What were you doing on Saturday, April 28, 2018? It might have been a day to enjoy with friends or family. It might have been a day that you cleaned house or ran errands. That day might not have meant much to you, but to me that day is special, important, and significant. That day wasn’t just any regular and ordinary Saturday. It was my very last counseling appointment. It was session number 39. It was my official discharge day.

When I look back on that day, it brings so many thoughts and emotions to mind. I started back in October 2016, so that means I have invested a year and a half into working on Natalie and allowing God the open door to heal every broken, hurt, and painful part of myself. What if I had been too scared to start this process? What if I hadn’t valued myself enough to work on me? What if I had thought that it was just too tough to deal with? Then that means that I wouldn’t be walking in freedom or be the healed and whole person I am today. That is a difficult one to process.

There were so many times I didn’t want to have to face the reality of my pain. It seemed as if it would have been so much easier just to live my life as I had always lived. Don’t face the music. Just stay as I always was. It would have been easier, but then I would never have grown. I had to realize that I was worth much more than that. God didn’t want me to live the rest of my life stuck in a pit. He wanted me to experience His abundant life. He wanted me to know just how much He loved me, valued me, honored me, and adored me. That truth got on the inside of me. It changed how I thought of myself. It let me know that no matter what was going on in my world, then I could face it because He would never leave or forsake me. It also let me know that God wasn’t finished with me. He still had a purpose for me, and He was going to finish and complete it.

There are times that I look in the mirror, and I see a woman that I don’t recognize. She is so much different now. She loves herself. She is whole and complete in her Savior’s love. She has joy and loves life. She loves walking in her calling. She loves and cares for people with healthy boundaries the way that God created her to function. She is excited about where God is taking her. She sees just what a beautiful masterpiece and creation God has made her to be. She has a passion to live each day with purpose and hope. She is walking her journey not holding anything back from the Lover of her soul. She knows God in a way that she never would have known and experienced had she not been brave enough to face what she didn’t want to face.

So I want to encourage you to love yourself enough to work on you. It’s not being selfish. It’s loving yourself enough to invest in you. You can’t pour from an empty vessel. He wants you to live overflowing with His love. Sometimes it takes a season of rest to give Him the space to work on you. The time will pass, and then you’ll be grateful that you took it. A year and a half passed for me. It would still be April 28, 2018 regardless of what I had done, but now it’s April 28, 2018, and I am living a changed and beautiful life.

You are worth it! Take it from someone that knows!

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10

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