Monday, February 18, 2008

stories of faithfulness

***Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who shared their own story here with us. I was so moved. Fresh reminders of God's tenderness and His love even when everything around us is a virtual nightmare, are so beautiful. It's easy to forget sometimes, and that is why I love hearing these testimonies of His faithfulness. If you have something to share and have not done so, please add your story! I will be adding something new tomorrow, but this post will always welcome additions!***

For months I have been receiving emails or letters from people, most of whom I've never met, who have felt compelled to share the story of how God carried them through their darkest season of life. Each time I have gone to my inbox and seen another of these emails waiting to be read, I get excited! I wait until I'm not hurried or rushed so that I can sit down and soak it in each story of God's faithfulness-something that never gets old. Each person who has shared has blessed me because it has given me fresh reason to praise Jesus. The stories are different, yet so very much the same. The details are varied, the situations diverse, but the common theme of faithfulness and love runs through each one.

Many times as I have read these words, penned by the hands of people I will never put a face with, I have wished that everyone could share in the joy of hearing how God is God, no matter the situation, no matter the suffering. He has the ability to make all things beautiful. I have used this blog to share in detail the story of God's faithfulness to me. l would now love to take the chance to ask anyone who feels comfortable doing so, to use the comments portion of this post to share your story. I have learned from experience, you never know who you are going to bless. Don't worry about it being long or short. If you want to share, just write until you have expressed your heart. The Bible tells us to share our burdens with each, but it also tells us to rejoice with each other! What better way than to rejoice with others as you read the individual stories that exemplify the fact that God does not just love us all, but He loves us each.


Candi said...

I will not post my story since I know that you have been to my blog but I just wanted you to know what a wonderful idea I think this is. Shared testimonies of God are amazing gifts and can help so many!
On another note, I saw a beautiful clock with poppies on it and thought of your beautiful little daughter!
Praying for you in Utah!

Chelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I was so touched by Poppy's Life, you see i never had Children due to medical reason's but God is so good, He gives me the wonderful Gift to keep God's gift to us is Babies through the Church nursery, Poppy's life ment so much and to me she and her family is a living testimony, I am too old to adopt but thank God never to old to enjoy the gift of Life

asplashofsunshine said...

I never paid attention to the state flower poppy signs along the roadsides of my home state of California, until about 3 weeks ago when I came across your story. I now notice the lonely poppies in a garden, and the many fields of poppies that surround us. Little Poppy Joy has brought a new light into my life. You have touched an incredible amount of people through your inspirational words, and strength. Thank you... From the land of the beautiful Poppy.

Tammy said...

I only know of you through mutual friends (I was at Bellevue from my time of salvation in 1996 until I finished college in 2002) and have been following your story here. What a blessing it has been to watch you grow through this time, to see you run towards God rather than away from Him as so many do when they are hurting.

I want to share something that came out of my experience. My darkest hour came when my father died in 2005, followed by the death of my mother nine months later. My entire world ended. I felt so lost, broken and torn apart. So many told me about how beautifully I handled myself at the funerals...if only they knew.
I spent an entire year just floating's all a blur that I prefer not to dwell on. Then, someone I didn't know came to me and told me something that God had laid on her heart. She told me that God wanted me to know Him as Father who takes care of His daughter. He wanted me to know that He was still with me, even when I felt so alone. He wanted me to know that He would never leave me nor would He forsake me, that I could be broken hearted for as long as I needed, but that He would be there to pick up the pieces when I was ready. He spoke all of this to me through this person I didn't know.

I began to learn my IDENTITY in Christ. I learned that I was not defined by my family, by my struggles, by my profession...but that I was defined by WHO HE IS. He IS love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, and self-control. He IS victory. He IS strength. He IS perfection. Wow! What a life-changing truth! It was when I began to learn my true identity that I was able to separate myself from all of the pain and darkness, and move forward. I became more confident, more peace-filled, more alive than ever before. My Sweet Father in Heaven would sing to me at night, and waken me in the morning...what a beautiful healing He created in my heart. Not only did He heal me, but He recreated me AGAIN.

