This weekend was a rough one for me, which naturally led to starting this week out in an awkward emotional spot. You see, two years ago, on the 15th of February, I should have died.
I guess not many people have those experiences, but more than you think actually do. I was wrapping up my time at NYFW, and one evening as I legally and properly crossed the street, a delivery van took his turn and didn’t see me. I tried to jump out of the way, but he clipped my shoulder, knocked me off my feet and ran over my legs. While I didn’t actually get up and walk away from the accident, I am beyond grateful that I, in fact, do still have my own fully functioning legs and can fully use them with minimal pain and restriction. Lying there in the street though, all I can remember thinking at first was ‘wiggle your toes and it will be ok…’ clearly I couldn’t feel my legs, and was too petrified to move any other parts of my body. My next thought though was eerily peaceful, ‘Why did you let me live God?’
Why? I wanted to know why. I could have easily been taken in that moment, or injured to an even more severe degree, but I wasn’t. So why? I believe that our Father allows for circumstances to unfold when He doesn’t have a fully captive audience, when He sees those idols creeping up in you that are replacing your time with Him. I also believe that He allows for the enemy to do his worst because our Father knows what we are capable of accomplishing when leaning into Jesus. And sometimes, we will never know the why.
So there I was, stuck in an NYC emergency room (very much like a dramatic television show), without a phone because mine was a victim of the accident, with no friends, no family, and no distractions. Just God and I. It was time to do some talking.
Fast forward a few months later and I’m still homebound and laid out on my couch, working like a fiend, and trying to push myself through the recovery process. I’ve finally learned to admit that working like a fiend is also my coping mechanism for dealing with anxiety and any time my triggers have been set off you can usually find me writing business plans, blogs, and re-organizing an entire home. True story. What else had I learned?
- You can’t rush the recovery process. Absolutely, in no way, can this process be rushed, and here’s why. There are layers that must unfold for there to be healing. Some of these layers go deep, deep, deep. Some peel back easily, and are more simplistic to identify, but some are as thin and delicate as lace and have to be peeled back slowly and meticulously. This process is a journey.
- I do not control my own life. Bleh. As much as we like to believe that we do, there is a seriously greater force at work here, one that actually loves us, and longs for us, and wants to unleash blessing upon blessing, but that also loves us enough to refine us in fire so we can draw nearer and deeper into Him. It makes no sense, and perfect sense all at the same time. My life is not my own, but a vessel for His glory.
- My work was not completed. He spared me because He wasn’t finished with me. Was my accident a wake up call? Absolutely – were my priorities out of line..probably, was this an attack of the enemy or a jolt from Jesus? I truly don’t know, but what I do know without certainty, is that God wanted my attention, and He had it, fully. And in those moments lying on the wet winter NYC pavement, I knew He had plans for me, and I believed it.
So for the first time in all of my life, I knew my life had purpose, real purpose, and I wanted to find it. As I began and am still enduring the recovery process, I’ve been pressed into Jesus in more ways that I even thought humanly possible. Even writing something with this level of transparency about my faith is a huge step in where I was then vs where I was today. And side note, that doesn’t matter! Our gracious Father, He is there no matter where you are in your journey, isn’t that beautiful? Has it been easy? Ha! No, well, yes, but mainly no. Some days are easier, and some aren’t. Ultimately, I know I’ve chosen to run after Jesus, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t hurdles–and sometimes they aren’t even physical. Emotional recovery–dealing with anxiety–it’s no freaking joke, but it’s good. I’m beginning to have a deeper understanding of discernment, what warfare for my work actually looks like and how to battle through it.
Most importantly, I’ve learned that I am filled with gifts, with purpose and skills to ultimately bring glory to His kingdom–making my deepest desire to die empty, unleashing everything I’ve been given to further the Kingdom, to meet those around me in love, grace, and understanding. To create a masterpiece, whether it be in raising our children, building a business, writing a book, or baking the yummiest cookie you ever did eat. I want to pour it out, and let it glorify Him.