I dragged my tired, aching body from bed this morning and begged God to give my spirit the strength to work just five hours.  That’s all.  Just five hours.

I don’t enjoy today’s job.  The family is always there.  Hovering.  And, screaming and cussing at each other.  Finding fault with my work.  It’s too intense.  It feels too much like my own family of origin.

My spirit grieves as I reach and scrub.  My fingers ache and my neck burns from the years of abuse and neglect.  But, the pain in my shoulders and lats feels GOOD today.  Yes, that pain feels good.

You see, I have news for you all……I have been selected as this year’s Habitat for Humanity build in my county! 

Yesterday I pulled fencing and barbed wire from an entanglement of weeds on property that is to be mine!  It was very hard work.  But, unlike working for this negative family today, that work was invigorating.

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What a beautiful site! 

Every stretch of those taut muscles today reminds me that I will soon have a home.  A real home.  And, oh, it’s beautiful!  The more I look at the plans and survey the property where it will be built, the deeper I fall in love with it all!
It could not be more perfect for us.

My emotions surrounding it have been a roller coaster from day one but any uncertainty I had about living in town diminished with each clandestine visit to the empty property.

The integrity of my rental has deteriorated rapidly over the last few months as my desire for this Habitat house increased.   And, I began to fantasize about a little cottage on the edge of town. 

An old fashioned English cottage garden. 

A small house I could easily take care of in my lonely old age.

Freedom from another man’s demands and slavery.  Freedom from his poor choices.

A place where new memories could be made.  Where violence could be forgotten.

And, the miracles began to occur!  We were chosen!  The plans that were selected for me are of a darling cottage style home!  The property has irrigation rights!  Perfect for that unwatered garden that grows in my mind!

Yes, my shoulders burn.  And, tears burn my eyes as I write this.  So many of you have walked with me on this horrific journey out of abuse and into a new free life.  You’ve listened as I’ve worked through memories of childhood abuse.  You’ve encouraged me as I’ve struggled to find my identity outside of who I was convinced I was born to be.  You’ve been angry for me when I’ve been wronged.  You’ve cheered me on with each victory.  And, I know you’re rejoicing with me now.

This.  This is for us.  It is for all of us who dare to dream.   It is for all of us who cling to life and hope.  It is for all of us who seek something better…… For ourselves, in ourselves, and in others.

This victory, this passage to the greatest freedom I can imagine outside of freedom in Christ, belongs to everyone who has helped me, prayed for me, supported me, and loved me.  I will be eternally grateful to the saints at Habitat for Humanity, as I will be eternally grateful to all of you for holding my hand and sticking with me through the darkness.  I’m excited to walk out into the light of my new life and share my new home with you.

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