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Me And My Spiral Bound Notebooks

Hello my friends! It is a beautiful sunny day in Indiana. Oh, how I long for the sun to shine in the wintertime. Sunshine just helps me feel better mentally. How about you? In my last post, I talked about the importance of reaching out for help when you are struggling with your mental health. I spoke about how important it is to get help from counselors or a pastor. There are many other important aids available like taking medication, prayer, reading, and journaling. Everything I mentioned is a vital puzzle piece in your story.

Journaling has been one of the pieces that has helped me open up spiritually and emotionally. Now, before we get started, I know some of you might be rolling your eyes and thinking, “There is no way I have time, nor do I want to sit down and write words on a piece of paper.” I get that! I understand your feelings. I used to feel the same way. But, if you want to build intimacy with God, in a way you never thought was possible, I would like for you to keep reading and consider it. This is a new year, so why not try something new?

I will never forget the first time I entertained the thought of journaling. I was going to a Bible study at my church. I was listening to the teacher talk about the impact journaling had in her life. While I was listening to her, I started thinking, “Lord, I don’t know if I am going to be able to do this. But, I am willing to try because I need as much help as I can get. If this is something that will help me, please give me what I need to do this!” 

When I got home that day, I couldn’t get her words out of my mind. So, I went to the store, walked over to the school supply aisle and bought a spiral bound notebook. It wasn’t one of those fancy leather journals that we have today. It was just a plain old spiral bound notebook. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on a journal.

I took that notebook home with anticipation in my heart. I felt very accomplished that I had taken a step towards attempting something new. The idea that journaling could make a difference in my life made me want to try it even more. I desperately wanted to move towards healing and I was hoping that journaling would help me move in that direction.

When I opened my notebook to the first page, I really didn’t know how I was going to start. So, I wrote down the date, January 3, 2001. Then, I noted what I was learning in my Bible Study and a scripture that meant something to me. And finally, I wrote a prayer to God to help me stay close to Him. That was my very first page of journaling. 

My first journal entry was written 22 years ago. I am currently writing in my 28th notebook. I still prefer a spiral bound notebook. I guess I am a student in my heart and love using notebooks. You should use whatever makes you feel comfortable.  

There are days I only write a few words and there are days I write page after page after page. For me, it is the absolute best tool for getting my feelings out. Journaling is therapy. Journaling has brought me closer to God than I ever thought was possible. Journaling has given me intimacy with my Savior. 

My notebooks are filled with conversations that I’ve had with God. He is my best friend. He knows me better than anyone else does. He knows what is best for me and He knows my heart. 

Writing has also helped me get my feelings out in a constructive way. It has helped me sort through my trauma, my issues, my depression, my anxiety, my panic attacks, my relationship with God and my relationships with others. 

It is kind of hard to explain what happens when I write. God meets me on that page. For me,  journaling is a holy work. He speaks to me and shows me what I need to learn. He comforts me and shows me the way I should go. He heals me with His words. He gives me wisdom. He loves me with His great compassion.

Look, I know it is hard to open up. It took me a really, really long time to build intimacy with Christ. I had so many trust issues that I didn’t realize I had. Every day I had to learn to trust Him. It took a long time. But, now that I look back, I am so grateful I kept at it. 

I kept talking to Him. I persistently asked questions. I wrestled with Him over so many different issues. The conversations that are in my notebooks are about everything I have doubted or   wondered about. Everything I have questioned, or was angry about, or longed for, or cried and cried over (that happened a lot!!), or laughed about, or mourned over. Everything that has happened to me before I started journaling, and everything since, are on the pages of those notebooks. 

I have also written down scriptures that have gotten me through my suffering. I have filled many pages with what I have learned from Bible studies, books and my reactions to the things I have learned from counseling and from sermons. Those tear and coffee stained pages are my testimony that you can heal. You can move forward. You can have intimacy with the Trinity.  

Sometimes it’s just hard to get things out verbally. That’s why I talk to Him through words written on paper. It is so important to seek Him. He wants to help us through every difficult situation that we face. He wants us to open up to Him.

