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6 Years of Breathing

Six years ago, I found myself in one of the most difficult seasons of my life. Everywhere I turned, I found loss after loss, disappointment after disappointment, blow after blow. Family, friends, church, my own body.... the good guys weren't acting like the good guys. And in the middle of it all, the most tender loss of it all, was losing my Grandmother, six years ago today.

I vividly remember feeling like I couldn't breathe. My capacity was shot. I remember the desperate feeling of needing the Lord to take over. I specifically remember telling the Lord that I could not ever imagine a way that He would bring me out of it and that I for sure would not ever get to a place that I would be grateful for the season. I felt like so much of it could have been avoided. I was hurting and so wanting things to be different. 

I have friends walking through a devastating season right now, today. Because I love them, I stand with them begging God for a miracle. Begging Him for relief. Begging Him to rescue. We are so desperate for the Lord to move and do something. 

I wouldn't dream of comparing the two situations. Desperation doesn't need any help to knock the wind out of you, each instance is painful enough. But on this anniversary for me, I want to remember to testify to the Lord's faithfulness to bring me through that season, because He did. Even though I didn't ever see how it would be possible, He did it. For my own heart, I need to remember today that God does perform miracles and He miraculously works in ways that we could never fathom with our feeble eyes. I find hope in His faithfulness and in the evidence I have in my life that He still works in seasons of desperation. 

I wrote this short blog post below when I first started to catch my breath. I read through this today and remember every word of this post and how each milestone I listed felt like such a solid place to stand. This is my testimony of how the Lord taught me to breathe again. 

The Breath of God 
May 9, 2010

When my dad came out of anesthesia from a surgical procedure, he had the sensation of not being able to breathe.  It took six nurses to hold him down to keep him from panicking and fighting.

The same scenario can be applied emotionally and spiritually after life trauma, and especially-trying times.  At least, that’s how I’ve felt after walking through some very difficult days as of late. Emotionally, I felt like I was gasping.. And although you might not see it on the outside, on the inside I was near panic at times. Just when I felt like I could take a breath, something else would drop in my lap. 

Finally, the fight gave way to weariness.  But the Lord met me there, and I feel like I’m breathing again.  

A few weeks ago, I read a verse that has given me purpose for this season: 

“The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed 
tongue to know the word that sustains the weary” 
Isaiah 50:4a (NIV). 

That word “weary” jumped off the page at me. Reading and believing the word “sustains,” I took my first deep breath.

“When you walk through the waters, I will be with you; 
and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. 
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; 
the flames will not set you ablaze” Isaiah 43:2 (NIV).

I read this verse in connection to the Bible Study I am going through right now, and it encouraged me greatly beyond the obvious. Notice the movement verbs in the middle of each phrase -  “walk through”, “pass through”, “walk through” - going from one place to another, from one river bank to the other side.  

This encourages me because it shows that the hard times are only part of the journey. The difficult 
season is not going to last forever. I will reach the other side. 

My lungs inhaled with the sweet breath of truth for a second time.

When studying the verse from Isaiah 50:4, I noticed that the verse reads “a word (singular) that sustains the weary” and not “the words (plural)”. 

So what is the word that sustains the weary?

The Lord reminded me of the familiar story of Jesus walking on the water in Matthew 14.  The disciples have just finished watching Jesus feed the 5000 and after a long day, they get on a boat. Jesus comes to them, walking on the water, and the disciples were terrified, convinced they were seeing a ghost. 

Jesus tells them, “Don’t be afraid, it is I.”  

Peter says, “Lord if it’s really you, tell me to come out with you on the water.” 

Jesus replies with one word: “COME”

One word to sustain the weary. One word to change our surroundings. One word holding out its hand to us, offering us breath.

Why one word? Because when you are wounded and weary, you can’t handle more.

Why that word? Because Jesus is the rest-giver. “Come to ME all you who are weary and burdened,” He says, “and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

As my head and heart met in the same place of understanding and began to involuntarily run with abandon towards the Father, I realized for the first time in months…

I was breathing.

Related Posts:

Missing Her..

Loss And Hope And Shiny Faces

On Grieving And Aching 

Precious Lives Worth Remembering 

The Fire That's Burning Inside Me


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I sell Scentsy to help generate extra income for my family and to make the world a better-smelling place. Check out my website here: http://carriewiley.scentsy.us  

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