I wasn’t ready for marriage

I love mattwalshblog.com. I love everything he has to say and the way he says it. There are a ton of great posts that I could link to but this one in particular is very relevant.

I wasn’t ready to get married either. I didn’t have a full-time job. I hadn’t graduated yet. I didn’t even have my driver’s license. I was only 20 years old. I had been encouraged by many people to not be in a hurry to get married. I was told to wait. That I had plenty of time and that I should explore the world first. You know, LIVE. Live first and then get married because after you are married you can’t live anymore.

They didn’t say those exact words but they might as well have.

By most peoples standards I wasn’t “ready” to get married and start a family because I hadn’t finished college, hadn’t dated enough guys, hadn’t had a career, or any of the other things that make someone an “adult” and “ready” for marriage.

But as Matt so wonderfully points out, you can never be ready; and the only way to be “ready” is to be at a level of maturity where you can walk, jump, or hurl yourself into marriage and learn along the way.

I have learned A LOT about myself, about life, and about God through being married. I have matured. I’m not the same person I was when I first got married. And that’s a good thing. Why would I want to put that off? Why would I want to put off maturing and growing with another person who, no matter what, loves me and is committed to me? I would much rather journey through this messy life with my husband than to do it alone.

I was mature enough at the time I met Kyle to say “yes, I am committed to you. I will be faithful to you. I will honor our vows” before knowing what the future held. And now that we’re three and a half years in, now that I know all of his annoying habits, now that we’ve had some pretty nasty fights, and we’ve been through some really hard stuff, I am even more committed to him and the covenant we made.

Don’t wait until you are “ready.” It will never happen. Once you love someone with a love that comes from God, jump right in with both feet. It’ll be a beautiful, though sometimes messy, journey where you’ll learn what marriage and love is really all about.

I wasn’t ready for marriage.

via I wasn’t ready for marriage.

Letting Go Part 1

I felt that I needed to do a video blog for this post. Sometimes you just need to talk it out. There are some tears so bear with me but I hope this blesses and encourages you in some way.

This video and the following videos are in no way formal or professional. I did it on my phone in my car so the quality isn’t awesome. And make sure your volume is turned up since the audio isn’t great either.

I pray that we learn to let go and trust the Lord more fully; seeking Him to be our salvation and hope.

Beyond the Costume

photo-2Back in November my favorite author, Ted Dekker, came to a church in Dallas to share his testimony and do a book signing. Having never seen him in person I was eager to go and hear him speak.

Some time after I received an email from Ted’s manager asking for the attendees to share how Ted’s talk had impacted us. I replied with a short version of my story. I came across that email today and it inspired me to write this post. Here is what I wrote:

Ted,
My name is Sarah Kerby and I am 24 years old. I am known as one of your diehard fans having read almost all of your books. I truly enjoyed seeing you in Dallas and having the opportunity to hear your heart and get a glimpse of who you are and why you write what you do.

What you had to say was very relevant to what I have gone through this year.
I am married and I have an 18 month old son. My husband and I desire to have more children and in January we found out I was pregnant. I lost that baby a few weeks later. In May I was pregnant again! But, just like last time, I lost the baby a few weeks later. It was utterly devastating. Tests have been done but there is nothing physically wrong with me that would lend reason and answers to why I had two consecutive miscarriages after having a healthy child. It’s a mystery, as so many things are.
In between my two miscarriages the Lord was working on my heart in an extreme way. I finally sought Christian counseling for the anger and depression issues that I had had for so long. It was a humbling and cleansing experience.
All that to say that the Lord has shown me an immense amount of grace. He has taken me beyond this “costume” that experiences heartbreak, pain, sin, and wondering and has shown me an unexplainable peace that penetrates my soul. There is more beyond this life that we live day to day. We forget who we are, always, but then God sends a reminder. He has done that a lot this year and He did that through you and what you shared.
I thank the Lord that He has chosen to speak through you and that He has given you such an amazing gift. Thank you for sharing it with all of us.
Faithful reader,
Sarah

Since that email I have lost a third pregnancy. And now I’m at a point in my life where the future of my family isn’t so clear. After three consecutive miscarriages I feel like we’re at a crossroads. What do we do now? Do we stop getting pregnant or keep trying to have a healthy pregnancy? What is the Lord’s will in this?

My doctor is going to be running more tests and we’re going to be praying about what the Lord wants us to do next but right now, in the unknown, I am at peace. I’m at peace because there is more to life beyond this costume. I’m just here playing a part that God created. This body that makes up Sarah Kerby is just my costume. The roles that I play, the experiences that I live, and the choices I make are just one small part in the greater drama that is the Gospel, that is God’s divine plan.

It’s not that my struggles don’t matter. They do matter. They are real. But there is more to life than this alone. There is more to life than fulfilling the dreams of Sarah Kerby. There is more to life than doing what makes Sarah Kerby happy.

I have this soul that is in dwelt by God Himself. And it is my soul that says, amidst the feelings of my costume,  that “it is well.”

My costume says, “God must not love me since he’s taken three babies away from me.” But my soul says, “I don’t deserve God’s love and yet He extended His grace and gave me a son.”

Beyond the costume. That is where I look when all seems lost and things don’t make sense. The costume confines but the soul is free. The soul knows that this body and this life is just a costume and that I am meant for much more than this.

My costume has always desired to have many children. I dreamed of having a big family. But my soul knows that the Lord is sovereign over that dream. I can let go of that dream because my soul is content with God’s purpose for my costume and ultimately, my soul itself. I may yet see that dream, maybe not biologically or maybe not at all, but I am at peace. I am not my costume. I am my soul. And my soul belongs to God. In belonging to God, I have nothing to fear. Not death, not unhappiness, not suffering, not future unknowns. I can rest here, now, in all of this, because I know Jesus and Jesus has set me free. I am not bound to this world. I am not bound to this costume. I am bound to Christ, to His unfailing love, and to His grace which carries me through life until He calls my soul home.

The following song written by Horatio Spafford is, for me, the perfect way to end. I cry every time I sing this song as I’m sure Mr. Spafford did as well. He wrote this song during his own personal tragedy and it wonderfully expresses the anguish of pain and loss of our costumes as well as the deep spiritual strength, gratitude, and humility of the rescued soul.

When peace like a river attendeth my way
When sorrows like sea billows roll
What ever my lot you have taught me to say
It is well, it is well with my soul

Though the devil will ruin, though trials may come
Let this blessed assurance control
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate
And He shed His own blood for my soul

It is well, with my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul

My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought
My sin not in part but the whole
Is nailed to the cross and I bear it no more
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, oh my soul

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord haste the day when my faith shall be sight
And the clouds be rolled back as a scroll
The trump shall resound and the Lord shall descend
Even so, it is well with my soul

It is well with my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul