One of my favorite #RestorationStories ever!
Meet Jeffrey McCall founder of For Such A Time Ministry
Watch this amazing video of his story.
Visit his website here
Some may not know all the specifics of my medical history and how God has showed up and healed me in some pretty amazing ways.
I am still believing for more healings and to tackle taking better care of myself.
So here it is …I am laying it all out here…
At 20 I was diagnosed with Thyroid disease and put on meds. I was also diagnosed with Chronic fatigue syndrome.
At 27 I had a procedure done for removal of endometriosis and some adhesions.
At 28 I had a procedure to enlarge my bladder for interstitial cystitis after chronic bladder infections.
At 29 I had twins – 6 weeks early but weighing in at full term. I hemorrhaged twice afterwards with the C section and had some complications.
At 29 I was put on anxiety meds for post pardom depression.
At 30 my back was going out weekly and had to have steroid injections. I had some bulging discs and female issues that were later discovered.
At 31 I had a complete & total hysterectomy for an enlarged uterus, my gallbladder removed because it was completely non functioning and some adhesions removed all at the same time.
At 31 I was placed on high doses of HRT – by the time the anesthesia was wearing off my hysterectomy I was in full blown menopause about to lose my mind. Menopause with 2 year old twins!
At 34 after many years of steroids for my back and asthma and chronic bronchitis and just overwhelmed with a corporate job and twins I spent a week in the hospital due to a colitis infection due to extreme stress.
At 35 I left the corporate world to stay home with my twins.
At 36 my brother Toby died suddenly.
My drinking and smoking and eating
was out of control.
I was very depressed and angry at God.
My Dad also was very sick and hospitalized for 2 years at the same time. High stressful times but I found my way back to God and left all religion for a personal relationship with Christ.
At 37 I stopped smoking.
At 38 I suffered a stroke. 1.8.08 –
8 is my favorite number still!
At 38 I was told to stop drinking alcohol due to elevated Liver Enzymes and Fatty Liver. I didn’t drink again until 2013.
At 38 I was diagnosed Diabetic – couldn’t take meds – ended back in hospital with severe kidney issues and cellulitis infection on my face. Taken off all diabetes meds and within 4 /5 years reversed my diabetes and A1C to pre diabetic numbers, lost 65 pounds with a very strict diet and exercise.
At 39 had severe muscle bridging in heart detected after a failed stress test – had a angiogram / Heart Cath and the cardiologist couldn’t find it after the scans and other tests confirmed it. I had so many people pray over me before the test I know it was God that healed me! Has not returned and last stress test was perfect.
At 39 I went back to work part time.
At 40 diagnoses with rare eye condition Retinoscisis where retina is split down the middle in both eyes.
At 40 put on higher doses of thyroid meds due to Hashimoto’s and secondary hypothyroidism diagnoses.
At 41 had a bike crash – broke 3 ribs, collarbone, collapsed lung – damaged an adrenal and went back into menopause with 13 year old twins and was put back on HRT meds. Menopause round 2 with teenagers!
At 42 left working outside the home to go into full time ministry.
At 44 due to a family history of breast cancer and many issues myself and biopsies I was taken off all HRT Therapy. Biopsies all clear.
At 45 diagnosed with another rare eye condition called Poly Choroidal Vasculopathy
(PCV) after losing all eyesight in my left eye for several months. I have since regained sight but limited – but am still believing I will be healed completely and sight fully restored.
At 46 while getting prayer for my eyes I was prayed for and told that God wanted to give a new Thyroid – I laughed but said I will take it!
I have been off all Thyroid meds for 2 years!
Praise God my hypothyroidism / Hashimoto’s and secondary hypothyroidism was all healed!
At 47 – last December, I ended up in hospital for 4 days – tests upon tests ran – 7 biopsies – 2 came back inconclusive for Celiac and Chrohn’s. They also ran my thyroid numbers daily trying to disprove my story that my thyroid was healed by Jesus after prayer. They couldn’t find a thing wrong with my thyroid. They had me on 7 different pills and 2 injections until I refused all meds those last days because they were making me sicker and they were just throwing stuff to see if it stuck without a diagnosis coming back.
