I’m learning a lot about myself, life, and God as I walk this new path. I want to be fully aware of what God is bringing about in me and soak in every moment. I don’t want to miss anything that God is doing.
One thing I’ve learned about myself is that somewhere in the last fifteen or so years I’ve become a team player. When I teach anything, it culminates in a gathering of ideas so we can make a final presentation together; whether cooking, worship dance, science projects, a Christmas presentation, or even writing. I love getting everyone’s thoughts and ideas out of their heads and into discussion, and getting them all involved and working together.
My partner in life, my teammate, is gone. As I move forward into this life alone, it would be impossible to not feel the sudden emptiness of space all around me, to feel my heart break again unexpectedly at times. My love of the team is frustrated, lost, and confused. But there are times when I’m surprised at how well I’m adjusting to not having my teammate to bounce around ideas and share thoughts with and talk about everything in life for hours on end. My whole adult life was spent growing together with Doug. I don’t know any other way to be.
God is showing me how to enjoy this new life. There are things that I can do as a solo act that I couldn’t have done as a duet. There are places in my relationship with God that have changed—unexpected things. My heart had to share space between the two loves of my life, as it should in a marriage. Now, God is my all in all. It’s a big difference. I loved the relationship Doug and I had with each other and with God. Being married for thirty years, fully immersed in God, was the best thing for both of us, and it was all either of us wanted. But I love this new singular relationship with God that is growing in my heart. Both situations are perfect because they are both gifts from God. Learning to be alone with God is the best thing for me, or God wouldn’t have brought it into my life
The Lord is working his perfection in our whole family. We’re having to figure out how to be this new team. The kids are without their strong coach who gave support, guidance, and momentum. I’m still here, but I have a different style. Doug was incredibly strong. We can feel the absence of his protection. Where do we each belong and how do we cover his duties? Do we keep it together or freak out and run off the field? We may not all live under the same roof, but we’ll always be this team. How do we do that now? It’s another part of life that we will figure out as we go, and honor Doug by staying the dedicated team that we’ve always been.
Yesterday was a hard day. I needed my teammate desperately. I had one of those sudden, engulfing moments of feeling how alone I am. Then God reminded me ever so gently that he is my husband, my father, my brother, my confidant and best friend. And he’s the same for my children. The beautiful thing is, he’s all those things for each of us, whether we know it, like it, or even want it. How we perceive him and relate to him affects nothing of who he is. He is I AM. He loves. He cares. He hears. He answers. He tends to. We may feel none of his responses or hear any of his answers, but that does not change the fact that he is all that he is, and he does all that he does. We are changeable and we get off track, but he…he is I AM.
I must rest in the Lord. I must run to his unchangeable-ness as my world drastically changes. I must rely on I AM when bits of me seem to be pulled and ripped away. Sometimes all I can do is remember who he is and all he’s done for me. Even this is for my good and my growth. I am blessed to have this life. God is so attentive and he never leaves my side.
Do you realize that he is all this and more for you? We all face difficulties in life. God wants to bring us so close to his heart that in the middle of our biggest problem, we can’t help but see him and know that we are surrounded by him. He is our rest and peace. He is life.