I realize you might not be like me. That’s okay. Journaling might not be for you. You might not want to entertain the thought of writing your feelings down on a piece of paper. You might feel more comfortable talking to God verbally. That’s great too! I am here to encourage you either way. 

I am here to cheer you on to communicate with God in a way that you haven’t before. He wants a relationship with you. Invite Him into your life. He wants to help you. He is always near. All you have to do is talk to Him. If you pursue Him, you will find Him. You will get to know Him in a way you never thought was possible. Go after Him with all your heart!!! 

“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13

Until next time dear friends. This is my journey to joy!!!

Reaching Out For Help

Hello everyone! Happy New Year! It has been awhile since I’ve written. It feels so good to be back at it again. I am excited to see what God is going to lead me to write about this year. There is one topic that is always on my heart and that is mental health. So, why not start talking about it with a new year ahead of us.  

As the new year begins, there is a tremendous amount of focus on physical health. Yes, our bodies need to be taken care of, but so does our mental health. Our mind is so crucial to our well being. If you are in a bad place mentally, it can damage you physically. 

Because my childhood was filled with abuse, there wasn’t a day that I didn’t experience trauma. I coped by shoving my feelings deep down inside me which caused a lot of intestinal issues. Those issues were a constant problem for me for many many years. 

I really didn’t realize how damaged I was until I was in my thirties and depression set in. My doctor told me I had a chemical imbalance and needed to take medication. I had a baby and a toddler at the time and felt so overwhelmed with everything, so I gave in and took the medication. I didn’t even think that I needed to talk to someone about my past. The thought never crossed my mind. 

When I turned forty, I started having horrible panic attacks. Anxiety also became a constant companion. I felt like my body was reacting to a five alarm fire! I didn’t understand what was going on inside me. Those horrible attacks made me feel like I was going to die. So, I went to see my doctor to get help and was put on another medication. In the back of my mind, I began to think that I might need to see a counselor. But, I didn’t act on my thoughts until I had a conversation with a dear friend of mine.  

Dyan strongly encouraged me to call a counselor she knew. Even though I was desperate for help, I put off calling her for several days. Dyan kept reminding me that I needed to dial the number and make an appointment. So, I finally did. I am so grateful that I had someone in my life to stand by me and push me in the right direction. My life could have taken a much darker turn if I wouldn’t have reached out for help.  

I haven’t quit seeking help in some form or another for twenty three years. I take medication to help with my depression and anxiety. Thankfully, the panic attacks rarely happen any more. I have read books, participated in Bible studies, prayed, cried out to God, and written in countless journals to get my feelings out. I have spent hours alone with God. I am happy to report that I am healing day by day. One little step at a time. 

When I started writing this blog, I knew God was leading me to do it. My purpose has always been to help people and share what I am learning. I want to point you to Jesus because He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. John 14:6  He is the reason I am here today. I am stronger in my faith and closer to my Lord than I have ever been. I want that for you too!

I know how the pain of life can become so intense that you just want it to go away. You might think the only way the pain will go away is to end your life. That is not the truth!!! I am living proof there is another way. There are counselors and pastors out there who can help you with your pain. There are people who would love to pray for you and encourage you. There are so many resources for you.

Every December, I read Ann Voskamp’s The Greatest Gift. It’s a wonderful devotional to help you get ready for the birth of Christ. I highly recommend reading her books and devotional. I want to share a verse with you that has meant a lot to me. 

“The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

Jesus took on flesh and came to earth for us!!! He came to experience human feelings and human bodily functions. He cried. He felt anger. He laughed. He smiled. He saw how people treated others. He ate. He drank. He healed. He worked. He taught. He lived His life doing His Father’s will. He had friends. He loved and cared for others. He came to earth to be the answer we all desperately need. He built relationships with people and He was there for them when they needed Him. And…..He is here for us too!!! 