I was very discouraged and wanted a firm diagnosis – it didn’t come.
God said don’t let the diagnosis define you – been there done that bought the T-shirt for far too long – He said it’s about trust and surrender – UGH! 2 things I have a hard time with! Of Course!
Now at 48 – I take no RX meds.(years ago I took almost 6 RX meds daily!)
My A1C has creeped up slightly to 5.6 from 5.4 (which is a far cry from 9 at the time of my stroke 10 years ago) my cholesterol is elevated but mainly due to hereditary type and my poor diet choices. I stopped statin drugs after 10 years and refuse to go back on them.
I have gained 30 pounds back of the 65 in the last 10 years – (on top of the 20/30 I still needed to lose so actually I have gained and lost this same 30 pound over and over the last couple years.
Even using some drastic diets that totally changed how I carry the weight and wrecked my muscle tone. But I did have an amazing fasting experience and lots of downloads – you can see our blog for those.
So I have a good 50 pounds I need to lose now.
I stopped running in 2013 – and stopped really consistently exercising at all in 2015 and have struggled to get into a better exercise routine since.
I have done some amazing things in my life and in Ministry – I have awesome kiddos and a jackpot of a husband. I wrote and published 9 books in less than 2 years. I even recently published 3 the last month for friends.
I run a non profit Restored Ministries full time.
Life’s been really good! I wasn’t eating or not taking care of myself because life was bad.
I just stopped planning or worrying about it and ate way too much take out while the hubs was traveling the last year or so.
I share All of this to say ….
Still – some days a counterfeit comfort feels more powerful or soothing to me than the Great Comforter Himself.
I know what to do… But I don’t always do it.
I can get into moods where I put everyone and everything else first but me.
I carry others burdens that are not mine to carry.
I know the steps – I know it works if I work it ( my recovery) but sometimes rebellion wins over my recovery.
I abstained from all alcohol since 2013 because I am not a one drink kinda girl and have chosen to abstain now for over 5 years. (Except recently I drank a beer and knew that with one beer – it would set me back if I did not make the choice daily to abstain completely.)
I help lead a Ministry for recovery for emotional eating and still I struggle after 10 years letting God fill the voids and not Cheetos. I am not a hypocrite – you can help lead others while you are struggling.
It’s called Keepin It Real. Progress not Perfection.
I love God immensely and know He is able but I also have to do my part. Which I have not been.
I find myself here now – again – flabby and fat and dreading the work I know it takes to regain my health. But I know God doesn’t love me any less when I fall short, Or more when I am thinner.
On August 4th I started Plant Paradox.
Initially as a way to keep my Thyroid in top shape since Kelly Clarkson said that is what healed her Hashimoto’s and helped her lose almost 40 pounds.
In 12 days I lost 11 pounds and the hubs lost 6 (he didn’t have weight to lose but agreed to do it with me) we were super excited with the results and then we went on Vacation for 12 days. I didn’t follow the plan even though I wanted to and had every intention of doing so.
I thankfully only gained 4 pounds but quickly lost 2 of the 4 the first week back.
The last few days the 2 pounds are back and I have allowed some life issues and emotions to drive me to the bread instead of the Bread of Life.
I really would prefer a magic pill but God continues to deal with me about counterfeits and putting my Health first and to find a better Balance. I must honor His Temple better.
My Journey may not be a perfect one –
OK – So, I know it will not be a perfect one.
But it’s my journey and God’s to figure out.
So I Keep Keeping On Folks – It’s worth it because I am worth it. You are too!
You are never too far gone to begin again.
The devil is a liar. God’s will is to heal us.
He wants us restored and whole –
Mind Body Soul!
So I am declaring:
I am Healed
I walk in Divine Health
My body is being restored and transformed.
