What gives my message meaning is that I am a normal individual like anyone else, who has found myself, at times, struggling to find hope...to see Grace for what it is. Ultimately, to see through to God.
Up until my senior year of High School, I had enjoyed a pretty peaceful life. I studied hard, loved being with family and friends, and went to church every week. I spent time exploring my home state of Alaska, taking advantage of the fishing, camping, and hiking every summer. It was great...
Then, things changed. Life took an unexpected turn and this, the outworking of God's plan, shaped me into the person I am today and is the reason for my sharing so openly about my journey: From the fall of my Senior year until the summer I turned twenty-two, my world was rocked by the loss of a Marine I knew who paid the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country in Iraq, a two-year health crisis that nearly took my dad's life three times, the death of my step-grandfather, the near death of a childhood friend in a car accident and, later, the passing of my grandmother following a brief battle with cancer. Any one of these situations would have been hard to process, but to go through four years of such life-altering transitions and challenges, at times, left me feeling as though I had no hope left.
Over time, as I began to slowly work through the emotions and the disillusionment that was left in the wake of such pain, I began to sense the touch of God's grace. And my broken heart started to open. As weeks and months have passed, healing has come into my life. I honestly never thought I could ever be grateful for the way my life-story has been written. At times, I wanted to rip out certain chapters and pretend that they never existed. And yet, I find myself thankful...appreciative for what I've gone through, and surprised at how far I've come. Sometimes, I still struggle to accept my journey, but I am now at peace knowing that redemption is a reality. That hope can exist, even in the darkest of times.
It is my prayer that the thoughts and observations that I share on this blog will help to make these realities come true in your own life and that you may experience for yourself the Grace, the God, that so lovingly healed this broken soul and made it come alive.