Written by cycleguy on May 5th, 2014

This is a continuation of my Second Chance posts by guests. You can the read  the inspiration for it here. My first one here. Daniel’s here. Zee’s here.

Today I’d like to introduce you to Eileen’s Second Chance. I am not really sure how I came to begin reading her blog (probably saw here elsewhere and decided to read), but Eileen writes with a genuine candor and honesty. She, her husband and son recently moved to Georgia from Carolina and saw God’s hand in the whole thing. Eileen blogs at The Scenic Route. Here is her story.

Letting go has often happened in stages in my life. As I look back, I notice that the Lord always does an incredible amount of prep work on my heart before I’ve actually made the choice to surrender. I’ve often said that I think God is so patient with us. There are two pivotal and truly significant letting go moments I can remember in my life. The first occurred after a failed marriage when I was 27 years old.

I lost my mom to cancer when I was 18. After she was gone, I got this bright idea that maybe I could do a better job at making decisions and choosing directions for my life because God’s plan of taking my mom away (and my best friend) was a real sucky plan. I spent nearly a decade after my mom’s death planning my own life. I ran back to a relationship that had red flags all
around it and became determined to make it work.

For years, instead of acknowledging the red flag feelings I was having, I chose to numb those feeling. My best friend became wine and sometimes I had other friends like rum or vodka join in the party too. As the flags waved all around me, my “friends” were there to distract me. I could escape. I didn’t have to address the flags.

That cycle went on for years. Instead of making the scary choice of leaving the familiar, I stayed and kept myself sufficiently numb. Then one day it happened. The fear of stepping out into the unknown and making a different choice became more appealing than staying and continuing to numb my way through hell.

That’s often when we make the scary changes in our life, isn’t it? It’s when the pain of our current situation becomes so overwhelming that we finally become willing to choose differently. I picked up the phone that day and I called my dad. That was the hardest phone call I’ve ever had to make in my life.

“Dad, things are bad. I can’t do this anymore. I need to get out.”

“Come on home.” he said.

After years of navigating my own life, I was certain of one thing. I stunk
at it!

The Lord and I started talking again on a daily basis. Some days, I would just sit quietly while He spoke truth into my heart. Other times, I asked for advice or cried out to Him for wisdom. Looking back, I have to smile at God’s ability to ignore the big elephant standing in the room with us. You know, that need I had to avoid life’s problems and drink wine instead. At the beginning, He and I really didn’t talk about that issue. It never came up. I really just believe he was happy to have me home again. I guess, that’s one of the reasons I love Him so much today. He didn’t push me or pressure me to change before I was ready. He patiently waited for me and He faithfully kept working on my heart.

It would be almost a year before He and I started to seriously look at my drinking problem. Quite honestly, I thought the problem would just go away, but it didn’t. I remember seeing a skit in church around this time where a lady was arguing with God. She was cleaning house and God wanted access to the room that was locked and she was reluctant to open the door. That was me and drinking. I had given God access to everything else, but I hadn’t yet been willing to open that door.

The journey of doing this became a choice to not turn the volume down on God each time I failed. I think that’s the key to anything in life that God is asking us to surrender. No matter how many times we fail, we must get back up and choose to grab hold of His hand again. It’s so tempting to run away. Yet, each time I made the choice to come back to Him, God did something in my heart. And one morning…I was ready.

That morning was different from all the other mornings. I had a strength inside of me and calm inside of me that I had never known. And for the first time in the process, I was depending on His strength and not my own. He was fighting the battle for me. The months to come were by no means easy, but I had a BIG GOD fighting on my behalf.

Any thoughts?


26 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    Second chances when they can be realized and appreciated are just wonderful opportunities to hold tighter to God. Great story.

  2. David Rupert says:

    I subscribe to Eileen s blog and read every post. She’s a marvelous writer and an honest soul as evidenced by this piece here. Thank you for bringing her to your audience

  3. Eileen is a good blogging friend, has an amazing story and love her honesty.

  4. Betty Draper says:

    Every time I stop at Eileen site I am better for it. Her second chance story is revealed in her honest words that lift up the Lord. One of things that kept me filled with hope for our son was my husband has one of those second chance story. From 13 when he got saved to age 35 he lived for him self and of course our marriage was always in turmoil. Because he knew God’s grace and patience in his life he is able to give the same out. His words reminding me of God’s work in his life kept me while we waiting for God to have his perfect will with Jared. I love it when tells his story. In fact right now he is working with just such a man as he was, his name is Kent. Lost his family and every thing because of drink BUT…OH HOW I LOVE TO WRITE THAT WORD…BUT God drew him back and now he is hungry and thirsty for the Lord. Such encouraging stories of God longsuffering with us, thanks for doing this brother.

    • cycleguy says:

      I love that word “But” also Betty. Paul also liked it in Ephesians 2:4. 🙂 I am excited to do this series on Second Chances Betty. It has been a blessing to me to get these stories.

    • Eileen says:

      Betty, I always love your thoughtful comments over at my place. I agree with you and Bill. “But” is a beautiful hope filled word. Simply amazing what He is capable of doing in our heart and in our lives.

  5. floyd says:

    Great post. It’s in honesty and humility that our words become our Father’s words to use for all of us… and all of us are in need. Thanks for the testimony of how we all have trials, times in the valley where we think we’re alone, but it’s our Father who is marching us through it. We’d never make it on our own.

  6. TC Avey says:

    Nice to meet you, Eileen.
    I loved what you said about God not addressing the elephant in the room…He gives us time and slowly He prepares us. You’re right, before we’re asked to make a big changed He’s already working. It’s not till later that we can see all the prep work- the building blocks God put in place for us.
    God is so patient.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • cycleguy says:

      Surprised you have not met before TC. Great point about the elephant.

    • Eileen says:

      TC I know we visit many of the same blogs. I’ve seen your name all over the place. 🙂 Nice to meet you too. That’s exactly what I meant with the elephant too. His timing really is perfect. I’m forever thankful He didn’t/doesn’t want to address all the “elephants” at the same time!

  7. Chris Monahan says:

    I only know Eileen through Twitter and her blog (I know it would be WAY cool to have a neighbor such as her) and learned many more details about her heart and story today. It makes me love and respect her more that she can share so openly. Thank you Eileen (and thank you Bill for making ‘space’ for her). Blessings.

    • cycleguy says:

      Welcome Chris! Thanks for taking the time to come over this way. I see your name on her blog from time to time. It is nice to know more isn’t it? Thanks again for coming by.

    • Eileen says:

      Hi Chris, glad you stopped by! You’d be nice to have as a neighbor too. 🙂

  8. Rick Dawson says:

    I haven’t met Cup o Joe Girl face to face, but we share a *lot* of common ground; like David, I subscribe and read (though I may not get a chance to comment on everything – same with the Deuce). Love the heart, and the message she carries…I *might* be a touch biased 🙂

  9. Thank you, Eileen, for sharing your story. That took courage.

    The skit of the locked door was a powerful image I’m still thinking about.

    Jennifer Dougan

    • Eileen says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Jennifer. Yes, after all these years, that skit will still cometo mind every so often