Monday, May 14, 2012

When Nobody Else Understands

Do you ever have one of those days when you firmly believe that no one else knows how you feel. There's no one in your world who understands what you're going through. Your husband is at work while you're dealing with the kids (even though you work too), your mom is sleeping because she has to work tonight, none of the other people you're close to have three rambunctious little boys.

Yeah, I had one of those mornings. It's picture day at day care. And you know I love pictures, but I never imagined this day could be so stressful. Ethan had to have black pants and a white shirt to wear with his cap and gown ( baby's growing up...sniff), and he needed like three pairs of shoes for his different outfits, Elijah got dressed, but then ran outside...with no shoes, Ethan couldn't find one of his pairs of shoes, Ezra was screaming because no one was holding him, Elijah was still missing, Ethan went to the van to look for a pair of shoes, someone moved my shoes this morning, Ezra was really wanting to be held, I couldn't find the labels for Ezra's food, Ethan was only half-dressed and still looking for those run away shoes, I realized I didn't buy anything for my lunch, Elijah was still outside somewhere, Ezra threw up (on his picture clothes), Ethan disappeared to wherever Elijah was, Ezra was glad I picked him up after I carried half the house's contents to the van, Ethan and Elijah were in the van, Elijah had snot all over him (literally) since he wiped it "off" with his hand, Elijah had poured drink all over Ezra's car seat, Ethan found those pesky shoes after I had told him three times to look in the van, and we finally left the driveway. You know, one of those mornings.

But we made it to the van and that meant that I could get us to day care where those awesome ladies would grab my babies and give them kisses after not seeing them for two days, they would feed them and make them presentable for their pictures. Just getting behind the wheel makes me feel lots better about my mothering abilities. This morning Joy FM played the song "Jesus Will." The lyrics say, "when no one else understands how you feel, Jesus will." This morning, I'll admit, that made me mad. I thought to myself, "Yeah right! I don't recall the Bible story where Jesus was working full time and dealing with his three sons every morning."

I was upset with myself for thinking such a thing, but then I thought about a note I had written a few weeks ago and stuck in my Bible. It says:
"I was listening to 89.5 today and they were talking about God's anger. I thought, "why would God be so mean? Why would we want to serve someone that was so easily angered?" After a minute, I realized that He should get mad at us. He gives us all we that we need and we're being ungrateful children by not listening to what He says for us to do. It's just like when we get mad at the boys - we give them so much, but they still disobey us. They want stuff they don't need and it aggravates us. Same thing with God - He gives us so much, but we disobey. We want stuff we don't need and it aggravates God. So it makes sense that He'd get mad at us."

So this morning when I thought that Jesus doesn't understand how I feel, I realized that He does, but on a much bigger scale. He's not trying to get us dressed and out the door for picture day. He's trying to get us to trust on Him so we can go with Him to Heaven one day. He's not trying to make us look good for a moment in time, He's trying to wash us white as snow that we can live for Him. When I get frustrated with my three children, I must remember that we're all God's children and that he understands what it's like to be frustrated with us. So, yes, Jesus knows how I feel. He's been there, he knows all of our burdens. We just have to look to Him for guidance to get through our trying times.

"Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee nor forsake thee." Deuteronomy 31:6

If God never failed Moses or Joshua, He won't fail me and my my little issues. He is with me and he understands. And that's how I can be the mother that I should be. Even on picture day.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Genesis 21:6

"And Sarah said, God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear me will laugh with me."

I'm laughing. Or at least I'm trying to.

On March 24, Ronnie and I had a date night. We went out to see the Hunger Games movie after he got home from EMT class. I'm not really sure when he told me, but we had a conversation about why he got home late. He had been talking to a classmate and when he told me the topic of discussion, I was more than a little shocked. He explained to me that he had been feeling the call to preach. I never saw it coming. He had been fighting, ignoring God, for a couple of years he told me. But when God calls you, you can't run forever. He'll get  your attention and He had Ronnie's.

I'm proud of my husband. I'm honored that God has found him favorable to be His servant and I pray that God uses him in a mighty way, but there's a catch: if he's a preacher, that makes me a preacher's wife.

Whoa! What? You have GOT to be kidding me! But God doesn't joke around like that. So here I am, a preacher's wife.

I actually told Ronnie that it was great that he had been called. But he needed a new wife. (Note: We believe that a preacher should be the husband of one wife, meaning no divorce, so I don't know what I was getting at.)

Ronnie told his parents, then mine. The response was fine, until they realized what I had already figured out - that I'm now the wife of a preacher. My grandmother felt the same shock. Everyone was cool with Ronnie being a preacher, but they couldn't believe, nor had they ever expected me to be a preacher's wife.

He announced his call at church this past Sunday. Everyone was really supportive and I'm grateful for that.

But there are comments about me being a preacher's wife. "You? That's a shock!" "Never saw that one coming." "You know you're going to have to be nice, right?" "You better treat him right."  

At first I was okay. I brushed the comments off. After all, I had had the same response they were having. But it finally hit me hard last night. Do people really think I'm that mean? Do they think I don't love my husband? Or give him the love/respect that he deserves? What have I done to make people think I'm such a bad candidate for a preacher's wife?

I know that I'm not worthy of anything that I have. I have so many blessings in my life: a great husband, three awesome sons, a wonderful family, a good job, a roof over my head...more than I could ever deserve. We all have more than we deserve and God trusts us with so much even when we're unworthy, but I don't know what I am doing that makes people think I'm a less than desirable preacher's wife. I know I have room to grow, but the comments started to sting.

I prayed and asked God to please show me something that would help me. This morning I was reading in Genesis and I read verse 6 of chapter 21 and I smiled. It was like God pointed that verse out to me and it hit me that I needed to laugh it off. Sarah was ninety years old and God told her that she would bare a son for Abraham, but she thought having a baby was impossible. She lacked the faith that God would provide her a child. But with God nothing is impossible and He knows what's going to happen to us before we're even born. Things may surprise us, but God is never surprised. If God had told me before March 24, that I was going to be married to a preacher, I wouldn't have believed it. I would not have had the faith to believe that it  could happen. I would have come up with so many reasons why Ronnie becoming a preacher was "impossible." But God makes no mistakes and he knows what he is doing. He knew that Ronnie was going to marry me and He knew that Ronnie was going to be called to preach. So I am a preacher's wife and there is nothing anyone on Earth can do about it. I'm human and my feelings still hurt, but I'm going to try my best to be happy in our calling, to laugh while we do God's work. And, in the process, I pray that my happiness in my "impossible" situation makes others happy as well. Maybe we'll all share a laugh together.