a strange new place

For our “Held and Beloved” online study friends… here is a little more of the story from CHAPTER FIVE:

When the LORD directed our move from Savannah to south Florida in 2011, He brought us to a beautiful place and provided a rental home we still talk about for it’s spacious kitchen, cozy family room, and perfect location in a gated community a block away from main roads that would help us navigate our new surroundings.

We were grateful. I was grateful. But as my husband went off to work and my kids settled into a new school, all making new connections and engaging with our new life, I was left at home. Where a battle raged in my heart.

I felt horribly isolated. Alone. In unfamiliar territory. I mourned the loss of anything that felt “normal.” The days ahead seemed so uncertain and strange. What was I supposed to be doing in this place?

[sound familiar to these days of pandemic and quarantine?!]

Even here, where the beauty of GOD’s creation and the abundance of His provisions surrounded me, I felt like I was in the middle of a dark, stormy sea of swirling emotions, questions, doubts, and fears. All I could see was fog.

But GOD.

In this place, the water and the sky captured my attention and I began to crave the stunning pictures He painted in both! Steely grey, bright blue, or sunrise/sunset colors – I love them all. And in my desperation I began to crave His Words! I needed to hear from Him and clung to any and every Bible verse I could find.

It was here that He rewired my heart and my routines to carve out time to talk with Him, to cry out to Him. I slowly began to surrender my picture of how things should go. To ask Him for His plan – or at least for the courage to reach for His hand to pull me up and lead me forward.

It was in this sweet rental home in a strange new place that He held me, and wooed me, until I could breathe again.

“When you go through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you… for I am the LORD, your GOD, your Savior… you are precious and honored in My sight and I love you.” Isaiah 43:2-4 (ESV)

When have you faced dark, stormy days? How has the LORD met you there, held you together, lifted you up, and led you bravely forward?

#HeldandBelovedbook #onlinestudy #learningtogether #tellingourstories #isolation #alone #afraid #lost  #strangenewplace #Hewaswithme #hungerforHisWords #surrender #growth #trustingJESUS  #ohhowHelovesus #coverofHisPresence #amazedbyGRACE #lostinwonder #mysteriouskindness

ps… my kids now drive that little red Honda CRV! 🚗 … and although I never would have believed it 9 years ago (or even 2 years ago!), south FL finally feels like “home” to me!

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