And the storms of this life will pass, and all will be well. Our troubles here are momentary. Which make the moments of joy momentary too. That is why we should live each and every moment to its fullest...through good times and bad. In sickness, and in health.
When I was growing up, I always had this idea for myself. That I would go to college. Date a little bit. Find my soulmate at a fairly young age. Be married by 25. And then start having a family before 30.
And then life happens. Trauma happens. And things don't always go the way you plan. At first you're upset and discouraged. But eventually, in time, you learn that it's okay. You accept what is, trusting the hope that God truly is working things out for your good.
Going through trauma, but then coming out stronger and using it to grow you, I believe, also gives you a stronger capacity for love.
I have known love in my life. Through family and friends, yes. But also through relationships. Each relationship I felt like I was able to give more than the last. The years shaping me and my heart... changing my perspective and appreciation for the good things.
I'm 26 now, which is still relatively young. I remember turning 25 and feeling like I had grown significantly. I got through another heartache. I learned to let go of my timeline. I felt stronger than ever. I somehow knew I was on the edge of a turning point in my life. I just couldn't pinpoint what.
Then I went through my 26th year. Some days I felt like I was crawling. But I also felt in my heart that surrendering daily the things I couldn't control were helping me grow to a new level of confidence, self love, and living in the present.
My 26th and 27th years are the ones that have sharpened me the most in this life so far. I was put through the ringer last year watching my dad succumb to cancer. Month by month. Day by day. I have been pushed to my limits emotionally and spiritually, but have come out stronger for it.
I remember questioning a lot in my life though. Especially about why things didn't work out with the men I dated in the past. I wondered what was wrong with me. I questioned my worth. We all struggle with thoughts like that when relationships don't work out.
Then it began to all make sense to me. I couldn't let real love into my heart without first making peace with my dad. And as I was making that peace with him and within my heart his last few days on earth in early November...loving and letting go...Jared stood by me.
And for the first time in my life I was free to love. Really love. In the deepest, purest, yet simplest of ways. I was stronger than I had ever been with an even greater capacity for love. Without the weight of tension I felt with my dad. I don't even mean tension within mine and my dad's relationship (though most of my life that was the case), but the tension of knowing that he was always in pain. The pain I carried knowing he was in pain. Always suffering. All the time. And that there was nothing I could do about it. But in his death, his pain finally left him. Every ounce of it. Forever. His soul was set free from the burdens of this life, which in turn, freed my soul from constant worry for him.
I believe with my whole heart that God saved Jared for this very specific time in my life. A time when I could give the most of myself, freely and genuinely. No burdens or barriers.
What I thought was me being let down in the past by failed relationships was really God's way of making His perfect plan known, without me knowing what that plan would even entail. God, in all His Grace and Mercy, saved a good man for the very time in my life (that only He could know) when my heart would finally be healed, after 26 years of heartache and loss.
For the first time in my life, I can move forward in love, with peace. Knowing how important it is to be present. Appreciating all the blessings along the way.
Thankful to serve a God who replenishes what was lost a thousand times over.