There was not one moment this summer when Mac & I found a good time to eat outside on our patio under the umbrella enjoying coffee & conversation. As soon as summer break released me from work, I began packing for our first family vacation. It was a beautiful & peaceful time spent with dear friends, but every mom knows that vacations are hard work! This was no exception. However, seeing our friends and visiting with our family in Alabama was worth every moment and penny!
Unfortunately the week we came back, my husband, knowing something was very wrong, headed to the ER and from there, our entire lives were altered. Having him home for the summer was always a dream, but not like this. After a life-saving procedure, complicated setbacks, and being separated from our kids for two weeks, it was time to come home and recover. You can imagine the challenges we faced with four rambunctious children at home along with a teething six month old.
We honestly wouldn’t have made it through without the support and prayers of our family and friends. My sister, Faith, and her family kept the kids. My close friend, Ivana, flew in from Florida on a day’s notice to help my Aunt Carol with our baby. Countless friends came to visit and pray with us at the hospital; Michelle, Margaret, Niloufer & Paul, Atesh & Mike, Ivette & Charlie, Laurie, Tacha & Annette, my sister-in-laws, Lisa and Kim, and two of my co-workers, Debbie and Ximena, came and sat with me during the eight hour surgery. My friend, Mel, ran errands, and my friends Allison and Michael picked up pumped milk for our baby, and my sweet friends brought me food and gift cards to show me I wasn’t alone. The care and support continued as we came home with dinners, a reclining chair from our friends Ami and Sean. And then my friend Cheri made a gofundme for us and a few friends may not even realize how much they’ve helped us financially! I know I’m not listing everyone who has loved on us, but please know that you made this time of healing easier to bear, and we will never forget it. I don’t know how other families would make it through without a support group like we have had. I hope I will be better at helping others in the future with the love lessons of servant-hood we have learned from so many!
But even with so many people loving and praying for us, depression was a real thing, cabin fever, insomnia, short tempers, and other complications threatened to steal our peace. Many days they did. Ugly tears…uncertainty…confusion, and so much more. And now another round of unemployment… while just a few months ago we had more than enough. Now, I’m trying to trust in God’s plan, but it is so hard! Are we being punished? Did we do wrong? Did we fail? Why are things so damn hard?!
Because. Life. No one is immune to this. No one escapes hard times. No one escapes desperate times. We will all face them, and it doesn’t matter our race, gender, financial status, education, religion… and maybe you, too, are facing these hard times as you read this post.
This past week, I downloaded the Bible App again and searched out this plan called “Trusting God’s Process” by Brittany Rust. And I’m so glad I did. It reminded me that trusting in God is hard. There are days when everything feels like it’s caving in, but God. I started to get panicky again last night, and the only thing I could think of is I can’t let my mind go down this trail. But God. One day at a time. He is not punishing us. He loves us. He has shown us through so many ways and so many people.
This Bible Study reminded me to pray with Scripture, and take one day at a time. When thinking about all that is ahead, I can’t escape the worry, fear, and anxiety, until the Holy Spirit reminds me, during hard prayers, that I won’t have the answers, and if I try to make it work, as I have in the past, I’m not truly trusting in God. All the ideas I have to make it through will not work, they will only lead me down another heart wrenching road, and I can’t go there! My family needs my husband and I to truly place our trust in God and let Him have the reigns.
So much easier said than done. But we are choosing to be faithful.
And I want you to know, Friend, when you see good things come our way, when you see our lives being transformed through the fire, it was because of Him. It was because we finally trusted Him with our lives and future.
I hope if you find yourself in a desperate situation, you will find Him, too.
Yes, there are consequences to making life happen in our way, consequences that hurt and lead us through situations God never intended for our lives…but God. He forgives, he makes a new way, and He will do it for me, and He will do it for You.
I am going to pray in faith, using Scripture to help me when my trust starts to slip away and my fear tries to take over. I hope you will, too.
See you on the other side.