That’s the bottom line. He is here for us. When you think there isn’t anyone who cares—He cares. He feels your pain. He feels your hurt. He feels everything you feel. That’s how much He loves you. He is the Way you are searching for. 

I know this, because I live this every day. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Him. I cling to Him and ask for help every single day. I am not perfect. I make mistakes all the time. I don’t always get it right. But, He is still here helping me and forgiving me. There is always a way through with Him by my side. 

Before the new year, I asked the Lord again if He still wanted me to continue to write. I was journaling at the time and the Holy Spirit started speaking to me deep in my soul. Let me share with you what He said to me. (It is awkward and hard to share this!)

“Laurie, you have gone through many things. We want you to share your story. Speak, little one, speak. You have a voice. Your story needs to be heard. We want others to hear your story and your struggles. We know how much you want people to know us and have a relationship with us. You were created for such a time as this. Share what you have learned and continue to learn. You were made to do this.”

So, here I am, feeling very humbled and encouraged to keep writing. I really want to know if there are topics you would like me to write about. Would you like to know what books I’ve read? Would you like to know what scriptures have meant a lot to me? Can I help you with journaling? How can I encourage you?

God always has a plan to use what has happened to us for good. He is always good and He can’t be any other way. That’s a fact!  One of my many favorite verses in the Bible is Genesis 50:20. “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

God has taken the evil that was done against me and used it for good. And, He will do the same for you! Please believe that! 

Let me share something I read on Instagram the other day. “God is always working. Sometimes you can’t see it. Sometimes you can’t feel it. Sometimes you can’t grasp what He is doing. But that’s what faith is, it’s believing in the goodness of God in spite of what we can see.” From Living Christian

I think believing in the goodness of God, in spite of what I see or have seen, has been one of my biggest challenges. And… it might be for you too. I have to focus on God and not what is happening around me. I have to look at who He is, what His word says and believe Him over what the world is telling me. I know how hard it is to do that!

I am truly amazed at what God has done for me. I am struck by His goodness and mercy. I am so grateful for His work in my life. I wouldn’t want to live my life without Him. I am healing every day. Healing takes time. But, every tear I’ve cried, and there have been a lot!, every prayer I have prayed, there have been a lot of those too, every book I’ve read, every counseling session I’ve had, every single thing is being used for good in my life. 

I really hope 2023 can be a year that draws you closer to God. I pray my words encourage you to reach out and get help. There are so many good counselors out there. There are so many resources that have been tremendously helpful to me. I would be glad to share any of those with you. You can message me with your questions. 

Until next time dear friends. This is my journey to joy!

“Being Still” On The Red Sea Road

We are wayfarers, on the Red Sea road, searching for direction; searching for peace; searching for answers; searching for comfort; searching for truth; searching for someone we can talk to and someone who will listen. If you want those things, I’ve found a companion who gives me direction, peace, answers, comfort and truth. He listens and He wants me to talk to Him. His name is Jesus. He is the best travel buddy you will ever have. 

Let’s grab our backpacks and start walking. Before we get too far, let’s find a spot on the road to sit and be still. A whole new world will open up to you, if you will just be still. Look around you and look at Him right beside you. Take a deep breath in and ask Him to help you find your soul.

I am inviting you to look inside yourself, so you can connect with God. “Let nothing get in the way of your communion with God.” Voskamp When I draw near to God, He draws near to me. James 4:8  Your connection to God brings wholeness to your life. I can’t emphasize how important your time with God is. 

I have spent thousands of dollars on counseling. I take medication. I read books and I study. All of those things have been instrumental in my journey to heal, but the time I spend with the Trinity, listening and journaling, is where my soul is healing. My time with the Trinity is extremely important. So, I implore you to sit and be still on your journey. Ask God to meet with you and help you.  

You might be someone who has dealt with a lot of horrible things. You might not see a way through it all. But, I am here to tell you there is a way through what has happened to you. God is the “Way Maker ” and He will make a way through. There are lots of bumps in the road along the way, but every day you put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward, you are making progress. 

