Love Fiercely

SHARE YOUR STORY (KRISTEN)

 

DO YOU EVER HAVE ONE OF THOSE DAYS… One of the days where you ask questions like, “do I matter, does anyone know my heart – really, or is what I am striving to be effective for God?” Well, I had a day with some thoughts like that & God has a great way of showing us {when we ask} ways that He is using us. Sometimes He even puts a name & some heart felt words across our path – that encourage us to keep going.

 

 

 

I decided long ago that I was going to be real. I had determined that I would use ALL of my life for God – so that others would know that they are not alone! I desired that those who were lost, could find freedom & peace… & that through my life they could see Gods love & restoration power at work. I wanted my story to help anyone that finds them self in a place of hopelessness & pain – & be an example for those that have no real-life modern day example of Gods working power, so that they can find hope in & know that –  they are worth loving | they are worth fighting for | & just when they think things are over – God is just getting started… I want my life to show people, that they are already fully loved & chosen by God! & that it is the no’s in life that lead up to the biggest YES in their lives if they just hold on!

 

 

 

This week – I received an email that started a new passion I want to share with you. I have the privilege of sharing my heart with you pretty often, & I now want to incorporate others stories to show you their lives & how God can use their story to show His faithfulness. I am calling it SHARE YOUR STORY – When Kristen reached out to me, I instantly realized she had been through quite a lot. She has felt pain & been in a place where she seemed to have little to no hope. But God found her, in the middle of her pain & loved her right where she was. Just like me, she is still in process, like me – she is not perfect… & still God has incredible plans & promises ahead of her! He will use everything in her life & in your life for the good of those that love Him!

 

 

 

She so graciously allowed me to share her story with you, & I hope that it encourages you, like it encouraged me. Thank you for Kristen for being bold enough to share your story & enabling God to use your life to help others!

 

 

 

I want to share more amazing stories like hers with people – please comment or contact me if you have a story you would like to share. 

 

 

 

ROMANS 8:18-19

What we are suffering now is nothing compared with our future glory. Everything God created looks forward to the future. That will be the time when his children appear in their full and final glory. 

 

 

 

Keela,

 
 
I have wanted to reach out to you for so long but until this moment I really didn’t know what I would be thanking you for. First and foremost, I have followed you on social media for about 5 years now. I have been so awed and amazed at your transparency and your relentless faith in God. The year you married the first time was the year I got married coincidentally. When I learned you were going through a divorce my heart dropped and ached for you. But it was through witnessing your journey in that time (what was shared on social media) that led me back to God.
 
 
I had been angry at God for a long time. In my early twenties I was raped which led me to drug addiction. I had been to rehab. My depression even got so bad I took a visit to the psych ward for a few days. I was lost. I had no purpose. I had given up on myself and God. At 25 I met a man who changed my life forever. He was kind, patient, loving, respectful, and loved me for me. Within a year we were married but the honeymoon phase didn’t last long. As I began to find God again slowly I became more unhappy in my marriage. I realized I had married someone who didn’t have a love and passion for God. I married someone who wasn’t ready to be a husband and I realized I wasn’t ready to be a wife. You see, I got married thinking THAT would give me purpose. Thinking that being a wife would erase all the hurt and pain I had ever felt. I played it safe and married someone who was nice to me because I was so scared of being mistreated. While he was and still is one of the kindest human beings I have ever met, he wasn’t the man God chose for me. He was the man I chose for myself. And as we all know, we will never bring us the happiness God can bring us.
 
 
I prayed a lot for clarity during that time and decided to get divorced. I felt ashamed that I was getting divorced and I felt that I was letting God down. I know your situation was a lot different and that you really were left with no choice. But for me, your journey gave me strength and most of all…hope. I went through a really rough year of beating myself up and wrestling with shame and guilt. I started using drugs again and I even was so reckless with my heart I entered a very toxic relationship. But oddly enough, during this time I found a church home and was baptized in July. I struggled with letting go of my old ways. I was living two lives. I’d spend my mornings reading and talking to The lord and by nightfall I was using drugs. Sometimes I would even go to church high on drugs. I kept telling myself that I would quit tomorrow. I was still stuck in a very toxic relationship with a man who was also using and living two very different lives. I had been saved, I was going to church twice a week, I was setting aside time every day for God, but being with this person was holding me back from where God was trying to lead me. It was keeping me in a very toxic place.
 
 
I remember during this time I would read your blogs, I would scroll back through your social media just thinking “How did she get through that time in her life?” Then I saw that you had found love again and you were so happy and that you had let go of the past… I so longed for that. I knew that your testimony was meant for my eyes and ears. I knew I couldn’t give up. I had to keep pressing forward and REALLY start being obedient to God. I knew he wanted more for me…and because I saw what he did in your life, I knew it was possible.
 
 
On the morning of November 15 I remember praying to God that if he gave me a way out of the toxic situation I was in I would obey and I would never go back. I knew that leaving a controlling person would not be easy but I knew that God would be my strength. That same morning, in a drug-induced rage, he assaulted me. I grabbed what I could, grabbed my dog and got in my car. I went to the police station first and then headed back to Dallas where I told my parents everything. In less than a week my parents had locked down an apartment for me in Dallas and retrieved all my belongings from our rent house. I had to leave behind my house, my job, my friends and hardest of all, my church.
 
 
This was the hardest thing I had ever been through as a believer. But I knew I had to be obedient to God as I had promised him and lean solely on him during this time. I didn’t have a job, I was in a new city in a new apartment and I didn’t have any friends here. It was just me, my dog, and God. In times where I would start to feel weak I would think back on your strength and how you used your faith to strengthen you. I started doing the same.
 
 
I feel like I have rambled long enough but God has blessed me in so many ways since coming back to Dallas. I got the job I wanted so badly in less than a month! I began working out with a trainer and using fitness as an outlet for any aggression or anxiety towards my past. I found a new church home downtown and all of this happened in one months time. I kept thinking if this can happen in one month…what can happen in ONE YEAR?!
 
 
I want to live a life I’m proud of and most of all a life God is proud of. You have no idea the role your journey has played in my journey. You are such a STRONG woman and you inspire me every day. Watching your wedding video with Cole…I want that. I want a man who brings me closer to God not pulls me away. I want a man who honors God and puts him first. I want a man who doesn’t judge me for my past but appreciates the woman I have become from it all. Most of all I want to be a strong woman of God myself. You have inspired me to share my story more with people because maybe my journey will help their journey as yours did with mine. As of right now, I’m content with being single and letting God work on me.
 
 
I know he will bring me a partner when he feels I’m ready…just like he did with you. You are such an inspiration to me and you’re such a beautiful person.
 
 
Thank you for always being so honest and open because you are helping women like me, women you don’t even know!
 
 
I know now God IS my purpose and I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
 
 
Sincerely,
 

Your secret cheerleader – Kristen Stephens

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