My dearest tired woman,

I see you.

I see you staring at your reflection.

Your face is lined with age, and it reminds you of the scars in your soul.

Your eyes are tired, and they mock your lack of vision.

Your dull hair, a reflection of lost passion.

The way your skin has begun to sag seems a fitting but cruel depiction of the heart that hides beneath it, so worn and weary.

Your mouth, once upturned and full of joy, now so flat and horizontally useless—a faded smile.

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Chewed fingers of counting down the seconds until anxiety releases its grip on your mind.

This is a tired woman.

When I began writing again, it was with the promise to myself that I would stay honest—that I would not mimic hope where there was none, and that I would never tidy up my words for the sake of being more comfortable. By being honest in these moments, my hope was to paint a picture with my words, of what this looks like for those who may not be able to see it.

Mostly though, I wish to silence the voice that screams out to so many that they are singled out and alone in some desolate darkness assigned to them, and them alone. It does feel that way, and the enemy intends for it to.

Sometimes the darkness wins, and yet . . . you must keep goingstaggering about, trying to find your way through the lostness.

Do not mistake this for weakness, my tired woman . . . even a stumble is an act of great bravery when there is not even the flicker of light to guide your way.

Stumble toward hope until its light returns. It always does in the end. Lost and foundthis game we play behind the tired eyes and worn skin.

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This is not some woe is me trip down pitiful lane that I have chosen to wander. And I’m not speaking out for the sake of sympathy or to make anyone squirm. There is someone out there who is desperate to believe that they are not finished. There is a lie that hunts them and whose only objective is to isolate them in this darkness, to ensure they surrender to it. My understanding gives me the ability to speak it into existencenot to glorify, but to destroy its mirage of ambiguity.

It has a name. It has a face. It is an enemy.

There is One greater than this fear. There is One whose light will find you out. There is One whose Truth prevails over every single lie you’ve been told. He does not grow tired, nor weary. He cannot and will not fail you even as you curse the very name of hope He has handed you time and time again. He knows your hands are tied. He knows you feel this has always been . . . and that it will never end.

Still, He cannot fail. He will not fail. You must keep breathing. You must take that next breath. You must wait, even as your heart pounds your tired body to the ground and time stands still in a hopeless moment.

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It’s not pretty. I won’t insult your pain with a pretty bow. I will tell your story, but you must trust me when I say, “It’s not over.” This is but a prelude to a book whose story has yet to even begin. Yours is not a tragedy, though it bleeds onto the pages as if it were. There is an Author whose words were written by His own blood, and sealed with His own promise.

My tired, battle-weary woman, you are not finished.

Your story—it is not over, but the war?

Listen to the words of your Savior on the cross, declaring to you this day, “It is finished” (John 19:30).

Sincerely Yours,

Tired woman

Previously published on the author’s blog

Laura Gaston

Laura is a wife, mother of 5, and blogger at brokendevotion. Having struggled with severe depression and anxiety throughout her life, she feels that she has been given a special ministry in helping others who walk down this road. Just as He called, and continues to call her from her ashes and into a life of beauty and redemption, she now hopes to inspire others that Grace has no limits, and that nobody is beyond Christ's reach.