If you are weary, and you have to sit down right in the middle of the road, do it! Sitting still is a movement forward. Everything you do to heal your soul is a movement in the right direction. I’ve had to figure out which way I want to go and which way does God want me to go. He knows which path is the best for me.

Like the Israelites, I have been in “fight or flight” mode off and on for years. My dad was a psychopath. I don’t use that term lightly. He actually told my mom that he would have murdered her if he could have gotten away with it. And towards the end of his life, he wanted to murder me. I lived with a very deranged person for a parent and that does something to a kid.

I lived in self-protect mode most of my life. I didn’t realize the damage that was doing to me. Let me share what Ann Voskamp says about self-protection. “Keep burying how you feel and you’ll end up digging your relationships a pretty big grave. If you don’t speak your fears and questions aloud, they only grow louder in your soul.” 

I learned not to ask my dad questions and I also learned to bury my fears. I had no idea what all those years of self-protecting would cost me. “Strange how the trauma from our early stories lives on in our bones and bends the way we see the world. That trauma can bend the way I retreat and try to self-protect.” Voskamp

Let me say this…I self-protected because I wasn’t safe. If I didn’t feel safe, I didn’t speak. I’ve spent years developing my relationship with God so I could feel safe to talk to Him. I can tell Him anything now. I ask questions and I tell Him about my fears. I am still working on my feelings because I stuffed them for so many years, but I am getting better. God cares about our feelings. He gave us feelings so we could feel them, not stuff them. I am learning to recognize my feelings and process them with my Abba Father. 

Let me share something I wrote the other day. Maybe this will help you see what I talk to God about when I journal.

“I can tell my emotions are starting to surface more. I am beginning to feel more. I really don’t want to put my emotions away like I used to. I want to sit with You and talk about my feelings because You are safe. Your are my home. You are the only One who really knows my pain and understands how I feel. I want to give my feelings to You. I used to hide them from You. I realize now that hiding my feelings only hurts me in the long run. You gave me an epiphany the other day when I was journaling, that I felt shame for my feelings. When I was a child, I was shamed into silence because I knew my words didn’t matter. But, my words matter to You. You care how I feel. You gave me feelings to feel, not feel shame for. You are teaching me to find value in the pain. Feel the pain. I have to feel so I can move on.” 

I would also like to share this with you. “Many of us never had the support needed to learn how to feel our feelings—so we may have learned to think about them instead. Though cognition is an important part of our humanity, it can also be a way we bypass emotions, often without realizing it. May you come to access your God-given emotions in a way and at a pace that allows you to experience them without being swallowed by them.” Aundi Kolber

I know I didn’t allow myself to feel things for years. Then one day, my body went into panic mode. It took years of counseling to calm down. I still get triggered. I still struggle with anxiety. But, the difference now is I go to God and talk to Him. I tell Him how I feel. He is helping me make a way through.

The world expects a person who has experienced trauma to “get over it”. I have been so hard on myself for years because I didn’t seem to be healing fast enough. Yes, you can heal. Yes, you can move forward. Yes, God helps us through it all. But, your journey is your journey. Do not fall into the trap of condemnation because your healing isn’t moving along fast enough.

We must have compassion towards our feelings and our pain. There is a reason why you have pain and feelings. God did not make you a robot. You are a human being who is fearfully and wonderfully made to have feelings and experience all sorts of emotions. God wants a relationship with you, so He can help you process all those things. He longs to hear from you. He longs to help you. Yes, we need counselors and all sorts of other things to help us, but a relationship with Christ is hands down the greatest gift you can give yourself. It is the gift that keeps on giving!

I could go on and on about this because I am passionate about it. So, I would like to end this post by asking you some questions. Are you in a state of self-protection? Are you burying your feelings and your pain while you journey down your Red Sea road? Are you taking time to be still? Are you willing to open up to God and have a relationship with Him? Are you writing down what you see and what you hear from Him? Are you lifting up your soul to Him?