Once that healing transformed me, I was never the same again. God has brought so many people into my life that need a fresh touch from Him. My passion has become to teach people who they are in Christ. For when we know that truth, everything else fades because we then realize that we know HIM in a way we never thought possible.

To God be the glory. My God turns my darkness into light!

The VW's said...


I have left several comments on your site, but have always left them anonymously. I figured that no one would want to read my story because it just isn't as profound as yours and all the other families who have dealt with Trisomy 18. I have a son with Trisomy 21, otherwise known as Down syndrome. He has had to go through a lot in his short life. I too have blogged his story to update family and friends and as a way to vent my emotions through everything that he's endured.

After reading your update today I realized that it may have been selfish of me to not also share my story with you. I have been so uplifted by you and the life of your precious Poppy! I have been humbled by your faith and God given strength! Reading your site has helped me to realize that I am even more blessed than I had thought! I have been comforted and touched by all that you've shared, so now I'm posting this comment with my site as well. You are right about never knowing when you might bless someone else or help them through a trying time by sharing. I know that you have helped me! Thankyou! God Bless You!

Anonymous said...


I know I told you about a week ago that I would be blogging about the precious life of Poppy and you wanted me to let you know when I was finished so you could read it. I have finally finished after much prayer and thought. You are such an inspiration to me for the woman I strive to be in Christ. Thank you for being so strong in your faith and being selfless enough to share your heart with the world. It has spoken to me more than you will ever know.

Lauren Watson

Anonymous said...

Angie,God Bless you and the family for letting us express how we feel, our Lord Gave us Poppy Joy and she will never ever be forgoton,this site is love by and touched by so many,and not till we all get to Heaven to be with our Heavenly Father will will all know each other,you have just gave us this path and jouney as we walk with you nameless and faceless, we are just walking by faith and not by site. Thank you and May God shine His light upon you, Jesus loves the little Children of the world.

The Adoption Of William said...

You inspire me to be a better person. You are so open and so filled with faith. Your blog is a beautiful testament to what having a strong relationship with the Lord will do in your life. Your blog is uplifting and just wonderful. I have been very blessed to have read it! You are such a beacon of light in the darkness this world can bring upon us.

With Love and Hope,

Jen-Will's Mom

Julie Christopher said...

This is something that I wrote in my blog back in I serve as a ministry partner to my husband who is a pastor. Pretty humbling..anyways, here's my story

