Laurie’s life hasn’t been easy, but through the struggled and the ruined wreckage, God has taught her some important lessons about trusting him no matter what you are going through…and she’s gone through it all.
Purposely. Your life. God’s purpose. Listen at onpurposely.com.
The things that we would’ve covered up, that we didn’t wanna talk about. The things that we thought broke us beyond repair are exactly the things that God’s going to use. And he’s gonna say, watch what I do with what happened to you and God will profoundly use us and our testimony.
We’ve all experienced it. You run into a friend from the past, but there’s something different. They are changed. Maybe there is a calm where there once was a storm. Maybe there is gentleness instead of harshness. There’s a new passion, a new life. What changed? Welcome to brought back to life, a podcast where we explore stories of ordinary transformation.
Hi, my name’s Laurie Hauser-Treece. I guess I’m here today to share a message about what it looks like to be in the midst to praise. What it looks like when we haven’t got to the answer. When we haven’t got to a solution, what we do in the midst and I’m there right now, I’m grateful that we just kind of had a brief conversation about I was scheduled to come in on in June and and share and speak to my brought back to life testimony, which I have a great testimony.
I’ve got a testimony that I’ve shared over and over through the years, most commonly in my 30s 10 years post getting saved, which was sensational and well wild. For all intents and purposes, I used to sing in a gospel group. And because of the music that we sang, which was kind of hip hop, a vibe, I came outta Antioch church and our pastor who is has now gone on to be with the Lord, Ken Hutcherson.
Hutch. Had a message that was profound and, and impacted my life in crazy ways continues to in his teaching. But we would go with him to speak oftentimes to prisons juvies. And I was the unlikely person in that group that our director used to say, this is what heaven is gonna look like. All colors all people and, and flavors and.
I was oftentimes the beginning of a concert or in a juvie center or a prison that our director would say, sister, Laurie, would you come and share a bit of your testimony and I’d watch just. Overt eye rolls. Like know this little white girl is not gonna share something with us. Isn’t it amazing that we don’t when redeemed look like what we’ve been through when God does a work in us it’s not evidence, you know, our scars are how we learn.
But aren’t evident to a watching world and I would begin to share my, my testimony that I won’t get into completely today. It’s a different story. But you know, at 10 I think is about the time that my life went dramatically left and in the midst of being the youngest of four, my parents getting divorced and ultimately a year post divorce. My three older sisters were with, went with my mom and I stayed alone with my dad. And. We had moved to Seattle. My formative years were in Texas. So I brought a little seven with me. That’s where I landed in so much of my music culture in my personality. But we moved to Seattle and there was a lot of inner city strife and we came right in the thick of that.
And so in the middle of my family coming apart and me being pretty alone. It was also super violent. It was either fight or get beat up a lot. And the first year I got beat up a lot and then I learned to fight. Sadly, it became a profound stain on the rest of my life. My life then was marked from then on unsaved by a lot of violence drugs, a 15 year addiction, chaos in mayhem. I was always super functional because of just my personality had a great career. I carried myself, I traveled a lot. I experienced a lot of wonderful and amazing things in the midst of inner deep brokenness and turmoil. Again, that was dotted with violence in my relationships, in my, in my life, I was the girl that was gonna go in on somebody if they messed with me or mine. It’s amazing to me to see that God puts strengths and characteristics and, and profound giftings in us. And immediately the devil comes in and distorts them. He, he sews into our lives fractures that try to break down. The appointments that God has put the anointing God’s put in our lives and he tries to disappoint.
He tries to dis dislodge or disengage our abilities and when I was getting ready to come in today, the scripture that came to my mind that the Lord had shared with me several years back in the beginning of the big fix for me was out of Matthew 13. And it’s the wheat and tears, parable, which is kind of a random scripture, but, but 30 says, well, let’s go back to, to 24. It says the kingdom of heaven is like a man who sewed good seed in his field, which is the Lord to me. God gives us these gifts, but while men slept, his enemy came and sewed tears among the wheat and went his way. So the servants of the owner came and said to him, sir, did you not sew good seed in your field?
