Soon after building and moving into my new home, and having my son, I felt I had achieved what I thought would fill the hole in my heart and satisfy my craving for normalcy. At last, I thought I had the dream most of us spend our lives striving for and I was expecting to live “happily ever after”. Instead, I was brought crashing down into the reality that the dream house, the husband with the great job, the beautiful little boy I had been blessed with, were not enough. Even losing my sixty pounds of pregnancy weight and regaining my thin figure was not enough to make me smile. All of my “if only’s” had been met. “If only I can build myself a normal life”, “If only I can get moved into the new home”, If only I can lose the baby weight”. If only, if only, if only.” I ran out of “if only’s”, but still, the emptiness echoed inside. I was still depressed. I was still filled with anxiety about the unknown. I was still constantly worried about my son’s safety and losing another family member. I was still insecure about myself and my appearance. And, I was still lonely in a room full of people. I had everything on the outside going for me, but on the inside, I was dying. I was at the end of my rope, ready to let go.
One day, completely exasperated, the husband with the great job, put a pen and a piece of paper in front of me. “Sara.” He said. “Write down what will make you happy.” I looked at him and I looked at the paper and terror gripped me. I had nothing to write. I was a writer and there was nothing I could think of to write down. This confirmed what I had come to believe. That there was something dreadfully wrong with me. That I was broken and I didn’t have the glue to put myself back together.
Mercifully, the God that I now know, the God that loves me and made me perfectly in His image, didn’t leave me there broken and alone. If He had, my ending might have been just another tragic story on the evening news. Another statistic chalked up to post partum depression, post traumatic stress disorder, or any one of the “posts” that had been the silent enemies lurking in the aftermath of tragedy and defining my life. No, He didn’t leave me. He came in the form of Maria. Maria was my best friend, before, during, and after the siege at Ruby Ridge. He came through her faith. He came through her conviction and boldness, her assurance of her own personal relationship with Him. “Sara.” She said. “I know Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.” I just looked at her, shocked and stunned into silence. Where had this come from? I was the one raised on religion. She had never had any form of it. The powerful words that had just about knocked me out of my chair, were delivered by the one person that I explicitly trusted to be completely straight forward with me. Those words dogged me for the next few months, ringing in my ears, tapping me on my shoulder, chipping away at my resolve to stay far from God.
One particularly hard day, I couldn’t resist Him any longer. I searched for a Bible and opened to the only verse I could think of: John 3:16. “For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him, would not perish, but have everlasting life.”(KJV) I began to sob as pure, soul-cleansing love, poured out on me from heaven. At that moment, I met Jesus for the first time. He introduced Himself to me through His life-giving words, and I felt Him wrap His arms of peace around me. I was so tired of running from Him. How wonderful it felt to surrender all my failures and fears and allow His healing into my broken places. I sensed He understood me as no one could. That He had created me and wanted a relationship with me. That it was not about doing everything right, and He didn’t care that I had done everything wrong. I just had to admit it, release it, and trust Him.
After the 1992 Ruby Ridge tragedy, Sara Weaver has worked hard at overcoming her pain, deep depression, and PTSD. Out of that experience, Sara brings a message of hope and forgiveness from her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and is now an author and public speaker, dedicated to helping others through their own challenges. Sara lives in Montana with her husband Marc and her son, Dawson. To find out more about her, visit www.rubyridgetofreedom.com.