Hope you’ve all been good.
No, this isn’t click bait, its real. I wanted to share one of my favourite testimonies. One that till this day continues to baffle’s me, to the point where there is no way to explain what happened. It’s the one I always reference back to whenever my mind starts to doubt God and His existence. This is the story that reaffirms my faith, ensures that being a Christian is not for nothing and that no one, and I mean NO ONE, can tell me that God is not real.
So let me get into it.
Before I start, like every story, I have to set the scene for you.
It was 2016, I had just broken up with my boyfriend, I had just moved out of my parents house into my own flat, I had just started my second year in uni and I had started working in Manchester Arndale, where I was contracted only 8hrs a week, which obviously was not enough to pay bills. And I know what you’re thinking “But Farielle, didn’t you have your student loan?”. Yes, yes I did, but I used it to buy some of the furniture in my house, which resulted to me not having a lot of money and spending £11 a month on ready meals and whatever left on the other essentials.
So I was
broke, isolated and alone in a new environment, brokenhearted, down and out, tired because of the long travel to and from work and early lectures the following day
and on top of that
my relationship with God was unstable, as I was unable to go to church because all of my shifts were on Sunday’s, and I had no idea where to find him in the mist of that
but I stayed praying and stayed patient because I knew that God will come through some how, but I won’t lie it got harder and harder everyday. I felt like I was a robot just functioning in routine. Not going to church really upset me as well, because I knew that’s where I needed to be but too afraid to ask for a change of shifts.
Anyway, to the main story.
It was Wednesday 14th December, I remember because my work Christmas dinner was for the 13th and on the day this whole thing happened I was hopeful because I finished work at a good time where I could catch the last 40 minutes of bible studies, which we have every Wednesday.
I finished work at 6pm and I went to catch the bus number 8, that takes an hour to get to Bolton from Manchester, however that day it was only going to Pendlebury, which is about halfway between Manchester and Bolton so I waited for the next one but it was still the same thing. I thought instead of waiting again I would go and get the 163 which goes to Bury, another halfway destination but I knew how to get home from there, however, by the time I got to that bus stop the bus had left.
By this point I was getting frustrated because I’m in the town center with hella people, no buses to Bolton and I couldn’t even make bible studies anymore as it was now getting to 7:30pm.
I went to another bus stop where I knew the buses to Bury are a bit more frequent and normally take about 45 minutes to get there. I got on the 135 and got stuck in some next traffic! We were in the same spot for that same 45 minutes it normally takes to get to Bury. On the scale of 0-10 in terms of frustration, I would say about 8.5.
I finally got to Bury at 8:45 and guess what? I just missed my bus home! And the next one wasn’t for another hour!! Can you see my frustration? I’m someone who can actually keep patient in most situations and this one was really tricky, but like I normally do …
There’s another bus I can take from Bury that would take me into Bolton and I would have to just wait for my bus home from Bolton bus station, which was long but at least I will get home. But this also meant that when I got into Bolton, I would have just missed my bus again and wait another hour. I felt like being stuck in Bolton would be safer than being stuck in Bury as I know Bolton better and I had friends there in case I needed to crash somewhere.
Got into Bolton at 10:15pm, and decided that after all this stress I was going to treat myself with some KFC hot wings with the £5 I had for the week. I walked over to KFC, bought my 6 hot wings and ate 2 whilst I was walking back to the bus station. I felt a bit better after that, if I’m being honest. It didn’t make up for everything but I was grateful I was able to treat myself.
Anyway, after waiting for about 10 minutes my bus arrived, I hopped on and put my things on the chair next to me.
Now, remember how I said I had a work-do the night before? Well, I had a change of clothes in my work locker and I had to stuff that all into my bag so I had no space for anything else.
Back to the story. When I got off the bus, at 11:35pm, I started making my way home. As I walked home I started to think “hmm, what am I going to eat when I get in?” then I remembered about my KFC and for a split second I thought it was in my bag, until I remembered that my bag was full, then I realised that my hand was empty.
Do you see where I’m going with this?
Yes. I left my chicken on the bus. The one thing I was looking forward to, after not looking forward to anything except for the day I could go to church again, which thankfully was that Sunday.
I turned around to go and run after the bus, but it was definitely long gone. So I turned back and started to work home, but I was so overwhelmed with stress, frustration and disappointment that I had to take my earphones off and sit on the curb to cry.
I just looked up, I remember the sky being so clear and the moon was so bright that night, and I just said “why is this happening to me?”. Once I remembered where I was, I picked myself up, wiped my tears, held them in until my throat was killing me and started speed walking home saying to myself “Farielle, you’ve just moved here. Let’s not cry and get a name for ourselves, like the girl that cries home”.
I got into my flat, kicked my shoes off and plopped myself onto the edge on my bed and let everything out.
Like literally every tear, every bit of pain and anguish my heart was feeling those past few months.