(I am also committing to the work it will take to do my part)
I am not buying the lies or beating myself up.
I am hoping my “At 49” is going to be pretty amazing!
Until then – I got some work to do!
Will you agree with me and pray for me?
I just keep things real because that is the only way we can heal.
Being in denial will never deliver anybody.
Hope my being real and raw – showing my vulnerability will encourage you to make a change if you need to too!
So slap that cake right outta my mouth if you see it!
~ XXOO Michelle
The image is by Dana Jarvis- I so receive it!
My Battlefield will become my Harvest!
My story may be much different than others you may hear. It’s the kind that seems painful, raw, jaded, but disastrously radically beautiful and that is exactly what it is, beautiful. I think at times what makes me extraordinary is that I consider myself a lioness and am currently combining my warrior traits with the beauty of love and vulnerability and my truth. Quite the combo, if I must say, but a beautiful one at that.
I carry warrior qualities, I’m a fighter for what I’m passionate about, I chase after my dreams to succeed and better my family’s lives but I also am a work of art, a rare find, and a source of beauty through a jaded and difficult journey.
This isn’t to boast it’s to state that even those with hard times, difficult pasts, who have failed numerous times and had to repeatedly be humbled and get back up…that those people are beautiful also and capable of dreaming, doing, and succeeding. YES!!!
I also like to say that once I found my voice in the midst of being silenced and the midst of finding my true and authentic self that I now have the power and capability to ROAR my truth and to set myself free from the “bondage” that I have been entangled in.
The one thing I would love to tell, especially women, is that “You are worthy”.
In times society wants to make us seem mediocre, small, microscopic and that our views, stories, our voices don’t matter.
Well, I’m telling you that you can achieve your dreams, you can accomplish your goals, you most certainly have a voice and I encourage you to “roar” as a lioness and be the women that you are intended to be whether the world sees it as capable or not.
· Fight for your life, your dreams, and your soul, the love for yourself, your families safety and your voice.
· Love yourself
· Take each day at a time
· Don’t judge your journey amongst others
– dont rush your healing
· Offer yourself abundant amounts of grace when you do fall
· Find those who will support you back up
· keep going!
When I was young I began to explore the world and found myself on my different paths. At a young age I began to explore the world of sex, drugs and alcohol. I was not aware how this could deeply affect my life, my view of self, my view of others, my safety as well as my success as a woman in this world.
In high school I became very enraged and angered by my inability to be able to explore the world as I chose. I was uninterested in school and began falling behind, at one point having a .66 in high school and didn’t even think graduating with my high school degree would be possible nor did I desire it.
I was uneducated, wasn’t aware of what I was getting myself into and didn’t have the resources that were crucially important for me to succeed or protect myself.
I, like many, did not have any experience in relationships, drug or alcohol abuse or sexual encounters, ultimately this lack of educational resources prohibited me from making knowledgeable and educated decisions or be fully aware of what decisions I was making and how it was ultimately killing me.
The year of my enlightening journey was not easy; I found myself in a residential care facility for troubled teens for 7 and half months of my life with the intent to form respect, self-direction, counseling and ultimately support.
This time I was pulled from my current high school suddenly and found myself living in a home of 13 teen girls and went from being able to speak to anyone the way I chose, to having to ask for permission to even speak, eat, go up or down the stairs, in or out of rooms and in and out of the house.
I found support among women who were older than me. They heard my cry and desire to explore this world and ultimately understood who I was. I found support among the women who I lived with and shared difficult moments with, who were living in the same world of chaos, frustration and pain as I was. I began to see that I was not the only one struggling tremendously through my teen years.
Upon completing the program, I moved home and chose to shake these restrictions and feel free again. This turned into drug and alcohol abuse, consistent unhealthy relationships and ultimately choosing sleeping on friend’s beds and couches due to running away from home.
I found myself waking up numb, and in random homes, several pregnancy scares and continual drug use.
