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Table of Contents

Introduction

Acknowledgements

  1. Purpose
  2. In My Beginning
  3. Change is Coming
  4. Happily Never After
  5. He is our Life Giver
  6. Life after Death
  7. A New Life Begins
  8. My Heart has been Healed
  9. Where Do We Go from Here?
  10. Letting Go
  11. Truth Hurts
  12. Find Your Purpose

    About the Author

Introduction

I have never had the desire to write a book. If the thought ever crossed my mind, I would never have imagined writing one about myself. I absolutely love to read and, when time allows, I can read for hours. My idea of a perfect day is relaxing on the beach or curled up on the couch with a good book to read.

My friends and family know that I don’t like to talk about myself or be the center of attention. I would rather be just another face in the crowd than to be noticed. When God began stirring in my heart to write a book about myself and some of my life experiences, I thought, “That can’t be God! Why would He want me to talk about myself?” Negative thoughts began to creep into my mind and I told myself, “I’m not interesting enough. I haven’t lived enough to write about anything important. Who would want to pick up my book and read it?” But those fears were not coming from God. God had a different plan and a calling on my life to bless others. Sometimes our human minds cannot see the greater plans God has for us. I have learned over the course of my life, especially during my journey of writing this book, that I am only wasting my time trying to figure things out myself. I need to leave all of my worries and fears in God’s hands.

Something happened one particular Saturday when my husband and I were driving to Dallas to visit our kids and grandbaby. On this day, God began giving me a vision about this book. He gave me the scriptures, the title, and most of what is included in this book. I became so overwhelmed with emotion that I started crying in the passenger seat. After hearing me sniffle a few times, my husband looked over and asked me what was wrong. I couldn’t talk from the weepy tears and the biggest lump I have ever had in my throat. He asked me if I was okay, to which I nodded, “Yes.” He asked if I was feeling bad, but all I could do was shake my head, “No.” He was puzzled and couldn’t figure out why I was crying and why I couldn’t talk. Eventually, I was able to recover enough to gather a few words and I told him that I would explain more later. I turned back towards the passenger side window and continued to look outside. God continued to give me more material and kept reminding me of things in my life that I had forgotten about or hidden in the deepest part of my mind. There were things He wanted me to include that I had not thought about in several years.

In I Have a Purpose, the stories I share are only a few events from my life. These are things that have happened to me and things from which God has delivered me. While I have changed the names of some of the characters in this book to protect the identity of some people who may not wish to have their past written about, I want my readers to understand one immutable fact: It doesn’t matter what you’ve done or are doing. It doesn’t matter where you are or have been in life - past, present or future. God can and will turn things around for you.

This book was written with the singular purpose of showing how powerful God is, how He pulled me out of some circumstances, and how He rescued and healed me from so many things. He literally turned my life around and blessed me more than I could have ever imagined. My story tells how, through all the circumstances of my life, I found MY purpose - and He can do the same for you. I hope you enjoy reading, I Have a Purpose.

Acknowledgements

This book would not have been possible without some of my closest loved ones.

A big thank you to my best friend and wonderful husband, Robert. You are my better half! Your support and encouragement mean the world to me. Your patience and willingness to put up with me and all my craziness while trying to put this book together has not gone unnoticed. You have been by my side for 28 years and you have been there to witness some of these occurrences in my life. I don’t know how I would have made it this far without you by my side. I love doing life and growing old with you. I love you so much!

A much deserved thank you also goes to my children! You were both my motivation in completing this book.

Kris, you have been one of my biggest encouragers during this time. Every time we discussed the book, you made me more enthusiastic and excited to complete the book. Your words of wisdom and love made me feel like I could conquer the world. Thank you for giving me pep talks when I was having doubts about myself and my writing abilities. Your advice on the book, and the help with editing and proofreading have been enormous. Hearing the words, “I’m proud of you, Mom!” really turned my heart to mush. I love you, son.

Melanie, you have also been one of my biggest cheerleaders and encouragers during this time. I couldn’t have done this without you! The look of excitement when I read the first page to you really got me excited to get the book written. Every time we talked about it and you asked me if it was finished, and every time you told me that you couldn’t wait to read it was a big push for me to keep going! You don’t know how many times I wanted to quit, but I didn’t, because of you. Thank you for the proofreading, suggestions, and editing. There is no way for you to know how much your opinions and suggestions helped me. Thank you for always knowing what to say when I needed to hear it most. I love you, baby girl.

I would also like to thank my mom and dad and my brothers in helping me remember facts and details for this book, especially of events when I was younger. My family is the best.

I love you all!