I realized something today. Most people who read my blog don't know a lot of who I am or who I was. For a long time, that was true because I myself didn't know how to cope with certain things so I would just not deal with it. I am much like my father..non confrontational. I prefer to let things go..which isn't healthy either b/c what happens is that I let a lot go..then I get upset and then it all comes this past year has been spent learning to address issues as they with it then and then just move on. I'm still working through's hard to just get rid of years and years of unhealthy habits. But in order for me to get here..I had to confront my past..and it was painful at was difficult. But through it all..I've experienced healing and walk in freedoms that I didn't know. I'm still a work in progress, yet, I think it's always going to be that way..I mean..I am human. With that..I think it's important that you know me. I have no idea how long this blog will take me to complete. What all I will say..or won't..but I promise that it'll be real..I won't be writing to impress or pull feelings out of you..I'm going to write from my you know who I am. Because what I have that by keeping it in it's with holding glory to God. That's unfair to Him..b/c He's worked and moved in very, very amazing ways in my life. So, with that..I'll begin my story...and I'll say this..I'm going to speak unapologetically..and more importantly..I don't want you to feel sorry for me..that's not my aim. I believe I was allowed to endure my trials so that I can minister to women..Lewis said something the other night that really hit home..he said that when we causes damage and it creates baggage. My past is a product of own sin and the sins of others. we go..I was born here in parents were married at the time. I actually have memories from early childhood..I think it's because they were so tramatic. I can remember a time before my brother was here..and we are 26 months I am not sure exactly how old I was..but my mom was going to leave my mom had me up on the dryer getting some clothes together when my father walked in w/ a knife telling us how he had slit the tires to the car and that we wouldn't be going anywhere. My mom called my grandpa and then we went outside in the front yard where we were met by my dad who was now yielding a gun and he put it to his head and proceeded to tell me goodbye and that he loved me and how this was my mom's fault b/c we were leaving. I don't know why exactly I remember that so clearly today. It doesn't invoke any feelings from me today..except that my dad was nuts then. Then I remember my father abusing my mother. I don't know how old I parents divorced before I was sometime before then. What I remember is her face..mascara all over it as she cries uncontrollably..and when he would shake would make her buttons on her shirt open and when he would leave her alone I would stand up on the couch and button her shirt back up. Maybe I thought I was fixing her..I don't know..then one of his friends stopped by to visit and saw what was going on and confronted my dad. They proceeded to fist fight in the living room. I remember the coffee table being broken. When I lived with my parents..we lived in filth. Trash everywhere..I can remember rats everywhere. Probably why I am so scared of them today. Once they seperated, my mom threw herself at guys. I can remember once her and a guy stayed in her bedroom all day long w/ us free to roam a/r the house as we pleased. A 4 yr old and a 2 yr old. We'd knock on the door and the guy would answer it w/ a sheet a/r him. Rejection..that's when I started to realize that we were just a burden. For as much as a 4 year old could understand. Once my parents seperated, we went wherever someone would take us..usually we would be seperated.Anyways, so my mom and dad divorced. She lost the house and we moved to this apartment where we lived with her and a friend. Now, up until this point..sure my life hadn't been roses..but I wouldn't characterize it as damaging...but given the events that were to occur in the future..I guess we'll never know. My mom's friend had a boyfriend who would watch us sometimes. It is here, in these times I am exposed to just how sick people can be. This man molested me. He never penetrated me, but he would force me to do things to him. And he in turn would do things to me..what is so troubling about remembering this is that there was a time that my brother who was about 2 at the time was watching the whole thing....I just remember him standing there and never saying anything. Now, I can't quite remember time frames then becuase of my age. What I do know is that I was a/r 4. Also, a/r 4 my mother got a b/f who had a son who was in junior high or high school. I don't know for sure. I know what my perspective was then, but to a 4 yr old..who knows. Anyways, this young man would also do things to me. He would however penetrate me..not only vaginally but also anally. Now, the fact that I can actually write these words is really good. And it's a testimony to how God has healed me of this. Right before Ryan and I were married..I was told by God I needed to tell Ryan this. Up until this point in my life..that aspect of my life was not acknowledged, not even by me. I tried for a long time to convince myself that it didn't affect me, that it didn't matter. When God told me to tell Ryan I was working out..