We all know that a New Year’s Resolution doesn’t necessary mean lasting change. For Abbey, a New Year’s Resolution is exactly what she needed to find everlasting change, a life secure in the hand and family of Jesus. This is her story:
“Opening my heart up to Jesus literally saved me from the dark path my life was on . . .”
I was 21 when I began losing hope in myself and everything around me. I was dealing with depression and an anxiety disorder, in a negative relationship with a guy, had lost my job and was just kicked out of my mom’s house after she found out about some of my irresponsible choices and crazy erratic behavior. Instead of dealing with all of that, I did what I did best – tried to run away from everything. I packed up and moved to Florida, knowing that was the last place I could go and the last chance I had to “start over” with my life, or what was left of it.
Honestly, I did not see myself getting very far in life. While my friends were graduating college and getting their dream jobs, I had dropped out after my first year (and multiple attempts to go back) and could not see anything past the next 3 years. I had no aspirations or goals for myself. I thought “I will just be repeating this cycle over and over until one day I just poof away”. I didn’t really want to end my life, but I didn’t want to deal with the emotional burdens anymore.
Over the next 3 years – that’s exactly what happened. Things just got worse. New faces, new climate, same problems. It felt like it would never end, even after I moved out on my own. Even though I had removed myself from my “social circle” (even though it was really just a social triangle), being alone meant I had WAY more time to beat myself up – and I could do it freely. I binged on food, barely left my house and would only communicate with an average of 3 humans per month, which were my dad, my increasingly nosy neighbor and my best friend. I was just a shadow of myself, just going through the motions of life waiting for something to happen, and I didn’t much care what it was.
New Year’s Resolutions
Then, the day came. Monday, January 5th 2015 – my 25th birthday. It was the first Monday of the New Year and I was sitting at home by myself while everyone else went back to work after the holidays. I was just sitting on my couch, blank stare on my face and frozen in every aspect of the word. I was at a complete loss – what happens now? I never thought I would make it this far. I’ve been on this planet for a quarter of a century and I’ve done nothing with my life. I wrote out 3 New Year’s Resolutions (even though it was technically the new year already) which were:
- Find Inner Peace
- Love yourself
- Pay off the credit card.
Pretty hefty resolutions! In order to cross off the first and second resolutions (paying off the credit card was easy!), I decided it was time to finally see a therapist for my anxiety and depression.
I was seeing her for 3 months when I told her something was still missing. I was still struggling in many areas and felt like I couldn’t go any farther. She went out on a branch and asked me if I was religious. Now truly, I was absolutely terrified of the whole “faith and religion” world. I can remember every single time we’ve ever been to church since I was about 5, and none of those times did I go willingly. I always felt out of place because I wasn’t raised with any real faith base. Multiple people had tried to introduce me to Jesus, but I wouldn’t really take it to heart. Truth was, I wasn’t in a place where I was ready to receive Him into my life.
In Christ’s loving pursuit of His children, sometimes all we need to do to find Him is look.
I became so frustrated with my lack of progress and the emptiness I was still feeling then that I gave myself to Him in a fit of tears. Immediately after doing so, it was like a lightbulb went on. A feeling came over me that I’ve never felt before – a feeling of freedom! I had cried every day for about a week when I would speak to Him, and after every prayer, I would have the same feeling of freedom. I would think “Wow, this is amazing, but what’s the catch? This cannot be a long term thing. Where is the hidden crack I will step in or the rabbit hole I will fall into?” I always had “artificial highs”, which were occasional high peaks with deep expansive valleys. This new “Godly High” was filled with many high peaks with occasional valleys, but nowhere near as deep as before.
Over the next few weeks, I began opening myself up to Him more and more, and I could feel the weight being lifted off my heart. He has brought multiple blessings my way this year, and even though I still have a long road ahead in my journey, I know that I will never again be alone. I absolutely have a refreshed perspective on everything in life, and I share nothing in common with the person I was a year ago. Just about everything in my life is different, I love every second of my life, and I wouldn’t have been able to get to this point without Him. Opening my heart up to Jesus literally saved me from the dark path my life was on and I will forever walk alongside Him.
For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us.
1 Thessalonians 5:9 (HCSB)
Are you interested in learning more about Jesus? You are so loved, and just like Abbey, there is a plan for your life – for good, not harm (Jeremiah 29:11). God loves you, and wants you to accept His son, Jesus into your life to change you, and save you forever.
Because the truth is, as much as I love fitness (most of the time 🙂 ) and healthy recipes, diet and exercise will never be enough. We need Jesus!