2019 – Reflection
At the beginning of this year, God called me to start preaching a message on “Courage.” It was a topic brewing for some time but I knew the timing of its release was held in this year. I did not know how much I would need the topic to the navigate the year it found its voice.
The first few days of 2019 were spent speaking at a Global Awakening conference while attempting to hide my bulging belly behind baggy clothes. The Presence of God was strong among us, many people touched and healed. Mitch and I received a prophetic word from Paul Keith that we were entering into a new volume of our lives and that the seven years of suffering was ending.
Less than two days later, I began to bleed, which was the beginning of another great tragedy in our lives. Eliad Leo Luse died, our son. His heart stopped beating at 10 weeks in utero. We learned about it unexpectedly at a standard pre-natal appointment. He would’ve been twelve weeks, his size measured ten, and his heart revealed a flat line. That flat line …
Within hours of this news my body manifested its reality. The next few weeks were sunk in physical, emotional and spiritual suffering. Two induced labors, and eventually a surgery, followed by months of recovery from unexplained extended blood loss.
We lost another child to death.
Our second child is in heaven now too.
Too bad to be true.
Too painful to embrace.
To real to escape.
Eliad Leo Luse. Our 2nd child.
This was our first pregnancy since Ruby Joy, conceived in 2012, who went Home at 2 years 8 months old from a disease. We could not have imagined another loss, and yet we found ourselves in one, grieving again. Unbelievable. What about that new volume on life?
The loss of Eliad’s life was a piercing to the budding hope that had taken us years to discover. It was a piercing to our hope for family in our mid-thirties, piercing to our belief that our position of loss could change. It was a piercing to my spirit.
My heart broke.
My will also broke.
Somehow in this terrible loss, I found myself in the deepest surrender to God I have ever known. “This life is not about me, God. My life is for and about You. Take and use me, God. I am tired of parading my own desires. Have all there is of Katie Luse.”
And, ministry suddenly exploded.
Stage after stage after stage – I stood and preached.
Well … at times I sat in a chair and preached, for I could not stand.
Holy Spirit rushed into the room at the sound of my voice.
People were saved, healed and delivered.
Doors flung open.
Mitch quit his job.
We dove into ministry together.
Whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will find it. I started living this in a way I had never known it before. Absolutely terrifying, absolutely liberating, absolutely the heart of the Gospel. Die to live. Give to gain. Sow to reap. For what value is our commitment to Jesus if we are not in practice all His?
At last, I was truly all His. Alive for One.
I fought hard to be courageous and continue serving God with a broken spirit.
And, I discovered in the midst of it that public favor, I was unwell.
So, I sought help.
Tried counseling, it failed.
Tried processing, it failed.
Tried writing, it failed.
Tried pressing on, it failed.
Tried ConnectUp, and it worked.
I began to heal. And once again, healing was a choice, hard work, and a bad ass process. As I healed I found myself in the most liberated state of being, holding nothing but Jesus and racing forward into the call of God. During the surgery when Eliad was removed lifeless, I had a vision of God implanting the world into my womb. I began to embrace, “The world for God” as my trumpet call from that experience.
June rolled around and I felt unleashed from constant grief, my heart now healing, fortitude emerging. I felt gratified with my ministry family, mothering the people who are making their home with us, fortified in my call to Mother for God.
Courage to heal.
Courage to preach while hurting.
Courage to get help when I needed it.
Courage to face personal opposition in ministry, oh the tails!
Courage to build a new leadership infrastructure for ConnectUp.
Courage to let go of ownership of the Jesus Theater.
Courage to dare to get pregnant again.
August dawned and I found myself, for the first time in my life, with the desire for a baby. “I want a baby.” Many would assume it was my position for the last decade given our story, but honestly not so. Not my childhood dream, not my pre-emptive decision before Ruby Joy, not my desire or aspiration in life – Mitch’s – yes – but not mine.
I wanted a baby.
A baby came.
I learned the baby was with me, cognitively.
And then the pregnancy moved in like a bomb that has yet to stop exploding. I was not suffering from June-September, a rare find in this short life, a free run. My norm has been private suffering and public glory for a long time. I had a break from that, my private held joys of its own, my wounds no longer raw. Too brief.
Suddenly, nausea and vomiting every day, the experience of which made it impossible for me to celebrate what was happening or think clearly. Literal misery, every single day. A loss of self, a loss of momentum, a loss of clarity, a loss of my trail.
I am only now emerging from that roller coaster of a life, the first-trimester dungeon. Barely walking, uncertain of my internal reality, unclear as to who I am and what is happening. All I know is that I spent the last three months vomiting.
And now, it’s 2020.
Courage, dear heart.
It’s now 2020.
Katie Luse is a speaker and writer who is passionate about navigating life with eyes on a hunt for beauty.