Still, within my soul I knew there was more. I knew I was worth more. I knew my life meant more and that one day I would be able to find it.
I began to research how to enroll myself into school and had a friend drop me off at a University for yet another chapter of my life. Unfortunately, at this school my drug and alcohol use continued because it was much easier to obtain. I began to lose sight of the course of life I truly knew I needed to be on.
After one semester I was already back on academic probation, struggling to find financial assistance to stay in school and was once again losing hope. I was living a life of numbness. I worked hard but was so caught up on seeking social acceptance that I did not realize where my life was heading.
I stayed numb.
At this university, I sought out the party scene and began to experiment sexually and dive into pill usage on a whole new level.
In a sense I was walking around with my eyes closed just trying to get by and manage life, thinking at times I had everything I had ever wanted, but so incredibly lost at the same time.
One evening, I found myself on my bathroom floor with a positive pregnancy test in my hand.
I remember leaving the University hospital, alone, on a very rainy day and getting in my car, after being told once again that I was pregnant and close to 6 weeks along.
Thinking….“Wait, I am only 20, not even close to being done with school, I am lost, completely unhappy and I am now growing a human being in my belly, when I can barely care for myself.”
For one second within the confines of my car I felt instant peace.
This was my day of awakening.
A child was growing in my belly and I had to radically change my life….
On this day I chose to better my life, not for me but for this soul that was begging me to be succeed, to be healthy, to be a powerful woman, an example, a mother, and for this,
I owe my son…my life.
At this point my mind, heart, and soul were focused on bettering our lives. My life became about becoming self-sufficient, growing together, and pressing forward to achieve my goals and dreams so that my son could have an example and a beautiful life
It is never too late to be what you might have been. – George Elliot
I can tell you right now, it is NEVER too late to become more, to become better, to be who you were intended to be.
We made our way back home, to be closer to family. We had been and were in a very toxic environment but I was able to find support and guidance and began to dive into studies. After a strenuous and difficult journey, I came to a realization; I had been silenced.
I had been an independent woman, strong willed, and felt no shame in declaring who I was or what I thought and slowly I found myself silenced, unheard and ultimately speechless.
One evening, I was on my knees weeping by my bedside begging for the lord to give me a sign and give me the power and voice to step away, for good, because I honestly couldn’t do it on my own.
That night I had a very raw and real dream about my own life, but it was not happy, nor did it end well.
The next morning, I awoke from my own nightmare. I walked away from abuse and never went back.
I had tremendous support in my mother, who had seen me weep in pain for years. We both began weeping, in relief.
I found my voice and knew that I wanted to be a survivor, not another statistic and that I wanted to help others overcome and find their voice as well.
My real friends came to my side and I was close to completing my bachelor’s Degree.
On Mother’s Day, with my son in the stands, I graduated with honors, Magnu Cum Laude and walked straight into my graduate degree, a one-year advanced program for obtaining my Masters in Science of Social Work.
I have walked with my classmates again, after a long year in the Master’s program and obtained my MSSW the summer of 2016.
I never imagined the life I have today…with not one, but two diplomas.
Life has radically changed and I have been incredibly blessed.
We have been so incredibly blessed with such love and support in our journey.
I would have not made it this far without the support of my incredible mother, who is our biggest fan, The Family Scholar House program, my peers and those in my cohort, teachers who supported and empowered me, case workers, advocates on our behalf, my sisters and even bystanders, who without knowing, empowered my weak spirit.
I have been empowered by women within the community who have challenged me to speak out and share my story. They have helped me see my real beauty and my inner-warrior and to use my voice. They have also blessed me with the opportunity to speak my truth to others as an outlet and support to those who may be going through or who are healing from the same things.
Most important, I would not be here without my son, who has given me my passion, my drive and has instilled in me the real meaning of love within my heart. He is my heart outside my body and the reason I found the drive to strive to be the woman I am today.
