I thought my life was over. This was the sort of thing that happened to other people. People who didn’t have it all together. People who weren’t as smart. Not me! This wasn’t how it was supposed to go. Standing in the midst of the broken pieces of my life’s dreams, I felt hope drain from me like rainwater into a gutter.
Honestly, who of us has not been there?
Today, I had lunch with a kindred spirit. I knew the general outline of her story but had never gotten to hear it from her lips, with her words. Like many of us, she reached a point where her shattered dreams littered the floor of her life and she felt it was pretty much over for her. Things hadn’t gone right and therefore she was less useful, less valuable, just…less.
I understand that place. I lived in that place for far too long.
What was so fun about today’s lunch was hearing how God delivered her out of that place when she sought him, showing her that she still has value, that Jeremiah 29:11 is still true, that there are still dreams to dream and goals to accomplish and ways to be used of God. And not only did he restore to her a hopeful future, he’s given her more than she had before she reached that terrible season of loss and mourning. Hearing about her journey brought tears to my eyes – God is so good!
Whether it’s Job in the Old Testament or my friend in present day, everybody loves a good restoration story. Overcomers inspire us and give us the opportunity to join our hearts with them and rejoice in their victory. They give us hope that restoration is for us too. These stories also reflect the grace and glory of God, that no matter what kind of mess you find yourself in or create for yourself, he can and he will turn it around if you trust, follow him, and go after it.
When Job prayed for his friends, the LORD restored his fortunes. In fact, the LORD gave him twice as much as before! So the LORD blessed Job in the second half of his life even more than in the beginning. -Job 42:10, 12
I don’t know about you, but I’m shouting at the top of my lungs that my latter will be (and already, in fact, is) greater than my past!
You can shout it too, if you’d like.