Stuttering

God makes the impossible possible.

I was recently studying Psalm 134, the last of the Psalms of Ascent. The psalmist encourages the people to bless the Lord but ends with, “May the LORD, Maker of heaven and earth, bless you from Zion.” Something about the Psalm left me troubled and I finally figured out why.

I can bless God all day, meaning I can acknowledge and thank Him for who He is, but my praise pales in comparison to the way He blesses me. I can come to God with all that I am and surrender every fragment of my heart, my life, my family and my future to Him and still leave with more than what I gave.

In studying, I found this quote by Beth Moore: “The exchange is quite unequal: to bless God is to acknowledge gratefully what He is; but to bless men, God must make of him what he is not, and give him what he has not.”

Isn’t that truth mind-blowing?

He makes us what we are not and gives us what we have not. This powerful truth brought to mind something that I’d long ago buried and had rarely pulled out and examined. Something big that God did that I never thanked Him for.

You see, I grew up with a terrible stuttering problem. My little brain worked far faster than my mouth. My parents were extremely patient, encouraging me to slow down and take my time. They never shamed me but at times, the inability to say what was bursting inside me was extremely frustrating.

Combine the stuttering with a seizure disorder, and there was plenty of fodder for teasing during the elementary and middle school years.

One night, I was laying in my bed, no more than about six or seven years old and an image of myself as a grown adult flashed through my mind. I was standing on a stage, holding a microphone and speaking to a crowd of thousands.

Suddenly, I knew that’s what I wanted to do with my life. Excitement burst in my chest, but as quickly as the thrill came, it dissolved into disappointment. Even as a child, I knew that a crowd of people wouldn’t want to hear a girl speak who stammered through every other breath. For years I buried the dream and decided that God must have something different for me. Something more practical.

But I never could seem to forget that image.

What I didn’t realize is that God opens the doors no man can shut and shuts the doors no man can open. He made me with a purpose in mind. My never-ending chatter that likely drove my parents nuts and annoyed countless people, was what God ordained me to do before I was ever born.

And here’s the thing about stuttering…it disappears when you sing.

Whenever I grew frustrated, I would start to sing. And sing and sing and sing. Over time, the stuttering faded and slowly, God led me into the realization of that long ago dream of a frustrated six year old: I am now a singer, speaker and author.

Even now, there are rare moments when the stuttering will try to reappear. There are certain words or combinations I know I can’t say because it will trigger an avalanche of tongue-tripping. But that’s okay. It’s just another reminder of what God has done…what He has brought me from and how He can use even the weakest vessels for His purpose.

Much like Moses, God has given me what I did not have. The blessings between God and his people are not equal. We can bless Him and praise Him continually and He will continue to give and give and give until we are bursting at the seams.

God opens the door no man can shut, and often through the weakest vessels to show the exceeding power of His glory. Isn’t He amazing?

I would love to know…what has God given you that you did not have before? Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!

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