52 SPOKEN WORDS

36. SHINE | with Rochelle Donato

WOMEN+WORDS SERIES

This is the extended series of spoken words shared by women who I honorably share their spoken stories and word from God. It's to showcase the power of faith and how God whispered to them and they listened wholeheartedly in His plan.

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I met Rochelle during my internship at our church, we developed a close relationship the day when I was hearing her story and barely knew her, my spirit felt and said: 

"I want to pour into you". 

This is where it started, when we would hang out, we connected on a creative level, whether it was through lettering, being vulnerable, and going to open mics. It was seeing the light of music that overshadowed her past. It was the voice of that shined brighter than the stars. It was her wisdom, her story and her growth as a young woman from her past, that showed me through the darkest of your days, God brings in that light. 

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Darkness is the pit of our insecurities, the lover of destruction, and the holder of our fears. Once an ounce of darkness starts to drop into our lives, it dives into the center point of our focus, and if we allow it, it starts to spread. It brings back the past of hurt and regret, and influences us to attack ourselves and eventually others. Darkness was the epitome of shame.

Darkness was a repetitive being in my life. Since I was a child, I had issues of insecurity because of my weight. I was never the smartest person in my class. In fact, I was closer to the bottom of the class because I had no motivation. Sleep was never an option because of fear. I was lead to failure. The darkness inside me defined who I was and influenced others around me. However, I realized later that there was a reason for all of this.

I was fat because I was defending myself. I was always at the bottom of the class because I was low-key calling for help. I never had enough sleep because I’m 98% sure that my door would open late at night and an unwanted visitor would do unimaginable things to me for more than a decade. Darkness shadowed my childhood like an umbrella.

But, that umbrella seemed to miss some spots. Over the umbrella was light. When I was 10, I first witnessed that light. At 15, it gave me hope. By 23, I let it reveal my scars. The light slowly and cunningly eased its way into my life, and I started to let go of the umbrella of darkness.

That light, which saved me from the destruction of darkness, was God. It was the very move of love that prevented me from letting guilt and shame fully control my life. It was His love that showed me the true meaning of joy and laughter. It was His Son who distracted me from the darkness around me. And it was His Spirit that made me who I truly am. It was God who loved me first, who carried me in His arms, and ignited a light inside of me that will never burn out.

It was God who made me shine. Because I was able to shine, I was able to push away the darkness. I was able to reveal my wounds, let go of my hurt, push away my fears, and gave me courage to stand for myself. God showed me that any of the darkness that was put into my life was not my fault and I was never intended for anything less than the light He has provided in me.

I learned to forgive those who blanketed fear into my life, I learned how to lead others with love, and I became the light God intended me to be. The broken past and heartbreak from this experience became a story to shed light into others.

I’m not the only light that God has ignited. It’s those lights that we see everyday. It’s those lights that are brighter than the stars in the sky. It’s those lights that create wonder in the night when you find Him. It’s that light when you look into the mirror.

 

You see that light over there? It’s you. It’s your time to shine.

 

“You are the light of the world” Matthew 8:19

 

I wrote “Wayside Up” to let people know where our identity stands. We may be surrounded by a lot of titles, but the title that reigns true is the one God defines us as -- His child. Whenever we are at the edge of the road leading to nowhere, look to wherever matters. Your light shines brighter than anything in this world.

 

Wayside Up

I’m pushed and I’m pulled under your rushing current

I’m broken and loved and sometimes I don’t even see it

 

Maybe I’m wrong

But I know you’re right

Here beside me

Through the heartache and broken days

I find you and you say

 

Even the stars in the sky can’t define you

Even the skyline below won’t show you

You shine brighter than the stars in the sky

You are wonder in the night when I find you

From the wayside up to nowhere

 

I know that all these things are temporary

I know that all these memories can’t be taken

 

I know I’m wrong

But I know you’re right

Here beside me

Through the heartache and broken days

I find you and you say

 

Even the stars in the sky can’t define you

Even the skyline below won’t show you

You shine brighter than the stars in the sky

You are wonder in the night when I find you

From the wayside up

From the wayside up

From the wayside up to nowhere

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