I am not alone

Unbeknownst to me God was leading me to 2 Corinthians from day one of this horrible ordeal. I’m not foolish enough to ignore the signs so that is where I have been meditating. From chapter one I was shocked by the messages Paul wrote, I that felt they were written just for me. I know the people of Corinth were not going through a rough break up, but the advice they were given has been invaluable to me.

We stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God
2 Corinthians 1:9

So many of the passages confirm what I knew in my heart. The deeper I go in 2 Corinthians, the more I connect the dots and find peace. It never ceases to amaze me how a book written so long ago continues to have such a real and true presence in the world and rings true to the problems of today.

He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.
2 Corinthians 1:4

One of the most uplifting experiences that has happened over the last month, is the comfort I have found in others. Many of these people have been through similar relationship problems, and each time they share a piece of their stories with me I feel like I can face my own struggles. In my short time dealing with the pain of an end, I too have been able to help others. It is encouraging to know that I am not the only one dealing with these feelings, and I will not be the only one to make it to the other side stronger and wiser.

The Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
2 Corinthians 3:17

It is amazing the freedom that comes when you give it all to God. For me I felt like I had no other option. I knew I was not strong enough to handle this situation on my own, no matter how many people I had to support me. If you were to look back in the sand as I go along the beach there would only be one set of footprints. I am being carried and supported, and I take comfort in in that. It is never showing weakness to accept help.

For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow.
2 Corinthians 7:10

We are only ever given what we can handle and nothing good or bad is not given to us without a reason. I have a long way to go before I know a reason for my pain and sorrow, but I do not regret it. There is a lesson to be learned from every experience as long as we take the time to look at the good, and not dwell on the bad.

I still have far to go and I know 2 Corinthians has much to teach me, but I also know that I am not alone.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.

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Pressed but not crushed.

One of my favorite worship songs has always been Trading My Sorrows. It’s not uncommon for it to be stuck in my head, but for the last month it has constantly been there. The song sums up how I feel and how I have managed to move forward.

Trading My Sorrows
By Darrell Evans

I’m trading my sorrow
I’m trading my shame
I’m laying them down for the joy of the Lord

I’m trading my sickness
I’m trading my pain
I’m laying them down for the joy of the Lord

[Chorus:]
And we say yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord
Yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord
Yes Lord yes Lord yes yes Lord Amen

I’m pressed but not crushed persecuted not abandoned
Struck down but not destroyed
I’m blessed beyond the curse for his promise will endure
And his joy’s gonna be my strength

Though the sorrow may last for the night
His joy comes with the morning

So much of what got me here was out of my control, but I have still had to deal with every negative emotion and action. I’ve had to pull myself together and stay strong despite it all. I truly and honestly believe that I was able and continue to handle everything not only because of the support from others, but also because I put my trust in God.

As everything was crumbling and falling around me a part of me knew there had to be a reason. Many of the things that happened that should have brought me closer to my ex-fiancé, tore us apart. Times when he should have stood up for me he did not. No one wants to be in a relationship like that, no one should have to feel the way I have felt.

Recently, I was invited to go to church with a former teacher and family friend. I had never been to this church before, and few people knew what I was going through. This morning the pastor started a series on 2 Corinthians. The sermon was about the salutation of the letter the apostle Paul wrote to the city of Corinth. He greeted them with “Grace and peace” (2 Corinthians 1:2).

When the pastor pointed out how hard it is to understand the struggles that the apostle’s letters are meant to help because the Bible only shows us one side of the story, I could relate. The people and the apostles already knew what the issues were, therefore, the letters do not spell out the problems of the people. This concept is true in all of our lives. Often we only ever deal with one side of the story and we need to piece together information for the other side. Over the last month I have tried to piece things together from other perspectives in an attempt to understand. Somehow I always come back to the same conclusion, God has a bigger plan for me and somehow He will turn all the bad things to good.

I find it ironic that the song Trading My Sorrows is based on 2 Corinthians 4:8-12. I highly doubt the people of Corinth were dealing with being left at the altar, but they were going through a tough situation and needed to remember that God was there to take their pain and leave them with joy.

2 Corinthians 4:8-12
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.

Over the last month it has been amazing how things line up. My recovery so far has been orchestrated with such precision only God could be responsible. Who would have thought that such a horrible time in my life could have brought me closer to so many amazing people. It is not the situation that defines you, but how you make it through to the other side that matters.

Tomorrow will be a little bit easier and I will become a stronger me everyday.