Today is the start of a new year! On New Year's day, many take the time to reflect on the years' success, failures or accomplishments. A time to reevaluate life's choices and determine what the next year might hold. But this New Year is a little different. It marks a decade! Wow! 10 years. Can you believe it went by that fast? 10 years is a milestone year. Year to reflect and think did I accomplish what I set out to accomplish these past ten years? A decade reminds you how short life is. So I went back to 2010. It’s hard to think back to a painful season in your life. But the beauty is seeing how God brought you out!
2010 marked the continuation of the greatest storm I would ever face in my adult life. When you are in a storm you don't realize the damage or severity, you're just trying to survive. I didn't know this, but my then-husband had confessed to a good friend of mine he was in love with her. What?! Right?! Yes!? Let’s back up a few years for context. My ex since 2008 began to severely struggle with depression. I lived through 5 years of his cycles between depression, anger, and happiness. It greatly wore on me. When his condition worsened to the point of physically hurting me, I sought shelter. Have you ever read the weather report during the day? And it says a severe storm is coming or that the storm will increase as the day goes by, but you don't realize how severe it is until it's upon you. That was my report. He shortly after filed for divorce and wanted the house, car and our two girls, everything! I went from a housewife, homeschool mom, minister's wife to in-between houses single mom in poverty! My prayer was “God do you See?! Can you hear?! Do you Care?! The divorce lasted 3 ½ painful years. I believed every minute God would restore the marriage. I knew he could do it! Then I found out he was pursuing other women. But I knew God could do it, at least that was what I was taught. He can do anything, right? To be honest, to this day the enemy attacks me with that belief. The depth of pain had no words. The deep wound of betrayal ripped at the root of my soul. There were times that I would drive with the girls and not wear a seat belt. If I wrecked I thought and killed us all it would look like an accident right?
But God! Yes, But God! He saw. He heard. He cared. God sent refuge in the storm. He was the light that led me through the raging winds. The day he married the other women, God saw, He heard, He cared. When I lost the house and had to move. God saw, He heard, he cared. When food stamps and pantries and gifts from friends were the only way to feed my girls, God saw, He heard, He cared. When I had to work three jobs and still didn't have enough. God saw, He heard, He cared. The storm lessened and shifted and I had to learn to walk the wilderness alone. I hated God. I hated him, for what my life had become and what had been done to me! I felt he didn't answer my prayer. What I didn’t realize was that he had been answering my prayers the whole time. I was just in too much pain to see it. Miracle after miracle unfolded in me and my girls' lives. And when I say miracle, yes things that could only be explained as a miracle. My tears watered the soil for the ministry God had and was preparing for me.
So let's fast forward to the middle of the decade when the past life I knew ended and the new began. 2014 into 2015 I launched NotJustPiano and shortly after released my first worship album which is a musical representation of my journey through the storm. NotJustPiano my piano/voice lesson business was a huge scary step of faith. I had no clue what it would turn into. It’s started with just my two daughters and exploded to over 60 students across the world. Yes, I said the world! Students not only in America but in Canada and Africa! Above all that, I discovered Deanna. The pain of walking through healing has been very difficult but the fruit of healing in my life is evident. I love the saying, “God took the broken pieces of my heart and turned it into a tapestry of His love”
So, I say this all to say, my ending does not equal my start. The beginning of the decade was totally horrible but God redeemed my time. He stepped into my story and fathered me back to the shelter of His heart. I know what it’s like to look back on the year with disappointment and look into the next year with despair. But trust me when I say God sees. God hears. God cares. He may not answer the way you want or in the way you want, but what He is not, is one who abandons. God’s hand will never fail you. His love is not like man's love. He keeps His covenant with us. So if you're going into the next decade with pain, fear and trepidation, don’t! In the years to come, every step of faith in the God who sees, hears and cares will lead you to a victorious closing of the next decade!!
She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.”