I don’t want to forget.
I don’t want to forget what I walked through. I don’t want to forget how it changed me. And mostly, I don’t want to forget Who brought me through it.
Cuz I’m sitting here now on the other side of the valley – a little breathless, but with the sun streaming onto my face. And it could be easy to forget. I could just turn and keep walking toward the brightness and forget that I just came through the shadows.
But I don’t want to. I need to remember where I was and contrast it to where I am. I need to not get caught up in the trivial things that seem so easy and meaningful in this brightness, when the thing that really matters is that my Savior Loves me, and He saved me, and He’s saving me still.
He never left me when I was in the depths. He never turned from me even when I screamed His Name in anger. He never walked away when the trouble got so troublesome that I nearly lost my faith.
No – He was there. Every. Single. Moment. Watching out for me. Holding me. Catching every single tear in that bottle that He holds right next to His heart. He was interceding for me. Crying with me. And whispering deep down in my soul that He understood – because He’s that kind of Savior, the most wonderful Great High Priest.
I can’t believe how much things have changed, and so very quickly. The wandering through the darkness felt as though it would last forever. Every ray of light I saw turned into a mirage when I was in that place, and each time the light melted away, my heart would go deeper into hiding.
I know I know I KNOW that there was nothing by accident. I know I know I KNOW now that it wasn’t just a dark valley – it was the darkness of planting. There under the ground where I couldn’t even see my hand in front of my face, this little seed of faith began to sprout. Because it had to. It couldn’t stay in its warm cozy shell anymore, because that warm cozy shell was cold and dank. I needed to reach for the light.
And so I reached. I reached out to the promises that I knew were real, even though I couldn’t see them. I fought on my knees to see the truth of who God was even when I couldn’t feel His presence. There were moments when I was tempted to give up, but I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. And do you know what that is called? GRACE.
It’s only by His grace that I could know deep down, like the tiniest bubble of joy, that He was REAL, and everything I knew about Him was TRUE – that He is GOOD, He is KIND, He has BEAUTIFUL PLANS for my life, He is NEAR, He is TENDER, He is STRONG, He LOVES me, He TREASURES me, and He only has my BEST in mind. And He was promising me PEACE, JOY, HOPE, and WHOLENESS so that I could RUN with FREEDOM into my destiny – a glorious destiny that He began to paint onto my soul when I was very very young.
And oh I am glad. I am so glad I hung on. I am so glad I believed. Every moment of hoping against hope, of believing despite the odds, made me stronger, and caused my roots to go down deep into that sure foundation that cannot be shaken. I learned things about myself that I didn’t know were there, and I learned things about life that are invaluable and that I’ve been entrusted now to share with others.
Oh sweet Savior, how could you be so kind as you make my valley of trouble into a gateway of hope (Hosea 2:15)?
So now that I’m in the sunlight – high on a cliff and away from the valley – I don’t want to forget. These silly little gnats of distraction are trying to convince me that things that aren’t really important ARE. But they’re not. All that is of importance is YOU – YOU, JESUS. Oh let me not be one who loses her vibrancy in the light, but let me be one who grows more vibrant still, remembering the One who was with me in the valley is also the One who runs with me in laughter, joy, strength, intimacy, and purpose in the light.
I’m becoming now, and my becoming began in the darkness. May I grow forth into something beautiful and life-giving in the light. And may my gaze continue to be turned toward YOU, my Love. You’re all that matters! You lead me where I need to go. You Love me to wholeness. You take delight in and laugh with me. You let me run with You into destiny – running even to other valleys of darkness to find captives and set them free.
Because You are that good. You are that kind. You are that Loving. And nothing, nothing, NOTHING can compare to you. No success, no accolades, no earthly treasure or achievement. You are more than enough to fill every crevice of who I am.
You are what I want, Jesus. You are always what I want. Let me never, ever, EVER forget.
Feel like you’re in the darkness in body, soul, or spirit? Please REACH OUT TO ME - I would love to help you find your wholeness like Jesus and some dear friends have helped me find mine.