Hi, my name is Alyssa. I remember a time when going to church and reading the bible were not on my list of priorities. Both seemed like obligations that I didn’t have time for, nor an understanding of what it meant to be present in either one. Now I look around my house wondering which wall I could add a little more scripture to. Needless to say, now I can’t imagine my life without either one.
Looking back, I remember all of the years that God relentlessly pulled at my heartstrings; but I always found a way to dismiss the small voice that was speaking to me. I would often wake up in the middle of the night with questions running through my head. Until one day, it became impossible to dismiss what I was feeling. I wanted answers to my questions and knew where to find them. I asked my boyfriend at the time to join me at church. Not only did he say no, but he also insulted me for thinking and feeling like church was where I needed to be. As I fell asleep that night, I cried and prayed for the first time with intention. I asked God to show me the way. Not only in my relationship, but for my entire future. I was feeling lost, confused, and unsure about what my own plans even were.
In the days to follow, God revealed to me that my plans were nothing like the plans he had been eagerly waiting to share with me. My three-year relationship came to an abrupt end and I found myself needing every bit of God’s grace and provision over my life. After spending countless hours obsessing over social media posts, secret Pinterest boards, and text messages that left me feeling more broken, I began to replace the time with truth. Several months went by and I finally gave my heart to the Lord. I relied on Him more each day. I began going to church regularly and inviting God to move in my heart and life.
About two months later I was denied a teaching job that I really wanted after the final round of interviews. At that moment, I decided to quit my current job and give up on the field of teaching altogether. Again, feelings of uncertainty rushed over me as I tried to envision my future. It was in that moment that I came across a bible verse that I often wear as a necklace now. A verse that spoke to me so clearly and repetitively, I knew the Holy Spirit was moving and urging me to truly believe in what it says. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11). I began to cling to that verse and commit it to memory as each day felt more exhausting. As time went on, the transformation that was happening on the inside became evident on the outside. The work that God was doing behind the scenes began to unfold and many prayers had come to fruition. Although at the time much of me still felt broken, and some days I still do, I began to trust in the Lord with all of my heart and lean not on my own understanding (Proverbs 3:5-6). I knew that the more I leaned on my provider, protector, redeemer, and stronghold breaker, the more I would grow in each area of my life.
It has been almost three years since I gave my heart to the Lord and he has moved many mountains. I have been given not one, but two jobs that I love. I have the pleasure of shaping young minds through the gift of teaching each day. The ability to shine light into the hearts of young children is truly a blessing. Relationships that I prayed for have been restored and God has led me to many prayer warriors and sisters in Christ who inspire me on my daily walk. I graduated with my Masters in Education and hope to continue making a difference. I serve in children’s ministry at church and look forward to where God will use me next. I bought my first home and welcome all who enter with the presence of Jesus. I’ve had the opportunity to travel and take in this breathtakingly beautiful world that God created. Yet through it all, the glory remains His.
At this point in my life, although many prayers remain unanswered, many circumstances remain uncertain, and the future still remains unknown, I know that I can now trust it all in the hands of a known God. The same God who calls us to walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). To walk by faith, especially during the days, weeks, and months when it seems like nobody is listening. To walk by faith when prayers go unanswered and situations remain unchanged. To walk by faith when we feel stuck or like we are moving in the opposite direction. To walk by faith when we just don’t understand “why?”. I pray that God continues to move not only in my life, but also in the lives and hearts of all women who are walking by faith and waiting on His timing. In the silence and in the waiting, still we can know that He is good. I have faith in the next chapter because I know the author.
I will continue to give God the pen and ask Him to keep writing. I encourage all who are reading to do the same. There will never be another story quite like yours. I truly believe that if God is the author, it is sure to be a “best-seller!”