Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 Years Ago

My how things have changed over the last decade of my life.  I remember waking up, 21 years young and alone, in my Wilsonville Oregon apartment on that September 11th morning. I awoke to a call from my boyfriend John telling me that something was going on and I needed to turn on the news. I walked into my living room, snuggled my Siamese cat, turned on the big screen TV and could not believe my eyes. I sat and watched the twin towers fall - then I decided I wasn't going to work, classes were soon cancelled for that evening. I spent the rest of the day in a state of depressed shock, I think I met John sometime that  afternoon. I just remember thinking - I wonder what my life will look like in a decade? At this point in my life I was a Christian, but was going through a rebellious time - if you would call it that. I was questioning why I believed what I believed, I was asking tough questions and dealing with anger and bitterness that had haunted me for the last 2-3 years. Looking back, it was a low point in my life, but a necessary trial that later produced great fruit and healing.

I was struggling with grown up things like:
Growing up is hard.
Emotions are hard.
Deciding what to do with my life  was hard.
Dealing with the question - "Why do bad things happen to innocent people" was a hard question I didn't know the answer to.
What is my purpose here?
Does God really hear me when I pray?
Does God love me less when I'm not perfect?
Why does God seem so distant? 
Is God real?

But - Life went on and slowly over the last decade God has dealt with all those questions and doubts through the pages of life. I dove into getting to know the Lord - not who I believed Him to be, but what the Bible said He was. I searched and prayed and studied and waited. Over the last decade life matured me and my relationship with God matured too.  I married sweet John, moved 1500 miles away to another country called Texas, birthed 3 children, and somehow grew up. The questions and fog from decade past shaped who I am today. The very fact that I asked those questions, delt with sin and pain and trials and questioning was not intimidating to God - it was a blessing He allowed into my life.  I believe every person in this world struggled with growing up - I just didn't know that because no one told me!

I would not be the woman I am today without the last decade of hardships. That Tuesday morning of September 11th will always stand out in my mind. That day represents the pain and depression I was walking around with, trying to deal with the big questions of life. When I saw our country unite, it gave me hope to keep pressing on. God used the experience of 9/11 to push me forward and helped me to not get discouraged. One year later I was engaged and 18 months later I was married and on my way to Texas - that lonely and painful chapter of my life was about to give birth to different challenges and trials.

I am so blessed that God is Sovereign - He knows everything I need to make me into the woman I want to become.

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