to take a minute to dance around and sing "You are not alone" with my best MJ voice and moves.  Sorry, or perhaps you are welcome, if you have to take a minute yourself to get a similar experience out of your system.--

A few months ago while preparing dinner I tested myself.  It had been a great stretch of time since my last emotional meltdown, so obviously I assumed the hurt was all gone, I was all healed up and ready to go.  The root digging experience had come, my milestone day was circled in my heart and head, so why not see if I could handle it.
I immersed myself in a past hurt and it took only seconds to feel myself begin to slide...

Six plus hours of constant tears,  numerous text message conversations, a threat of bodily harm from my best friend if I ever did that again, and more than a few hugs from my love took up the rest of my day and the wee hours into the next. But as He always promises to do, Good came.  I can never screw up enough to keep that from happening, neither can you, amen and hallelujah.
Hurt can trigger countless things, but in the midst of the past memories emerging, thankfulness pops up as well, and it's friend courage follows close behind as you are reminded again of His faithfulness and the long road you have already walked.

The next morning, after weeks of debating, chickening out, then thinking about it again, I told Zach I needed a not so small chunk of money to invest into my future, after getting the you should absolutely do it response I needed, I registered for SheSpeaks and also requested to be placed on a list to meet with two publishers during the weekend.  Deep breath.

This past weekend I drove through Atlanta rush hour traffic complete with thunderstorm to Charlotte, checked into a hotel all alone, sent more than one frantic tear-filled, fear-filled message describing how completely unequipped I am and how I think I'll just leave because obviously this was a mistake, received more than one "you can do this" message in return, and then fell asleep feeling like a teenager all over again getting ready for her first day of high school.

Over the next two days full of freezing conference center temperatures, beautiful decorations, fantastic food, poignant messages, and 800 other women four words were whispered into my heart over and over again...

I walked in completely alone, received my registration packet, then took my husband's advice and found a table that appeared to have another girl flying solo.  After initial hellos, conversation started and after 15 minutes I found myself at a table full of seven other singles who God turned into a group.  In less than an hour I was taking a picture with said ladies at a cutely decorated spot for photo ops that after passing first thing that morning had left me pondering how pathetic I would look taking a picture there alone.

These lovely ladies and I shared meals, stories, social media accounts, email addresses, phone numbers, hugs, pictures and even car rides.  They are now not only friends, but coworkers for Christ across the country.  Ladies who share similar thoughts, aspire to similar roles, and feel similar feelings of hope, anticipation, and for sure more than a little doubt for the future.

You are not alone.

Standing in the hallway of a hotel conference center two states away from home I glanced up and saw a familiar face.  A woman who runs in a similar circle, a woman I bump into constantly in the oddest places, a woman that until this weekend I might not have described as a friend but now is not only that, but a woman I would call on for prayer in any situation.

You are not alone.

At the first session, after the inward debate of where to sit, I found myself right in front of another Sarah May also from the Atlanta area. No joke.  We laughed, we talked, we took advantage of a photo op, we waved in passing, we even found ourselves twinning on day 2 in our kimonos.

You are not alone.

My entire weekend went a similar way.
One speaker shared a marital past that compares to mine.  Another shared about waiting for her calling to be revealed and then waiting again for it to come to fruition.  Over and over again more words lovingly and transparently shared that encouraged and spoke to specific fears, specific needs.

You are not alone.

In the hotel lobby before leaving for the second morning of the conference a conversation was struck up over the coffee/tea bar and an offer for a ride to the center was extended from me to two ladies from San Francisco.  A lengthy conversation between myself and one of them was about foster care and the cycle of abuse that goes on and on and both of our hearts that ached for the people caught in the vicious circle.

You are not alone.

Before one publisher meeting a stranger stopped by to hand me a hug and a jar of mints with a note attached.  Before another, I was stopped in the hall and prayed for by a fellow attendee who initiated conversation in a previous meeting. Then while waiting for our appointments, the woman sitting next to me and I discovered that she knew my husband's parents quite well and had attended his church and was also a youth leader for one of my sister in laws years ago

You are not alone.

Recently my PCA pastor Father in law shared a mini sermon with us at our family reunion.  In it he suggested that in a way we each wake up every morning as unbelievers, needing to be reminded of the gospel, of the Truths we know we know but can't always remember.  Preaching the gospel to ourselves daily is a necessity so that our hearts are available to see the times we need to share that gospel with others.

Yes, take homes from the She Speaks conference included an adorable necklace, a conference notebook full of things to ponder, a renewed passion and assurance that I might possibly be traveling in the right directions, contacts, networking, and a core group of co writers for Jesus to lean on for support and pull from for inspiration.  But the number one take home was the reminder that my God, my Creator, the one who sent His Son who placed His Spirit in my heart, is unendingly faithful.  He holds me, little bitty me, in the palms of His hands, and loves me.  He is before all things and in Him all things hold together. (Col. 1:17) Even me.  Even you.  Even us.  Especially us.

It is not necessary to travel to a conference, or travel anywhere for that matter, to realize the Truth of not being alone, the tangible feeling of never being left or forsaken.  All it takes is a glance around to see what has been placed before you, to see who is before all of your things and who is holding you together.  Can you see it?

I'll be praying that you can see countless ways that you too are not alone.  Praying that you know how much you are loved by an Almighty Father.  Praying that you know that you are being held right there in the palm of His hands.  

I'll be praying for you.  Pray for me.

1 comment:

  1. ***شرکت نوين گيت***

    با سالها سابقه در طراحي ،اجرا و خدمات سيستمهاي درب اتوماتيک و راهبند
    فروش،نصب و راه اندازي و خدمات انواع درب اتوماتيک (درب سکشنال - کرکره اتوماتيک - کرکره پنجره - درب ريلي اتوماتيک - جک پارکينگي - کرکره شفاف - رول گيتر - انواع راهبند و درب اتوماتيک شيشه اي... )
    خدمات 24 ساعته و شبانه روزي حتي در تعطيلات رسمي
    مشاوره رايگان در تمامي مراحل