(for some reason I hear Him the most and the clearest during this time) anyways, so I went back to my desk at work and sat down and decided that God told me I needed to do this..and I knew if I didn't do it right then, that I would wait and convince myself that I didn't need to. As I wrote him the email..tears just started pouring as I sat and saw the words in the was in that moment did I realize just how wounded I was. Ryan was of course gracious..and he handled the situation perfectly. He never ever pushes me..he always waits for me to tell him what I feel is important. The only thing he asked me was if there was something that he needed to know in terms of what aspects of our marriage would be affected..which I am happy to say none today :) Anyways, carrying when I was five I will say that my mom had the sense to send me to live w/ my grandparents...for the next five years that's where I would remain and I had a relatively normal and happy childhood. Actually, during this time..I was actually known for always smiling..that was my trademark. During this time I usually saw my mom a/b once a year..and I did see my dad every other weekend. When I was 10 my mom came back a/r and we would stay w/ her on a part time basis. When I was 11 she decided she wanted us to come back home with her. My grandparents asked that the transition be slow, gradual and on our terms. My mom compromised and moved 5 houses down from them so that we would have them right there. When I was 12 we did move in with her. Right after, she got a b/f who didn't like kids..and to save you from all the morning before school he proceeded to place his hands on me and left bruises. It was from these events that I was placed in Buckner's Children's Home in Dallas. That experience has changed my life..and perhaps after this post, I will post specifically about that experience and some other things related, but to keep this on track..I will continue. My mom was fighting my grandparents on getting custody and my case worker was explaining to me how long it would take for my grandparents to get us..but that my mom had agreed to let my dad come from Ohio and get custody of us and she wouldn't fight him. At that point, I was desperate. They could have said that they would send me to the North Pole and I would have said my dad came and we ended up going with him to the Buckeye state. So Ohio...that was a really confusing time for me. Shortly after we arrived, my father and his wife seperated. My brother hated it in Ohio and had pulled enough stunts that my dad agreed to let my brother return to Dallas. I wanted too..I really did..but the one thing w/ me that is that I am matter what. Perhaps it's b/c I felt betrayed and abandoned all my life, I don't know..but I didn't go back..I felt bad..I didn't want him to be alone. He however, got addicted to crack cocaine and was an alcoholic. So, he was rather absent from my life. He wouldn't come home for days. I lived in the country..and when I say country..I mean no grocery store in our town, no gas station...neighbors were miles apart. My friends parents would bring me groceries b/c he wouldn't be a/r. I would do whatever I wanted to...I was in junior high and I had the freedom to leave my house at any time that I wanted and return at anytime I desired. I am lucky that I was an kept me out of a lot of trouble..and the fact that I witnessed one too many friends have crazy trips on scared me enough to stay relatively out of trouble. I did drink a lot..I did smoke pot...but that was about as crazy that I got. And considering what I could have gotten into..I think I did pretty good. When I got to high school..I decided to go to my friends house and then I ended up staying for the summer. My dad never called to tell me to come home, so I stayed. Come September, I felt bad..I wanted to talk to my dad so I had my friend take me back home to find out that he had moved...I will never, ever in my life forget that feeling..and remembering the defeaning silence on the way home..I know Nikki felt horrible, and didn't know what to say and I didn't know how to process what I was feeling at the time..I guess I should also mention that a lot of the reason I stayed with Nikki is because she was rather insistent b/c I was so depressed that I wanted to committ suicide. I held that gun in my hand so many many..thank God I never had it in me to pull the trigger. So, I finally heard from my dad..he dropped a letter in the Lohr's mailbox and said "come and see me sometime" nice...At the age of 17 I was officially emancipated by the state of Ohio.At the end of my junior year in high school I started to date a kid and it was really serious. I passed up some opportunties to play softball in college to stay close to home b/c of him..our relationship, although unhealthy, was a blessing in the sense that he kept me out of a lot of trouble the rest of high school. I didn't know how to process a lot of my emotions and he kept me from drinking and doing drugs and whatever else. So, I go to college though and we ended up breaking up. I wanted to marry this kid...I thought I would..but after I went to Kent State..there was this feeling that something was just just wasn't right. So we broke up..and even though we broke up we were still together for the next year or so until enough was enough..looking back on it was God working..b/c had we stayed together..I don't know if I would have found Christ as he is not a believer, not even today. Anyways, so we broke up and I resorted back to drinking a lot...among other was during this time that God really started to call me out...In high school I was blessed with some really strong Christian friends who never, ever judged me although I lived a completely different life than them..they just loved me..they planted seeds that would produce fruit years later. My sophmore year of college He started to pull me out..Some friends started to challenge my by this point..I was very anti-God..I couldn't possibly fathom a just and loving God after my childhood. In my mind, it was really, really hard to comprehend this just and loving God who would allow this to happen to me. Because the thing is, I touched all the major events in my life here in this post..but there were and still are so many words that have stuck w/ many other smaller events that have occured that I still remember. At that time in my life..I felt see my family had turned on me when I got emancipated. "Barnett's don't do that" I was told. They would call the family that I stayed with drunk and threaten to kill them and stuff..It was horrible. When I was still in high school we had to notify the police b/c of some threats that were made to even me..I was constantly