How then does it have tears? He said to them, an enemy has done this, which is back to my story of the brokenness that we experience. And then in verse 30, it says. Of the owner, let both grow together and tell the harvest. And at the time of the harvest, I will say to the reapers first gather together the tears and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn. For me this is a profound parable that God then spoke to me several years back. And so let me now jump into the midst the right now and why I kind of think you and I, because we’ve known each other for a long time why I’m here now, this is a different story than I would’ve shared in June when I was scheduled to, but here we are.
And I’m in the midst. I have, I am stage four with an incurable cancer. It’s called Rhabdo Mayo Sarcoma. I was diagnosed stage three in 2015 and two years later, it went stage four. I went through the top of the protocol of all cancer treatments and it didn’t work. And I was given a two year maximum life expectancy and then prepared to die.
That’s like a whole story in and of itself because we talk as Christians all the time about that we know tomorrow is not promised, but we truly think it is, and it’s not, but there’s so much of scripture that I’ve thought was the case. And I’ve come to realize it’s not as the Lord in me preparing to die.
The Lord has shown me. That’s not what I meant. That’s not what this says over and over to me as I’ve sat with him and studied the word of God, it’s just different than we think it is. And the only way to get there, which the Bible has already told us to gain our life we have to lose it. We think that means something but when you’re given a terminal diagnosis, It changes everything. So right now I’m between you and me. And now all the people that are gonna hear this, because I haven’t shared this even with my family, I found another lump and I go in the 15th of this month and I hold right now before the Lord, what that means for me, because my cancer, the story that went with it. And I just used to be scanned every quarter, which was like, kind of Russian roulette mentally is that if the cancer hits your core, you have three months to live period, and that just hangs over your head and it changes the way you move in life. One of the big lessons that I’ve learned is to say what you need to say.
You’ll never pass this way again. And do what you need to do and say what you need to say today, because you may not have the opportunity with that person or in that situation to say those things, those words again. So, so don’t hold back the things that we need to say, the repairs we need to do. Probably more profoundly for me as a really outspoken, a type personality is to not say a lot of things.
The Bible talks about that will be accountable one day for every word we speak, I’ve been a person who’s been quick to share my opinion, my thoughts, my mind, what the spirit of God has shown me in this new economy is to not say things it’s not necessary so much of the time I’ve used my words without measure, and he will measure them.
And it’s caused me to be much more restrained in how I speak and what I say and who I say it to. Here we go with a bit of the, the story of of my testimony of in assessing my life now, which I hold very loosely because tomorrow’s not promised and I may not be here, but the lesson of that, we don’t know what the wheat and the tears are that we’ve experienced in our life until God is the one that defines them as the harvester. And this word out of Matthew 13, for me, was a little daunting. When I felt like God interpreted it for me. What I’ve come to know is that God’s word is the living word. People can tell us what it says, but when we open the pages of the word of God, he is speaking and he can say something different to me today, out of the exact same scripture than I’ve heard, or he’s said before, and in this to me, What the Lord had said was there are things about you they’ve been done to you or you’ve experienced them, and that you’ve seen them as terrible, tragic, broken shame, things that you don’t wanna speak about.
Things that you hope people have not understood about you or that you can gloss over. And in reality, what the word of God has said is let them come up together. I, in my wisdom will extract the tears and the wheat at the time of the harvest. And what the Lord said to me several years ago was it’s time.
It’s time for me to start pulling the tears in your life which was terrifying to me because I didn’t know what that meant. I was at a great place in my life. Worked here at CRISTA Ministries for 17 years. One of the, the ultimate promises that God gave me when I received him as a 25 year old. And had a radical salvation story.
I was the, I was like the whole Simon thing. The disciples were invited to be with Jesus, Jesus extended an invitation to walk with him to join him. He didn’t do that to Simon. Right. He just got in the boat dude just stepped into the boat and was like, okay, let’s go. And. Peter, who was still Simon at the time had kind of a wild personality.
And I guess that’s just how Jesus knew it had to go down. Well, that’s my salvation story. And we’ll talk about it maybe another time. but I’m so grateful that God saw the Peter in me when I was still Simon. And and continued to as I struggled and appeared to the outside to be a very successful Christian woman, a leader Personal life was a hot mess, but the promise that God gave me when I was 25 and got saved, that was very clear was that I have something great for you to accomplish in Africa. I was sure I knew what that meant. And then I waited and waited and waited and I’ve sung again my whole life. I’ve been a worshiper and most people assume that I would go on. A mission trip or something and sing. And so I got lots of those invitations and then I’d pray about it and it would, I’d be no, no, no, no, that’s not it.
