As long as I can remember, I have loved words. Words build people up, they can speak sweet truth, they can be a window into a person's soul of what they are thinking, how they think about you, what they know of life. Words can also tear people apart. They can bite and linger. They can single handedly assault and leave you feeling lifeless.
I spent a good portion of my life being told a lot of things and never speaking about a lot of things. As I have grown up, I have slowly but very surely gotten my voice back. And with that, God has put a passion and desire in my heart to not only use words to love people, to glorify Him and to build people up, but to scream. Like a megaphone hooked up to my soul, I will scream of God's love and pursuit over my life.
Several years ago I began to deal with some things in my life that would forever change every part of who I was. And what I mean exactly, is that The Lord tore into my life and began to peel back the layers. The layers of inauthenticity, bondage, fear, insecurity. (to name a few) I woke up one morning, the same I had every day, and by the evening and the end of a phone conversation, my mind woke up and everything changed.
I was raped my freshmen year of college. I never dealt with it, never had any emotional feeling to it until three years ago. I had a phone conversation with a dear friend who brought me out of that dark room that night so many years ago. We spoke about it, for the first time in 8 years. And when I hung up the phone, my chest tightened, my mind flooded and panic set it. For the first time, I was acknowledging and feeling all the feelings I had never felt since that night. The memories are there, they have always been. But never had I felt any kind of feeling. And there I was, with the epidural running out, I was now feeling everything. I felt crazy, I had panic attacks and all I wanted to do was run into a dark room and never come out. God seemed to have flipped my world upside down and I could not, for the life of me, understand, why now? I was a Young Life leader doing high school ministry. I had a new baby and a husband whom I had to explain everything to. My voice escaped me. "The old is gone, the new has come!" So why was my old junk regurgitating back up again. All I wanted was to stuff it right back down to the place of numbness and away from the light.
For the next year, I experienced a personal hell. Through much counseling, writing and my community, The Lord began to pull me from my own personal pit. He began to take the chains that I had been holding for almost a decade and began to lift them off. At the time I was angry, there were things I never had to deal with before. There were hard realizations of how this has seeped into all areas of my life and I had to re-learn who I was. I'll be honest here, it was awful. Lots of anxiety, lots of fear and lots of picking up the pieces. In that year, God carefully and specifically sliced into who I was, the core of everything, and penetrated right into the heart. With any kind of cut- there is pain. I can't think of it without crying. Not because of the pain, but because of the freedom. I never knew there could be so much freedom. For the first time in my entire life, I felt free. Like these things that I carried for so long, God gently but firmly lifted them off my back.
"You let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance." psalm 66:12
One day, in the midst of a panic attack, I went to our back wood room ( a room that looks like a cabin) and I began to shout and yell at God. I took every word I thought and yelled it at my Lord. And in a moment of desperation I opened my bible and yelled again for him to give me a word, ANY WORD. (luckily the Lord's grace on me testing him was overwhelming)
I opened up to Isaiah 61.
"The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion- to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. Aliens will shepherd your flocks; foreigners will work your fields and vineyards. And you will be called priests for the Lord, you will be named ministers of our God. You will feed on the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast. Instead of their shame my people will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace they will rejoice in their inheritance; and so they will inherit a double portion in their land, and everlasting joy will be theirs. For I, the Lord, love justice; I hate robbery and iniquity. In my faithfulness I will reward them and make an everlasting covenant with them. Their descendants will be known among the nations and their offspring among the peoples. All who see them will acknowledge that they are a people the Lord has blessed." I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. For as the soil makes the sprout come up and a garden causes seeds to grow, so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations."
All at once, in what felt like a windstorm, I felt the Lord speak these WORDS so deeply into my soul as if to pick me up and say, "my sweet darling, I am not hurting you, I am healing you. You are mine, and I want all of you." These words were life to what felt like, my ruined soul. My whole life was turned upside down. My head and my heart were a blurry wreck, but these words stilled the storm in my soul.
Words. I love them. I love His words that speak over me. They have the ability to bring people from death to life. From hurt and pain to hope and love. So over the past three years, God has been bringing me back to who I was always meant to be. My husband would probably tell you, there was a physical and emotional difference between the before and after (of me) from that day the phone call came. And friends, I have experienced some highs and lows, but that year I hit the ground running. I can't run fast enough, I can't yell loud enough of the love that gave me life. Out of that, and a few other things the Lord put in my path, I began to create.
Coming out of me, I could feel God pulling things out and using them for my restoration. At the time, I had this blog, "Thirsty Hearts." The name came from a quote by A.W. Tozer-
"Thirsty Hearts are those whose longings have been awakened by the touch of God within them."
I had no idea, when I first created this blog, how this quote would speak over my life they way it has. I am a thirsty heart who is flawed but saved by grace.
I have a degree in Integrated Strategic Communications with an emphasis on Public Relations. Design and creative art has always been engrained in me. So the more I started to write, the more I began to create. I would create things to remind myself of truth all over my house. I needed reminders; I needed something visual to bring my thoughts back onto true things.
And soon after that, Thirsty Hearts Design came to form. I began to pick up a pencil and draw. It was therapeutic for me and the more I began to draw and create, things began to take off. So here I am today, grateful and enjoying the ride. I have no idea where it will take me, but i'm loving every minute of the journey. I love creating words that build people up, that make them laugh or simply feel nostalgic. I love creating words that will go on a sign to adorn their walls to remind them of true things when life gets hazy and unsettled, in the dark and waiting. My biggest hope, dear one, is that you would know and experience the earth shattering love that our great father gives to us. That in the midst of our greatest bondage or life rocking moments you would know and feel our God carrying you (Isaiah 46:4) and redeeming/restoring you (Isaiah 61). That you would be crowned with a crown of beauty instead of ashes.
Angie Poston is first and foremost a flawed woman who serves a flawless God. She is a stay at home mom as well as the founder and designer at Thirsty Hearts Design . She lives in Lexington, KY with her husband and two little ones enjoying adventures, dt. coke and log cabins.
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