I’m going through a divorce and emotionally, it’s tearing me apart because I still love my husband.
At the same time, I’ve also been struggling with my faith. Reconciling my faith with my decision to divorce has been excruciating.
My grandmother used to always tell me that if I don’t listen to God, I will live my life running in circles. Maybe marriage wasn’t the best decision I’ve ever made and as of late, I feel like I’ve paid for my disobedience. I feel like a hamster spinning it’s wheel- I ain’t going no where despite all the moving I do.
Long story short, I got up one day with a scripture on my mind, “No weapon formed against me shall prosper”. It sounded cool. I figured I would share it on Facebook and be done, like I do with most other quotes. To be honest, I wasn’t sure if it was really scripture. I remember thinking “The path to hell is paved with good intentions” was scripture but low and behold it wasn’t. I figured this was kind of like that.
I opened the Facebook App. Shared it. Perfect. Done.
I scrolled down my timeline, other people posted similar iterations of the same scripture. Awesome, great minds think alike. And would you look at God. This was a real scripture from the book of Isaiah. Good to know.
I remember this day so clearly. I dropped the kids off at school and laid down. I really wanted to sleep but this strong, powerful voice spoke to me in my head and said “Today, you will get up, run and clear your mind. Then you will go to the movies and watch “Unforgettable”.”
One, I didn’t feel like running that day. My legs hurt from the day before from running and it was hot as Hades in Atlanta and I didn’t want to pass out.
Two, I never went to the movies, especially alone. I have an Amazon Firestick.
In that moment, I sat in my bed, confused and depressed. I was confused because this voice was overwhelming and I was depressed because it was setting in that I was not only going through a divorce, but I was also unemployed and at the second lowest point in my life. My only solace was that it wasn’t the lowest point but between my bank account and my ego, it was hard to tell.
As I was laying in my bed, “the voice” returned and said “Run”. I am fighting with myself because at 9:30 AM, all I wanted to do was pour myself some OJ and wine, like I did every morning since my husband moved out, or I put him out. Different story for a different day. The harder I fought it, the louder “the voice” became until I couldn’t take it anymore.
So, I got up and ran. I felt amazing. I ran longer and harder than the day before and my breathing was on point. I even remembered to bring my coconut water with me to hydrate after. I went home, showered and laid down.
“The voice” reappeared and reminded me about the movie. At this moment, I felt crazy because I knew I heard a voice and I felt compelled to listen. It wasn’t like the voice was telling me to do something bad. I didn’t understand why it told me to go for a run. Why the movies? I found myself laying down, frustrated, and ignoring the voice. All of a sudden, I heard so clearly “Go to the movies”.
I was afraid to be disobedient so I went to the movies. I was glad I went to the movies because it was a good movie and I could relate to it. I needed a moment to myself outside the house without my kids so I figured my subconscience was telling me to do something for myself. I remember the movie coming to an end and I was happy because my body felt like it was going through withdrawals. I wanted to go home, pour me some wine with a Ciroc chaser, get in my bed and sulk about losing my job and my husband during the same week.
Then something happened. A scene at the very end of the movie brought me back to a place I didn’t want to be. In the movie, one woman is pointing a knife at the other. *Spoiler alert* The antagonist is the one that dies. I don’t know why but at that moment, I think about the time my son’s father pointed my 38 special (gun) at my head and threatened to kill me, our son then himself, in that order. I remember that night. I heard him talking, screaming, but I heard nothing.
All I could think about was the fact that I was about to die without having a college degree or fulfilling my purpose and promise to minister. Literally, at a moment that I was about to leave this Earth, I’m battling with God bc I felt like a failure.
I felt like I let God, my daddy, my son and Mr. Levin down.
As the gun was pointed to my head, I remember my son’s father all of a sudden dropped to his knees. In the moment, he asked God for forgiveness and apologized to me. I don’t remember all that he said, just bits and pieces. I couldn’t focus on him or the gun. I blacked out. I was there but I blacked out. God covered me. Or maybe I was scared out my mind. Or both.
Long story short, the story ends with his suicide and my rebirth of sorts.
So where am I now? Yes, I have my degrees now. No, I never answered my call to minister and I feel like God is having his way with me because I made a promise to Him to answer my call to minister. To date, I purposely continue to ignore it.
After the movies, I drove home and this Morgan Freeman voice returns to my head and told me to “go to THAT church”. I am in my car mad because I didn’t want to run, but I did. I didn’t want to go to the movies, but I did. I just wanted to go home, pour wine and sulk in all my unemployed depressed glory. As I am battling myself, the voice returns, demanding that I go to “that” church; I decided to ignore “the voice” but my mind was going home yet my feet were on the pedal following “the voice”. I was angry and crying because I felt like I was losing it.
Before I knew it, I was driving by the church and I noticed that the front lot was empty and I was like “yaaaaaaas, I get to go home”. I was about to stop at the stop sign and buss the meanest 3 point turn ever back home. As I get to the stop sign, the voice says “Pastor is waiting for you. Park in back”.
Now at this moment, I felt like I was crazy. I felt like I belonged in a padded room with white walls and an hourly rotation of meds to make this voice go away. I wanted to turn around badly and go home but “the voice” wouldn’t let me be great. I got to the stop sign, sighed and went to the back of the church and parked.
“What did I just walk into?” I thought.
Then all of a sudden, “the voice” returned and said “no weapon formed against you shall prosper.” I really didn’t want to go into the church so I Googled the verse since I’ve never truly read it. It was two lines long, so much for stalling.
I didn’t want to go inside the church.
At that moment, I saw someone get out of his car and I wondered if the middle aged white guy that got out of the car was the pastor. “There is no way God would send me here”, I thought. “I grew up in a Black church. I must be losing it.”
All of a sudden, “the voice” reappeared and demanded that I get out my car. It was like I couldn’t control my body. My feet felt like bricks walking out of the car because I could feel the tension between what I wanted to do and what I was ordered to do. My eyes were filled with tears and my heart was so heavy and afraid. I didn’t know why this voice ordered my steps to this specific church and why I was there on this specific day.
So I went into the church and Pastor is no where to be seen. Neither me nor the cleaning guy could find him. Part of me was happy because this meant that I could go home.
The cleaning guy searched all over for Pastor then all of a sudden, Pastor appeared out of no where.
At this point I was crying, shaking, and scared. I tried to speak but there were no words that would come out my mouth. I wanted “the voice” to tell me what to say but it went away and in its place was pastor’s.
“What brought you here today” he asked. I opened my mouth but no words came out. Tears fell from my face like water flowing from a well.
He invited me into the sanctuary and calmed me down.
“I have something to tell you but I don’t want you to think I am crazy.” I said, defeated.
“I won’t. Promise.” he said.
I believed him.
I told him about the voice and how it ordered my steps on this day to this church. I broke down and told him I couldn’t ignore my calling anymore. I explained how imperfect I was and how I never wanted to minister because I didn’t want to be judged.
At this point I have never felt so vulnerable. I felt broken, lost and crazy.
“I just want to be a HR Manager” I said. “I want to write succession plans, recruit, resolve some employee relations issues and do the things I was qualified for but God is having his way with me, showing me who is really in charge and that I have more purpose than I am living.”
So there I was, in a church talking to a complete stranger hoping he didn’t think I was nuts. At this point, all I wanted was a hug. And some wine.
I bared my soul and didn’t know what to expect.
His response? “God showed me that you would be coming. Thanks for listening”.
Then he proved it to me.
It was this day I learned to trust what I can’t see.
It’s also the first day I started writing again, and I haven’t stopped since.