“I wish I could get to where you are…I still feel so hopeless, sad, or angry.”
Whenever I hear that I want to say, “Trust me, you DO NOT want to be where I am!”
I struggle a lot with things. I have moments where I feel like disaster is imminent…where I can’t possibly do this life successfully…when my sins seem too awful…when I can’t see anything good happening.
Days filled with many more tears than laughter.
But then God shows me that He indeed has it all under control…He is working and He is loving us. And I’m reminded that this life is not about me knowing the answers, it’s about me knowing Him. And it’s about my kids knowing Him too.
Today has been a roller coaster…and it’s only noon.
There are times when curling up in a ball seems like the best position to approach the day. If only I were like an armadillo with some outer armor so I’d be safe and protected.
Today is one of those days.
I woke with such hope for the day but heartache found me fast. It’s a thousand things and nothing at all…it’s the past, the present, and the future…it’s people and things, occurrences and utterances…it’s calls and texts and emails…it’s my thoughts and sometimes my actions and words…it’s just this life.
I can’t tell you what made the curling begin, but I can tell you when I decided that I wasn’t going to curl up in a ball and cry no matter how much I wanted to.
My soul melts away for sorrow; strengthen me according to your word! Psalm 119:28
Let me go to the beginning or at least close to it.
My youngest daughter, Jane, is almost 6. She is beautiful, fun, and feisty. She is also angry, defiant, and disobedient. The past two weeks have been very difficult for her…and therefore for me too.
Even at such a young age my little girl thinks deep things and asks hard questions. She is dearer to me than I can express. I was blessed to become her momma when she was 24 hours old. I loved her the moment I heard about her.
One of the hardest things for me since my husband left is the fact that my two youngest adopted daughters have now had two father’s abandon them. My ex-husband contends that he did not abandon us, but I don’t know another word that fits the situation better. That’s certainly how we all feel.
Both girls know they are adopted. They ask lots of questions and I try and answer well. Last night Allison asked me why the lady who had her in her tummy gave her to me. I answered, “She wasn’t able to take care of you and she loved you so much she wanted you to have a mommy and a…” and I thought, “Oh Lord! Oh Lord! Why????”
While in my head I questioned God, I whispered out loud to my sweet little girl how thankful I was that God chose me to be her mommy – that God grew her in my heart – that she is a blessing. I told her how I had chosen the name Jane because it means “God’s gracious gift” and I consider her exactly that. She seemed satisfied and we cuddled close. But the ache in her heart – and mine – remains.
The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you. Psalm 9:9-10
Two of my closest neighbors have shared that my sweet little girl has asked their husbands if they will be her daddy. The other night she and I sat on the front porch weeping because her best little friend has a daddy at home and she doesn’t. She is desperately sorrowful about it. I keep telling her she has a daddy, but she maintains it is not the same. Which it isn’t.
I don’t know what to do. I can’t fix it. And it hurts.
Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe in your commandments. Psalm 119:66
This morning we were having a relatively good morning when things just fell apart with a mean action towards her 7 year old sister, Marie…there were mean words and angry outbursts, discipline and prayer…but she is still so angry. I can see it. She is stealing herself inside and I don’t know how to stop it. I can’t seem to figure out how to parent my dear daughter. I feel like I do everything wrong.
Jane is angry at me. She asked this week, “Why doesn’t anyone like you Mom?” Ouch.
She feels I should have already remarried. And in her mind the fault lies with me. After all her daddy is remarried. I don’t have an answer for that except God’s way, God’s will, God’s timing and God’s man…but she’s 5 and that’s not something she grasps. JUST FIX IT MOMMY!
Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD! Psalm 27:14
As I sat this morning in her room while she sat angrily on the floor, I couldn’t help but ask God, “Why? God, why are you allowing my little girl to go through this?” I was angry, very angry, at God. I was ready to have words with Him…
I do not understand His plan. I do not understand why my children have to suffer.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:5
I’m realizing that I don’t struggle as much when difficult things happen to me. I trust Him. But I am struggling to trust His plan for my children as I watch Him allow things to happen and not to happen in their lives.
Earlier this week something didn’t happen for my oldest daughter, Caroline, that again had me a little annoyed with God. I don’t understand why things just can’t seem to work out for her. She is a wonderful, wonderful young woman who is consistently being disappointed by people and events. I DON’T UNDERSTAND. I don’t understand why God’s plan is to allow things to mess with her confidence. I just want one thing to go her way…one thing.
BUT I know that I can trust God. I know that the things He allows He will use for good in my children’s lives. I just don’t understand how and I feel a desperate need to catch a glimpse of how this is going to work out for them. I’m twisted in knots about it.
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. Psalm 42:5, 11
Even as I write God is reminding me of things that are going well. Things that are blessing my children. Ways He is working visibly.
For example, I have godly neighbors who love and pray for my children. The men Jane is asking to be her daddy are godly men who God will use to love and bless her. And my prayer partner and dear friend’s husband is going to take my Jane on a date next week. Another kind friend from church has asked about mentoring Caroline. I’ve been praying for someone to come alongside her for 5 years! I’m so excited I could bust. Those are good things! I forget those when I’m in the middle of things.
I forget a lot in the middle of my emotions.
But I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more. My mouth will tell of your righteous acts, of your deed of salvation all the day, for their number is past my knowledge. With the mighty deeds of the Lord GOD I will come; I will remind them of your righteousness, yours alone. Psalm 71:14-16
I forget that God has been faithful…God has loved us in innumerable ways…God has provided for us over and over again. I hate that I forget and get all mixed up with my emotions.
When Caroline and I were working through her sorrow and disappointment earlier this week, I reminded her of all the good things we have and we were comforted that God loves us and takes care of us.
So at the beginning-ish of this post I mentioned that I remember the moment when I decided I wasn’t going to have a curl-up-and-cry kinda day.
It was the moment right after I was sitting with my angry little girl and I was mentally yelling at God. I looked at my little girl and I realized that I want her to run to God and love Him with all her heart, soul, mind, and strength…I want her to trust Him. He is the ONLY answer to all our struggles. Where else would we go?
You know that difficult place of questioning God and not trusting His goodness? Well I’m not going to go there.
I’m just not.
At least I’m going to try hard not to.
I want to show my children what it looks like to run to God rather than curling up in a ball. I want to show them that God will bless us through our difficulties…that He will provide hope for us.
He will take care of our children and be all that they need. He will give us the protection we need as we stand firm…no need to curl up in a ball! He will lead us and love us.
Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long. Psalm 24:4-5