And I kind of thought that passed me by, you know, maybe I’ve missed it. Maybe God forgot it. God is not a God who forgets. But God’s timing is mysterious to us and his waves are so high and so far above ours and in 2009, I had the relief director of world concern come into my office in the it department to ask an opportunity to do kind of a mission impossible situation, which was in one of the new regional offices in Gus beta, Chad north central Africa.
And they were moving the offices and there was a lot of transition that was happening. But there were only two people allowed to go into the country just because of the risk. And she was asking if the department, if a couple of my people could go possibly and do this infrastructure opportunity and get their technology going and do some training in this office, very, very, very remote office.
And my spirit just lept. And I knew this was it. I had a lot of pushback, cuz people are like, you you’re gonna go and we prepared for six months for this crazy trip. I took one of my, who is then disc desktop support, but Brian Presto is still here in the it department at CRISTA Ministries. And my staff had jokingly said, okay, Laurie don’t have too high of expectations.
I mean, you, you believe this is the full fulfillment of a 25 year promise, but don’t have too high of expectations. My expectations. I’m gonna like lead the prime minister to Jesus. I’m gonna, I mean, I’m gonna rock the country some kind way. I mean, this is, it’s how I think. And so here I am charged and ready to go.
What I didn’t know, and lovely things, beautiful things happened. It was a successful trip. I mean, gosh, Pin in it that it’s that’s the year that I was the employee of the year for CRISTA. Right. Because this was just like a no way kind of a situation, but that’s not why God took me there. Many great things happened, but the little superwoman Cape that I had worn and hid behind for so many years, With the tears that still existed in my field at the time of harvest and in a time of preparation for greater things.
The Lord took me beyond my medal in that experience through some pretty daunting. Terrifying dangerous kind of environment experiences. God took me beyond my medal. I had to depend on him in a new way. And I came back from that experience undone and with a lot of anxiety. And because of that, I went into counseling and it started a three year process of me, on the front end, thinking that I was gonna go in to deal with an anxiety that I didn’t know, which was uncovering pain and brokenness that I had covered so well for so long, my personal life was falling apart. My life was kind of crumbling under the facade for lack. Better word. I was very successful by the world’s standards, but I had a lot, I had a lot of brokenness that God wanted to free me from in that process, I realized that a lot of my failed relationships had so much to do with me. I was kind of the common denominator I used to always say, I’m just a bad picker. It’s such a crazy, like, thought that we attract what is so internal to who we are. And I was just picking identically to an interior mirror.
I just thought it’s time. And I took those things on. I, at my amazing counselors direction got into Al-Anon. I’m such a fan of Jesus and everything that works. use all the tools, anything you can get ahold of. Plus Jesus, but oftentimes in the Christian community, we think it’s only Jesus. The Lord tells us that he will light the path before us.
He doesn’t say he’ll move our legs. And there’s a lot of work on our part that God asks us to participate in. At any cost. I thought, I, I wanna get whole, I wanna get free. And for me, it was just the preparation for what was coming, which I didn’t understand. And so here I was at a place where I’m thinking, okay, this is kind of the prefunk to one day getting to heaven.
And he’s gonna say, well done, good and faithful servant. Right. And I’m gonna put my feet up for a minute. I’m at the age where I should enjoy things. My boys are becoming adults and. I’m finally in an awesome relationship and I’m healthy enough to be able to honor and respect my husband in the midst of it and to manage myself and to move differently in in my Christianity and my walk with God.
Like I have never moved before in this place and in the removing of tears and in the looking back of what’s good and what’s bad. It. Profound lesson for me that the things sometimes that we think are the worst things that have happened to us. Are actually God using all things together for good Romans 8, 28 comes into play.
And I think it’s misused often. People say, oh yeah, cuz God works all things together for good. Well, no, we have to kind of stick with the scripture. He works all things together for good, for those that love him and are called according to his purpose, not our agenda, but his purpose. So, so much of. The changes in my brain.
