You were made to sparkle // sarah mae //

Every time I see my friend Karen, I cry. (She also makes my husband cry.)

There is something about entering into the vulnerable places of your heart with another person that just breaks and releases you. Karen is the woman I talk to when God brings issues up in my life that need to be dealt with. I sit on her couch and I talk and we pray and we ask the Lord what it is I need to know or see or deal with.

Even though I go in willing, once I’m there I think I’m fine, until it’s clear I’m not fine, and then I cry.

I cry because the Lord reveals something in me that needs healing, and it hurts to uncover wounds, but it feels so good to acknowledge them so they can be healed.

And it’s because of this healing that I keep opening myself to this process. You see, I’ve decided that I want a healthy relationship with myself.

I believe the world is desperate for healthy people — people who are willing to have the dark places turned into light.

And isn’t it just lovely how God takes those dark places in our lives and offers to turn them into light?

We all have a story that’s unfolding through our lives that won’t be complete until heaven, but it all has purpose if we are willing to go through the dark to get to the light.

We can choose whether we stay in our dark places — to be resentful and bitter and scared so that we don’t grow and let light in — or not.

The Lord is tender and kind, and He will lead us toward freedom throughout our whole lives. We have the opportunity to accept or reject His guidance. We can hide and act like we’re okay, or we can get real vulnerable and walk through the fire in order to come out shining just a little bit brighter.

Let’s say you are broken over something, and you cry out to God about it, and then the next day everything seems fine and you think, Oh, it’s really not a big deal. Have you ever done that? That’s the moment to make a move to deal with it and say, “Okay, God, I’m ready and willing.” If you don’t, I can assure you that “thing” will come up later. God always seems to bring things back until we deal with them.

When I first wrote my abortion story on my blog, I didn’t want to do it.

It was painful and vulnerable, and I cried the whole time I was writing. But I believed with my whole heart that God wanted me to do it; it was the last piece in my healing journey.

I hit publish and cried some more.

The reason I cried wasn’t because I hadn’t dealt with it. I cried because I was putting a very private thing out there for the whole world to see and judge. But you know what happened? Thousands of people viewed it, and so many women thanked me because it helped them know they weren’t alone. And it helped them to seek healing and to understand that God is so loving and there is always hope, that He wants us to come to Him for comfort.

He took a dark part of my story and gave it light so others could see and hear and put their trust in the Lord.

Our stories aren’t just for us — they are for those who are hurting and in need of hope. We get to partner with God in being light-bearers for His Kingdom.

Whatever it is that you’re in or have been in, if you stay tender and let God lead you through the healing, you will sparkle.

by Sarah Mae, author of Longing for Paris: One Woman’s Search for Joy, Beauty, and Adventure . . . Right Where She Is

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  • Bev @ Walking Well With God

    Sarah Mae,

    Your post so reminds me of my life verse(s): Psalm 40:1-3

    1I waited patiently for the Lord;

    he turned to me and heard my cry.

    2He lifted me out of the slimy pit,

    out of the mud and mire;

    he set my feet on a rock

    and gave me a firm place to stand.

    3He put a new song in my mouth,

    a hymn of praise to our God.

    Many will see and fear the Lord

    and put their trust in him.

    May others see the mistakes we’ve made; see how the Lord redeems us; be in awe of what God has done, and ultimately put their trust in Him! Beautiful!

