Can anyone else relate? Any other slow learners out there?!
This has been a booger of a year. People, I am emotionally, mentally, and physically exhausted! If I look back to last August I’m amazed at all that has taken place. We were in a hard place a year ago. Needing a job. Bleeding emotionally and relationally (and financially).
But hope was on the horizon. We had just heard from First Alliance Toccoa. After a couple of other disappointing church contacts from around the country we were stoked about the possibility of moving to Toccoa.
Of course moving was the operative word. Dang. We’d just bought our house a year ago. I loved where my kids were going to school. I had precious friendships. We’d just moved three times in the last two years already! SERIOUSLY.
Pull up the big girl pants and off we go. If I’d known then that we would live in three different temporary homes before finally moving into our semi-permanent house I don’t know if I would have gotten out of my bed. Some days I didn’t.
Throw in my mom’s physical spiral downward. When she crashed this summer I didn’t feel like I had any emotional reserves left to draw on.
On top of that throw in some disappointments this summer. I lack one semester in my college degree. Yeah, I know, “one semester, you seriously couldn’t have finished that two decades ago?” It’s an equally long story. Four denied job applications later and school bills I just can’t stomach, and I still don’t have the means to finish my degree. On a human level it’s frustrating.
And then my first-born had the audacity to go to middle school! He’s an awesome middle schooler, but that’s not the point. The point is I feel old! I find myself looking back and realizing I’m not the mother of little’s anymore. The seemingly eternal days of nap time and Wiggle’s are gone. How did that happen?! I really don’t know whether to cry or clap.
So – much – change in just 12 months. My head is still spinning.
So what’s the point? Through this long roller coaster of a year I have struggled with my identity. Circumstances told me I was in danger, I was a failure, I wasn’t good enough, I wouldn’t be happy again, I was worth little to God, others, or the church. Circumstances became my plumb line. They became my god.
Do you ever do that? Let that broken relationship, poor job review, bad habit, hard circumstance, etc. tell you who you are? It’s a huge temptation for us earthbound humans.
When will we learn that just when things get tough is the best time to dig in deep to God’s word? When we feel the temptation to pull away from godly friends or the accountability of church family, that’s the very time to draw close. If we don’t we will listen to the voice of circumstances, instead of the voice of God.
You [God] will keep in perfect peace
all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Isaiah 26:3
What a powerful promise! Peace for those who tenaciously, steadily look at God. Not circumstances, not our own selves, but God, and find our worth and peace there.
Through these hard months my husband and a handful of dear friends have prayed for and with me, have pointed me back to God’s word. Some days have just been hard. But I know I forfeited peace more often than I should have because I listened to the words the world uses to measure success, and not to the words of eternity.
If you find yourself there, press in. Listen to God’s voice and let him shape how you view your circumstances, not the other way around. I’m a slow learner, and no doubt life will give me more opportunities to practice these truths! But the more you and I practice, the more we learn to trust God and build our faith muscles!