Megan Oaks | @MeganCOaks
Hi, my name is Megan, a strong believer in Jesus Christ who struggles with trust, alongside many other character defects.
Every Thursday night, I have the honor to serve with a wonderful team of people in my home church through Celebrate Recovery - a ministry I had never heard of until moving to Clovis, and one that I thought “was not for me”. After all, I don’t have a drug or alcohol addiction, I’ve never served “real time” behind bars (although I have been handcuffed and held for a few hours, but that is another story), and I was not court mandated to attend. Why did I need to be there? What could I possibly receive from a ministry geared toward those hurting from addiction? That was my mindset until 7 months ago, when my entire world was flipped upside down and all I thought I knew, was quickly shattering to the ground in the fiercest way imaginable.
Before I go there though, let me start by saying I was saved at 9 years old during a tent revival held by my childhood church in Eastern North Carolina. I remember feeling an overwhelming sense of awe for God. Clinging to all I could learn and yearning to know more. For the most part, I lived a normal childhood. My biological parents divorced when I was very young, but by the time I was seven, both of my parents were remarried and both were beautiful examples to me of what marriage is. I attended church every night of the week, for one reason or another. Drama, choir, mid week service, youth group, prayer meetings. I was the girl in school who was borderline harassing her friends to come to church with her. My Mom would fill our family car to the max picking up and dropping off friend after friend to our youth meetings. Not long after this, not long after my family had become “that family” that even my non-believer friends would look up to, we were hit with a life altering piece of news.
Infidelity reared it’s ugly, unwelcomed head into my family and ripped us apart at every seam. My Mom was angry, my Dad was embarrassed and heartbroken, my brother was young but even he understood life would never be the same as we knew it and I was a mix of all those emotions in one. Angry that I could no longer trust the one man in my life that I was supposed to have full trust in. Embarrassed that my family was no longer “that family”. Heartbroken for both of my parents, for my brother and especially for what I had always thought would be. As a child, you place value in things you expect. You expect your parents to live happily until they’re old and gray and too deaf to hear each other argue anymore. You never expect to hear “we’re getting a divorce”.
At the prime age of 15, this news rattled me to my core and since the one thing I placed such high value in no longer existed, I decided everything I had ever been told was a lie. Out with my parents, out with church, out with living a moral life, and out with God. Over the following years, the girl I grew into was one I still have a difficult time reminiscing on. Sin began to fill my life until I was swimming in more sin than I truly ever knew existed. Lying, cheating, sneaking out, promiscuity (that was a big one), eventually stealing and dabbling in drugs and alcohol. Who had I become? Where had the girl who loved Christ and was filled with him gone?
At 19, I moved from North Carolina to Tennessee. I needed a change, and I thought scenery would bring on the change I knew was necessary. Turns out I was wrong. It didn’t take long until a boy came into my life and not long after that, I was pregnant. Romans 8:28 reminds us that God works all things together for the good of those He has called. Even in my sin and even in the sin of the boy I was quickly falling in love with, I believe God was working things for His good. It didn’t take long until that boy and I decided one sin was enough and our solution was marriage. A mere 5 months into knowing each other, just two days after my 20th birthday, we stood on the front porch of my mother’s house and swore to love one another until death parted us.
In ten years, we’ve grown our family by two additional children, lived in 4 different states and even had the privilege to spend four years in Italy. That “boy” is now an amazing man, serving in the Air Force and is still just as handsome as the day I first laid eyes on him. Even in all of our joy though, we’ve experienced plenty of hardship. Our greatest trial came just 7 months ago, when my husband walked out the door and determined he was done with our marriage and making it work. If I’m being honest, I was done too; just not done with our marriage. I was done with the life we had led for ten years. Done pretending we were in love. I wanted to truly be in love again.
I had failed as a wife and watched my husband, the man I thought I would grow old and gray with until we could no longer hear each other, turn his back and leave our home. It was the threat of divorce that made me realize I had been hurt and hung up by my childhood. Watching my father disappoint our family, and never healing from that pain; I made my husband pay for my father’s sin. Ten years of distrust. Ten years of doubting his integrity. Ten years of questioning where he was or who he was with or what his intentions were. Again, if I’m being honest, he is the strongest man I know for putting up with such nonsense for an entire decade! Hearing him say “I’m done”, words I’ll never forget, was the direct slap in the face I needed to see just how much pain I had caused him. Losing all control, made me realize just how controlling I had been. With nothing more to lose, I sought counseling, learned much more about myself than I ever truly understood and began the healing process that was long overdue.
Our trial was short lived by the grace of God, and after just a few nights, many tears and a lot of pleading; we committed to make it work. Today, as I type out all the nitty gritty of my faults and failures; I am grateful for the unwavering love of Christ. The Father who I truly can count on never letting me down, the one who will never walk out the door on me and the one who strengthens me to love even in the hardest of times.
Now, every Thursday as I step into Celebrate Recovery, it is not out of obligation to serve but rather to be served. To stand alongside my brothers and sisters who have been hurt and are choosing to walk their recovery one day at a time. When I introduce myself as a believer in Jesus who struggles with sin, it is not to remind myself of who I once was or who I fight daily against becoming again; but rather a radical reminder of who God has made me into today. Who I am now, only by His forgiveness and love. Today, I am 56 days clean! 56 days of fully trusting in the Lord and choosing to trust my husband without waiver.
Megan Oaks is Maryland born, North Carolina raised, currently residing in New Mexico and looking forward to retirement in East Tennessee. Married to her Earthly hero, an Airman in the Air Force and mother to their three "acorns". Recently enrolled in her first college semester at 30 years old and striving toward a degree in Rad Tech. In her spare time, which is few and far between, Megan enjoys photography, reading, following the Baltimore Ravens and reality television. Air Force wife, mother to three, and daughter of the most high King. You can contact her via Twitter at @megancoaks.
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