It was never my intent to come back to Virginia. I had no desire to return after I finished with school. Virginia for me was a source of abuse, rejection, and failure. And, I wanted out. I wanted far away. I wanted to completely disconnect myself and never return. But, God had other plans.
Every time I tried to leave, my car said “Aht. Aht. Satan. Not today.” Whatever plans I made to depart were thwarted by the fact that I did not have a car. I could not get around. I had no place to live. And, if that wasn’t bad enough, my bank accounts were steadily dwindling down. The only choice I had was to remain where I was, the place I went when the pandemic hit but now couldn’t leave now that I was back.
I was extremely frustrated. So mad that God was holding me hostage. But, then my ministry partner said “I believe you are still there because God wants you to be fully healed, so when you leave, you will have nothing holding you back.” That’s when it hit me. Every time I packed up my car, it was because my heart had been broken again. Every time I declared I was leaving, it was because I was faced with disappointment yet again. The more I reflected the more it made sense. I wasn’t leaving. I was running – running from my problems, running from problematic people, and running from problematic situations.
I was like Hagar fleeing a bad situation. But, it would not have helped because I would have taken my anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness right with me wherever I went. I needed to be made whole before I could reach the next phase of my journey. I needed my heart to be healed, so I could fully be present. But, where would I do that? I didn’t have a house of my own and no one house was better than the other. I needed a space, a clearing where I could do the work that needed to be done, so I could rid myself of the pain that has been dictating my life for so long.
Since my sister was leaving and needed a tenant for her house, I figured the best place to go would be there. No one would bother me (mainly because they would not know I was there). I would disappear for a while. Get myself together. And, come back refreshed and of a more sound mind. So, I talked to her, made a plan, and off to South Carolina I was headed.
But, Christmas Day came, and I was confronted with the “what is your plan? how are you going to pay the bills? your sister is going to be losing out on money if you move in.” My parents were asking questions any caring parent would ask, but the questions were the result of a betrayal of trust because my sister was not supposed to reveal my plan. But, little did I know, there was a completely different plan going on that I knew nothing about.
See, my family had been watching me, and even though they pretended not to, they were listening too. They knew how much I needed a space of my own – a place where I could be mentally stable, heal, and raise my daughter. They knew that I needed out of the situation I was in and that the path I was following was not going to allow for that to happen. They knew ministry for me was not lucrative, so I would not be able to afford my own place and be able to stay afloat. So, they did the unthinkable. They rallied together and decided this Christmas, they would gift me a house – a safe space for my daughter and I. A place that was just for us, so we could have the fresh start that we needed.
What my family did not know is about two months prior, I prayed and cried and cried and prayed for God to help me find stable ground. I was tired of being a nomad bouncing from house-to-house, living out of suitcases. I was tired of living off of others. I needed my own, and I knew I could not afford it on my own, but I had enough faith to put it out there that I needed a space rent free, comfortable, and in a good neighborhood. And, on the first day of January, I learned that is exactly what I would get.
Now, it all makes sense, and I know why the car wouldn’t start. And, now I know why I couldn’t run away. Virginia, the place that created the insecurity, the instability, and the mental anguish was now becoming the source of my healing. The place of my oppression, shame, letdowns was becoming the place of my salvation. The place I was running away from was what I needed for my wholeness. I needed to stay to face the darkness. The time had come to open the closet and sweep under the rug. It was time to put fear in its place, and it was time to surrender.
So for now I will stay where I am and bloom where I am planted, as I feel the winds changing and see the tide shifting. I am entering into a new season; and for once, I’m excited about it. What I prayed for in secret, God revealed in public!