Last Wednesday, I had the honor to share my story with the incredible kids at Sallisaw First A/G.
This was the first time that I had spoken to a group that I wasn’t as familiar with. I knew a handful of students through 20 Camp, but for the most part this was a completely new audience. Even for the ones that I did know, most of them had never heard my story before.
Two years ago if someone would have asked me to share my story, their question alone would have sent me into a frenzy of panic and anxiety. But a lot has changed in these past two years.
I wasn’t nervous.
I was actually almost giddy on the inside.
I knew that the words God had given me to share that night in conjunction with my story were meant for someone.
The night kicked off and I was in a side room off the stage until it was my turn to speak.
The sermon that night included video clips following my character as she dealt with her haunting.
The final clip showed her overcoming her haunting, proclaiming that she didn’t deserve the pain she had been putting herself through and victoriously walking out of the room she had been trapped in.
These kids were genuinely excited that I had overcome in this video.
I was equally excited to be sharing how I overcame.
I asked them a very simple question, the same question I asked our students at Refuge: What will you do with your pain?
I think that’s a valid question for all of us. What will we do with our pain?
Will we let it keep us from pursuing the greatness we’ve been called for?
Or will we use it as a springboard to reach those great places?
I’m choosing to use it as a springboard.
I don’t take this calling lightly. I have a heavy story to share and hear equally heavy stories in response.
I had the honor of talking with a student after service on Wednesday about things going on in her life. I had never met her before that night. She opened up to me about things that she had never told anyone before.
What a beautiful gift to have received.
Life wasn’t meant to be walked alone.
Our struggles certainly weren’t made for that either.
Whatever it is that you find yourself going through, know that you don’t go through it alone.
Know that these moments are just as important as any other in your life.
They are important because you are important.
They matter because you matter.
Life won’t always be so heavy.
But you have to be here to see that.
No one should suffer in silence.
Silent suffering is why we have lost so many precious souls.
Let’s not lose anymore.
If you feel too much, reach out.
You were made to know and be known. To love and be loved.
I see you.
I know you.
I love you.
You aren’t alone.
He sees you.
He knows you.
He loves you.
He is with you.
If you’re feeling too much, take my hand.
I’ll walk this road with you.