I would like to thank Lynette King for all the hours spent editing, your suggestions and encouragement. I appreciate your help so much.

I would like to thank Isaiah Shook for taking the time to read my story, editing, making suggestions, and for your help and encouragement.

I would like to thank Sarah Scott for your talent and suggestions with the book cover, you did an amazing job.

I would like to thank my friend and coworker Casey Stone for your honest feedback, and encouragement about the book and all the extra advice about following God’s plans for me as an author.

I would like to thank my friend and coworker Morgan Whitehead for reading my story, and for your encouragement every time I tried to talk myself out of this book.

Chapter 1

Purpose

What is Purpose?

Purpose – (noun) the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists; (verb) to have as one’s intention or objective.

Have you ever wondered:

Why you were created?

Why do I exist?

What is God’s purpose for me?

What if I missed my purpose?

You are not alone, my friend.

Unfortunately, so many people think that they do not have a purpose, or they fear they will never find the reason they are here. Some people might think that the life they are living is their purpose, but the truth is, most haven’t even begun to reach their full potential.

We tend to get caught up doing the same thing every morning: going to a job that we may not like, but we stay because (we say) that’s the only thing we know how to do. Sometimes, we do it because it is our comfort zone. It is so mundane, perhaps even monotonous, that we could get to work and complete our routines with our eyes closed. Before we know it, 10 or 20 years are behind us, time has flown by and we are experiencing burn out in our jobs and careers only to wonder why we aren’t satisfied.

I believe the reason for this feeling is because we are not living out our purpose and, until we reach it, we will not be satisfied. I don’t have all the answers or some creative way to tell you how to find your purpose. Some people search all their lives for purpose. Every year, millions of dollars are spent by people in search of purpose and meaning in their lives. They seek help from counselors, psychologists, life coaches, and preachers. However, I’m not sure they will ever find what they are truly looking for without help from the One who created them.

I can tell you from my personal experience where I have found answers. I personally believe that to find what you are looking for, you should seek God. Pray and ask God to show you what your purpose is and to prepare you to fulfill that which He has called you to do. Read the Bible for confirmation of what you think you’re hearing, God will never tell you to do something that is against or contrary to His character.

God’s Word talks about purpose in several scriptures. Look them up and study them. One of my favorite scriptures about purpose is in Ephesians 2:10 where it says:

We have become His poetry, a re-created people that will fulfill the destiny He has given each of us, for we are joined to Jesus, the Anointed one. Even before we were born, God planned in advance our destiny and the good works we would do to fulfill it! (The Passion Translation)

My opinion of what this scripture says is that we were all created with a purpose. When God calls us to purpose, He has already given us everything we need to accomplish that purpose. Most people will say the hardest part is trying to figure out what our gifts are, what our purpose is, and (perhaps the biggest question), how to use those gifts to fulfill our purpose and destiny.

Psalm 139:16, the scripture says,

Before we were even born, God had planned our days. (The Passion Translation)

Isn’t it amazing that we were thought of by God before we were even born?

It blows my mind to think He knew what He had planned for each and every one of us before we ever even came into this world. Take a minute and think about how many billions of people there are in this world. Now think about what that scripture says: He has a plan and purpose for every single one of us – and it was planned before we were born. WOW! God is Awesome!

There is not one of us who is more important than another. In God’s eyes, we are all the same. It doesn’t matter what color we are, where we came from, what our political stance is, if we are rich or poor, or even if we are Christian or not. God loves us all the same and our purpose has already been chosen by Him, specifically for us! No one else in the world can do what He has planned for US to do. It is up to us to seek God and step into our purpose.

I feel that the reason God wanted me to write this book was to use life experiences, failures, wins, and testimonies to reach people who are emotionally injured or going through situations similar to mine. God wants to use each of us to touch the lost, the broken and the lonely. There are so many people in the world who are hurting, alone, or feel like no one can relate to their pain. We must each be in prayer to recognize the lost, because THEY are our purpose.

We all have a story. You never know how your story can change another person’s life, perspective, or maybe even save a life. You never know who is watching you. Some people may think you “have it all together.” They may even wish they had it as good as you. But they don’t know the hell you have gone through to get where you are today. If they knew your story, they might find hope for themselves and they might even think. “If it can happen for them, it can happen for me!” Let’s find our purpose!

Chapter 2

In My Beginning

In 1967, my mom got married at the young age of 14 to her first husband with whom she had my two older brothers Lee & Ruben. They divorced and a few years later she met and fell in love with my dad in 1972. They dated for a little while and finally married in January of 1973.

