I remember where I was sitting the night my divorce was final with my two-month-old baby boy. I felt utterly heartbroken, abandoned with a newborn, and like a total failure that our marriage ended in divorce. I was exhausted and dejected from years of fighting for a marriage that was sinking and a pregnancy that was a surprise. My world had absolutely crumbled around me. The bright spot in all of it was my beautiful baby boy, but the darkness was sometimes suffocating during this season of my life.
These were dark days and the valley of my life: all the hormones and the incredible loneliness met with the sobering reality that my marriage had failed. Moments of overwhelming joy and happiness with my son were followed by the pang of the most intense grief and loss. Yet even in this rock bottom, I felt God’s incredible presence surround me and that bolstered my faith to persevere.
I’d always wanted to be a mother, but the way my life was unfolding was drastically different than what I had envisioned.
This began the most accelerated time of my faith. I had been a believer since I was 4 or 5 – accepting Jesus in my heart in Sunday School over apple juice and vanilla wafers, listening to Bible stories. I was devoted to my faith, or at least I would have told you that at the time, but my faith had never been tested like it was during this time. Up until my marriage imploded, my life had been pretty idyllic, altogether normal, and almost like a fairytale. (And I don’t say that lightly at all, I know I’m the exception and not the rule because I have an incredible family and upbringing. Shoutout to Lala and Papaw!)
Through the fiery furnace of this season, my faith was tested and refined. Jesus absolutely wrapped his arms around me and comforted me: reminding me every step of the way that He is a God of hope and REDEMPTION. I knew somehow, some way God would provide for us.
My faith caught fire. It was no longer just nice stories from Sunday School, but I had an insatiable desire to worship, to foster God’s presence and felt His incredible peace during a time that should have been tumultuous. God demonstrated His unbelievable faithfulness to me. Every direction I turned He would show off and provide answers to prayers, friends to encourage me, and his unwavering peace.
Having grown up in the Church I knew all about God and Jesus, but who exactly was the Holy Spirit? The most nebulous and mysterious of the Trinity. I finally got to know Him in a personal, real way. The wild, transformational Holy Spirit met me and touched me. I went to Church and saw people being healed before my eyes, missionaries from China and Africa would come and share testimonies about God’s power, unlike anything I’d ever heard. God met me with prophetic words from complete strangers that touched my heart and were the exact things I needed to hear and to be reminded of. These were nuggets of gold — reminders of God’s word, His promises, and His loving heart towards me — during a very dark time.
God is a jealous God. He wants us to worship and adore him above all else. I realized I had made an idol of my marriage and my Wasband (a term I cheekily call my ex-husband that I heard from Kristen Armstrong, Lance Armstrong’s ex-wife) and God wanted to make sure that He was on the throne of my heart and my true first love. I had put the idea of a perfect marriage and my husband up on a pedestal and made idols out of them.
I knew that God could REDEEM any situation. It just looked way different than I thought it would.
I love stories in the Bible that have heartbreaking circumstances (which story have you clung to in this season?) and then the little phrase “But God” pops up and the whole story does an about-face. God enters in. He miraculously changes things in an instant.
“You meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to . . . save many people alive” (Gen. 50:20). This is what Joseph said to his brothers who had sold him into slavery, but God had other plans that included Joseph REDEEMING the Israelites during a national famine.
“For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:7-8).
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard . . . the things which God has prepared for those who love Him. But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit” (1 Cor. 2:9-10).
But God Had a Different Plan for My Life
Plans that included navigating dating again in an age of Tinder, all while I had a baby. But God brought Justin into my life thanks to a brilliant setup by a dear friend, and life has never been the same since. Our dating story is a testament to God lavishing His love for both of us. We both have walked down hard roads, but it’s part of His faithfulness to bring us together. We knew almost immediately when we started dating that God brought us together for a big purpose and so we quickly got married.
I am experiencing a marriage with God as the sure foundation has rocked my world. I feel more loved and cherished than I have ever known, and am truly thankful for all the struggle that led me to this place.
“I will also sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean. I will cleanse you from all your impurities and all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will remove your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. I will place my Spirit within you and cause you to follow my statutes and carefully observe my ordinances. You will live in the land that I gave your fathers; you will be my people, and I will be your God. I will save you from all your uncleanness. I will summon the grain and make it plentiful, and I will not bring famine on you.” Ezekiel 36:25-29 CSB
I had a heart of stone, but thanks to the Holy Spirit, God gave me a heart of flesh.
Now, this isn’t to say that there isn’t still really hard stuff, of course, there is. We are still on a
And it isn’t to say that if you’re a single mom that God will send you a husband and everything will be better, but what I do know is whatever your circumstances are, God wants to REDEEM them for you.
The true Redemption hasn’t been getting remarried, although that has been wonderful. It’s been experiencing God in all of His wild, magnificent ways. Getting to know Father God as my Abba Father that lavishes His love over me. Getting to know the Holy Spirit for the first time and experience the possibilities of living a supernatural life in step with Him. Partnering with God as He restores my SOUL, as he binds up my deep wounds and I become whole again has been incredible.
“But he was pierced because of our rebellion,
crushed because of our iniquities;
punishment for our peace was on him,
and we are healed by his wounds.” Isaiah 53:3 CSB
My heart to share my story is to shed light on the supernatural moments of God’s power in our everyday lives. I pray that my testimonies would be a beacon of light to you that if God can do these things for me, He absolutely can do them for you too.
So if you don’t know me, I’m Kristen and I’m a wife, a work from home mama to 3 young kiddos ages 6, 3 and 2. I’m a digital marketer, a native Nashvillian, a writer, an extremely loud laugher, and a cheerleader of living life authentically. I grew up going to church literally two or three times a week, and while I thought I knew what life with Jesus meant, I had no idea.
While this is just a fraction of my story, I will be sharing more here on the blog about how God is continuing to redeem so many areas of my life including postpartum depression, co-parenting, setting boundaries, finding my voice, divorce, insecurity, motherhood, marriage, friendship, anxiety, and much more.