I am now asking you to listen, to empower and to advocate for those who are uneducated in regards to violence and their harmful current situations whether it be physical, emotional, verbal, sexual or mental abuse, as well as those who you are witness to violence in an extent that has drastically changed their lives. Many people have been silenced and are living in silence, so please offer them the opportunity to be heard and to find their voice once again.
Choose to be that one person who makes a personal impact on another’s life that empowers them to be the person they were intended to be….so at this time please stand and face forward if you are able to commit to this…you are making a commitment to assist in diminishing the cycle of violence within this community, empowering those who have difficulty seeing any strengths within them, who have spent many nights and days weeping, bruised, naked, alone and emotional drained, who have spent days or even years in silence, who have difficult carrying for their children due to the abuse they are undergoing amongst the bills they are unable to pay, you are giving them an opportunity to be heard, to hear themselves, and to help them find safety and hope, you are allowing them to see support and to feel the presence of someone who sees them as more than just a statistic but yet giving them an opportunity to grow, flourish and be the beautiful soul that they have been trying so hard to be…. and recognize that you are not alone and others will be at the same time choosing to say no to violence and taking a stand in allowing survivors voices to be heard.
You are WORTHY.
Your journey is worthy.
Your freedom is Worthy.
Your Voice is Worthy.
My passion is to empower others by using my journey and my voice and so I began The Soul Grind, which is a place of self-exploration, radical self-love, soul searching, and some powerful empowerment!
A community where your voice is heard and your soul can grow and flourish in the company of some beautiful other humans on the same journey.
The Soul Grind pours love on wounds and allows you to be heard and also it emphasizes the importance of combining all of that with a big cup of coffee!
Join us! Let’s hear your ROAR.
~ Jaydee Graham
Connect with Soul Grind-
Her face is the sky holding constellations
Found in her eyes;
Her insides are the core breathing
Life into surrounding beauty;
Her feet have walked in intense darkness,
Stumbled and fallen many times
And yet she is still picking herself up,
To bleed wounds healed from memories
Encompassing her mind;
Freedom over enslavement,
Life over death;
Rhythms from the heart play her life in tune
To echo sounds coming from inner battles
Fought and won,
Felt and overcome;
To be more than a feeling,
More like the seed planted in severe conditions;
It endured storms and drought
Yet still remained in the ground,
Her roots held on and was birthed
A second time to the God who sent the rain
To cause her to grow and eventually bud
Underneath the Son, to be strong enough
To fight off the infections taken on by the weak;
This flower breathed beauty,
Overflowed in peace,
Her depths began to surface,
Causing her mind to free itself from enslavement
To profound pain;
She walks by the flower now budding
In profound beauty,
And understands the journey it went through
To embrace this day,
Before time was forgotten,
Erased from the mind;
She now believes in His unfailing love;
Love use to be an ocean
She couldn’t baptize herself in,
But His faithfulness has endured
And her mind is allowing the light
To shine in her darkness,
His love to embrace her
Through all the pain,
And everything that was used
To envelope her in a world full of darkness,
Where she couldn’t touch the light
Even if she tried;
But now she is set free
And her wings pick the body up
To escape the cage she’s been living in
For far too long;
Before, she was a victim,
But now she is a victor
And her wings carry her above depths,
Into the light absorbing darkness;
She knows who she is
And whose she is;
No longer a slave to this world,
But living her life as a servant to God-
The One who created beauty from her ashes,
Peace from her storm;
She breathes truth now,
No more lies,
For she knows that’s all they are;
She trusts God, choosing to live for Him
From actions to spoken words,
She accepts the challenge to fight
Because she knows she’ll win
With God on her side;
No matter the problem or situation,
God is bigger than anything she’ll ever face
With God all things are possible;
Trust Him and see where He takes you
~ Bethany Anne
Have you ever been so badly wounded by someone that you grieved at the same depths you did for a devastating death? A betrayal so hurtful you just could not ever imagine a rainbow ever reappearing after the soul-damaging storm?
