November 20, 2020
Forty Days of Proclamation: RESTORE
Psalm 51:12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me.
When I chose my word for this year, I spent a lot of time, last year, wondering what God had planned for me. I was excited that I had several jobs and they were all going so well and I was actually having extra money set aside for paying down debt and paying my taxes quarterly. (Who does that??!!) I foolishly thought that my word meant that I was finally going to Restore my house that hasn’t been updated since we moved in. Boy was I wrong! I totally forgot that I’m not in charge of my life, He is! By the end of 2019, I had lost a couple of jobs due to little activity needed from me and the jobs I had that were giving me the ability to have extra income were starting to hold back on hours. In the Spring of 2020 I was starting to panic and wondered how much of what I saved was going to hold out. But again, God showed up and I did not go hungry and all my bills were paid. Psalm 126:4 Restore our fortunes, Lord, like streams in the Negev. I even had a ton of toilet paper because I live by myself and my kids weren’t allowed to come visit! Haha And during this whole time at home, as in all the other years that I’ve taken well care of myself, I haven’t gotten sick at least once, even when one of my sons and my grandson came down with pneumonia right before they came to visit me. Isaiah 38:16b You Restored me to health and let me live. But even through all of that, I still wondered how God was going to Restore my finances or house needs or whatever I thought my word was going to mean.
I am a divorced empty nester…which meant it was hard for me to see that some people at home were complaining about how their spouses or kids were driving them crazy. I was over here wishing I had someone to complain about. Since I couldn’t go out and find a real job during this time, I just took advantage of all the time I had on my hands. I was so used to being busy and taking care of everyone else that I forgot what it was like to take care of me. But again, it wasn’t about me…God always knows what we need. And what I needed was to be busy and feel needed during my very quiet time. So I joined a group called Operation Underground Railroad whose focus is finding and Restoring trafficked kids and adults that are in bondage. It happens that one of my self-employment businesses donates to this group through a couple of products that we sell and donates all proceeds to them. And come to find out, we have a local group here in Nashville and surrounding areas are starting to pop up. I got to help with a fundraiser in Franklin and am on the “board” so to speak of a few of us that come up with and plan out any future fundraisers or how we can bring more awareness to the community. And of course, I joined their national prayer team and I get texts/emails about their special operations (no specific details) of when they are in need of a prayer for a difficult operation, when they are going in, and when a child has been saved. It’s heartbreaking and exciting at the same time to know I’m a small part of that. Their bible verse for this purpose is Isaiah 61:1-4 Talk about Restoring!
But this verse connects me to something else I am doing along with all the other bible study groups I’m in, my church decided to do the Breaking Free series by Beth Moore….and our main bible verse is….Isaiah 61:1-4!! God knows what He’s doing, ladies! Not only is he Restoring my idleness, He is Restoring my heart. This bible study had me in tears just by the very first week, but, in week 4 it talked about being released and Restored from positive and negative influences from your family. I’m glad I was by myself in my house because talk about an ugly cry getting this all out. But I needed this release to Restore my broken heart from past mistakes, past heartaches, past hurts and wrongs, and knowing that I didn’t have to carry this with me, anymore. There’s a line in there where she says: We don’t have to disinherit our physical lineage to fully accept and abide our spiritual lineage. Wow! I’m not to blame for my family’s past history nor am I responsible for my children’s wrongdoing! That was something that I so needed to be Restored from. That was such a heavy weight lifted off of me. Whew…
So in this Restoration learning I went through because of all the things that have happened to me over the last 5-10 years, there were also some good highlights to this year and I just want to praise God over them. My grandson got baptized this Spring!!! And to hear him say, Grandma, me and you are the only Christians in this house, could be heartbreaking to hear but I’m praying and confident that this is something that could help his dad and my other two boys to come back to the Lord! My house got paid off!!! It took a horrible divorce to go through to get it that way, but who cares, it’s paid off and that’s a silver lining in my book! And one other great thing that happened is my middle son is moving in with his girlfriend (not the ideal way to go, but still) and he is doing great at adulting! This is my son who I had to kick out of my house and show tough love to just a couple of years ago. This same son who I can’t tell you how many times I had to call the cops on. This same son who I finally had to give over to the Lord even though I knew that no matter what happened to him, I had to accept what God was going to do with him. This is huge in my book and in my life and I’m so very happy for him and he is also so excited to be moving on with his life and out of the strongholds that were keeping him back. I’m so thankful and at peace, this year, no matter what happens from here on out, this will be a momentous year to be Restored in my heart with God.
For further reading: Psalm 78:1-8, Psalm 71:20, Galations 6:1, 1 Peter 5:10
I thought this song was perfect for me with my word:
Lord, what people and circumstances thought could keep us down, You have displayed Your goodness and shown me many ways to be Restored in You. I pray that everyone will, very soon, come to know You and walk with You so that they can find the peace that passes all understanding. I am in awe of what You have given to me and Restored in my heart, this year. The more I poured into You, You came right back and poured Yourself into my heart. Be with every single Soul Sister in this group and help them to know that they are loved and cherished and saved in Your precious name. Amen