I saw the video in the post above on Jerri's blog and was so encouraged. I haven't written much on this blog lately because I have been going through a very difficult time.
Ronnie and I have been living apart for 4+ months now. In October he took a job as a CED in Paducah which marked the beginning of this long journey. He works there Monday-Friday and then we see him on the weekend. Selling our home and buying a house in the small town of Childress has proven to be no easy task. Add in with that two little boys who cry every Monday when Daddy is gone, feeling the pressure and loneliness of being a single mom Monday-Friday, my Paw-Paw being sick, the unstable job market in Texas for teachers and...need I say more?
Ronnie has been dreaming about moving back to Childress (and the land his family has there) since 1994. I wanted to move so we could raise our boys in the country and be closer to family (I have a niece and nephew due next month:) This journey has been hard. I have cried more tears in the last 4 months than in the last 4 years.
I feel like we are in the wilderness on our way to the Promise Land, but we don't know when the road will end.
Why is not knowing "when" the hardest part???
It is especially hard for me because I am a planner. I love to make lists and dream about the future. My SIL says I make her laugh when I call her in July to ask about Christmas. LOL!!! I don't apologize for who God created to me to be, BUT is there a point where a person can turn a gift from God into an obstacle in faith?
I am embarrassed to admit my attitude hasn't been much better than that of the Israelites. I have complained. I have felt sorry for myself. I have doubted God. I have been ugly to my family. I have never felt so alone in a trial. Ronnie and I are WEARY. My faith has been stretched in a way it has never been before. In 30 years, I have never had to trust God like this. I am asking God to make a way where there seems to be no way AND do it TODAY. And when my faith has been stretched to the max, I have had to ask myself the hard question, "Who do I REALLY have faith in? God? Ronnie? Myself? Our plans? Our TIMING?"
During this trial, I have taken a long look at myself through the mirror of God's Word, and I am humbled. How many times does God say, "Fear not!" I am humbled by questions like, "Do I really believe God is who He says He is? Do I really believe that God loves ME, hears ME, and will do what He has promised to do? Do I really believe He still loves me even when I am not so lovely?"
Do I really believe what I say I believe? Well, actions speak louder than words. Have I acted any differently in this trial than a non-believer? I am ashamed to confess I have not. I have worried. I have tried to find the solution on my own. I have been depressed, but I am so thankful God's compassions are new every morning.
Through this extremely painful trial (that is not over yet) God has taught me to
- not assume I know what tomorrow holds
- take one day at a time
- not worry about tomorrow because tomorrow has enough troubles of it's own
- BELIEVE IT IS OKAY TO NOT KNOW WHAT IS COMING NEXT (deep sigh). I think my desire to know what is coming next stems from the mind-set that if I know what is coming next I can control my life. I have been studying God's Name, Adonai. It is a beautiful name. If I say my life really belongs to Adonai, does it matter what is coming next? Do I trust my Abba Father?
- be grateful for who/what is right in front of you - my Nana always told me when times get tough to count my blessings. She is so wise. It is impossible to be depressed when I meditate on all my blessings - Jesus has restored me, my husband is an amazing godly man with a great job, our house sold, I have 2 healthy boys, my parents found a great church home, my sister-in-law is having twins, my brother got a HUGE promotion, I have already been invited to a Bible Study in Childress...
But, yesterday was a hard day. A house we thought we had bought in Childress might not be ours any more. After I dropped off the kids with my parents, I cried, prayed, and sang praise songs at the top of my lungs for a long time. In all my pain, I experienced God's love and power yesterday on I-20. I know MY REDEEMER LIVES. I went from sobbing to laughing. God is the ONLY ONE who can lift me out of a deep pit of fear, pain, and worry and turn it all into peaceful, confident, unspeakable joy.
I had/have an amazing supernatural peace. If we buy the house, GREAT! If we live in an apartment, GREAT! It doesn't matter. On the way home I heard the song, "My Chains Are Gone, I've Been Set Free" and I knew in my heart I was finally free from the worry and cares of this trial.
I called Ronnie last night and we talked about God in way we never have before. God is working in Him as much as He is working in me. We are growing closer to God, together. What an amazing blessing!!! I don't want to miss the glory of God during this time.
I DON'T KNOW WHAT IS COMING NEXT, and that is okay because God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. He is El Shaddai, more than enough for me. Deut 31:6 says that My God will personally go ahead of me, He will neither fail me nor abandon me. Jer 29:11 says He has good plans for my family. Romans 8 says God uses all things for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them. I believe God's Word is true for me!!! I am thankful for the valleys and troubles in life because they always bring me face to face with my Savior.
BUT HE SAID TO ME, "MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR YOU, FOR MY POWER IS MADE PERFECT IN WEAKNESS." THEREFORE I WILL BOAST ALL THE MORE GLADLY ABOUT MY WEAKNESSES, SO CHRIST'S POWER MAY REST ON ME. THAT IS WHY, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE, I DELIGHT IN WEAKNESSES, IN INSULTS, IN HARDSHIPS, IN PERSECUTIONS, IN DIFFICULTIES. FOR WHEN I AM WEAK, THEN I AM STRONG.