Picture this: shackles and chains tied, bound to my arms, legs, to my neck.  Heavy and immovable with words written on every heavy link, words like FAILURE, TOO LOUD, TOO SKINNY, SHAME, TERRIBLE MOTHER, AWFUL DAUGHTER, LIAR, WEAK, ADULTRESS, SELFISH, GOSSIP, TWO FACED, UNLOVING, UNFEELING, NOT A FRIEND AT ALL.  WORTHLESS.


These are heavy thoughts, heavy thoughts carried around with me from one day to the next.  The weight is heavy, almost too heavy to bear but I keep moving slow and steady but my heart is heavy held captive by these things.

These things are too big to be forgiven. 

These things are labels I deserve.

Choices I’ve made.

Things I’ve done to others and to myself.

I don’t deserve forgiveness, mercy or grace.

“My soul is downcast within me.  Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  Because of Your great love I am not consumed, for Your compassions never fail. They are new every morning.  Great is Your faithfulness!” Lamentations 3:21-23

Can you see it?  Can you see the chains breaking? I can, one by one they are breaking.

I am captivated by these words that I just stumbled across in my desperate attempt to find God in this darkness.  These words, if I think on these things if I soak myself in reminders of His love, His compassions that never fail my heart feels light, this is hope.  The darkness that has my soul downcast suddenly has no power; my soul becomes radiant with the promise of being consumed not by darkness but instead by HIS GREAT LOVE. 

This is freedom.

My eyes and my soul look up, no longer downcast, no longer afraid.  No longer shackled by my past.

It. Is. finished.

I am no longer held captive by darkness, by these thoughts, chains and bondage that so easily could entangle me, hold me captive to the lie that I am not worth the price He paid.  Yet, I am. 

I am not consumed for His compassions for me never fail.  I am not consumed because His love, His GREAT love for me is new every morning, each and every morning.  Great indeed is His faithfulness for me, for you, for us.

I am no longer held captive but instead captivated by His great love.

About joymsteed

"This is the day the Lord has made I will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:4 I love this verse but the problem is I, more often than not, spend so much time rushing through the day that I don't think I really embrace what God is telling me through this verse. So, I am deciding to stand still or at least go slow and enjoy the days and the blessings that come, all of them; the ordinary and the extraordinary, the hard and the good, catching the moments wrapped up in each and giving thanks for the journey I am on. I am blessed to venture forward with my husband of 20 years and our two daughters, life has been hard and good and taken us places we never imagined we would go - both standing still and moving. God has been good and now as we enter a new stage, that point where our family road begins to have forks that are leading our girls to begin chapters in their stories that are separate from our story and although this excites me it also makes me wonder what's next for this mom, where do I go from here and what will this next chapter look like for me? I don't have the answers yet, what I do know though is that God is good and I know that He is going to lead and I will obediently follow, leaning in, standing still and rejoicing in the days ahead, the good and the hard days, the ordinary and the extraordinary days and the blessings wrapped in each. Thanks for stopping by and joining in my journey!

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