I graduated Jacob’s Well Recovery Center for Women one year ago today, for the second time. I had lost everything…AGAIN, but I found new purpose on the pages of the Bible. I am where I am today because of people who sacrificed of themselves and were obedient to the calling before them. Thank you Susan, Pastor Charlie, Mrs. Pam, Pastor Tilghman, Mandy, Asa, Mrs. Teresa, Lisa Daughdrill, Lisa Thrasher, Megan Ezell, Tammy, Bosh, Joann, Jossette, and countless others. My life is forever changed becasue of who you are and what you do for others!! The following is the speech I wrote for my graduation as I stepped across that stage and into my destiny:
“God is not on the pages in the book of Esther, nor was He on the pages of my book for a very long time. It doesn’t mean He wasn’t there, producing and directing a show, setting me in places I never thought I would be. Esther was the most unlikely candidate for Queen. She was the wrong nationality, and she even had to hide her true identity, but she was called to save a nation from anhilation and she had FAVOR. Esther becoming Queen was nearly impossible, just like my situation looks impossible, but God lavishes in the impossible because He then gets all the glory.
He uses me now, not because of me, but in spite of me. I was afforded and extended not one, but two – 6 month opportunities at Jacob’s Well, a full 12 months of purification at the hands of beautiful men and women of God who cared for me and taught me how to hear my own name.
Esther 2:12-14 – Before a young woman’s turn came to go in to King Xerxes, she had to complete twelve months of beauty treatments prescribed for the women, six months with oil of myrrh and six with perfumes and cosmetics. 13 And this is how she would go to the king: Anything she wanted was given her to take with her from the harem to the king’s palace. 14 In the evening she would go there and in the morning return to another part of the harem to the care of Shaashgaz, the king’s eunuch who was in charge of the concubines. She would not return to the king unless he was pleased with her and summoned her by name.
I fell short and was not qualified to go where God is leading me, but I was called anyway. The names of the past that I answered to on a daily basis still ring in my ear; however, today I hear God calling my name and His voice overshadows the rest and resounds in my heart and spirit. He calls me by the name which He announced to the heavenly angelic host the day I was created for His purpose.
Isaiah 43:1-3 – But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush and Seba in your stead.
I am NOT your girl, your trash, or a loser. I am not someone to be stepped on or stepped over. I am not your enemy, or a figment of your imagination. I am NOT a hopeless addict or a helpless drunk, a lost cause, or your pitiful excuse. I am not someone to feel sorry for. I AM a mother, a daughter, a sister, and a friend. I AM an author, a speaker, a leader, and a trusted servant of the Living God. I am a minister. I am a child of the King! I am a disciple, a friend of Jesus, and a warrior ready for battle!
Isaiah 49:1-3 – “Listen to me, you islands;
hear this, you distant nations:
Before I was born the Lord called me;
from my mother’s womb he has spoken my name.
2 He made my mouth like a sharpened sword,
in the shadow of his hand he hid me;
he made me into a polished arrow
and concealed me in his quiver.
3 He said to me, “You are my servant,
Israel, in whom I will display my splendor.”
I heard a voice from heaven as my name was called, “And He who sits on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new’. And He said, ‘WRITE, for these words are faithful and true.'” (Revelation 12:5)
It’s not what I am called, but what I answer to, and MY NAME IS VICTORY!”