photo by Darlene Taylor

Isaiah 61:4 – “And they shall rebuild the old ruins, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations.” In the margin of my bible I wrote on 8/8/04, “I feel like an old ruin.” It was only a couple of months after my marriage had ended. I remember feeling old and broken. Earlier in that chapter is where we’re told that the Lord has come to give us beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness We will be called the trees of righteousness so that the the Lord may be glorified. I have held on to those sort of verses for so long. In Matthew we’re told, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” I wondered where my comfort was. I thought “comforted” meant that my pain would just go away and I’d be happy.

Psalm 147:3 says, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” My margin says “wounds” is literally translated as “sorrows”.

Yes, please, I would like my sorrow bound up. 

Psalm 147 and several surrounding it are Psalms of praise. Psalms recounting what the Lord has done and can do and will do. Reminding our own souls to turn our faces to Him; to Praise Him in all things. ALL things? Seriously? What if I just lost my baby, job, or husband? What if I just TOTALLY freaked out on my kids? What if I already packed my entire house to find that we’re not moving? What if I lose my job or my arm?

There is something miraculous that happens when we choose praise and thanksgiving. There is a song that says, “When the darkness closes in Lord, still I will say ‘Blessed is the name of the Lord'”. I remember singing that song with tears streaming down my face.

It is a hard, impossible thing to choose blessing and praise when you’ve been ripped apart.

I have spent most of my life feeling a profound sadness. It’s different than when I’m having a rough day. It’s very familiar. When it comes upon me I feel just like I did as a little girl all alone in my room. I could hear my parents in the other room and I would cry. I would just feel so sad and didn’t know why. Then after my mom died I spent about 4 years crying myself to sleep. At some point I guess I decided to stop crying or feeling sad.

I can now say that I’ve moved so far past that. I don’t mind feeling sad. I don’t think it’s a bad thing. In fact, I think it can be a very good thing, I just don’t live there anymore.

I’m also able to feel greater joy.

Someone recently told me that my laugh is different. I don’t hear it, but I believe them. Someone yesterday told me my countenance had changed and my friend next to me nodded.

Thank you Jesus for miracles and healing.