Did you know that some say about every 7-10 years your body totally regenerates itself? Almost all of your cells literally die and fall away from every part of your body, your organs, skin, blood, bone. Your self as you know it now, in seven to ten years time, will be a body completely new. Regenerated.

On January 2nd 2019 I celebrate 8 years living in recovery. So much has changed for me in the past 8 years. I could list countless things I have done or accomplished, the many hairstyles and hair colors I’ve had (my bff always laughs about my “Cher” phase), but I think what’s important now is not what I’ve done or what I’ve appeared to be on the surface; its who I’ve become. And how I’ve gotten there.

In Isaiah, God speaks lovingly to his people:

See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland (Isaiah 43:19).

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{Note: did you know that Isaiah is the most quoted prophet in the New Testament and one scholar I’ve happened upon notes that Isaiah preaches both doom and deliverance. Doom and Deliverance: I like that. Sounds a bit like recovery, doesn’t it?}

I remember being a very sad, self-conscious, and scared teenager. I felt like I didn’t belong; like everyone knew what they were doing but I never had the patience to read the instruction manual. I did not prescribe to any religion or spirituality – did not have a spiritual solution – I floundered and questioned.

I recall one night when I stood at the top of my parents drive way and begged and pleaded for “whatever is out there” to take me home. Beam me up. I just stood there by the trash can and mail box and looked up at the ink-colored and star-scattered sky.

Take me home.

Well I had no such luck and continued on. I became very rebellious. That girl next door was no longer an athlete, star student, or the girl next door. She lied, was depressed, and couldn’t stop using drugs and alcohol. My solution at that time was escape. And I worked very hard at becoming a master escape artist.

Fast forward… (let’s not get stuck in the mud). My redemption story is not tied to the girl I was. She no longer exists. See!!! God has made all things new. See!!! He does a new thing…8 years!

In my recovery, my life now is lovely. I have an amazing husband, have had wonderful jobs, and now have the best title of them all – twin mom! Today, I can be present for the people I love and who love me, I can be present even for the people who are hard to love.

Now, when I look up at the night sky all I can do is offer up a prayer of thanks to the God I have come to know, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Friends, celebrate with me. Let us “forget the former things and not dwell on the past,” as Isaiah also said. Just for today, let’s live in the newness. The old has gone.

There is a way through the wilderness.

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