From Ruin to Recovery, and the Ministry Beyond…

I was struck with a very encouraging realization recently.

My prayers have been answered. Literally.

For those of you who have followed this blog for any amount of time, you know that I followed the Lord’s leading in December 2010 to do two things: First, return to my home state of Delaware; second, write a novel. The process of doing these two things I have not shared in full on the blog as of yet, and I am unsure I ever will. To make a long story short, I did the first in August of 2012 and completed the second in May 2013. Since that time I have felt like my life was in a holding pattern while waiting to make my next move.

I went through days of thinking the Lord would reveal some next new path, and I prayed for that. Some hours I prayed for his nearness and encouragement in the face of pressures and stressors that were taxing my mind in both waking life and dreams. Of course, other days I simply wanted to make it through my 9-5 without damaging my testimony with gossip, malcontent, or vitriol (I will admit that I have failed here more than I would have liked).

Even now, as I type this, I find myself wondering what is next to come. I have felt consistently that 2014 will be a major year for my wife and me–in what ways, I do not know, but I am certain that this year will be significant.

In one way, really, it already has been, for I am in the midst of online training to lead a small group for a recovery ministry. I have to pour through a great deal of curriculum before I begin to interface with others, but the content is excellent, and the program directors with whom I’m working are encouraging. But it was not until earlier this week (during a discussion with my wife), that I realized something: this blog, my writing, and that novel I felt led to complete have already resulted in some level ministry, and now, with this new role I will undertake, more is coming.

I prayed for such an opportunity for a long time. Years.


Is this new function what I expected? Not at all. Do I believe it is the culmination of Stronghold’s reach? Not remotely. In fact, I believe this is just my putting a foot through the threshold of a new phase of life, and I am wildly enthusiastic about following it. The Lord has answered my prayers. My hope is to live worthy of the call. By his grace and to his glory, I will. Through the fellowship of believers,  through encouraging community, and through the power of one greater than myself, the Lord will be honored.

And that, my friends, is worth the wait.

About C.J.:
Enjoy what you are reading??? Let’s connect. I'm currently on Instagram, LetterboxdFlickrTwitter, always as CJstunkard.