I love neuroscience, you know, that, and the more that we find out about the brain, the Bible talks about it’s in our mind, the battle is in our mind, it’s where the enemy has access to. And if I can take just a little side path here, I’d love somebody to rebrand the devil. I think that the best PR campaign from creation in the fall of man was whoever PRd the devil. So he’s too creepy to talk about. So we don’t talk about him a lot. Therefore he doesn’t get pointed at when we have problems as much. You hear people across. All walks of life. Talk about why did God allow this? Why did God do this? It’s one of the things that I said to my boys when I was given a two year life expectancy, I went and met with each one of them face to face.
And I said, I, if I die, I never want to hear come out of your mouth. Why did God allow this? It has nothing to do with God. And it surprises me. That people look at God, like he’s failed when he’s already said in his word, he’s in heaven. He reigns over it all, but we are here as sojourners we’re in the devil’s camp.
So why don’t we point at the devil when things go left, when things are bad, when sin erupts and we see chaos and disease and brokenness, why don’t people curse the devil. Anyway, I think that we need to rebrand the devil as what he is. He’s the destroyer and he’s active and this is his place. And we’re passing through God is the one that’s good.
God is the one that we go to and delivers us. But all of it’s not gonna be experienced until we get to heaven for now. We’re passing through the devil’s camp. Back. So I digress. The thing that has kept me going and the tears that God didn’t fully remove from my field were the ways that my brain changed by fighting a lot by physically fighting a lot in my year earlier years.
Definitely. My. Pre saved years because it’s allowed my brain in fight or flight to know how to fight. I’ve shared this a couple of times. I know I’ve said this to you before, but I’ve shared this with many young ladies that I’ve mentored. If I could just give a piece of that, that little attitude that little don’t push me or I’ll drag a fool, kind of a, kind of a mentality that I now apply to the devil.
The devil will push me and I’ve said this out loud and he just hasn’t figured it out. Cause it’s not his nature to be content he’s gotta always take more is he’ll push me into a place of discouragement. And I’ll drop my head. I’ll start feeling the weight of my loss and my struggle. And I drop my head and then he goes too far, something happens.
That’s just so extra. And I’m just like, no, he didn’t. And he crosses a line and now I’m mad. And my little fighter kicks in. And now, as I’ve said for so many years, it’s on, I’m taking off my earrings, I’m dragging a fool and that’s how I’m going to respond spiritually. Holy, of course, I’m not gonna do anything crazy.
So, I mean, nobody’s gonna get hurt here. but it’s allowed me in the midst of suffering. It’s just not ending for me. I have a promise now of a whole nother project that you know about The Legacy House on Lopez. It wouldn’t have begun. If I didn’t have cancer, we bought a piece of property for me to die on, on Lopez island.
And it was a gift from God, but it was in preparation to die with God. Reigning and ruling, sitting, knowing my day saying I have a different end, which today right now, I don’t know, but what I have done the Bible talks over and over again about putting a stake in the ground and the old Testament over and over when God would speak, when God would move, when God would show up in crazy miraculous ways. He would say, build an altar and they would name it, lovely name so that they would remember what God had done. And so for me, the legacy house on Lopez, I have put a stake in the ground when I’m not here my life and, and what I’ve done will make a difference for generations to come.
My hope and my heart and my mission is to serve others with a story that’s legacy building. The Bible talks about generation to generation. We have a responsibility. I have children. I wanna break the chains of generational destruction that I’ve had that I’ve experienced. I wanna do a work in my life that allows my children to not have to do that work in theirs and the harder that I press now and the more repair that I can make with them. For them, but before the Lord will allow them to go farther in their lives in hopefully generations to come. So, so it’s my stake in the ground, but it hasn’t come to pass yet.
We’re still right in again, the midst of this house, this ministry that I hope God willing will be my highest calling. And it will be the culmination of everything I’ve experienced so that I can minister to others and refresh them there like God’s refreshed me the place that then the active lesson today’s lesson, the in the midst lesson for me today is what do you do when it doesn’t stop?
We don’t get there and it’s not what we’re taught. It’s not, what’s commonly preached. It’s not what the church usually talks about. The same thing, it’s almost like a bait and switch, which is, you know, get saved. Your sins will be de you know, you’ll, we’ll be forgiven. We’ll be forgiven of our sins, which is amazing and true and absolutely accurate.
