Despite how I felt, I was never on my own. I didn’t see it at the time, but God had His hand of protection over me while I lived apart from my family. I can see it clear as day now. You want proof? My Heavenly Father, My Protector, My God preserved me time and time again during this period of my life.
There was food to eat, when food was never a priority. We spent all of our money on cigarettes and alcohol, yet there was always something to eat. It may have been an apple that someone didn’t want at school or food that was brought in at work, but there was always food to eat.
I was kept physically safe when alcohol became our recreation – yes, there was drinking and driving taking place. When we would go and hang out with friends, we would drink alcohol and then would drive across town to a pool hall or to our apartment. The friends that we hung out with routinely actually had a drunk driving accident in our car – no one was injured, thankfully! (Side note: This is not a “get out of jail free card” to drink and drive. Just as I never should have done that, I want to be clear that we should never put ourselves or anyone else in a drinking and driving situation.)
My boyfriend never hit me and nothing was ever thrown at me during arguments. When a fight would get heated and he would throw things or push things in the apartment, I was never a target and I was never harmed physically.
I had an “out” for every time he proposed that we elope. As I mentioned in my last post, it was exhilarating to think that anyone loved me so much that they actually wanted to marry me, but I was extremely uneasy whenever I thought about joining our lives in marriage – marriage in my mind was permanent and binding. Anytime he wanted to jump in the car to elope, I would remind him that we had to work or that I had a test the next day – and we couldn’t afford to miss any of those responsibilities.
I was kept perfectly safe when I had the car accident and ended up in a ditch – I could have had some really nasty injuries. My mom also reminded me that there was a woman who showed up to help me who kept me calm and composed until I was able to leave the scene – someone divinely sent to me.
I never got pregnant – and no, there weren’t any “safe” practices in place. Enough said.
I now know that my family and many of their friends were praying for me daily. I can’t thank them enough for that. I truly believe that is directly responsible for me being here today. Prayer cover is so powerful and effective. I was at a time in my life when I didn’t even know how to help myself. Luckily, there were prayer warriors battling for me every day.
I didn’t leave home with the intention of the life I gained. I thought it would be so different. I thought it would be fun and exciting all of the time. I thought that I knew best what I needed and how to make the right decisions for my life. I had no idea that it would turn out the way that it did – even though I had so many warnings from people I love leading up to the day I left and after. They could clearly see the road that I was headed down. My view was foggy at best, clouded by my desires and imagination. Satan works best when he can use our own desires to pull us away from God – sadly, we make it so easy for him.
God was so powerfully present during this time of my life – and I didn’t even know it. He had a better plan for me. He had a different purpose for my life. I am so thankful that He preserved me during these few months (5 to be exact). What I knew as survival at 17 years old was God’s preservation in reality. My family and their faithfulness were so instrumental in how God’s plan played out. So much so, that it was my precious family who physically rescued me when I had come to the end of the road and was completely hopeless…
What I Learned:
- God is more present than I realize. If a tree falls in the empty woods, does it make a sound? Yes, just because you can’t hear it doesn’t mean that it didn’t make a sound. The sound is still there, you just weren’t listening. Same thing here with God, just because I wasn’t looking for Him, didn’t mean He wasn’t there with me daily.
- God provides for His children – not always the way we expect Him to, but He does provide.
- God’s plan and purpose will prevail. He never left me – he never forsook me. He was with me every step of the way – like the Footprints story (below).
- Prayer is more powerful than any weapon ever created by man. God’s weapons will always defeat the enemy – not always as we would define victory, but according to God’s will and plan for us.
- Have you ever experienced God’s divine intervention in your life without seeing it at the time? What was the situation?
- How did He show up? How did you come to recognize His presence?
- Are you in a situation now that you need God to show up?
- Is He welcome in your situation? Why or why not?
- Take a step back – can you or others close to you see the possibility of God’s handprint or protection in your situation? In other words, could it be worse…?
- What do you need to surrender to God to get back on the right track? Does pride get in the way? Do you simply need to invite Him in?
I pray that if you are in a situation where you feel hopeless and helpless that you will allow our God to enter into your life. He has a plan and purpose for you – plans to give you hope and a future. If you need prayer, please contact me privately – I will be a confidential prayer warrior for you.