I felt like I needed to speak to someone but unsure of who to call, especially so late. I remembered that there’s always someone who was listening and waiting for me to speak to them, but I was so mad at God but who else could I turn to?
So I looked up to the corner of my bedroom and said
“WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS ME?! Why are you letting me go through all of this? I’m being patient! I’m praying everyday for this heartbreak to go away! He’s moved on so why can’t I? I want to move on! I don’t want to keep thinking about him and being sad. I don’t want to be sad anymore. I want to be happy!! When will you let me be happy? You won’t even let me have chicken and be happy! This isn’t fair. You said you love me but where is the love right now? You know what? I’ve got work in the morning, I need to sleep and that’s all I have to say right now. I don’t want to speak anymore. Good night!
And I went to sleep.
The next day, after work I went to prayer meeting. When they opened it up for individual prayers, I said
“Guys, please pray for God to help me with my stress. I cried over chicken yesterday”
Of course everyone started laughing, “how can you cry over chicken?” and all I could do was laugh with them because I wasn’t about to share my problems with everyone.
Sunday comes and I was happy because I was going to church for the first time in two months, but I was still sad because I didn’t feel whole. However, I felt like I would probably get my answer in whatever sermon my pastor was going to preach.
Don’t ask me what it was about, I really don’t remember. After the sermon, there was an alter call and he played a song (don’t remember what the song was), he told us to listen intently to the words and sing along if we could. I remember having my hands raised as he started to pray for people from my right.
I felt so overwhelmed with feelings and I felt that lump in my throat again as I listened to words of the song. So, I just closed my eyes and said to God, “I know you want me to cry but I’m not going to”. I remember my pastor praying for one of the girls next to me and then come to me.
He placed his hand on my head and started to pray over me. He took a pause … then he started to pray in tongues. He then as he was about to move onto the next person but came back to me and said
“DO YOU NOT KNOW HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU?! You need to relinquish the past and surrender yourself to me!”
As soon as I heard those words, my eyes filled with tears, there was no “I’m not going to cry”, there was no “I’m hiding this part of me away from you, God”, it was immediate surrender.
First of all, I was like “woooaahhh! God is really telling me off like a child”, and then I thought, “oh man, God actually cares for me”, and the next thought was “wait, I didn’t tell anyone about the conversation I had with God that day in my room, how is this even happening right now?!”
This is why I say no one can tell me God is not real because that conversation is the most intimate and private conversation ever and I wasn’t trying to share it with no man! So the fact that my pastor straight up gave me that word, that’s when everything just clicked.
All this time I was praying for God to take away the pain I was going through, but he couldn’t do it unless I
LET GO of the past and SURRENDERED to him.
Yes, I was vulnerable in my home, but there was a vulnerability that God wanted.
Complete and ultimate surrender.
I couldn’t hide my tears, my real emotions and not just from God but from everyone. Pretending to everyone that I was fine, hiding that there have been times where I have cried home because of the hurt I was feeling, not being open about riding my bike, near where my parents live, late at night to find somewhere quiet to cry and pray to God, as I didn’t want to be vulnerable in front of my family.
Sometimes we think that God doesn’t want the ugly, we think he’ll be mad if we confess to him what we’ve done or how we really and truly feel.
Firstly, God sees everything, he already knows, but he just wants you to go to him. You hiding from him is not helping you.
Can anyone hide from me in a secret place? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth? says the LORD
– Jeremiah 23:24 (NLT)
If anything its a hindrance, because you are not being true to yourself, and you’re not in full surrender to God. How can he help you if you don’t tell him everything that’s going on?
Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help in no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to saving yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you? What could you ever trade your soul for?
– Mark 8:34-37 (MSG)
Secondly, God wants all of it. He wants the good, the bad, the ugly, and the despicable! He wants you to share everything. When you share everything with God, you will be surprised how free you feel.
But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness
– 1 John 1:9 (NLT)
So how do you start the healing process from whatever hurt or pain is tormenting you?
- Let Go – stop holding onto your past and the things that have happened.
- Let God– tell God EVERYTHING. What you’ve done, the wrong that has been done to you, how you’re feeling. He’s listening. Always.
- Stop Hiding – I was holding onto a memory that was no longer for me to hold on to, which stopped me from moving onto what God had planned for me.
- Remember that God’s love doesn’t change. It always stays the same. I really shouted at God and he came back with “do you not know how much I love you?!”. Meaning, after all that I have done, the mistakes I had made, He still loved me the same and was waiting for ME to surrender.
The greatest love a person can have for his friends is to give his life for them.
– John 15:13 (GNB)
I hope you have been able to find something encouraging in the testimony I just gave. I hope it’s helped in some way or you’ve been able to take something away.
Continue to be open with God, remember to let go and let God in all situations. And remember he’s always waiting and listening.
Complete and utter surrender.
Stay safe, stay blessed
That’s all she wrote …