The long road to recovery and forgiveness is brutal and this journey of the heart is not always a quick trip.
My head knows that no one is perfect. We are all fallible and fall short. We all say and do things we regret. My head knows people will disappoint us, but God never does.
I don’t want to walk this journey of forgiveness to recover from being wounded. I want to do like my kids did when they were little and grab God’s face with both my hands and give a deep eye-to-eye stare. I want God’s full attention!
My heart wants an instant miracle!
I want to say : “Look God, I need You! I am drowning here! I am hurt. It is not well with my soul! I am trying to forgive, I am trying to forget. I am trying to pray for those that hurt me and love them and live life but right now I am anything but fine! If You are counting all my tears and saving them in a bottle, I think You got more than you or I bargained for on this one.”
My head knows that God restores every heart that is broken. His word promises that.
However, healing takes time and restoration comes only in God’s perfect timing.
But right now, my heart is not too excited or happy about it. My heart is aching and I am just plain miserable. My heart feels like it got trapped and shipwrecked somewhere on a distant shore.
We are to forgive even when sometimes we don’t ever get the apology we hoped for or deserved.
God is the only One that rights our wrongs.
My heart wants the situation changed now, but My head knows the journey of the heart to forgiveness is not an easy or quick one.
The head knowledge that has to come first is this: forgiveness is the ultimate act of obedience to the Father.
He forgave us freely and commands us to forgive those who trespass against us.
The journey from head knowledge to heart knowing is a much longer and more tedious process. It is a long, winding and, at times, unsteady road. It takes time, tears, much prayer, and a constant surrendering of our jumbled-up, raw emotions to God.
There will be days you will feel like you can barely grasp enough air to keep breathing or the strength to even stand. That’s okay.
The fragments of your shattered and wounded soul, like the potholes or deep grooves on a rough road, are in the process of being slowly filled and smoothed away. Forgiveness is a process, not an instantaneous feeling.
It can’t be rushed.
Just as you have to navigate a rough road slowly, so is the same with the road to forgiveness. Each encounter with rough terrain can only be navigated from God’s perspective and with His help.
The restoration in the forgiveness process is something that only He can do to heal us properly.
Eventually, the road to recovery and to forgiveness is complete when the head knowledge is now your heart-knowing that God is the Great Restorer of all things broken.
The journey of the heart must be traveled in order to reach full forgiveness and wholeness again.
~ XXOO Michelle Bollom
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book. – Psalm 56:8
It is true that you planned to do something bad to me. But really, God was planning good things. God’s plan was to use me to save the lives of many people. And that is what happened. -Genesis 50:20 ERV
For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. -Matthew 6:14-15 NIV
Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. -Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV
I will make their going easy, level the mountain road and smooth the path that leads them home. -Isaiah 49:11
I wrote this last year as a guest blog for Compassion That Compels and have revamped it to encourage others on this journey of the heart to forgiveness.
It is a journey so worth taking!
Whatever enemies are tracking you down or have you surrounded and keeping you up at night, be comforted and encouraged that the invisible God is much more real and powerful than any visible enemy.
Davis had armies of enemies trying to track him down and God was right there shielding him from harm. David was able to sleep and awoke rested tall and steady.
Real help comes from God.
Be fearless before the enemy mobs.
We have no reason to fear.
He has never lost a battle!
~ XXOO Michelle Bollom
God! Look! Enemies past counting! Enemies sprouting like mushrooms, Mobs of them all around me, roaring their mockery: “Hah! No help for him from God!” But you, God, shield me on all sides; You ground my feet, you lift my head high; With all my might I shout up to God, His answers thunder from the holy mountain. I stretch myself out. I sleep. Then I’m up again—rested, tall and steady, Fearless before the enemy mobs Coming at me from all sides. Up, God! My God, help me! Slap their faces, First this cheek, then the other, Your fist hard in their teeth! Real help comes from God. Your blessing clothes your people! ~ Psalm 3:1, 3, 5, 7-8 1-2 MSG
We can choose to trust God or we can choose to trust in ourselves or others.