Our eternity is sure, but we just put a bullet on our back for the enemy to come for us. And depending on what you’re carrying, we’ll determine how aggressive the enemy is going to come for you. This is a battle. We are in a battle and it’s not flesh and blood, but powers and principalities. And we often forget that we, we buy into the happy, wealthy and wise.
It’s not biblical. Spoiler alert. It’s not, it’s not biblical Jesus disciples. Nobody ended. Well, nobody had a big house with their feet up and live in the Lavita loca at the end of their life. That’s just not how it works, but somehow in our culture, we think that that’s what it should look like. We think being blessed should look like the Western culture, whatever that is.
It’s just not true. And so. What I’ve come to is this is a slug fest. We are going to fight all the way out, and it’s only as much as we’re willing to risk. It’s only as much as we’re willing Malachi talks about, about our offering. And we so often out of Malachi three, talk about our tithe as just money, but it’s, but Malachi three talks about it’s our time talent. It’s so much more. And what God says is I want it all, bring it all for me, and then I’ll give all back to you. But what does all mean? It’s not what we think it means. And so by spending the last six years in God’s word with just he and I, and having God say over and over to me, that’s not what I meant in scripture.
It’s so much simpler than we’ve made it. We need to worship him in the midst. We need to pull the sword of worship out of our sheath. Over and over again, worship confuses the enemy. He can’t be in the same place as the presence of God in a place of worship, especially when we’re suffering, especially when we’re at the very bottom.
When we choose to exalt the Lord in the middle of being crushed, it’s like the scent that flows to the throne room of heaven of crushed pedals. I just have that in my mind over and over again. God says, I see that I know what that costs you. And so let me meet you there, but we need to stay in that posture.
God is good, period. No matter what comes our way and it doesn’t. It doesn’t change things necessarily, but it changes how we move in those things in the trial, in the difficulty. So for me right now, with my tears and wheat, I’m beginning to see night before last I pulled up, what is the difference between tears and wheat and, and I, and I looked it up.
Praise God for Google. They look identical. In fact, they’re referred to, it’s such a obscure parable. But it was a big deal to me, but yet I hadn’t taken the time to really vet it, to understand it. They look exactly the same. They sprout the same. They bloom the same, the characteristics, and even the color of what the stock and the fruit that’s produced, they look exactly the same until it’s time to harvest. And then the tears simply bloom they’re unfruitful. There’s nothing there where the wheat was. I mean, it was the commodity. It was sustenance in life from a biblical perspective. It’s time for God to remove tears.
It’s time for God to define in our lives what’s good, what’s useful, what’s productive, what’s beautiful, and what’s not. And I’m here to tell you it’s not what you think it is because sometimes the very worst things, the things that we would’ve covered up, that we didn’t wanna talk about, that the things that we thought broke us beyond repair are exactly the things that God’s gonna use.
And he’s gonna say, watch what I do with what happened to you. God will profoundly use us. And our testimony testimony is another gosh, thirty three hundred and thirty two instances in the Bible. It talks about our testimony and our testimony’s not just a good story to tell. It’s not a sensational thing to talk about.
It reminds us of what God has done, not just for us, but to the listener. It says. This is what happened to me. And this is what God did, but it reminds us in the telling if he’s been faithful, won’t he be faithful again? And so we can trust him no matter what it is, no matter what you’re going through. And trust me, I understand.
I mean, that’s the other lovely, terrible thing about having a ruined wreckage life pre God is that you can relate to people. I’ve done that. Oh, I’ve done that. And things that would’ve been shameful. The Lord says once I’ve redeemed, it’s part of your story. His word says that he’s comforted me there so that I can comfort others.
And so it’s what I’m gonna keep doing all the way out.
Narrator: We’re telling these stories of transformation so you can know and understand the power of Jesus in your own life. If you’d like to learn more about Jesus and how he can bring you back to life, visit us at onpurposely.com/whoisJesus.
And if you like Brought Back To Life, please give us a five-star rating and a review. You can follow Brought Back To Life podcasts on iHeart radio or wherever you’re listening right now. You can also just tell your smart speaker, play Brought Back To Life podcast. I’m Sam Kelly. Rebecca Beckett produced this episode. Our audio editor is Scott Karow. And thanks for listening to Brought Back To Life from Purposely.