Sunday, June 10, 2012

Survival Mode.

Friends, can I be honest? Over the course of the last 12 months, we have been stretched in a way I've never experienced before. Mentally, financially, emotionally, physically, spiritually, relationally. All areas of our life at some point or another have been in a state of crisis, sometimes simultaneously. All have left us living in what feels like survival mode. And by that I mean, our eyes have been taken off the leisureness of life and have been fixed on just making it through the day or making it to the next pay check.

In the three years we've been married we've moved three times, had two children, changed jobs more times than I can count, mourned the death of Tim's dad, step dad and both our grandmothers, faced a myriad of health concerns and accrued a serious amount of medical debt. In just three years. Today I finished an application for government assistance (food stamps, medicaid etc.) which I started a number of times over the past year but wasn't forced to submit until recently.

For the past ten days I've been fighting a losing battle to continue breastfeeding that's driven me to tears (and into a closet) more than once. For the past three days Jack has had a fever which turned into a case of hand, foot and mouth disease. On his birthday.

I feel like I keep being brought to the edge of either punching something or screaming and pulling my hair out. On a lighter note, if any of you watched the show Daria on MTV years ago, you might remember that the dad's eye would pop out whenever he'd get overwhelmed:

I feel like I've reached this point in my heart at least once every day this week. 
(hilarious but also kind of miserable)

I'm not sharing this to complain or to ellicit sympathy or pity or charity. Far from it. I say all this because I realize much of what I post is a glossy, squeaky clean view of our life. Not that it's dishonest - it's just as easy for me to find the joy and the blessings in our situation as well. It's not hard to put a positive spin on our situation. Let me be loud and clear when I say that

God is good and worthy to be praised for all that He has done for us.

However, I know it's easy to feel as though everyone else's life is a cake walk compared to your own, especially if you read a lot of blogs. And I think we as bloggers like to fool ourselves into believing that our lives are truly as put together as the staged pictures we post convey. But of course, they are just that - staged. Set up. A brief moment of neat and tidy, just as much in the metaphorical sense as in the literal sense. Because you know that the time on either side of the moment the photo was taken a mess was either being cleaned up or created. Somewhere in that day I yelled at my kids. Somewhere in that day I left the dishes for another twelve hours. Or failed to put a load of laundry on for the upteenth time. Somewhere in that day I lost my patience. Somewhere in that day I wished my life was easier.  Somewhere in that day I cried out to God to help because it all felt like too much.

But you only saw the part where I briefly had it all together.
So this is me saying I don't have it all together.
This is me saying that life is messy and hard, sometimes agonizingly so.

And those happy memories and moments I post about? Those are truth too. Those are the ways God blesses me and reminds me that amidst the trial, there is joy and more joy is coming and that truly, above all, my family and I have everything we need because we have Him and we have eachother.

In the light of what others in this world are facing, what others have faced but also just because, I have so much to thank Him for. It is in having hardships that we are greater aware of His goodness to us.
 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 that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 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. 
2 Corinthians 12: 9,10

1 comment:

  1. well said may Jesus fill you with peacand joy and continue His providential care


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