This holiday season, I’m sure you can relate to the high expectations we all have, and those moments when things take a turn we’d never expected, and it’s time to scratch our plans and chart a new path forward. In the midst of the craziness, take a break and enjoy some refreshment from my friend, very talented Author Sara Ella.
Starting from Scratch
by Sara Ella
Do you ever buy those baking mixes from the grocery store? You know, the ones that basically come with everything you need except for oil, water, and eggs? They’re so easy to use, my nine-year-old can bake with them on her own (with a little oven supervision, of course).
Wouldn’t it be nice it life came with its own easy-mix? That way, when things don’t turn out quite right, when the bread burns or tastes a little off, you can just go back to the store, grab a new mix, and boom. You’ve got your life back on-track in under thirty minutes.
Yeah, I wish life was like that. One big easy-mix just waiting to be baked. It would be cheaper, cleaner, and all around less work. Unfortunately, as I have learned, life is the exact opposite, and more often than not, we have to start from scratch. I’m talking sprinkle-the-yeast-in-and-wait-for-it-to-rise kind of scratch. The type of scratch that happens around Thanksgiving, when you generally start on those pies a week in advance and pull the turkey out to thaw on Monday. Scratch takes time. Scratch takes patience.
And scratch is the last year of my life in a pie-shell.
Just when I thought I was settled, living in the house I planned to die in and all that jazz, bam! God was like, “Not so fast, Sara. My plans are not your plans.” To put it bluntly, my bread was so charred, there was literally no salvaging it. And to be honest, I didn’t handle the loss so well. I kicked and screamed and threw that bread in chunks all over the room before finally starting to sweep up the crumbs. I went through phases of trusting God and trying to control the situation. Of giving it all to Him and then taking it back. And all while on deadline for my second book. I never thought I’d get through it, and a lot of the time I simply tried to ignore what was happening. I pretended I was okay when I wasn’t. I acted as if I had everything together when I didn’t. I was the girl who always had things under control, who kept her cool when things got rough. I would not and could not be the person who fell apart.
But I did. Oh man, did I fall apart. I was so broken, so lost and confused, I even questioned my own faith. I hesitate to admit that, but it’s true. I didn’t question God’s existence, but I did question whether or not His existence covered me. Did I matter?
The simple answer is yes, I matter. But living that out is a different story entirely. And that, my friends, is resilience. It’s not coming out of a situation totally fine and no worries and yada yada. Resilience is a day by day action. It’s saying my Creator has a purpose for me. That He’s not finished with me yet and just because my first try at life didn’t quite go as planned, it doesn’t mean I’m not worth another go. It’s choosing to live a life of purpose even when I’m not quite sure what that purpose is yet. It’s allowing my wounds to heal, and not just on the surface, but way underneath where it still hurts. It’s choosing not to let my situation or past define me. I’m not the girl who burned the bread to a crisp. I’m the girl who chose to try again and make her second loaf better than ever!
I’m starting from scratch. My dough is still rising and my Creator is kneading me a little more each day. And I’m okay with that. Because it means I matter to the One who is the bread and the life. And His plan for me is the greatest recipe of all.
“I am sure of this very thing—that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the Day of Messiah.” ~ Philippians 1:6 (TLV)
Once upon a time, Sara Ella dreamed she would marry a prince and live in a Disney-style castle. Today, she is a winner of the ECPA Christian Book Award for her debut novel Unblemished, which released to magical applause: “a stunning journey into a fascinating new world of reflections” (RT Book Reviews). Sara spends her days throwing living room dance parties for her two princesses and conquering realms of her own imaginings. She believes “Happily Ever After Is Never Far Away.”
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