The following was an entry from my journal on June 8, 2014:
“…I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10
“A new beginning, a new chapter of life; You came Lord to give us life and to give us life more abundantly. Thank you for using Shaunna as a vessel to share your love through the gift she gave us. I will embrace the life you have given me. I will choose life. I will choose to believe in you and your goodness. If doubt or fear creeps in then I will turn the focus away from myself and pray for others, that you may bring life into their situation. Lord I ask that you give me the full vision of what you want birthed from our story. I know that it isn’t finished and you have gifts set aside for us but for now Lord, show me and guide me in how you want me to move for now. How can what I’ve learned be used for today, to bring life to hurting and desperate people? Show me the way. Let my focus be you. Let my focus be life. You are the prize Lord. You are the gift. You are the good and perfect gift.”
It’s hard to believe that I had written this only four days after having my second miscarriage. If it weren’t for the unrelenting, unconditional love of My Heavenly Father I would not be able to share with you this part of my journey…
I was hurting and in pain from the loss of yet another child. I had been broken. I was torn by the fear of possibly having more miscarriages, of maybe not being able to get pregnant again or perhaps never being given the opportunity to hold a child in my arms. Despite the physical pain my body was enduring, there existed an emptiness inside my soul; I was desperately grieving the loss of my children. Family and friends tried to deliver messages of love, hope and comfort but I knew, for me to be healed, I had to go deeper with the Lord. As much as I desired to hold my babies, I had to allow myself to be held by the loving arms of the Father. I knew, yet again, only He would be able to tenderly carry my heart through such painful grief and He was faithful.
He used the obedience of my dear friend Shaunna. He used her to bring me a message of hope that only He could deliver. The Lord had placed it on her heart to create a small care package filled with carefully thought out gifts. Each item was an intricate extension of the never ending, unfailing, magnanimous love that Christ has for me. One of the little treasures in the package was the reason why LIFE Journey Ministries was born. It was a little wooden sign that said, “Believe.”
I had placed this sign in our living room, on top of the entertainment center, just below the television. I remember being alone and crying out to the Lord. You see, as a child, I had made a choice to serve Him all the days of my life and for me, this was not an occasion to turn from Him, so I sat there praying and asking Him to help me through the indescribable pain I was feeling. I had been reading my Bible, searching for His plan in all of this and I came across John 10:10. As I was experiencing such gut wrenching pain, it was quite the challenge for me to comprehend how another miscarriage was a part of me living an abundant life. Seriously God? How does that even make sense?
At some point in the afternoon, I found myself staring at the “Believe” sign. I don’t quite remember how long it took, but I began to feel a shift in my spirit. God not only wanted me to see the sign, but He wanted me to believe in what it stood for; He wanted me to believe in Him. He wanted me to believe that He had an eternal purpose for my life bigger than I thought, a purpose beyond my immediate pain. He wanted me to believe in the countless promises that He had spoken over me and that someday I would have a child. He wanted me to believe that He knew the pain of losing His Only Son and that He understood the anguish I was experiencing but He also wanted me to believe that death was defeated at the cross. He wanted me, to once again, believe in life.
On June 8, 2014, I had to make a choice and I chose to hold on to Him. I chose to embrace the life that He had given me; the good, the bad and the ugly. I chose to trust Him as my Good Shepherd and follow Him into pastures that would lead to His glory. I decided to change my perspective and instead of focusing on my temporary circumstance, my focus became life! I wanted Him to show me how to use my journey to bring healing and life to the brokenhearted.
On a day that began with such sorrow it ended with an outpouring of life. The Lord gave me a vision and a heart for a ministry that was beyond my comprehension. LIFE Journey Ministries has been a labor of love and I have been through a roller coaster of emotions, trials and victories along the way. Today I rejoice in the lives that He is changing because of this ministry. Your life matters to the Lord, He loves you no matter where you are in your journey and He wants to be with you along the way. So, on behalf of LIFE Journey Ministries, thank you for taking the time to be a part of our journey. We look forward to serving you as we discover how to live life abundantly.