We can choose to stay stuck in the past and rehearse every hurt or we can choose to grab ahold of the great Promises for our future in Christ.
We can choose to live in doubt and unbelief and be tossed around by our unsteady emotions or we can choose to Agree, Believe, and Confess the Word of God over every situation.
We can choose to eat crap, over indulge in food, alcohol, smoke cigarettes or do drugs, lay around in bed or on the couch all day watching TV or playing with our gadgets online and continue to defile, vandalize, and destroy our temples or we can choose to altar our flesh and honor and respect our bodies as we should by no longer being a slave to our addictions and compulsions and instead choose healthy foods, habits and exercise.
We can choose to stay in a dead end job or relationship or we can choose to better and respect ourselves and make a change and give some people the much needed Gift of Goodbye.
We can choose to gripe, complain, and moan over our misfortunes or we can choose to praise God even when we are suffering and don’t understand or like what is happening.
We can Choose Blessings or we can Choose Curses….
But Guess what?
We get to choose
And you can’t choose both!
Stop saying – I don’t have a choice.
You always have a choice.
The choices you make may not be what God wants for you to make. God may have already told you what you need to do and you are still dragging your feet in disobedience.
We must tune in and turn to God. Read, hear and do what His word says. Get up and turn off the TV and all the other devices and voices trying to influence you so you can make sure you are choosing wisely.
Don’t just be hearers- be doers.
We are the choice we make.
You can either choose to
Or Give it all to God!
Look, you’ve got two choices: you can be blessed, or you can be cursed. If you obey His commands, which I’m giving you today, you’ll be blessed. If you don’t obey His commands—if you leave the path I’m showing you today so you can worship other gods who are foreign to you, then you’ll be cursed. ~ Deuteronomy 11:26-28 The VOICE
You must be doers of the word and not only hearers who mislead themselves. Those who hear but don’t do the word are like those who look at their faces in a mirror. They look at themselves, walk away, and immediately forget what they were like. But there are those who study the perfect law, the law of freedom, and continue to do it. They don’t listen and then forget, but they put it into practice in their lives. They will be blessed in whatever they do. James 1:22-25 CEB
Jesus looked at them intently, then said, “Without God, it is utterly impossible. But with God everything is possible.” ~ Mark 10:27
~ XXOO Michelle Bollom
Turning to everything but God
We wonder why our lives are fragmented;
Lost thoughts fill the mind with tides taking
Us down into the gravitating depths of the night
That removes our sight, causing us to stumble
In the moment we cannot afford to lose;
We must return to the only One who can save,
Be patient and wait for His timing to unfold
As our inner complications become gold
Found within ourselves, beneath all the dirt;
He is waiting for us to turn back and trust
In His plan and purpose for our lives,
For only He alone can fill the void within;
His words of truth will bleed
Through lies believed, clinging to the mind;
He will remove the toxicity,
Replacing it with His living Word,
Causing the demons to flee in the name of Jesus,
The only One who can save us
And heal the profound pain inside
Our empty, failing hearts waiting to beat again
Source: My Diet Is Making Me Sick!
Wow! Too many times. Too many situations. God had restored me on so many occasions could I possibly just tell one story that would make people understand?
Nope. Not the way that you needed to hear. Not the way you needed to understand the grace and mercy that God has shown to me. So, here’s my story…
I was molested at 13. I was sexually assaulted at 13 and I was raped at 14. Three traumatic events that shaped my belief in men. Men took from you. Men didn’t value you. You were nothing more than eye candy for men. Those were all the things that ran through my mind.
At 14 my boyfriend and I broke up. He blamed me for my rape. I was devastated. I felt unloved and alone. I tried to take my life. Life had become unbearable.
I spent that summer being depressed and crying every day. I wouldn’t get dressed. I wouldn’t play with my siblings or talk to my mother. I was broken. My mother didn’t know the real reasons for my pain. I wanted to die and I cursed God for not letting that happen.