You might feel overwhelmed by all of it. I certainly was. You might have never thought about being still; talking to God; listening for Him to speak; going deep in your soul to process your pain. It is a lot! But, my journey on this road has given me something that I consider priceless….intimacy with Him. As far as I’m concerned, there isn’t anything in this world that is better than that. My relationship with Him is the best thing that has ever happened to me.

There is healing for all of us on this road. There is hope and there is love. I can’t wait to share more with you! 

Until next time dear friends…. This is my journey to joy on the Red Sea road.

My Red Sea Road

I heard a song this summer by Ellie Holcomb called “Red Sea Road.” Let me share the lyrics with you.

(Verse 1)                                                                   

We buried dreams

Laid them deep into the earth behind us                             

Said, our goodbyes, at the grave

But everything reminds us

God knows, we ache

When He asks us to go on

How do we go on?

(Chorus)

We will sing to our souls

We won’t bury our hope

Where He leads us to go

There’s a red sea road

When we can’t see the way

He will part the waves

And we’ll never walk alone

Down a red sea road

(Verse 2)

How, can we trust 

When You say You will deliver us from

All, of this pain, that threatens to take over us

Well, this desert’s dry 

But the ocean may consume 

And we’re scared, to follow You

(Bridge)

Oh help us believe

You are faithful, You’re faithful

When our hearts are breaking

You are faithful, You’re faithful

Oh grant us eyes to see

You are faithful, You’re faithful

Teach us to sing

Many of us, right now, are traveling down our own Red Sea roads.  We are desperately searching for a way out. You might not see how you are going to survive and feel completely consumed by fear and anxiety. I am here to tell you that there might not be a way out, but there is a way through.

“The way through happens wherever we stop focusing on how to get out of something and focus on what we can get out of this to become Christlike. Freedom isn’t about looking for a way out, but the way deeper down, the way to grow into more, to be pressed into the narrow pathway through.” Voskamp

I find it hard to admit this, but asking for a way through and not a way out is extremely hard for me. I want to avoid as much pain as possible. I think most of us feel that way. Most of our crying out to God involves asking to be taken out of a bad situation. But… I am learning that I grow and learn so much more when I ask Him to hold my hand, walk down the road with me, and teach me what I need to learn. 

I know I’ve wanted out of so many things because I was abused as a child. Of course, I didn’t want a way through. I know there are some of you that are reading this post that feel the same way. I have begged God to take me out of this world; take away the pain; take that person away that keeps hurting me. I have asked many times, “How can I escape the torment that this situation brings me?”

“Facing waves, and finding a pathway through, has been part of the human experience from our very first breath. There is a wall of water in front of you not because you did something wrong or because you took a wrong turn; there has been a wall of water in front of us right from the beginning because this is the human experience. There is no controlling life’s storms, there is only learning to live with the waves. The real work of being human is mastering how to process losses while being in the process of moving forward.” Voskamp

The trauma from my abuse are the walls of water that I have been facing most of my life. I became enslaved to so many bad habits and behaviors because of it. My thinking was wrong; my view of God was tainted and my ability to process my losses was non-existent. I was stuck and not able to move forward for many years.

I was a little girl who had to develop instincts to keep herself safe from harm. I watched and observed constantly to learn how to operate efficiently in my home. I did everything I could to keep the peace. I became a slave to pleasing and performing to keep myself safe. I did whatever I could to protect myself and my brothers. I did whatever I could do to control my environment. I became what I needed to be. I had dreams. I had plans. But, I couldn’t pursue them because it wasn’t safe to do that. I wasn’t safe to be myself. 

I see that little girl standing on the Red Sea road. She is turning toward Jesus and walking with Him. She loves holding His hand and talking to Him. She loves listening to what He has to say. He is her friend. He loves her unconditionally. He loves to hear what she has to say. She can trust Him with her feelings. There is joy in knowing He is there. He is making a way through for her.   

That little girl decided to give up what she knew to follow God just like the Israelites did. She wanted a better way to live. She wanted a new life. She decided she didn’t want to stay enslaved to her sin. She wanted to be set free and started walking down the Red Sea Road with Him. Even though there were walls of water surrounding her, she decided to look forward, hold on to Jesus, and ask Him to make a way through for her.

The Red Sea road can be a way of deliverance for us. God delivered His people from slavery and He can deliver us too… if we let Him. We have to be willing to turn away from the things that enslave us and ask Him to help us move forward. We have to cling to Him and trust Him.   

I know it is scary to leave what is comfortable behind. We might think we can’t live without whatever is enslaving us. Believe me I know. It was very scary for me. But I have to tell you that it feels so much better to be set free than it does to be enslaved. I have given up a lot of things and frankly I don’t regret giving them up. Some days are easier than others, but I want to be on that road walking with my Savior. I want to walk with Him and watch Him work in my life and in the lives of others. 

I haven’t written much this summer while I have been walking down my road. There have been some pretty big roadblocks that needed my attention and prayer. I have been digging deep to get around them and asking the Lord to make a way through for me. My circumstances haven’t changed, but I am changing and growing and learning. I am learning that the only way I am going to make it through the detours and roadblocks is to keep my eyes fixed on the One who is leading the way. 

I am actually praying more than I ever have for a way through instead of a way out. You have to get your hands on Ann Voskamp’s book called “Waymaker“. Her book is opening my eyes and teaching me how to live with the waves of life. I can’t control them… but I can move forward in them.

I am going to be sharing what I have learned this summer in the next blog posts that I write. So, stay tuned for them. I share because I care. Whatever you suffer from, there is hope. We have a “Way Maker” who is making a way for us. If we allow ourselves to hold on to Him and trust His way, He will bring good out of it.  He is always good because He can’t be any other way.

Until next time dear friends. I”ll be walking down my road with Jesus and my friends by my side!

What My Trauma Did For Me

If you would have told me, I was going to write a post about what my trauma has done for me six months ago, I would have said, “There is no way that is going to happen!” But here I am, writing about it and hoping I can help someone out there who struggles with it.

So, let’s talk about trauma. It isn’t the usual topic of conversation that you have with others. But, it is a topic that needs to be discussed because so many people are suffering from it in the world today. I think we can all agree that our world has dramatically changed in the last few years and because of that change, there are more and more people suffering from trauma and the repercussions from it. 

Before I go on, I want you to know that I understand how painful and debilitating trauma can be. I am not in any way trying to minimize the havoc it wreaks in our bodies. Trauma is awful and to live with it day in and day out is horrible!! It takes a very long time to deal with it and heal from it. The trauma that happens to us is bad, but God can bring good from it. 

I was born into trauma. I lived in a war zone every day of my life until I was old enough to get out of my house. I developed very destructive habits in my younger years that stuck with me for a very long time. Then, in my thirties, I started dealing with depression. My doctor suggested taking medication, so I complied. The medication helped, but there was still a deep sadness inside me. 

When I was 37, my world came crashing down after my brother committed suicide. When I heard the news, there was a shift in my body that I really can’t explain. I remember my heart sinking, my heart racing, and my body was completely overwhelmed with emotion. I felt out of control and lacked the ability to deal with what was going on inside me. It was my first experience with a panic attack. 

From that point on, little by little the anxiety got worse and so did the horrible panic attacks. By my 40th birthday, I was really suffering. I couldn’t hide from my feelings any more. It took days for my doctor to help me find a medication that could help me function and calm down. I was a mother of three daughters and I desperately needed to be able to take care of them.

One night, a good friend of mine was with me and witnessed me having a panic attack. She took me aside and strongly encouraged me to seek counseling. She gave me the phone number of a woman that she talked to. So, I called the number the very next day to set up an appointment. 

I want you to know that it took desperate measures to get me to pick up the phone and dial that number for counseling. I really thought I could handle my life, until I couldn’t. So, I know how hard it is to reach out for help. But, to be perfectly honest, you have to have help. You really don’t have a choice if you want to get better. I’ve spent thirty years on medication and twenty years in some form of therapy. 

