My favorite stories on film or in a book are those with a strong story of redemption or restoration, when it looks like all is lost and there is a huge turn around in the character or the plot.
God is in the business of writing those redemptions and restorations in the lives of people who seek Him. It is good to be honest before God about what in our life we desire restoration in. 2 Cor. 13:11 says, “Aim for restoration.”
Almost 7 years ago I sat in a little white house converted into a Sunday school room in a tight circle with a group of women with the most beautiful hearts; we were beginning our first day of Bible study for 2009 and the challenge was given to us to answer the question that Jesus asked to his beloved disciple, “What do you want?” (Jn 1:38b)
I remember that wintery day clearly, as the furnace in that old house filled the room with the smell of burning heat, and I crafted my letter to Jesus asking him to restore me. I had just finished my year of cancer treatments and I was asking to be restored both in physical strength and as a woman. I had no idea at the time that radiation would make that request a true challenge.
After two reconstruction attempts failed and I had heard not just from my doctor but from my second opinion as well that there wasn’t anything further they could do, I was encouraged through the book, “Circle Maker” to keep circling my prayer for restoration.
In order to keep praying and not give up I put the keywords of my prayers on stones and piled them in a dish by my bed. A year and a half ago, after much prayer and research, I thought I had found my answer and I traveled to Baltimore only to be hit with more disappointing news. They directed me to a place in New Orleans that specialized in helping women just like me, but I was so discouraged that I just about threw in the towel and gave up the idea of ever being restored.
I don’t know what you have been seeking restoration for maybe it is also for your physical body, maybe it is a relationship, or a financial trial but whatever it is, I think we are often tempted to give up and face defeat right before breakthrough happens. We fear hoping for wholeness and being disappointed, so instead we turn our energies to trying to be content with the brokenness.
The enemy is the thief that comes to steal, kill, and destroy, but he loves to whisper accusations that God is uncaring and unloving and doesn’t care if we are in pain. He loves to discourage us to the point we lose hope and give up. Although satan loves to cast the blame onto God, the Bible is clear that he is the thief and that God is the restorer!
“God, himself, will restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.” (1 Peter 5:10)
Where do you feel broken, empty, or barren? God says that he gives beauty in place of ashes (Is 61), but our enemy wants to dishearten us to the point we just sit in our heap of ashes instead of hoping for a place of beauty.
A few days ago I returned from New Orleans after completing my last stage of reconstruction. The restoration I called out for is complete, almost 7 years from when my prayer began.
Whatever restoration you need, be vocal about it with God; go all in and see the restoration He writes into the story of your life!
About the Author:
“I believe God’s word and sharing life authentically with other believers has been my strength and support. I have had the pleasure of serving with my husband in church plants and community group ministries and have the joy of teaching weekly Bible study at our church as well as speaking at women’s events.”
You can read more from Leslie on her blog, DeeperStill.net!