My mother came in my room one day and sat on the bed and said, “As a parent you wish that you could kiss every tear that falls from your child’s eyes. But, you can’t. I can’t. But, this is the time when you need to go to the Lord in prayer. He will help you. He will answer you. Please just pray.” She left my room.
I sat silently in the room crying. Tears falling in big drops that left stains down my face. I fell to my knees and prayed. I simply said, “God please help me.” It was in that moment that I felt God’s reassuring love and presence. He consoled me. He loved me. He had not abandoned or forgotten me. He was there.
Many years and many life lessons later God reminded me that He is still in charge. That He is always there. Ever watching. Ever waiting for me to just let go and trust. Trust that He has not forgotten me.
I was losing my cousin to cancer. We were 9 months apart. He was the only man in this world that I ever believed loved me. Not my husband but my cousin.
My marriage was in hell. We were roommates. We had tried to have a child with no luck. I cursed God for making me barren and then taking the only man in this world from me. Letting him die. Life wasn’t fair.
God interceded and worked on my spirit. I began talking to my husband again. I began trying to fix my marriage. We tried to date and love each other again. We attempted invitro fertilization (IVF) again. We got pregnant.
The moment the nurse told me that I was pregnant I said “Thank you God”. I knew it was God. I knew he was sending me a message. He was going to give my cousin his wings. I would lose the only man that ever loved me. But, He was sending me a son. Another boy who would become a man who would love me.
The moment I saw my little embryo on the screen I said “Look at my son. Thank you God.” My husband laughed and said “It could be a girl.” I replied, “Nope, it’s a boy. God is giving me a son.” The funny thing is that I didn’t doubt God’s grace and mercy on me. I knew the message he was sending. It was clear. He confirmed it when they told me that my due date was my cousin’s birthday.
I had many complications in my pregnancy and almost lost my baby. People worried. People prayed. But I knew that he would be okay. How? Because I had prayed to God that if he let my son live that I would bring him to Him. I told God I would do as Hannah did with Samuel and I would bring my son to Him. That was my fervent prayer.
He did. He let my son live. He was born prematurely and I never worried. I knew that God had us. He always had. He had never abandoned me. My son was His gift to me.
But, life didn’t always make me believe that God heard me. I suffered so much. So many trials and tribulations that I didn’t really understand the importance of trusting God with everything that I am and everything that I have. Truly trusting and leaning on His word.
My marriage ended. I was heartbroken at the way I was being treated and I felt so alone. Many days I couldn’t get out of bed. I cried incessantly and I would fall out from the overall emotional pain of my situation. I thought I was dying. All while trying to raise a 5 year old.
My son would hold my head and say “Mommy, please don’t cry. I’ll protect you.” I was a wreck. Crying and praying. Praying and crying. God spoke to my spirit and said, “Get up! It is done!” Just like that.
I did and I prayed. He reminded me how he’s never abandoned me. He’s never left me and that His anointing has always been on my life. I was alive to tell of His grace and mercy because my words are what people understand. I would be a living testimony of how He saves.
I am a living testimony. I will tell of His grace and mercy. Our God has not forgotten. He will forever answer you. But, we all fall short. We forget how to pray. We get so consumed with our issues and situations that we don’t just pray and listen. We pray. We listen to the noise in our head. We don’t hear His voice. We think He doesn’t care. He does.
He is never changing. He never fails. Nothing will separate us from the love of God. That is my story. The life verse that reminds me of this comes from my favorite book in the Bible….Romans.
Romans 8:38-39 (NRSV)
38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~ Tikeetha Thomas
Tikeetha Thomas is a full-time working mom with an 8 year old son who is the apple of her eye. She resides in Maryland and when she is not working and catering to her little boy, she is busy working on her unnamed novel. You can follow her on Twitter Here: https://twitter.com/mskeeinmd