He Has A Plan for You
September is National Suicide Awareness Month but more specifically today is Suicide Prevention day. As I sit and remember loved ones I have lost to suicide, I'm reminded just how fragile life was for me three years ago.
Depression, anxiety and panic attacks was something I dealt with all of my childhood and into adulthood. After I had my son, Aaron, I was diagnosed with Postpartum Depression and Postpartum Anxiety. It was hard for me to accept that diagnosis, as I had worked so hard to get off medication with my therapist prior to getting pregnant. The thought of having to stop breastfeeding and take medication tore me to pieces. It was not long after, that my then husband called it quits.
Life was fragile.
I was fragile.
I took so much pride in being able to breastfeed Aaron. It's all I thought about throughout my pregnancy. I researched and made sure I was well-informed and very well-connected to a support system. It was all I wanted to accomplish and I was so proud that I was able to do so. It was no easy task for me as we encountered many bumps along the road. I say all this to say that just one month shy of my breastfeeding goal I began to ween Aaron off the breast. I was so grieved by the loss of my marriage that I decided it would be best if I took my life. Before I would do so I thought to ween Aaron so that my absence wouldn't be so hard on him.
As the days and weeks went on God began to use people around me to speak life into me. I had my plans but God had his! I was surrounded by spiritually strong people who to this day have no idea the thoughts I had on the inside. It was by the grace of God and their obedience that I am here today.
"He has a plan for you, Erika. It's not over for you, Read Psalm 139:13-16." This was the message and the verse that changed so much for me. In that moment of desperation and intense pain I was given a glimpse of hope. A hope for a bright and joyous future.
Psalm 139:13-16 reads like this "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
I had to trust God's plan for my life. In that moment I was suddenly curious to see what all he had written for me. It was like I was given a glimpse of what his sovereignty looked like. I had the choice to walk in his will for my life or forfeit all he had planned for me. When I look back at where I was three years ago I‘m moved with tears. Tears because I see a girl who was completely broken, alone and grieved with immense pain. I also shed tears of gratitude because I look at where I am today and the Joy that fills every fiber of my being. Happy tears because I've gained more than I thought I lost. I thank God everyday for the life I get to live, for his grace and for turning my pain to purpose.
I know that some are not as fortunate as I was and If you are in the same place I was three years ago, I want to leave you with this:
Psalm 34:18 " The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit."
You are not alone. I know it feels like it but I want to encourage you to meditate on the verse that practically saved my life. He has a plan for your life, it's written. The Lord is near, dear friend. He loves you too deeply to leave you or forsake you.
God. Loves. You.
His plans for us are bigger than we can ever imagine.
If you are in need of immediate help, dial 911, or a call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255