Hard as Nails Ministries
I am Seen

I am Seen

By:  Marisel Rodriguez January 8, 2021

I just turned 25 years old. I was living in New York city and my life was filled with gloomy nights and working endless hours. My mom and dad broke the news to me that it was time for them to move out of the city and find a new place in the South. I had to make a decision; either move with my parents or stay in NYC to continue to pursue my dreams in music. To walk into the unknown without the most important people in my life, was a scary thought.

But, to live on my own, to grow, to walk in the direction of pursuing my dreams also made me fearful. I asked myself, what if this doesn’t work out? How can I afford all of this? Should I just leave it all behind and go with my old folks? No matter what I chose, the common thread was fear of the unknown.

Into the Unknown
I prayed on it, dived into it and invited God into my struggle. I decided to stay in NYC where God had me and trusted in His will for my life even if I didn't know exactly what that looked like. I began living life on my own, found a place out east, still had a job and my faith felt stronger than ever. God kept on showing up for me, sending me great friends and family members to be my support through this transition that was so hard for me. Everyone has a story, and it's all valid in the eyes of God.

I kept on pressing in, trusting that these weary and lonely nights were for a greater purpose. I didn’t want to give up. I remember it like it was yesterday, I was working at my full time job as a special needs educator during the day and during the evening I had a photoshoot as a photographer. I came back super exhausted but told myself that I must work harder and save money. Sometimes, I didn’t have enough money to eat dinner, so I would fall asleep earlier to ignore my hunger. I never wanted to ask for help. I didn’t want to be a burden to anyone. There were continuous days like this and it turned into a very dark routine. Until one day, I received a call from a dear friend who told me that he had been praying for me. He expressed to me how much God desires to use my heart for His people and to share the music of my soul.

A Ray of Hope
Right then and there, the motive of my heart switched. I felt a warm light shine on my heaviness. Growing up seemed inevitable, filled with hardships and failures, but In that moment I was reminded that God sees me, takes care of me and remembers the desires of my heart. Even if I felt clouded and out of breath with life itself, God was with me all along, just waiting for me to let go and surrender. He showed me that there's beauty in the waiting.

The waiting wasn’t punishment but preparation for what's to come. Once I started trusting God wholeheartedly, leaning into His plan and not my own, doors started to open. My expectations were far exceeded and things began happening that I never could have dreamt up myself. Opportunities with music were flowing through like a river.

I wrote my life into a song and finally shared it after waiting for over 7 years.
It's called “I Choose You”.

It was a dark road
All I knew was to run from you
The pain was so strong
It wouldn't let me get close to you

Guide me to the light
I know there will be pain these nights
But I will be alright
Your joy will come with the sweet sunrise

I kept on running from the truth
Thought it would be good to do
The chains kept holding me down
Lord I'm in need of you

I choose you
Over all my wounds,
Over all all my doubts
I choose you
Over all the hurt
Over all the chains

I choose you over all...
I Choose You


Freed. Loved. Seen.

These lyrics speak to the many phases of my life when I wanted to give up, and fall for what the world had to offer, but choosing Christover all else is what truly completes me and fulfills my heart. You see, He sends us many signs that He is around, waiting for us to notice Him, to trust Him and allow Him to take good care of us.

Life will always have it’s ups and downs, just when I thought my world was being clouded with so much anxiety and what if’s, He came and reminded me to trust the process and to be open to His wonders.

The weight of the future occupied me, worried me down dry. But if I never answered that phone call, if I never trusted the process, if I didn't seek healing, I would never be where I am today:


The one who made the world, thinks the world of you and me.

Be blessed friends,
You are seen and so loved.

Photo Credits: "Photo a Day Challenge, January, 2 - It starts with G - Golden Girl." by Sunshine Lady ! is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 "Street musician" by Yuri Samoilov Photo is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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