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I remember my first time leaving home not being the ideal situation. I graduated high school in Indiana on a Friday, flew to Georgia (my old home that was going to be my home again soon) on Saturday, flew to India the next day for a missions trip, got back and flew back to Indiana, packed up the house and moved back to Georgia. Talk about a whirlwind of emotions. Then after about two summer months in Georgia I decided to go start my first semester of college in Missouri. Now, don't get me wrong, I had some good experiences in Missouri and I loved the people I met. But I was so extremely lonely on top of quietly "dealing with" the past sexual abuse that had happened in high school, it all felt like too much and as if I were going to lose it in a matter of moments. So after about 6 months, I came running back to Georgia.

It's easy to feel like a failure when your plans fall through or you can't keep going at the pace or the place you are at in life. It's easy to want to never try again after one or one hundred bad or painful experiences. But, as cliche as it sounds, those experiences help shape us. Though they may have left a bad taste in our mouths, those experiences are not the end-all say-all of your life and adventures with the Lord.

After one broken engagement, 3 years down the drain (at least it seemed that way), I had nauseous reactions to the thought that someone would actually want to marry me and actually follow through. So many times of crying into my pillows at night begging God to either take away my desire to be married or make me unattracted to any guy who was going to hurt me.

It's funny how we can read story after story in the Bible and hear testimony after testimony of people's lives and our own lives yet when it comes to particular areas we buy into the lie that it is unredeemable. Unfixable. Irreplaceable. As if God didn't take a violent death on a cross, a three day stand in the grave, a hopeless looking case and flip it around to bring true, everlasting life for all of humanity. As if God can't do the same with our broken pieces, places, memories, experiences, and hearts.

We call Him Redeemer yet we hide our dead places under the rug, as if He can't see them. We treasure the hurts deep in our hearts, not allowing the Healer, Yahweh Roph'ekha, our personal physician, to even look at let alone touch the wound. But oh, if we would, if only we would, we would see that nothing, absolutely nothing is beyond redeeming for God.

Maybe you feel that you will never be able to stand up again, to get in the rink, and put up your fists. Maybe just the thought of trying to put up a fight, to try again, get back up after you've been knocked down again and again, is paralyzing to you... that's okay. You need not worry, the Lord will fight for you, you need only be... be what? Be still.

So stop that worry, child. Stop the thoughts going through your head that say "what if I get wounded again?" Oh but what if, just what if you soared, my friend?

Now it's time for me to move again. Away from Georgia, away from my family. And the memories of the last time want to haunt me but instead I am remembering what they taught me. To stop relying on myself, to speak up when I need help or am hurting, to reach out to others around me, to trust God in the knowns and unknowns. And maybe it's time for you again, too, friend. Time to start living out the faith, time to start believing that there is nothing for God that is not redeemable. Because it is absolute truth, loved one, that there is nothing He cannot do to redeem you and every area of your heart and life.

"And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of His Spirit who lives in you." Romans 8:11

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