a letter to my future self
Danae, dearest Danae,
Please remember … please remember this season, unlike any other you’ve known to this point.
Please remember how anxious you were for months trying to – by yourself – find a place to live. You didn’t pray, you didn’t seek His wisdom…you worked and tarried and stressed for basically nothing.
Please remember the night you stood in response for a call for prayer, because of dizzy spells that were distracting you constantly. Remember how you sobbed and were surrounded by brothers and sisters praying one by one by one for your healing and rescue. Remember how people you barely knew offered to give you a place to live for free. Months of stress showed you nothing but that “worry cannot add a single hour to your life”.
Please remember how the dizzy spells progressed to panic. Attacks that came at work mostly, finally alerting you to the heaviness you’d been carrying for over a year – striving to perform, prove, and yes, provide for yourself. Remember that now – months later – you are learning that you are worth more than what you do, worth more than the money you make, worth more than the role you fulfill for others. Remember that you don’t think you are made for a nine-to-five job. Remember that you are resolved to wait until He leads you. He will show you where your great ache meets a great need in the world. You can trust Him. Because He is your Provider.
On that note…please remember the day you went toe-to-toe with Him.
Remember how He had been telling you for weeks to REST, and you looked Him in the face, tears streaming down and told Him you couldn’t because you had to make money. He asked you, “Who is your provider?” and you got closer and through clenched teeth aching with the pain of years of doing it alone, whispered, “I am.”
Remember how He heard that, and looking back at you with His own tears running down His beautiful weathered face, He responded just as fervently,
“No, My Love. I Am.”
Remember… you took the greatest risk of your life and decided to believe Him.
You left your job.
No plan. No back-up.
No other streams of income.
But remember all the support…all the conversations with your community. Casey…John and Amy…Amy…Jessica…the Springers…Jason and Steph…all emphatically saying: “Yes. Do this. You can trust Him.”
Remember the evening on the Kanyer’s back porch, feeling loved, covered, supported, and filled up with prophecies of a fresh, fun, beautiful season to come. Remember dinner with the Burglehaus’, stories and testimonies of God’s goodness, and their prayers for a new depth and power to your connection with Him.
Remember your last day of work. Remember the camping trip in southern Oregon, kayaking in the shadow of Mount McLoughlin and running your fingers through the water thinking about Hinds Feet…obstacles that make the falling water’s sacrifice and surrender more beautiful.
And remember the next day, crashing into exhaustion. And later meeting with a doctor…adrenal fatigue.
Remember the weeks of dizziness, weakness, really low blood pressure, painful vision. Remember only getting out of bed a couple hours a day. Remember feeling like walking ten minutes would cause you to faint. Remember the hour you spent crying and frustratingly telling Him, it’s supposed to be enough that You’re with me in this place. It’s supposed to be, but it’s not. It’s not enough.
And as you listened for His response...“even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, because You are with me.”
And you surrendered. It has to be enough. It is enough that You are with me.
Remember how after that moment, everything shifted. Because He was with you. Viscerally. Remember the dreams…spiritual dreams every night, dripping with meaning. And then visions of Jesus, every day and sometimes multiple times a day. Remember seeing Him singing songs of healing over you on your bed. Remember the physical manifestation of His presence around you constantly.
Remember hearing Him louder and clearer and more often than you ever have before. And remember how you began to improve, as He was healing you.
Remember how every. single. day. He broke through another box in your mind, kicking out another lie, tearing down another wall that separated you from the truth that makes you free. Remember your constant prayer, “I know You’ve set me free – teach me how to live it.”
Remember sobbing on Amy’s floor, snot running out of your face as He broke through yet another barrier: the doubt that you could hear Him and the need for other’s confirmation. You repented, pulled idols off their altars. Remember how you always always thought your Christian life was like walking on the edge of a cliff…one step – check and make sure it’s the right one – another step – check and make sure that’s the right one – don’t fall don’t fall don’t slip don’t mess up.
And remember what He said?
There is no cliff.
There is no freaking cliff.
Your Jesus-following life is actually a gorgeous, thriving, lush meadow. All the freedom to run and experience and laugh and delight with Him. Remember how you felt freer than you ever have in the moments after that revelation.
Please remember when you told Susan that, as you are experiencing Jesus as your husband, you really don’t care anymore if you ever marry or not.
Remember the songs that are carrying you through this season: Lean Back, Insatiable, Another in the Fire, I Won’t Let You Go, My Soul Sings, Tethered, Peace Be Still.
Remember the generosity and provision that came through homes and food offered to you…the Carters, the Antonys, the Springers, the Sprungers, the Emards, your grandparents, your mom, your sister, your brother, your dad, the Stubbs.
And remember tonight. Remember the long downhill walk through the woods, stopping at the prayer hut and saying to Him, “You only did what You saw the Father doing. So what is He doing? What should I be doing with Him?”
And the uphill walk back, taking twice as long because you are still healing. Remember the sun setting over the hill…now the sky is tinged with lavender, a little rose, and gold near the tree tops. The cat licking itself after trying to walk across your laptop. The crickets’ overlapping choruses in the forest behind you. The faint creak of the porch swing you sit on.
Remember, Danae. Remember this season. Your life is changed forever because of it.