“Our God is a master at turning devastation into restoration.”
Two shows I really enjoy watching on HGTV is Rehab Addict and Good Bones. I love how Nicole Curtis and the mother/daughter duo, Karen and Mina can see a home that has been neglected, in distress, and disrepair and have vision to return it to its former glory. Where most would see a pile of garbage, unrealistic work and too much money, these women see hope, potential and opportunity. I believe this is the heart of God with His children that have areas in our lives which are broken, hurt and in disrepair. Often we hide these areas of hurt and shame behind university degrees, money, religion, achievements and other outward facades that prevent others from looking too closely. Please be encouraged by the testimonies of my four Restoring Wholeness leaders at NAU.
· “I was sexually abused as a young child and again in high school, which made me feel like I had no worth and I wasn’t sure what my identity was at that point. When I went through Restoring Wholeness, it opened my heart to realizing I had to forgive myself as well as others which allowed me to begin to understand that God has placed so much value in me because I am His daughter. He freed me from the lies of worthlessness and restored me to Him!”
· “I took Restoring Wholeness last school year. Through the teaching and the words Brett brought to the class, God has brought so much healing over my life. God has completely restored my broken relationship with my father and he is moving from Connecticut to Sedona to be closer to me. This year I am able to assist in teaching RW and God is using my testimony every class to encourage other girls and He is continuing to heal me.”
· “I was in the process of recovering from some previous sexual brokenness and was starting to grow in new intimacy with God when I was introduced to RW. Going through the course, God showed me so many things, including some hurt that I am still walking through with my brother but making big steps in. The course showed me how to allow God to teach me some amazing truths through trials in life instead of just being hit by them. I also learned the importance of having community as I walk through my trials. “
· “Before going through RW, I was heavily addicted to pornography, and I was not willing to ever talk about this to anyone. I was trapped in a mindset of wanting to get out of the addiction, but not really knowing how to. When I finally decided to enrol in Restoring Wholeness, God showed me that I could not only talk about my addictions and understand where they came, but also to overcome them through His grace and the community which He has given me.”
This is the heart of our God! He brings beauty and restoration where we have been hurt, neglected, and dismissed. Isaiah 61:1-3. The truth is that everyone has their struggles, issues and pain. Some of us hide those issues better than others, but God sees our pains and disappointments. He knows why we do the things we do. And like a good father, He wants to get to the root of our pain. The Bible says that one of the names of God is Wonderful Counsellor. This is the job of the Holy Spirit. He is our Helper. There have been many times where I have come to God in the middle of my brokenness, pain and hurt, asking Him to guide, show and direct me in the root issues of my addictions and coping mechanisms. And sometimes, I don’t always like what He shows me about myself, but I always choose to believe. Whether I feel it in my emotions or not at the time, God has my best interests at heart. He’s a good Father!
For some of us, we have been living in our pain, dysfunction, and addictions for so long, it has become our normal. The idea that anything else is an option or that change is even possible is foreign, scary, and not attainable. Sometimes we cannot see the forest through the trees. We are not able to see the “God” possibilities. We have believed lies. This is why it is so important to surround ourselves with people that are lifegiving, have vision for God possibilities, and are allowing God to go deeper into their lives. This brings me hope that if God can do it for them, He can do it for me! God does not have favorites. We are all His favorites!!! Acts 10:34
When I hear testimonies like the ones above, I am reminded of God’s goodness, His faithfulness and His love! God is faithful to complete the good work He has begun. Phil 1:6. I am challenged to once again allow the Holy Spirit to go deeper in my heart and life to bring healing, restoration and greater freedom. We are constantly a work in progress. We have not arrived. This is our journey. This is our call. This is our purpose because when we allow God to go deeper in our lives, it shows others what God can do in their lives! It brings hope, vision and excitement of God possibilities and we are reminded that God is in the restoration business. It’s much like when I watch Rehab addict and Good Bones, I get excited in what Holly and I can do in our 100-year-old house. Vision is awakened once again.