My name is Fran Maynard. I have been married for 11 years to my beloved and I am a mom to three beautiful little ones. I am also a South Florida girl newly moved to Nashville figuring out this southern way of life. My heart’s desire is to encourage others as I share my story about a God who restores hurts and heals hearts. I share so that others may know that healing and freedom after tragedy do exist. From a heart that needed to know-I share so others may know there is no place God’s love and grace cannot reach.
To say that I had a dysfunctional childhood is undoubtedly an understatement. I was abandoned, raised by addicts, moved from place to place and school to school, and after my parents divorced, one of my step-dads was abusive.
That is a very abridged version of my childhood. Most of the time I had to detach from my feelings so that I could survive emotionally. Because of my brokenness I spent the first stages of my young adulthood not caring much about myself and making poor choices.
I searched high and low in this world trying to fill the hole I was internally feeling but nothing could satisfy it. By God’s grace and the slow nudging of our Lord pursuing my heart, I began to suspect that the God I had been hearing about may be the ONE thing that would quench my thirst.
You see, at 27 years old I had to say goodbye to my Dad who passed away from liver cancer. I was crushed. And as a nonbeliever, I didn’t have hope that anything good could possibly come from this. But it was during my mourning, through my stepmom and family, that I felt the love of Jesus like nothing I had ever felt before.
Maybe you know someone who radiates the love of Jesus. When you’re around this person you know they’ve spent time with Him because His love and peace pour out of their very being.
This is what I felt from my stepmom. She loved me and tenderly cared for me, meeting me in my brokenness even though she herself had just lost her husband. It was by God’s grace, about 2 years later I gave my life to the Lord.
From the outside looking in, friends might have assumed I was doing well, but even after I came to know the Lord, parts of my past still distressed me. I would often question why I wasn’t completely free and why sometimes my past would rear its ugly head again with feelings of shame and uncertainty.
As it says in Philippians 2:12-13 work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. The process of working out the gospel in my life has and will continue to be a part of my salvation story. This can be a beautiful, albeit painful at times, but a freeing journey.
I am here to say, by God’s Grace we can be set free. This doesn’t mean our lives are perfect or that we are perfected but that we are no longer BOUND or DEFINED by our past.
You see, my restoration journey involves allowing Jesus’s limitless love to enter into the depths of my pain so that He can heal, comfort, and forgive in a way only He is capable of. And when He does just that, there is true healing from the inside out.
There is NO place God’s love cannot reach, if you are willing to let Him.
You can read more from Fran on her blog, What Love Has Done.