For this release, we were each asked to share a time where nature struck but God shined through. I knew exactly what I wanted to share but wasn’t sure if it fit. Melissa told me to go for it, so here it is.
In 2012 was when it happened. I had a seizure on a Sunday night. It came out of the blue and was the first one I had ever had. It scared my family and promptly landed me in the ER. I was released and sent home after a few hours but life never was the same.
Living with seizures meant always being tired, meant not being able to drive, meant not being alone, meant not being able to do things that require me being by myself (rides, canoeing, etc), meant sometimes not being able to do just the basics because I was too tired, meant missing things I look forward to for months, meant loosing friends because they couldn’t handle the seizures or the flakiness, meant…well, I could go on and on. Suffice it to say, It was like being a kid again. I had to be babysat….and it was hard.
I had to go off on leave and we lost my income. Then Jim was let go from the same school because “he wasn’t a good fit anymore”. After five years? Just seemed more than a coincidence.
Things seemed bleak – I didn’t know what we were going to do or how we were going to make it.
Fast forward almost 10 years later. I went back to school because I wanted to be able to do something from home and teach at an online college seemed the right choice. Through that I found a love for marketing and….
Celebrate Lit was born.
I have made friends, travelled incredible places, and have gotten to work with both of my girls. It has been such a blessing!
Jim found a new job. One that he loves. One where he is supported by his supervisors and encouraged to grow. And he has. It has been amazing to see how confident he has become and to hear him interact with the families he works with. This man who had a hard time just conversating with others now enjoys talking. I am so proud of him.
Two years ago, I had surgery. You would not think that would be a blessing but it was. After I had surgery, I had no more seizures, They found what was causing all my pain and some other issues I was having. While I still wear out easily, I am doing so much better!
I have had friends that stuck by me through it all. We have grown closer because of my illness. I have grown closer to my kids, closer to my husband, closer to my family. It is a reminder that we do not know how many days God has given us but we need to make use of them by investing in others.
Lastly, it caused me to grow closer to the Lord, trust Him, and rely on Him. I have been prone to depression. It is easy to fall in at the best of times…..Going through this taught me to recite the Gospel to myself each day, then count my blessings. I was reminded that my worst day on earth is better than the best day in hell – It is something to be grateful for each and everyday. It also taught me that my gifts are from the Lord. It was humbling to have to be babysat, have someone drive me, etc. I needed that humbling. I needed to be reminded that I was not all that and a bag of chips. It also really helped me to have grace for others and be there for others who were struggling.
A few years ago someone asked if I could go back and choose, would I make the choice to go through this. Without hesitation, I would.
I am thankful for the friends I have. I am thankful for the authors who pour into me. I am thankful for my family. I am thankful for healing. I am thankful for mentors. Most of all, I am thankful for God’s grace on a depraved sinner like me.
I wouldn’t be if I didn’t go through all of this. I could see myself still thinking about and relying on myself.
Dear readers friends, I hope my story encourages you. Whatever you are going through right now…The Lord can use. No matter how bleak the circumstances, He is always there.
More About Seasoned Grace
You can run from your past, but you can’t escape it.
Though he disappeared that day, Raylin McReynolds never believed her father died at the World Trade Center on 9/11.
So, when a mysterious letter arrives from Breakers Head, informing her that she would find him on the Independence Islands off the coast of Georgia, she has no choice but to find a job, get there, find her father.
As mainland troubles encroach on Hooper Island, Sean Anderson devises a plan and presents it to the island pastors and his cousin, Scott. The result: Grace Mission—a place where those struggling can find the help they need.
What he didn’t need was a distraction in the form of a newcomer to the islands—a mission volunteer, no less.
Others at the mission, Beth and Scott, see more than just frustration brew between Raylin and Sean. What will it take to convince Sean and Raylin to stop bickering long enough to see what’s obvious to everyone else?
Raylin’s on a mission to find her father and protect her heart, but neither seem willing to cooperate.
Seasoned Grace continues the Hooper Island stories of the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.
The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.
Click HERE to grab your copy!
Before you go, be sure to enter my giveaway and stop by the author’s posts to read their stories and enter their giveaways.
Melissa Wardwell, August 31
Kari Trumbo, September 1
Rachel Skatvold, September 2
Tabitha Bouldin, September 3
Carolyn Miller, September 4
Chautona Havig, September 5
Sandra Barela, September 6