monitored in high school. School officials knew where I was at all moments. Anyways, so at this time..I felt like I didn't belong anywhere..I had never really known what love really looked like so it was almost impossible for me to understand how a God could love me. friend Sarah challenges me one night. She went through all the reasons that I didn't believe. She never refuted me..she never told me I was wrong..she just simply said that when I was ready, that He was there. I told her as I left that I just couldn't put my faith in something that I can't feel, I can't see...if there was a God He would have to prove it to me...I left. On my way home I felt the urge to pull over to a payphone. I reluctantly went because at the time, it seemed absurd to me to go. On top of the pay phone was a little booklet that was called the Execution. It talked and explained a lot of things about Jesus. So, momentrily this was my "sign". I said I believed. Yet, I had no one to disciple me..or hold me accountable and shortly there after the enemy came and turned what happened into doubt, a "mere coincidence" I would say. I went on living my life of rebellion. Fast forward a couple of years...Lisa and I are on our way to work at Allstate in Ohio. I was frustrated with my that time actually I was horribly depressed. I can remember telling her so many days how I was dying. I truly felt that. So anyways, I am venting to Lisa the whole 45 minute ride. At the end of the convo, I said I just wish God would tell me what to do..why I said that, I'll never know..b/c Lord knows I wasn't a believer..yet, in my rebellion even against Him..He was with me..and He heard me. A couple of weeks later I am sitting at work talking to a man in Georgia a/b a claim. At the end of the convo he asked me if I could turn off the recording. I told him I couldn't...and then he asked me something about church and I was short with him b/c I am thinking..what does this guy want..seriously. Then he asked me if I knew what modern prophecy was..I said no..he said well that's when you ask God questions and He answers those questions to you through someone else and then he went on to tell me about my conversation a couple of weeks earlier that I had had with Lisa...and he told me what God wanted from me...Now, I sat in stunned silence. All I could say to this guy was you have a good day sir and I hung up. I went and grabbed Lisa...I needed a smoke after that..and I recalled to her all that was said..most would ask when I accepted Jesus after that..and I will tell you it took some time..It took me moving back to Texas months later...and took the Holy Spirit teaching me and Lisa just who He is. I feel blessed to have the testimony that I have...and most times I simply ask God in awe, why me? Anyways..I tell you all of this for a few reasons..I am trying to break down walls and barriers. A few people really know me..most times I keep a wall up...letting a few "select" in..I realize how weak that truly makes me. I am protecting myself and telling God that I don't trust who you send into my life..Ultimately it's a control issue. See, I had no control as I child..and in that, some bad things happened to me. So there are aspects of my life that I tend to try to control..situations that I try to control...and I don't want to control anymore..I just don't. And I felt God tell me a few weeks ago to publish this..and I feel that this is important for two reasons..1) Confession leads to healing 2) God has revealed this past week what He wants me to do long term..and it's a stretch for me..when I got the word I was like no way, absolutely not..there is no way I can do this..yet, I think that's why..b/c it'll be all Him and none of me..and this is a stepping stone to His calling.I am trying to get to a place where I no longer inhibit His call on my life..and not my call long term wise per say, just in the every day ways that I fail. I can tell you that when I truly looked at myself within, I was disgusted. I found a self-righteous chick who thought she had it all figured out..and I am learning that that mentality is what kept me from healing and dealing. Here is something interesting that I read in a book called The Good Life "Empirical research supports the conclusion that people need each other. 33 scientists investigated the relationship b/w human development and community, reporting their findings in a 2003 report, Hardwired to Connect. The report argues that all children need authorative communities devoted to transmitting a model of the moral life. Without loving connection-to people and institutions that give children moral and spiritual guidance-children become prone to psychiatric disorders that develop in late adolescence." What I have realized this past year is that it's okay to say that my childhood hurt..for so long I pretended that I was fine..for so long I acted like it was no big deal.'ll ruin you if you allow it. So, for those that read this..I want you to know me..I want you to know who I am..but more importantly..this is about Christ. Look at my's a testimony to His goodness, to His faithfulness, to His love and His mercy. When I recall all of these events..I stand in awe of Him..He is a good and just God and although I don't understand it..I am always given this scripture Genesis 50:20 "You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives". For awhile, I never got that..but I do now..especially as He has layed ouy my future. Jesus, thank you for the ways that you have made yourself so evident in my life..thank You for Your grace and mercy and I pray that you continue to remove from me what is not of you..and that you continue to build me up as you would have me..Ryan and friends..thank you for the ways that you love me..I am so blessed to have you all..b/c it is through my husband, my best friend, and my many other friends that God has and is proving just how faithful He is and showing me what love is...Please be patient with me as I work through this..and as I walk in boldness to what He has called me too..Blessings, JC

