“The One who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’” Rev 21:5
If there is one promise that I cling to, and one truth that has shaped the path of my life, it is this.
I moved to NYC when I was 21 years old. I knew not a single soul, and after a tumultuous season battling an eating disorder in high school and much of college, I needed a fresh start. A clean slate. I was newly on the road of recovery, and I was searching for purpose. My life had been turned on its head, and all I wanted was to find meaning in my existence again. I wanted to rediscover the girl I used to be.
I thought that moving across the country and going to acting school would solve my existential crisis.
That’s what we’re told, right? That starting over means you can ditch the past, redefine who you are, and craft your future to become who you want to be.
But it turns out, you are who you are, no matter which area code you’re in. And your past follows you wherever you go.
My search for purpose proved to be deeply disappointing.
Until, I invited God to take complete control of my life. I had to submit to His will, His timing, and actually give my heart to Him.
I had to surrender the broken, ugly, messy parts of my heart that I had made such an effort to conceal from the world, and especially from God.
I believed that those broken parts of my heart disqualified me from love, from forgiveness, from grace.
I carried so much guilt and shame from the eating disorder in my past, and it was a cancer on my soul — eating away at who I believed I was.
It took a patient, loving Father to gently come in, take those fragile, hurting parts of my spirit, and redeem them with His love and His blood.
Behold, I make all things new. I clung to that promise. That was my hope. Because if He could do that with Paul, with Lazarus, with the leapers, the blind man, the paralyzed, the woman at the well, with Mary Magdalene, the prodigal son….then just maybe He could do that with me, too.
Just maybe, He could take my life, and redeem it to be used for His glory. My deepest prayer was to be used as His instrument: for Him to take my broken past, and use it to help others also battling eating disorders.
The old has passed away. I am free.
He has made me new, and I can stand here, a healed, whole, young woman — who finally rediscovered the “Caralyn-I-used-to-be.” She wasn’t in New York, or at an acting studio on the east side of Manhattan. She was in the arms of our Savior.
I didn’t have to run away. I only needed to run to Jesus, who takes every broken piece of our hearts, every shame, every hurt, every anger — and washes us clean with His amazing Grace.
Lord, to You I surrender my heart, my fears, my brokenness. I give You my all: take it, and make it new, just as You have promised.
This week, may we find the courage to open up that hidden space in our heart — the one we’re afraid to confront — and invite Jesus in to heal and redeem it…because He will.
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“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
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