I have found it very difficult accepting that my past life has now gone.
After many years in one place, friendships are formed and cemented. To be able to walk in the community where you live, and meet people that you’ve known over many years is wonderful – but I took it for granted. I love the familiar and I hate change.
My closest friends were those I studied the bible with. I have found that my friendships have been the very best that they can be, when they have been fused around the word of God. But it takes years to cultivate friendships where honesty, accountability and transparency reign. I think that growing together around God’s word fosters love and friendship like nothing else can. These people become forever friends.
To lose this without having any sort of forewarning or preparation devastated and traumatised me.
5 months on I am still struggling to accept loss of all. I feel like I’ve gone through the stages of bereavement, but I’m still stuck at no 2 at times, and have not yet come to terms with no 5.
- Denial and isolation
Being torn from all I loved has been the most traumatic thing I have ever experienced. I have felt completely overwhelmed and disconnected. It has been very challenging working through how I should react to all of this. I have not yet arrived and I am struggling to accept the new life that has been given me.
A verse that was very precious to me is found in Jeremiah 29 v 11
” I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
This was a tricky verse for me to grasp. I asked the Lord that we would be above reproach, and he gave me shame.
I have been torn away from my life and everything I know and love. And yet this verse has got to be true if we are in God’s kingdom. I don’t understand God’s plans, but I know that in this severe and overwhelming trial that has felt cruel and unpleasant, God has been at work in my life and he has taught me through it.
These are the things that I am learning ;
- That God is good all the time.
- That God never forsakes us, even though we may feel like we are in a psalm 46 situation, and that the mountains have fallen into the heart of the sea.
- That through severe trials God is revealing my sinful reactions and actions and humbles me.
- That Im not in control and I can’t fix it.
- That Satan is far more subtle and devious than we can ever imagine and I need to pray constantly and suit up in God’s armour.
- I need to hand control over to God and leave it there without clawing it back.
- That I can choose how I react – I can choose joy over anxiety and calm over panic.
- That I can leave the ones I love to God and entrust them to him, and not fret over their welfare or spiritual growth.
- That forgiveness is a very hard thing, and this shows us the huge forgiveness God has shown us in Jesus.
- That marriage isn’t about fulfilling our hopes and dreams , but sanctifies us by showing us our selfishness and pride and prepares us for heaven.
- Understanding the importance of cultivating our relationship with the only person who ultimately matters. God is the only person who truly satisfies.
So I need to accept that even though I don’t understand any of this, God does, and rather than looking back longingly at what I’ve lost, I need to look forward and accept what God has given me now. I know this in theory, but as yet, I have not worked it through in practice.
Paul says in Philippians 4:12
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength”
Thank you that you know all things. Help me to trust you when the path I am on is dark and unfamiliar. Help me to understand that although this has taken me by surprise, nothing comes as a surprise to you. Help me to accept and know contentment with what I now have, and not look back longingly to what has been taken away. Use me in the new life you have now given me for your glory.