“I’m in a season of transition,” I tell this woman who resides in a mentor space in my life. Years ago, when we met, there were so many parallels in our journeys that I was certain it was a divine connection. Days ago, I sat before her through a series of additional divine instances, eating and fellowshipping. The food was good, but the fellowship was better. Maybe it was because I forgot to ask the waiter to substitute the chicken in my vegan diet. But more than likely, it was because, what could be better than testifying about the hand of God?
My mentor shared her story of how the Divine had ordered her steps through the difficult season of loss and hardship, and I, in turn, shared how He had ordered mine.
There were so many flourishing events of triumph this year, even amidst the pitfalls and disappointments. I can look back and see the enemy’s attacks in my journey. But even those were allowed to work for my good. There were lessons I learned, and even what appeared as losses, were really just shields of protection and hands of deliverance.
I know this year, by sheer grace, I’ve finished strong. As a result, I can’t imagine what’s on the other side. Having said yes to purpose in my writing career just two and a half years ago, the outcome has been a series of doors whipped open and new levels of opportunity birthed that could only come through Him.
This last interview I conducted mere days before 2024, was the buttercream icing on the white birthday cake (my favorite icing and birthday cake).
I had the honor of interviewing a woman who’s faced several types of incomprehensible atrocities few will ever experience this side of eternity. The miraculous thing is, not only has she survived these horrors, but her face is now decorated with a beautiful countenance and a joyful smile.
Some of you may remember her story. Then known as Michelle Knight, she is a survivor of an abduction in Cleveland, Ohio, that lasted 11 years from her captor.
Upon the release of Michelle (who now goes by Lily Rose Lee) and the other two women she was captive with, this news-breaking story stole my heart and broke it into a million jagged pieces. I couldn’t believe these women were held in bondage for so long, and at the time, right around the corner from my residence.
Back then, I could have no idea there would be a divine assignment between myself and their story. That I, in fact, would be a witness to one of the women’s overcoming spirit and shining resilience. There are no words for it. It is a miracle. She is a miracle.
Lily is one of whom the world is not worthy.
I’ve been seeing a theme in the stories of those who overcome such mountainous hardships. I believe God amplifies the challenges of these so that others can find encouragement to know, “If they went through that and are still standing, I can too.”
I see this theme even in my own memoir.There are always those who come behind who can take heart in hearing your story. Click To Tweet
Days ago, I shared with my writing mentor the promises of God as we dined on Cheesecake Factory’s finest. I revealed my desires and expectations in this upcoming season. She stood with me in firm belief, rejoicing in the soon-to-be arrival. Even as nothing has arrived. It may seem like an unwarranted, misplaced concept to some, but to us, it is faith. Raw faith. The thing about faith is, even though our natural eyes can’t see a thing, our spiritual eyes see it all. And just like when you order from Amazon, you know your package is on the way.
As I wind down this year, I’m in awe of the increase that has already come, even as I get positioned for the increase that is soon to. I can see the steady unfolding of purpose; even during those moments of a blind stark standstill.
Girl Talk is a perfect example of this. For over a year, we met virtually, and then the need of the women emerged to where they wanted to gather in person. I never could have fathomed I could fill a room based only on connections. My faith journey has been swarmed with such connections.
I told these women there were days I struggled to grasp a reason to live. Days I struggled to find purpose. When I raised my eyelids to behold their faces, I realized they were on the other side of those dark days. If we can just push through those tough days, those difficult moments, we can see the lives we’re called to touch. These very lives may just fill a room.
Or, in the case of Lily Rose Lee, the internet world.
While my mind can’t grasp the questions Lily was asking in those traumatic years of torment, I know my own questions in following a path of destiny.
“God, where are we going, and when are we getting there?” I would ask so often in my journey over the years. Finally, I have a glimpse of the “there.”
I think I am finally on the horizon.
I can’t help but be encouraged by the leaps and bounds that have occurred with writing. “It’s like you catapulted so fast,” a woman I esteem shared recently. And though I understood what she meant, I had to inform, “I’ve actually been at this almost a decade.”
But that’s usually how it goes. When you’re in the creative space, and you’re launched into a larger platform, others are like, “Where did you come from?” when so often these people have been there all along, grinding and working. They’ve been sewing and sweating, trying to build what it is they’ve glimpsed only in the cobwebs of their imaginations. Trying to build the arc like Noah. But then, the time comes, and the thing is there. The arc is standing. And everyone is marveling: “Wow! How did you do that so fast?”
It’s only because they didn’t see what was happening behind the scenes—the work the Father was doing in you. Crafting and molding so that the world would one day see: it could only be Him.
That means He was working out even the hard things. When the enemy tries to capture you, steal your joy, and take your blessings, but God, in His own timing, sets you free, you have a story of triumph. One I don’t think any of us would have chosen, but a story, nonetheless.
I think Lily would agree the most.
The thing is every good story needs conflict. And the greater the conflict, the better the story.
Having walked out a couple of decades of faith, I can see the patterns of seasons and times in operation. These patterns make absolutely no sense to our linear mindsets but perfect sense to our cyclical, eternal ones.
As we finish this chapter in our lives, let’s make sure we’re positioned for the new. Spiritually, emotionally, physically, financially, and mentally. We can only make those divine connections when we’re accurately positioned for purpose.
Connections are important in any arena, but for elevation in purpose, divine ones are vital.
It is while in position that we’ll meet those who’ll partner with us in this work of manifesting kingship. It is in position where we’re able to see the ultimate revealing of who we are.
In other news…Did you know that I just dropped my debut novel When Love Wins? You can check out more here! This time around there is an audiobook in addition to the eBook and paperback versions. Make sure you are subscribed to my email list to catch special offers, discounts, insider information, and more!
Are you on Instagram/Facebook? If so, please reach out. I have a series called “Word of the Day Wednesdays” where I share 5-10 minutes worth of nuggets that are on my heart, which I hope are encouraging to others on IGTV/FB Live! I have these also posted on my Youtube Channel.
And, lastly, if you have read “Stories for the (Urban) Soul, please put up an Amazon review here. I was SUPER encouraged and blessed when a new reader put up her review for my 2nd book which you can view here :).
As always, thank you for your support!