Lord, thank you for the people You put in my life when I was lost in the wilderness and walked away from You. So many times, in so many ways, through them, You rescued me. I wasn't always ready to listen, but You sent patient, loving, caring people who taught me to keep my eyes always on You.
Like Your judges in the Bible, they were ordinary people working for You, despite their own shortcomings and struggles. They helped me when I turned away from You, when I came back to You and when I turned away again--a vicious, vicious cycle. They held on to me, one day at a time, during long periods of oppression….when I thought I would never see the Light again. (But I think there was always a part of me that somehow knew You were there…that when I was ready, I could reach out and You would take my hand.)
You never gave up on me even when I gave up on myself. Every time I turned in the wrong direction You always placed just the right person in front of me to guide me. They were all so different, Lord. Like Christian in the Pilgrim's Progress, I met each one of them on the road back to peace-- to You.
And then, the most amazing thing happened! They taught me how to reach out to others the way they reached out to me. Despite my pain and hardships, they showed me that the way back to You was to walk away from myself.
I will be forever grateful to you, Lord.