About the Author

Erica is a card-carrying Jesus Freak, homeschool mom, and wife to a bass-playing superman. She documents life’s adventures at These Three Remain.

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  1. This is a beautiful post. One of the most difficlt journeys is discovering how God will use our past. It’s full of surrender and shame and uncertainty. But the unveiling of His plan is so worth it. My favorite thing is watching as He not only picks up the pieces of a broken past, but puts them together to form something more amazing than we ever could have imagined. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Erica~ Your words are beautiful, and your story so similar to mine. Thank you! I needed this reminder. Today I’ll be looking for new growth!

  3. I think these words were written just for me! Just last night, as I lay in my husbands lap sobbing, I wondered if anything could ever grow out of my destroyed life. Our daughter was stillborn in March and we still do not have any answers and it feels so scary to try again (she was the third baby we have lost) without an answer or reason why, but your message spoke to me. Sometimes we have to be broken (and destroyed) for God to grow new life. Thank you!

  4. @Marilyn, oh, thank you for the hug! Those green shoots are a treasure and a joy, aren’t they!
    @Lissa, so true! Surrender is not my strong point but I’m learning how He meets me there. And you are so right, He knows how to use those broken pieces to create something much better than we could imagine!
    @Keri, praying for that new growth!
    @Britt….sweet sister, my heart just hurts for your loss. It’s so hard not to know the “why” of things. I have a friend at church who is going through the same thing…she is in her 4th month after 3 late losses. I will lift you and your husband up in prayer each day as I pray for her, too. May God heal your broken heart and bless you with treasure beyond your fondest hopes.

  5. My dad owned his house since 1960. We all grew up there. When went to college and later I married and moved cross country, I always knew I could go back home. My dad has alzhiemer’s. This summer he had to move to assisted living. My sister and her family have the house now. When I went back this summer I didn’t anticipate how much it would change how the house felt with dad somewhere else. Was difficult to adjust. This entry has allowed me to gain some perspective. I need to make my home the type of home my children will look forward to returning from college and bringing their future families to visit. I need to make “home” here.

  6. Thank you for such a touching piece. I still have tears running down my face. I am in a situation where all I can see is the ashes of my life. The last line you wrote is so perfect for where I am right now. I am clinging to the hope that God is making something new with the ashes of the old. Thank you for sharing your pain. I pray that God will send healing to you and all of those who are hurting so deeply.

  7. Wow, Erica…you stretched out your words and invited us into a place where the ordinary and divine intersect. Your story is full of grace, hope, beautiful raw redemption. Thank you!

  8. Oh, Erica–you absolutely made me cry. You write my heart here, my past…and give me something to hold on to for the future. Thank you.

  9. @BarbE and @Holley….*blush* thank you both for your sweet words!

    @Kat…(((hugs))) to you! You are so right. That’s what is important now…to make a home that our children and grandchildren will come back to, wherever that might be! It has taken me a long time, but I realize that wherever we are all together is home. My kids have done a lot towards helping me learn that!

    @Wanda…Praying for you as you wait to see that new growth. God is so good at using all the threads of our lives to weave something beautiful, even the strands that look ugly by themselves. I pray that God will give you comfort and a sense of peace that surpasses understanding.

    @Laura…I’ve long enjoyed reading your blog for the same reasons!

  10. I grew up in Montana, too, and I remember that fire, and I remember seeing the new growth and being amazed. There are some trees that are actually designed to not release new seeds until they have passed through a fire. (At least that’s what a Forest Service Ranger told me years later in a different fire area.) It is so good to know that God can use our trials to make us fruitful, too.

  11. @KDL….I love to meet a fellow Montanan! I love that about the seeds, such a reminder that God has plans for ALL things and uses ALL things to good. Yes, and I love how you put it…to use our trials to make us fruitful!

    @Jeri…Thank you!

    @Michelle… Prayers for you, that you would feel God’s healing hand on you today.

  12. Erica,
    sorry I missed this..

    this just makes me ache and yet feel comforted too in a way.
    I read on your blog how you have such gratitude for the love your father lived for you and what a difference that made.
    You share your story with such grace .
    I hope I continue to live love for my children and to remember that good does come from the ashes of our past.