“This is your life, child; this is why I’ve allowed so many years of pain and suffering, to help another of My children in need.” God spoke these words to me, not too long ago. It’s amazing, the second great commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself and that love must be shared by sharing your story of hope, so that all can see Jesus in you. 1 Peter 5:2-4 “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers, not because you must, but because you are willing as God wants you to be. Not greedy for money but eager to serve, not lording over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.”
The phone rang over the weekend. She wanted to give up, throw in the towel—just keep doing what she was doing until it finally took her from this life. Alcohol had its grip on her, and she cannot stop this cycle. Going to bed with the shame of doing exactly what she promised herself she wouldn’t do and waking up with so much pain that she didn’t have a choice, but to repeat the events of yesterday. She needed hope , not from someone who had it all together always, but from someone who has experienced falling apart—someone like me. She knows my God put all my pieces back together, and she wanted to know how. She talked and let it all out, over 400 days of the habit. She just needed hope. Who knew my pain was for a purpose? He did!!!! I am so thankful and grateful and humbled to be His servant, that He entrusted me with such a story of addiction, recovery, forgiveness, and a life changed through Him and for Him.
The “Y” in Recovery stands for yield. ”Yield your heart, mind and body to God.” Here’s what He wants from your yield: take your everyday, ordinary life—your eating, sleeping, going to work, play—and place it before God as an offering. He will use every bit of your life, recycle it and help so many! Embrace what He does for you! It’s the best thing you can do for others! Don’t become so well adjusted to your life that you forget the main purpose. What is that purpose, you say? Use your mess for His ministry.
The “Y” in Recovery also stands for YOU. You are amazing and so worth all His efforts! See, He loves you that much, to not just leave you in a state of contentment, but to make you see how desperately you need Him and how desperately others need to see your dependence on Him. Don’t waste what has happened to you!! Fear not, He will guide you to who needs you most.
1 Peter 3:14 says “Do not fear what they fear, do not be frightened. But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord; always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope you have. But do this with gentleness and respect–keeping a clear conscience so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” That pretty much tells you word for word how to tell your story. His word is our guide, my friend.
Ask boldly for the strength to carry His message and pray for discernment. His Spirit will guide you to who needs answers; answers to questions like…How did you recover? How did you do it? On the hard days when you couldn’t muster the strength for mascara, how did you even pour the milk for the children’s cereal? How did you breathe and put one foot in front of the other? What kept you from giving up? You know your story, and you know how you made it. Don’t waste it, I keep repeating this, but it’s just so crucial to your own recovery as well as someone else. You will get more out of this than they will. On Sunday, when I was reminded of still being in that pit, I knew I never wanted to go back. God sends us those to remind us of how it was and how we don’t ever have to go back there.
I end this with praise and a reminder that there is strength in numbers. There is strength in His name, there is healing in His name, and redemption in His name. Be the light to all; use your story, His story. Go ye into all the world and tell everyone who will listen…
Dear Heavenly Father, You have been so evident and present in our lives these past weeks and years. You have spoken to us through Your Word as if You were sitting right next to us. You have brought us to this place. We know now You have a plan. You are inviting us to share Your truths with hungry and thirsty men and women. As we now prepare to lead Your sheep, please prepare the hearts of those You are calling. Give them a hunger in their hearts, an open schedule, and a desire for more of You and a hope that comes from You. Give us a love for each and every one, no matter who You bring our way. Give us Your vision and wisdom as we step out and tell our story and recycle our pain for Your purpose. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
If you would like to email Kim in regards to this post, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org