I cried for days preparing my outline. It was so hard to rehash all of my past... I had been in a pretty rough and hopeless place in my addiction and bringing the reality of that back to light was very emotional for me. I think everyone in that room cried with me as I told my story that night. And no joke, as soon as I sat down there was a HUGE roll of thunder (and it had not been raining!) Everyone looked at me and I just smiled. It was as if God Himself was telling me He was proud of me. The silver lining in my arrest, time in rehab and jail was exactly that...HOPE. It was that journey that God revealed Himself to me through. At that time, I would have done anything to pass that trial by. I thought it was the worst thing that could have ever happened to me. I wanted my life to be different, but I was never going to get there on my own. I needed God and He knew it.
At the end of my testimony I shared a poem that a lady I worked with right before I went to rehab had given me. I didn't catch on then cause I was high all the time, but later I realized that she was a Christian. She gave me a couple of little prayers that I always held on to, even though I was far from a believer. They some how comforted me even though half of it made no sense to me then. I had this poem on my wall in rehab and then on my fridge since I got out of jail almost 9 years ago. It's still hanging there... I read it today and cried. It's so true... the things I used to think were important...mean nothing. I count it all as loss. (the way "loss" or "rubbish" is used in that Philippians verse is technically more like cow dung...or just plain dung. I added cow to be dramatic) :o) Here it is:
In a world where so much value is placed on what we own, where we work and what we do... Rachel, having none of those badges to offer, changed the world. (God uses the weak to shame the strong. - 1 Cor. 1:27) I can only hope that in my entire life I can accomplish even a portion of what Rachel has for my awesome God's kingdom. I pray that the things I look at as accomplishments are measured to God's standards and not the worlds and that I never forget that HE knows the desires of my heart and how to provide for them. That doesn't always look the way I think or plan and I am far from knowing what is best for me. Sometimes what is best for me really hurts.