That’s what trauma did to me physically and emotionally. But what I want to share with you is another side of trauma. A side that is is hopeful. I know when you see the word trauma, it’s hard to imagine seeing the word hope next to it. The two words side by side don’t compute in the brain, especially when you are in the midst of living in your misery. 

But… I have found hope and a purpose to my trauma. It has taken me many years to say those words. In order to explain why those words go together, I just have to talk about Jesus. I’ve read the story about Jesus dying on the cross since I was a little girl. This year, the verses about Him in the Garden of Gethsemane, jumped off the pages and burrowed into my heart. The words I am about to share with you gave me new meaning— a new revelation of Jesus. So, let’s get to it!

He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be deeply distressed and troubled. And He said to them, “My soul is crushed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” He went on a little farther and fell to the ground. He prayed that, if it were possible, the awful hour awaiting Him might pass Him by. ”Abba, Father,” he cried out, “everything is possible for you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” Mark 14:33-36

This Easter, for the very first time in my life, I looked at Jesus and realized He knows trauma. (You are never too old to learn something new!) He knows from first hand experience how horrible it is. Peter A. Levine says it best. “God-man is distressed, troubled, overwhelmed to the point of death—the very definition of trauma.” 

He was deeply troubled and distressed. He knew what was going to happen and even sweat drops of blood over it. He said His soul was crushed with sorrow to the point of death. Because of His distress, He wanted His friends to stay with Him so He wouldn’t be alone. He even asked for God to take away the suffering, but then said, “Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.” 

Jesus knows how we feel when we suffer. He can relate to every bout of depression, every panic attack we experience and all the anxiety we feel.  He knows what it is like to feel intense pain. He knows what is like to be deeply distressed and troubled. He knows how to feel extreme sorrow. 

The bottom line is… He knows. The day He died on that cross, He became so much more. He became our way through. He became our way through anxiety, depression, panic attacks and so much more. When you feel like you are alone in your pain, you have someone who knows how you feel. The men that Jesus asked to be with Him kept falling asleep. So, He knows what it feels like to be alone. He wants us to turn to Him because He knows. When no one else understands, He understands. 

I’ve been on a long journey with God. I have been trying to understand His ways. I’ve been desperately searching for answers to my questions. But what I didn’t realize, was my seeking and searching was giving me so much more than I asked for. My searching gave me more of Him. My seeking brought a deep attachment to my Trinity and that attachment is giving me healing.

“We don’t need answers from God like we need attachment with God.” Voskamp

Yes, it is nice to have answers. Yes, we need counseling and sometimes we need medication. But, the attachment I have with God is what is truly healing me. The time I spend with my Trinity is giving me the insight and the growth I desperately need to endure my life in this world. 

“Let our mysteries lead us to deepen our relationships, heighten our gratitude, strengthen our God-attachment, and grow our soul resilience, this is the way we find meaning and keep standing. All is meant to grow the soul toward the goal of God.” Voskamp

When I attach myself to God, sit at His feet, learn from Him, listen to Him, talk to Him, wrestle over issues with Him, give Him my struggles and my will—the trauma lessens a little each day. I have realized that everything that has happened to me is meant to grow me not destroy me. 

There is a great return when we pray for His will to be done in our lives. We gain His wholeness when we give Him our brokenness. We gain more of Him to help us with our pain and our suffering. He is truly our way through the trauma. 

I feel so much as I write these words. I am grateful. I am in awe of God. I am proud to be His child. I am excited to learn more. But most of all, I am deeply humbled at what God has done  in my life. My mind is blown away by how good He is. How faithful He is. He has been so kind  to me when I have questioned His every move. There is nothing on this earth that compares to Him. He is my reason for living. 

I could go on and on. But, what I want to leave you with is hope. Hope in Him. Attach yourself to Him and don’t let go! He is the Way through our messy lives. 

I love you dear friends!  Until next time…This is my journey to joy!