The last few days my heart has been filled with joy, peace, and confidence. I have had glimpses of this over the last few years, but I have been filled with this for the last few days. I just want to tell everyone, I want to say, guess what my heart is happy and loved. I look at where I was and where I am now and all I can see is how much God has walked with me, loving me, fathering me, and providing me. If you will walk with me for a little bit I will tell you about it.
My heart has softened and walls that were up have slowly come down. I had walls up that I hid behind, because that is where it was safe. I didn’t want to let people in, to know the hurts or see my struggles. But as I built relationships that were completely Christ-Centered, where I found women that were willing to cry with me, were protective of me, would celebrate with me, and just accept me right where I am I began to share more and more. The walls began to crumble as I shared and it was received with nothing but love and encouragement. Not only that, but what I shared mattered. Every time I shared I was reminded of that. It was received with attention, with care, and I was often told that. My story has been treated as a treasure. As I slowly shared my heart that often felt broken and shattered it was received with 2 warm hands, gently holding those pieces saying thank you for trusting me, let me help you hold these pieces as it is mended back together. It has been a process of sharing again and again, whether it was something big or something that just seemed big at the moment, it was sharing triumphs and hurts and having it all received with the same care.
There were times where things weren’t received with care and all I would want to do was go back behind the walls that provided me with a false sense of security. Those walls did what I needed them to until they couldn’t hold everything back anymore and until pieces had been chipped away and they were no longer as strong as they used to be. That is a beautiful thing. I had these fears and anxieties about sharing, I worried about what others would think, and the lies have been slowly replaced with truth, chipping away at those fears. Love and grace win. Fear didn’t stand a chance when I have had warriors of God alongside me, praying for me, speaking the truth, encouraging me and loving me unconditionally. I sit her and just think wow. I am loved.
I get to celebrate that all now. I feel as though chains have been broken, as weights and burdens have been taken from me. I cry with joy. I don’t even know what to do with the power of this joyful, confident spirit except share even more. That I can sit here and see God has been there each step of the way, every time I was ready to give up someone was there with encouraging words. Every time fear overcame me there was a reminder of the truth and that the feeling of fear would pass. Every tear I have cried has been gently collected and used to heal my heart. The times of anger have been redirected knowing there will be justice. My broken identity has been mended into one where I can say I am a child of God and know that it is true.
It has been a fight, but it’s a fight that I thought I could fight alone, but once I realized I couldn’t and let God and others really in, it was a fight that I know I will win. And it seems as though this fight has been going on forever, but I still have fight in me. But it’s all because I know how this fight ends and it is in victory. Because the fact is it has already been won with Jesus on the cross. So the fighting I have to do is to not forget that, and to not forget that I am loved and I am more than any of my past or what this world says. That I get to be defined by a God who wants to be a Father, who says you are more than that because I define you. I get to look up in awe and wonder and say I want to be more like you dad, I get to run into his embracing arms when the hurts are there, I get to walk with confidence and know that everything is temporary but the joy, it will last forever. My voice now can go from a small shaking voice, that was wondering will someone hear me, to a confident voice that says I am worth listening to.
I have felt for a while that I had moved from victim to survivor. I was stuck there, in just surviving, but I yearned for something more. But now, I can say I know I have more to do than just survive, and I can move from a survivor to a conqueror. It isn’t about just facing the day, making it through and hoping things will get better. It is about living, enjoying the peace, joy and confidence that I have been given and sharing it with others because I can claim victory over it all because of Jesus. I can say that my story matters, not because of the hurts, but because the healing and seeing the true redemptive power of restoration the cross offers. I can say my voice has been heard, not just listened to, but heard on a heart level and that voice has been strengthened by love. This is what it is to be a conqueror. It doesn’t mean forgetting, it doesn’t mean that there won’t be hard days to come or that all the feelings are gone. What being a conqueror means is I can say I will overcome. I know that there will be victory. And I am going to cling to these days of joy because this is what it means to be free.
Are you ready to hear my voice?
I am a daughter of God.
I am loved.
I am free.
I am strong.
I am cared for.
I am heard.
I am enough.
I am a conqueror.