Guys. It feels like forever since I’ve written. In reality, it’s been twenty-four days—and in blog terms, that’s an eternity. My goal for 2017 is to write to you weekly. This blog has been a blessing and helped me connect with so many of you who I otherwise would not have. I love hearing your stories, answering your questions, and hopefully giving you some encouragement as you continue about your life exactly where you are. This space is part of my ministry, one I pray God grows and uses in the days, weeks, and months to come. His plan is bigger than I can comprehend, and I’m excited to be even a small part of it.
I am bursting with stories to tell you and lessons to share. I’ve let the blog take a back seat throughout November, instead focusing on being present in my new job, new church, and new home. I’ve focused on relationships here, and I’ve focused on my relationship with the Lord. In doing so,
He keeps putting the word “restore” on my heart.
Restore (v.) — to give back or return. To put or bring back into existence or use. To repair or renovate so as to return to its original condition. Synonyms: recreate, refresh, revitalize, revive, renew.
I have been hearing “restore” over and over again. It started as a whisper and then this week grew louder and louder. I took that as a signal that it was time to write y’all a new blog post.
I’m in a season of restoration, and God is sweetly showing me what this looks like in various areas of my life.
As many of you already know, I’m a big proponent of counseling. I met with a Christian counselor regularly in New York City for the past three years and really believe everyone could benefit from a good counselor. Saying goodbye to my counselor when I moved brought me to tears. She had been with me through so much: moves, job changes, love, heartache. She counseled me as I decided to publicly affirm my faith in Christ through baptism. She watched and supported as I launched this blog. She’s been there through every up and down; my relationship with the Lord and my character as a woman of God grew under her. He had His hand on our counseling relationship, blessing it from the very start. I experienced tremendous healing from my eating disorder, anxiety, depression. And I became a true woman of the Lord.
As soon as I accepted the call to Nashville, I started looking for a counselor in the area. Through praying and consulting with those who know my story, I felt that a nutrition counselor was the best route to go. Finding one was at first an arduous process. It seemed as though I kept hitting dead ends. I actually broke down in tears one day over it.
My doubt and frustration was short-lived, though. A friend recommended her nutritionist here, and the rest is history. We’ve met twice so far; I know she’s part of the reason God has me here in Tennessee. She’s a nutritionist, a counselor, and a Christian. She knows what’s up. She just gets it. And she believes she can help guide me to full freedom, healing, and restoration from any remaining chains of the eating disorder that almost killed me eight years ago.
She used the word “restoration” on day one. That’s her goal for me. Restoration to the full woman of God I was created to be. Fearfully and wonderfully made. Knit together before birth with a name written in the stars. It’s a restoration both physical and spiritual. It’s a process I am excited about and believe God is equipping me to walk through.
In Acts 3, Peter heals a lame beggar. He speaks to all who watch him do so, reminding them this is possible through faith in Jesus Christ, whom God raised from the dead. He goes on,
“And now, brothers, I know that you did it in ignorance, just as your leaders also did. But what God predicted through the mouth of all the prophets—that His Messiah would suffer—He has fulfilled in this way. Therefore repent and turn back, so that your sins may be wiped out, that seasons of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send Jesus, who has been appointed for you as the Messiah. Heaven must welcome Him until the times of the restoration of all things, which God spoke about by the mouth of His holy prophets from the beginning."
The Bible tells us we can expect a restoration of all things. Over and over again, we see that God is making all things new! This doesn't only apply to our physical bodies; it applies to our entire lives. He will create a new heaven and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come to mind (Isaiah 65:17). I began researching this theme in the Word and found such hope in the fact that He is renewing everything. Truly everything.
I was thinking a lot about the idea of restoration, and the next thing I know, I find out my church is doing a Christmas series called All Things New. Yes, really.
Shortly after that, a different friend of mine mentions Isaiah 43:19 during a completely unrelated conversation.