    • Adeola Odutola

      Thankyou. May He do so for me

    • Sarah Mae

      That is my life verse! :)

  • Beth

    I loved this post! Especially your right-on example of how one day we are completely broken over something, and the next day we get busy again and the thing we were so upset about seems silly or trite. That happened to me just this past weekend, and I recognized – aka God showed me – that it was the second weekend in a row that the same sequence of events occurred – my Sunday was a boring, dull, what-am-I-doing-with-my-life kind of day but on Monday, I would get to feeling better because I was back to my routine. I knew that Monday’s “okay-ness” was just a mask for what I was really feeling on Sundays (purposeless, directionless, and just at odds with myself and what to do with my free time. I’m a schedule addict.) So…I chose to do things differently this time around before another angst filled Sunday arrives, and this past Monday night found me spending two hours reorganizing, clearing and decluttering my hobby/writing space so that I had no excuse not to set up shop and do things that were important to me. I had been lamenting that “I have nowhere to work”, but realized I don’t need the perfect room, the perfect house, the perfect set-up to pursue my passions- if it’s something I really want to do, I’ll make the space for it. And I did. No more fruitless Sundays!

  • Adeola Odutola

    Amen. I felt so wounded but I am not willing to be wounded all over again but for the fact that I know God and Jesus are the Good Samaritan and that He is true to His word I would have made a conscious and permanent decision based on temporary situations Apostle Paul’s light and temporary afflictions never to allow a Christian to move near my life. I felt like a human being on whom faeces was deliberately thrown on to make her abhorrent to man. Had God been mam. He,’d have done likewise.

  • Mary

    I would like to recommend author Cynthia Ruchti’s book Tattered and Mended to all who have been broken and need healing. It is amazing and so are her other novels. She is from Wisconsin and is an amazing author. I know what her books have done for me and I pray they touch you as well.

  • Lin

    A dark story was being written the last few months in my life. Being obedient through the tough times is extremely tough but I am working on remembering God’s promises to me when I have sought Him and expecting great results. He is bigger than any situation that I have to deal with and He knows the end from the beginning. All things work through His grace and for His glory! Amen

    • Sarah Mae

      It’s true, they do, although sometimes it’s so hard to see. Keep on, and keep remembering.

  • Karina Allen

    Such a strong word SM!

    I always tell people that when we keep our sin, struggles, issues, whatever in the dark…that’s where the enemy likes for us to keep those things. He plays mind and heart games there but when we expose those things to the truth of God’s Word, His spirit can come in and do the work that only He can do…the work of healing, redemption, restoration and salvation.

    Grateful for you sister! Praise God for the work that He has and continues to do in you! I love you lots!

  • JeanneTakenaka

    Beautiful post, Sarah Mae. Such timeless truths. You are blessed to have a friend who walks with you through the dark places of you, and prays with you for God’s healing and restoration within you.

    And this? “I cry because the Lord reveals something in me that needs healing, and it hurts to uncover wounds, but it feels so good to acknowledge them so they can be healed.” Been here. And the tears do begin the healing.

    I loved this too: “Our stories aren’t just for us — they are for those who are hurting and in need of hope. We get to partner with God in being light-bearers for His Kingdom.” I’ve seen this lived out, and been a part in God using my story to encourage and minister to others.

    Your post spoke to me today. Thank you.

    • Sarah Mae

      So glad, friend. :)

  • Bethany Key

    I am a little confused about the paragraph that talks about how God will bring q situation back around until we deal with it. I am going through something like that right now so I would really like help in understanding this. Thank you.

    • Sarah Mae

      Hi Bethany, :)

      It’s been my personal observation that the Lord will keep bringing things up in our life that He wants to mature or heal in us until we choose to walk through whatever the thing is. It’s all out of love and part of our becoming.

      • Bethany Key

        I think I understand. I’m just not sure how that translates for me and my situation.

  • Jodi

    Beautiful and helpful message! Thank you for being transparent!! ♥

  • Beth Williams

    Sarah Mae,

    Loved this post!! This is so relevant “Our stories aren’t just for us — they are for those who are hurting and in need of hope.” How so true! Once we’ve gone through something and been brought to the other side we can then help others going through similar situations.
    Also keeping those hurts, bad feelings to yourself is pleasing to evil one, but not to God! He wants it out in the open to release those and heal us!
    Blessings :)

  • DA Schuhow

    I soooo understand Sarah Mae.