read2kds said...

I have never posted on your blog, but have prayed for you for what seems like forever. I have wept over your loss and called on our Father to comfort you. Although this story does not compare to your loss, it is truly a testimony of God carrying me. When my 2nd child was 3 we decided to try for a third and became pregnant immediately...although no test would show it and the people at my OB office acted like I was having a hysterical pregnancy, I was pregnant (and knew it) and 8 weeks later woke up with excrutiating pain, like NOTHING I had ever felt before. I begged my husband to take me to the ER and when I arrived they whisked me straight back. For any of you who have ever been to the ER, this is not a good sign, :-) About 3 seconds after they put a catheter in the nurse yelled out, "It's positive!" I thought she meant for a kidney stone (?) and she said, "No, your pregnancy test." At which point I freaked out. My sweet husband just kept praying right out loud through the next few hours as we had tests and finally an u/s which confirmed that I was probably having an ectopic rupture, but there was so much blood from the hemorraghing they would have to wait until they were in there to really make a decision. So, I had to sign off that they could remove whatever necessary...and the whole time I kept thinking, surely this is a mistake, surely my GOD has not forgotten me. The next few hours, months, and year would prove that he had not only remembered me that day, he had gone before me to prepare the way, to soften the blow of losing our baby and ultimately to show me that through ANYTHING, he is my God and I must trust him.
So as I am being woken up from surgery, the first thing I ask the nurse with me is "Do you know Jesus?" To which she replied, "Sweetie, he is my everything." and then I asked, "Is my baby dead?" and she said, "Yes" They lost my husband...he was accidently put in the ICU waiting room by a nurse who knew I'd been bumped forward b/c of my critical blood loss, but the dr didn't know this. And for the next 2 hours while my husband worried about what was happening this precious nurse, Sharon, sang and prayed over me and my marriage, and my grief, and my children, and my future children. It was such a precious time to me looking back. A few months later I invited her to come sing at a women's event at our church that I was in charge of and she came and I just wept when I saw her, and she went on to tell me more of the miracle of that see she never works on Fridays, but she got called in the night before...and she never works post-op, only pre-op, so MY GOD who I thought had forgotten me, had gone so far as to arrange someone else's work schedule...just for me a day ahead of time, so that I would be comforted in the hours of my need. I truly struggled that year and saw a very gifted counselor who pulled me through and taught me to allow God to have all that I think is mine...because it's all his anyway. The last time I saw my counselor was when she came to visit me in the hospital, with my sweet baby Samuel, who is aptly named because of a biblical mother who "got it" and prayed for the child God would give her, that she would dedicate him to the Lord all the days of his life. I do not claim to have the faith Hannah had, but I do know God brought me through that painful season of life so that I would KNOW that he is my God and that he will never leave me. I think the blessing of my Samuel was the end of a very long battle with God that he won...and I am a better woman for it.