My story starts in February of 1976 in Wichita Falls, Texas. My mom woke up not feeling well one morning. She was cramping, had sharp pains in her stomach, and felt sick enough to call her sister to take her to the doctor.

Several tests were run and after anxiously awaiting the results, my mom found out she was four months pregnant with me. She was shocked because she hadn’t had any of the signs or symptoms of being pregnant, even though she and my dad had been trying to get pregnant for a few years. However, she was suddenly thrown into total disbelief when the doctor advised her to terminate the pregnancy because, based on his medical opinion, the cramping and pains she was feeling was because she was having a miscarriage. To be told that she was finally pregnant, but then informed she was miscarrying the child she so desired was the ultimate in emotional upheaval. My mom was a preacher’s daughter and she believed in miracles. She knew that God could heal, and she knew that God could turn any negative circumstance into a blessing. Without hesitation or doubt in her mind, she told the doctor she would not end her pregnancy. She asked him what she could do to save her baby. He advised her to go home and stay on bed rest for two weeks, but if her symptoms were to get any worse, she would have no choice but to terminate.

My mom didn’t have the chance to call her parents, but shortly after she arrived back home from the hospital, my grandparents showed up at her doorstep. My grandpa told her the reason they showed up without calling was because he had a feeling something was wrong. Grandpa felt like God wanted him to drop by and pray with her.

My grandpa always said God would usually reveal to him when his kids were going through tough times. My mom told him exactly what the doctor had told her. He listened as she explained, but then told he her not to accept the negative diagnosis given to her by the doctor. It wasn’t that he didn’t believe the doctor could be right. He just knew that God was bigger than the problem. Grandpa assured my mom that she was not going to lose her child. He knew she and my dad had been trying to get pregnant for a few years, so he told her that instead of letting fear creep in, she needed to pray about it. She needed to put the whole situation in God’s hands. He told her she just had to give that child to God and let Him take care of it. As they prayed together, they claimed life for her child, that she would go full term with the pregnancy, and that her baby would be healthy. Right there in our living room, they prayed, declared, and believed in agreement that I would have life and that, from that day forward, there wouldn’t be any more complications.

My mom went full term and gained more weight than in any of her other pregnancies. She gave birth to a very healthy baby girl who weighed 8 pounds and 11 ½ ounces. Of the four children she had, I was the largest at birth.

I was born and I have a purpose.

Even before I entered this world, the enemy was already trying to attack me. He knew that I would have a God-given purpose and that one day I would find it and use it to spread the Word of God. I’m grateful that my mom had faith and that God answered their prayers. Otherwise, that doctor could have talked my mom into ending my life before I even had a chance to live.

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you [and approved of you as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I consecrated you [to Myself as My own]; I have appointed you as a prophet to the nations” Jeremiah 1:5 AMP

My mom tells me that I was a smart baby: I started walking at eight months old, was potty-trained at 11 months, by the time I was two, I knew the alphabet and was trying to sound out letters on signs and in books to make words. My mom always bragged about how sharp I was and how quickly I caught on.

However, I have to give credit where it is due. Since I was my dad’s only child and my mom’s only girl, there was no lack of attention from my parents or siblings during those first few years. My two older brothers who are seven and eight years older than me, respectively. I remember them reading to me, playing games with me, and talking to me like I was as old as they were, which probably helped me catch on to ideas and concepts more quickly. I tried to do and say everything they did. In fact, I was probably the “oldest” three-year-old around. I have to admit, I was pretty spoiled too! They thought I was the “greatest thing since sliced bread,” that is, until they started getting in trouble when I got hurt, cried, or didn’t get my way. My mom said that my brother, Ruben, even asked my grandma if there was any way to send me back where I came from since he always got in trouble because of me.

I was a typical, healthy kid until I was about four years old and I got pretty sick. Out of concern they took me to the emergency room for what my mom describes as “foaming at the mouth.” It turned out to be asthma. I had so much drainage to cough out that it looked foamy. I found out just a few years ago that my brother, Lee, was extremely worried about me at the time. He thought it wasn’t like me to be sick and he had never seen me in that “foaming” condition. He did the only thing he knew how to do. He prayed to God. As I laid there looking lifeless and lethargic, he prayed to God for his baby sister to live. He said he told God that if He must take someone, to take him instead. Looking back on this situation now, I realize this was just another example of our enemy, the devil, trying to steal, kill, and destroy in order to keep me from my purpose. (John 10:10)

My oldest brother, Lee, was only 12 when he asked God to spare my life. That is a big prayer for a kid that age! After a few days of medications, and most importantly my brother’s prayers, I was better and back to my old self.

I have a purpose!