I once heard from a friend that God pursues us in our restlessness, receives us in our sinfulness, and holds us in our brokenness. I didn’t believe this until I came to know the Lord. As a little girl, much darkness and brokenness swirled around me. I thought God wasn’t for or with families such as mine. With the chaos, violence, and dysfunction present in my childhood, I didn’t want to be there, so I didn’t blame God for not wanting to be there either. He was absent from our lives, or so I thought. During that tear-stained time in my life, I knew I desired peace but wouldn’t know what true peace was until I accepted Jesus as my Savior. This didn’t come to fruition until much later.
Fast forward to my preteen years when my sister, my mom, and I shared a bedroom and slept on a pallet made of blankets in a roach-infested apartment. None of these external circumstances mattered as we were at peace because we didn’t have to walk on eggshells around my earthly dad any longer. We had gotten away, again. This peace we felt was a worldly, temporary peace, but not God’s peace. John 14:27 says, “peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives…” Jesus’ peace that surpasses all understanding would not enter my life until my early 30s.
After searching in all the wrong places, a dear friend invited me to her church: Cypress Creek Church. It was there I felt at peace and met believers that were transparent and did life together… real life. Despite what my past held, I felt accepted by God and other Christ followers. It was at Cypress that I accepted the Lord into my life. I now know God, and His peace has been with me always. He didn’t leave my side; He supported me through tough situations, then restored and strengthened me. God of grace will restore us to Him. Our trials make us stronger, allowing us to stand firm in the knowledge that He, and His peace, is for us.