I’m so happy to introduce to you my friend, Lori Schumaker. Lori is an encourager at heart and was one of the first to welcome me with open arms when I first began to write online. Lori has spent her life learning of the hope and victory available when we embrace our identity in Christ. Today, when she isn’t busy being a wife and Mom to her three children, she teaches, ministers, coaches, speaks, and writes to share that hope with others. Wherever you find yourself today – walking through the difficult, needing to get unstuck to follow your purpose, or simply experiencing a season of beautiful chaos, Lori’s blog found at www.lorischumaker.com is a place where you can get a virtual hug from someone who truly understands.
Today, Lori graciously agreed to allow me to share an article she has written about something that is dear to my own heart – sharing your story. No matter how painful and difficult, your journey can speak love and hope into the heart of another person. Sharing your story makes a difference in ways that are beyond comprehension! Please join me today as Lori shares insight from God’s word that will help you understand that there is a God-designed purpose for your journey and a story that only you can tell!
Here is Lori’s article. Thank you, Lori!
The other night I sat across the table of a group of women. Remarkable women.
All beautiful and all with scars.
These are real everyday kind of women. The kind that smile and give you hugs when you see them. The kind that laugh at the funny stuff, shake their heads at the nonsense, sit with a friend in need, and love their people like crazy. They are also the kind that push themselves each day, run late, miss deadlines, yell at their kids, get irritated behind the wheel, and cry.
Real everyday kind of women.
Each of them have a story uniquely theirs. In each there is much good, yet in each there is pain.
… from loss and from gain.
… from lack and from abundance.
Pain that comes simply from the fallout of the sin and brokenness of our world.
Each has a story and each has hope.
As for me, I look to the Lord for help. I wait confidently for God to save me, and my God will certainly hear me. Micah 7:7
It’s a hope for what will come. That a day will come where the pain eases. It is a hope for joy to return. It is a hope that the scars left behind will aid in writing a story greater than we could have ever dreamed.
The scars left behind will aid in writing a story greater than we could have ever dreamed. Click To Tweet
… For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn’t believe even if someone told you about it. Habakkuk 1:5
Sharon Jaynes wrote a book titled Your Scars Are Beautiful to God. In talking about the book she described scars as the remaining mark of a healed wound. She said, “There is a big difference between a wound and a scar, because a scar says, ‘I’ve been healed, and this is my story.'”
I love that because when we are healed and willing to share the story of our scars, God is able to use our story as a tool in the healing of others. Think of an actual physical scar you may carry. I have a great big one on my knee from an ACL reconstruction many years ago. People always ask me about it. It begins a conversation.
Just as those physical scars serve as a reminder of a healed physical wound, my emotional scars serve as the reminder to share the hope birthed out of my life story. And in that moment I choose to share God’s story, what Satan meant for harm, transforms into good. Just as God promised!
He longs for us to claim our heritage as beloved children of God – chosen and wonderfully created with purpose by Him. You see, the truth of our story is our victory and the enemy’s defeat!You see, the truth of our story is our victory and the enemy's defeat! Click To Tweet
It is the beauty recreated from the ashes of our pain.
To all who mourn in Israel,
he will give a crown of beauty for ashes,
a joyous blessing instead of mourning,
festive praise instead of despair.
In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks
that the Lord has planted for his own glory. Isaiah 61:3
Pain, challenges, and struggle are a part of who we are – all of us. No one escapes it. We each have a choice as to what we will do with it. We choose to crumble by the weight of it, hiding the struggles from the world and allowing our defeat. Or we choose to take the offering of grace and forgiveness by the One Who redeems. We choose to give it to Jesus. When we do that, He takes the burden from us, heals the pain, and gives new meaning and a purpose. And then in sharing the story of our scars, we are given the honor of sharing the story of our Healer.
Father, from the view we have, our pain and struggles often seem without meaning. We vacillate between anger, sadness, and depression. Lord, be our Courage and Strength as we step through it. Bring us to a place where the pain eases and the joy begins to return. To a place where we can share the story. Remind us – engrave upon our hearts Your hope for a wound that heals and leaves a scar. A scar that will give us a story to bring another to You, the great Healer. You know the purpose of our wounds, so I ask that we surrender them. That we surrender our pain and our anger to You so that You can take what the enemy meant for harm and destruction, and make something beautiful rise out of those ashes.
In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen
*This article was written by Lori Schumaker and a previous version of it originally appeared at www.lorischumaker.com.
**This article may be linked in other encouraging places. Click HERE to find out where!
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