Monday, June 6, 2016

Across Many Miles

One of the greatest gifts of having my blog over the last almost 7 years (hard to believe it's been that long!) has been the friendships the Lord has brought into my life through it.

Some of the women I treasure, I met because of my little space on the Internet. They are women of all different ages, with different stories, from across the world. It is incredible how the Lord weaves our stories and lives together. I haven't even met some of my dearest friends "in person," but when you relate on the deepest levels because of shared similar experiences, it's as if you've known that person always. When your hearts connect, it doesn't matter the number of miles between you.

I have one sweet friend named Suzie who lives in Scotland who is around my age and one chapter of her life is similar to a chapter of my life. The Lord led her to my blog about 3 years ago and I count it a huge blessing that my words have been used to make her feel a little more understood. We corresponded online for a while and then she asked if I'd like to be pen-pals... Umm, pen-pals with an awesome young woman who happens to live in Scotland... yes, please! :) She sent me a long letter and lovely package a couple months ago.

Last week, I got the opportunity to write her back, after being quite busy over the last few weeks (my graduating and my niece being born might have a little something to do with that). My letter was a whopping 16 PAGES! It is therapeutic and healing to write out my heart, to sort through things long buried, to ask for prayer and to pray for, to encourage and be encouraged.

Then I have a friend named Tina in New York, whose precious baby daughter, also named Lilly, was stillborn at fullterm a couple years ago in June. The Lord led her to my blog shortly after her daughter's birth and death. I have been richly blessed by her comments and emails over the last 2 years. And just this weekend, we spoke on the phone for the first time and talked a total of 8 HOURS, until 3 a.m.! Yes, you read that correctly haha. It worked out because I was home alone and didn't have anything I needed to do. It was time well spent. There are some people you never run out of meaningful things to discuss. Tina is 20 years older than me and has much wisdom to speak into my life.

After writing a 16 page letter and talking on the phone for 8 hours over the past few days, I feel lighter. I feel loved and understood by those walking similar paths. I feel uplifted. And I am ever so thankful to my Jesus for knitting my life together with these remarkable women who have hearts so passionate for Him. They help me in my grief, and also in my walk with the Lord. I hope to one day meet them face-to-face.

These are just two of the friends I have met, two of the sisters in Christ and in love and loss. The many miles are no barrier to the Lord. :)

And then there are other people who perhaps I haven't personally connected with, but that I know have read some of my words. A gal I met in Colorado who is from Canada recently told me how her cousin who had a miscarriage read my blog and shared a link to one of my posts on Facebook and she told her she knew me! A friend in another state told me a friend of hers reads my blog and sent it to her, thinking she might be interested in reading it, and she told her she already does. Another young woman who lost her baby son told me that her mom read my blog while she was carrying her sister, who was born shortly after Lily. Her mom told her about my blog, not knowing that her own daughter would lose her baby just a few years later. Aren't these stories crazy?! What a small world and a big God. Another gal told me my being open about my story has helped her have more compassion and understanding for someone she knows whose chosen abortion. I feel so inadequate and like I have nothing special to say, yet for some reason the Lord still chooses to bring people here. He really can use anyone if He can use lil' ol' me.

I will meet many people or run into people from my past who tell me they follow along with my posts. Honestly, it can make me feel extremely vulnerable at first when someone tells me this! I can know next to nothing about them, and yet they've read the depths of my heart. What am I supposed to say? haha But that is how I believe God has made me, to share my story in this way. And it is constantly humbling me and making me realize what an honor and responsibility it is to be obedient to the Lord in this calling.


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