Broken Dreams in a tattered box

Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it. 1 Peter 3:15 (NLT) 

Since my divorce eighteen years ago, there has been a constant theme in my life.The Lord has called me to be strong and courageous more than I would like to be. It is in the call to take courage that I have learned some of my greatest lessons. Lessons that became life altering opportunities towards a transformed life. Today, I am stronger because of these divine calls. In order to start healing, sometimes you have to revisit the hard stuff. My journey required me to start with my broken heart; I had to look inside an old tattered box in my garage. Kneeling beside this tattered box is where my journey begins towards the life of hope and restoration. 

In the Hispanic culture when a young girl turns fifteen, families celebrate with a huge quinceanera which symbolizes a young girl transitioning to a young lady. When I reached this milestone, my parents gave me a hope chest. In this treasure chest, I collected kitchen towels, a simple set of baking dishes, cookware, a scrapbook, and a journal. I placed them in there with the dreams of someday becoming a wife. My dream came true one December. 

As I sat on the cold garage floor and as I cracked open this dusty and tattered box, I could hear the crackling of an old hinge. I could smell the musty scent of the items within. It took everything in me to open that box. As I took a look, my wedding dress and tiara were stained with spots of yellow and they smelled old and musty. Flashbacks of that day sprung up from within as my heart wrestled to forget. My life as a wife had been stripped away and I could no longer hold on to that dream. As I pulled other items, my mind raced through the memories. Each item represented a promise that was to be kept until death do us part. However, those promises from long ago had been broken. As tears rolled down my desolate face, the heartache from within was unbearable. Item after item forced me to accept my current marital status. Divorced. 

Alone and broken, I mourned this loss. A reality I could not bear. It was heart wrenching to accept that my dreams from long ago had been severed by a piece of paper and a gavel. As I sat there with no hope at all, I pulled the last item from this treasured and tattered box. I pulled out a white Bible with our names embossed on it. Our names too were no longer a true statement. It took courage to accept this truth. However, as I flipped through these stainless pages, a ray of hope beckoned me. A still small voice from within whispered, “Draw near, I am here.” 

Who is this that beckons me? His soft whisper for the first time gave me hope. From that moment forward, I started a journey that led me through various seasons. My dark days turned to brighter days. My hurts turned to healing and my heart turned to the One who filled me with an ever flowing hope. Jesus is the answer to the hope you are seeking. Draw near, He is waiting.

Always and Forever,

Cynthia Salas

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