Jaclyn said...


I check your blog daily but haven't commented in a while. I found your blog through Boothe (who I also don't actually know, but love all the same!). I don't know what to say except that your daughter Poppy, Copeland, Maddox and Tristan have truly changed my life. I don't know any of you personally but God has used these Trisomy 18 moms to wake me up. I was led to your stories and have truly been changed for the better. I have grown tremendously in the Lord and your faith, along with the faith of your fellow Trisomy 18 moms challenge me and teach me daily. I have never prayed so much for people I do not know. I am now praying for the child that you will be adopting. What a wonderful gift.
After being so touched by your stories I contacted the Trisomy 18 foundation and I am now volenteering some for the organization. I just felt a huge weight and a need to "do something". I tell you this not to get a pat on the back, but to tell you that your faith and your sweet baby Poppy have made a difference in my life. Thank you for continuing to share your story and your faith with us!

Anonymous said...

I found your blog from another...and it is a true testament to the faithfulness of God. I found myself consumed in your story, and watching that video made me feel like I'd seen the faces of angels. One thing I noticed in every picture was your face - the peace that it shows is something we all covet. God is using you and your family in such a mighty way to bring his message of faith, comfort & yes, even healing, to others. I'll be reading with great anticipation to see what's He's going to do in the future, through Poppy.

Laurie said...

Hi Angie,

Well, since my story is on another blog and you suggested I copy and paste it, I have discovered that try as I may, and God knows I have tried, I am unsuccessful at accomplishing it. So if you don't mind, I will just say that it is on "Especially Heather" under the title of "Your Stories". It is towards the end and rather long, if anyone cares to go there to read it. If anyone does go there, Heather is the most wonderful lady going through a very tough time and your prayers for her would be great.
I love you Angie and I am praying for the baby God has been preparing for you and Nathan and Marianna. What a blessing this is going to be.:)

Love and Blessings to you, Laurie in Ca.

Anonymous said...

My story of God’s tremendous faithfulness is one of a father’s enduring faithfulness to a stubborn, yet somehow beloved, prodigal. You see, my story of being wounded, was not a circumstantial wound that happened to me, but yet a state that I wholeheartedly brought upon myself. I was raised in a Christian home, and accepted Jesus at a very young age, knowing undoubtedly that He was my Savior. However, during my early teen years, I slowly began to make decisions that would eventually take me down a road that I never believed that I was capable of traveling. Slowly, I began to take control of my life… feeling that it was unnecessary to give the reigns over to God. I believe that I sort of just decided to put God on the “backburner” for a little while. I slowly began to compromise on things that seemed tiny, minuscule even, to me. It was just normal “teenage” stuff, after all. Compared to other people I was friends with, I looked pretty good! I mean, I went to church regularly; I didn’t drink or do drugs! What was a little lie here or there? What was really the harm in hanging out with people who did things that I knew were wrong? This is where my dangerous journey of rationalization began. Slowly after I had compromised on one thing, then something that was worse suddenly didn’t seem so bad. Sure, I was doing things that I knew were against what God wanted, but I willingly decided that it really didn’t matter. It was at this point that I became vulnerable to whatever the devil wanted to try to do. You see, I did things that made me look good, or made me feel like I belonged. I hadn’t ever quite discovered my true worth in the God’s eyes, so I began to search for affection or attention anywhere else that I could. Once I began making decisions to go against what I knew in my heart was right, things began to happen in what can best be described as an intense downward spiral. In what was a relatively brief period of time, I became someone that I didn’t even recognize; someone that I never thought I was capable of becoming. I had compromised and compromised until I had just about zero morals left. I felt little guilt over anything. I was angry, rebellious, and the epitome of selfishness. I was a habitual liar; so much so, that I really and truly began to believe my own lies. I did many other things that I will not detail, but truly repulsive things. I knew in my heart that God was watching, but I was so numb, that I just did not care. I just kept running further and further from Him. I had become a hideous person inside, while not even realizing what was happening. Papa used to always say something like, “Sin takes you further that you ever plan or want to go, faster than you can even imagine!” Wow, how wise he was. This was so true for me. But all the while, God was looking on with a different plan for me that I had started for myself. He tried, gently at first, to bring me back to him, but my stubbornness would not allow it. So, in what I now call the most blessed and yet most terrible time in my life, God brought me down to my face. He brought me to my very lowest place and said in a clear way, “You are my child, and I will not let you continue down this road.” How great is His faithfulness! You see, it took a very painful process, but He loved me so much that He did whatever it took to bring me back. How vastly thankful I am today! It has been nearly six years now, and I can honestly say that because of His AMAZING grace and unwavering faithfulness, He has truly made me a NEW CREATION. He would not let me go, and I am forever grateful that my Jesus loved me so much, and how wonderfully special I am in His sight. My story is one of great hope, in that God, in His great faithfulness, never gives up on His children. He alone can and does change hearts. I am living proof of that.


