Like many of you, my life has taken a very different path than I ever envisioned, one marked by sweetness and blessing, as well as pain. Through it all, one thing I have come to know, truly know, is that the Lord is so faithful, and He is extravagantly good. The things He has taught and is still teaching me (because we are a continual work in progress) are precious jewels of wisdom that have come at a high price. My prayer is that the Lord would use my story to minister and encourage those of you who might be going through a difficult circumstance.
After five years of marriage I found myself in a very lonely place. It was the most difficult time of my life. I had never felt so alone, so betrayed, so foolish. Everything came crumbling down, and in that moment, I heard the Lord calling to me.
My father, my hero, brought my infant son and I home to Amarillo in the fall of 2012. Here we came to heal. There was a long and painful journey ahead. There were many lessons, or many jewels as I call them, but I had an army of people praying for me, and the Lord made himself so near to me. So real to me, that I came to know Him in a way that can only be known through enduring great loss and suffering. It is said that walking through a divorce is worse than death, but the Lord began to whisper to me that He wanted my life to be marked by His redemption and goodness, not the scarlet letter of victim or divorce. He began drawing me in. I realized that I could not afford, for my sake and the sake of my son, to not tune in to Him, so I chose to respond by letting Him draw me in. I didn’t know what else to do, but I did know that no one saw or understood like the Lord did. And I knew I needed, more than anything else, to hear His voice louder than anyone else’s voice.
And so, while my infant son napped, the Lord would beckon me, and I would steal away with Him. Oh those times heaven invaded my room in the sweetest way. Layers began being stripped away. The Spirit would open His word to me with amazing newness and clarity. I didn’t always feel something, yet I trusted that the Word still brought peace and life to me, regardless of emotions and circumstances. We also went on walks. With my infant son in the stroller and the expansive West Texas sky overhead, we would walk and talk to the Lord. And He would whisper promises to my heart-- promises too grand for me to believe in at first. You see, hoping and dreaming had become too painful, but He was so kind and patient with me. He said that it would be for His glory and so that it would be known that He was writing the story. He asked if I would just let Him be good to me?
He wouldn’t relent, and it was too good for me to have thought up on my own so I knew it had to be the Lord. Because I had already decided that it was just my son and I and the Lord taking on the world… but He had other plans. He helped me to gradually receive His promises and begin to hope and dream again. And in these sweet, stolen moments, my Maker, my Husband began healing my heart.
As I am writing this, the tears are flowing. I cannot share what the Lord has done without weeping because His profound faithfulness and extravagant goodness wrecks me. In the fall of 2014, just two years after first coming home to Amarillo, I was introduced to the most amazing man of God. The way he cared for and served my son and I made me feel so seen and cared for! Just when I had almost given up hope, the Lord answered the longings of my heart and brought me this wonderful man!
In the fall of 2015, we married and celebrated with our closest friends and family, and we just celebrated the arrival of our sweet son one month ago! I am humbled and in awe of the sweet fulfillment of the Father’s promises-- to the very date I wrote in my journal three years ago and dared to take Him at His word. All because of those precious stolen times when the Lord would whisper to me, “Won’t you let me be good to you?”
Many of you may be facing a similar circumstance, and possibly it has been decades and decades of the same long journey. I would encourage you to read the following passage from Isaiah as if the Lord is speaking it directly to you. Meditate on it often and let the words of truth settle into your spirit. For His promises are the greater reality- more real than what we see in the natural. Trust Him with the deepest places of your heart, because He cares for you. He is trustworthy, and He will never let you down. And take heart; He doesn’t call for perfection along the journey because Jesus has made already made a way for you, if you believe and receive. He is unapologetically smitten with you and after your heart. Draw near to Him, and He will make Himself near and real to you in your situation. Listen to His beckoning and won’t you let Him be good to you?
Laura Avirett Anderson was raised at Trinity Fellowship Church in Amarillo, Texas where she has been a member for nearly twenty years. She now is involved at Paramount Baptist Church where her husband, Tyler, is worship leader and creative director. They have a busy four year old son Truett and newborn son Liam.