Today is a day of celebration for me. Today I celebrated the end of a year and a half journey with a counselor who has become my dear friend. Have I ever mentioned to you that I've been in counseling? Probably not. When I first started I was so insecure and intimidated that I wanted it to be a secret. Now it seems to come up as a natural part of conversation with anyone I talk to. After my meeting, I got in my car to go home and the song that just happened to be playing at the time said the words "you're worth all of me, your worth all my fallen tears and your gonna have all of me". I couldn't have said it better myself. As I drove away from that meeting the only word I could think of to describe the way my heart felt was...found.

When I first walked into that office I was afraid, uncertain and probably a little dazed. I had, after all, made a habit of "surviving" and "moving on" in life. This was all new to me. My heart had become cold, and even a little hard from these habits that I formed to help me "make it". Today, as I write, I am cold on the outside (my blood must be thinning out from living in the desert:) but not on the inside. There is a warmth and a softening that God has brought to my heart through this journey and let me just tell you, I have found peace. This peace is not superficial, it is not circumstantial. I have peace deep, deep, down in my soul and it comes from letting Jesus find my heart again. Does that sound strange to you? How can someone know Jesus and yet be lost? Well, I am proof that you can love Jesus, live for him, and still have a heart that is lost in brokenness.

The thing about Jesus is he doesn't do a half way job. He really is not just interested in saving you and me from death. He wants to not just rescue but restore. This love of his is so selfless that he isn't content to just "save me". He wants to restore my heart and make it whole. That is what I mean when I say I've been found. I have not just found life forever, but I have found freedom forever. So many hearts are wandering this planet broken and bruised. Restoration is the message Jesus came to preach. He wants to restore faith, restore hope, restore joy. He wants to save us from a life of hate, a life of grief, a life of bondage. I could go on and on about the restoration I have had. What matters though, is that I tell you that this restoration is available for every single soul.

This Christmas season is about an invitation. An invitation came to us as a tiny baby, wrapped in shredded cloth, laying in a hay filled manger. An invitation for salvation. An invitation for redemption. An invitation for restoration. Do you need hope? Let me shout from the mountaintop that Jesus is hope! Jesus is the healer, the giver of life, the friend that never fails. He is inviting us to come and feast at his table and see just what he has to offer. I have come to his table and I have not been left hungry. My soul has found satisfaction in all that he is.

While I know there are still lessons to be learned, and there will be moments when I stumble and fall, I see things differently now. Today I am walking hand in hand with my God and I trust him to guide my steps. I trust him to heal the hurts that I will inevitably face. I trust him to stretch my faith so that my heart will look more like his. I trust him to continue to restore my heart. Maybe this Christmas you need healing in your heart. If so, I pray you will bravely take the steps that open the door for God to do miracles in your life. He paid a high price to bring you and me life more abundant. His healing power is what I celebrate this Christmas. Healing power that is strong enough to heal the deepest wounds of the human heart. Healing power that sought me out even when I didn't know I needed it. I celebrate a God that is relentless in his passion for me and his desire to restore my heart. He is a God of restoration. A God of second chances. May he be glorified in all that I say and all that I do for it is through him that I have found a life worth living.


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