Chelle said...

have read your blog daily, don't post much, but continually think of you and your family. I will not post a long story here, for it is posted on my own blogs that you are free to check out and read. However, I want you and your family to know that you have been a great inspriation to me and have made me walk a little closer to my Lord. I even posted a blog regarding detours from my Christian journey and included a link to Poppy's story.

Thanks for letting feel like I am a part of your family.
You are wonderful.

Shannon said...

I just want to say that I have been where you are. I lost my daughter, Olivia Faith, on Sept. 6, 2007. She had anencephaly and lived 1 hour 20 minutes.

I know how it feels to have that precious child safely in your belly, knowing what will happen at their birth. I know how it feels to finally meet your beloved child, knowing how brief their time will be on this earth. I know how it feels to plan a funeral service for a child who should be swaddled in your arms.

I also know of God's faithfulness to me and my family during that time. He never left me, not for an instant. I am so glad that you also feel His faithfulness- it is the only way to get through those dark valleys into the divine sunshine. Much love to you and your family.

Ashley said...

God is faithful even we can't reach out to him. I lost my son in December and the first few weeks were very difficult and emotional, but as that started to subside numbness and lack of feeling were the only things I felt. But very recently God has used your story and others that are similar to help me see that he's been carrying me even when I don't feel it. The comfort and reminders from others have shown me God's faithfulness when I just couldn't pray or read his word. Thank you for sharing your story and being used by God in my life and the lives of others.

The Lenda's said...

God has been faithful through 6 miscarriages. About two years after my husband and I were married we decided we were ready to start a family at this point I had just turned 30 years old. We got pregnant pretty quickly and lost that baby, we the continued to get prenant and have miscarriage after miscarriage after miscarriage. During this time my husband and I went to a fertility specialits who said that Invitro was our only option however I did not feel comfortable with that since we were able to get pregnant easily and also we could not afford the cost of Invitro. The first year of trying we had four miscarriages and exactly one year after my first miscarriage I became pregnant for the fifth time. This time God allowed us to carry that precious baby to full term and Rose is now a very beatiful three year old. When Rose was baout one we wanted to have a second child and got pregnant again the first month trying but lost that baby at about 2 months. That miscarriage was still sad and difficult but was also a sweet reminder of the miracle we had been blessed with in our first daughter. Six weeks after my D&C I became pregnant again and gave birth to our second daughter Pearl born just 6 day after her big sister's second birthday. A few weeks ago we were excited (well cautiously excited) to be expecting our third baby, however we lost that baby. My three year old knows about her brothers and sisters in heaven and asked if she could rub their soft little heads and give them hugs and kisses when she gets to heaven. Her sweet faith brings tears to my eyes and she loves to hear the story of how mommy and daddy prayed for a healthy baby and God sent her to us. I know that God has given me the perfect children for my family and pray that in His time he will bless us with our third child.

Rachel in PA

Kourtni Knobel said...

I have been following your story for awhile now and you and your beautiful family amaze me! If it is ok with you I have added your link onto my blog. If you would like it removed I am more then willing to do that! Thank you for sharing your story with us!

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