This is hard. I keep hearing God tell me to share what I’m walking through as I’m walking through it, and don’t wait to figure it out. It’s hard to do because I do not in any way believe it’s helpful for me to vent or rant. I try to never focus on bad stuff and difficult circumstances, even if they’re what I face every day. I want to acknowledge them, but keep my focus on God. I want to learn from Peter and not let my concentration fall from the face of Jesus to the thrashing water at my feet. This is hard because I don’t like it, and I feel like it’s not going to help anyone; and what’s the purpose of writing something that won’t help anyone? Or at the very least, what’s the good of posting it? For some reason known only to God at this point, I have to write it and I have to post it.
Everyone says we should be “realistic” about hardships, and I agree; but what exactly does realistic mean? While it may be a fact that our bills are two months behind, the reality is that God is our provider and that he hasn’t forgotten us. We live in better conditions than people we see every day. It may be a fact that we don’t make enough money between the four of us to meet the basic bills each month; but the reality is that we are all employed. The reality is that God brought this job to me. I didn’t apply for it. A placement agency rep saw my resume and contacted me. This is what I mean. I see the work of God in my life, in my family’s life, and I get excited for all he’s doing. That’s what I want to focus on, but each month my eyes turn to the facts of our bills and lack of income.
At any moment in time, the facts of our situation are what they are. At every moment, I have to choose whether to face them with unbearable dread or as an exciting adventure. I do well until it gets down to the wire. I am frustrated that in all of life, this is my biggest hurdle. It’s like a double edged sword. One side is the lack of reasonable, reliable, consistent income; the other side is the inability to separate money from fear. I am so sick of that fear!
I don’t like the word hate, but I hate this! I hate that I’ve actively been trying to get over this issue for so many years. I hate that I should have conquered it by now. I hate that I allow fear to steal my joy. I hate that because money is almost synonymous with fear and nausea, my life is like a paddle ball, with money coming and going, but never settling down and always bouncing away. I know that my mindset needs a major breakthrough. I know that I know that I know that this is the change that must happen. And despite trying and failing year after year after year, I know it’s possible. God has been putting his finger on this area because he’s bringing about the change in me.
Do you realize that I had less fear last year dealing with cancer and losing Doug? How crazy is that? There were times when fear rushed through me like ice water washing my bones, but I was always able to retreat to my hiding place in God. I cried, I sobbed, I wanted to run but there was nowhere to go; but always, I could sink into the immenseness that God is, and know that I was held. Last year, with its cancer and heartache and death, was a beautiful, intimate journey with God. Joy, peace, love, and strength were our companions. It wasn’t always harmonious and never easy, but there is nothing like being hidden in the Father. Doug and I were able to go there together, and perhaps that is the biggest blessing of all.
All that we faced last year did not have me in its grip the way this stupid financial fear does. That also frustrates me. How can I have faced that and come through stronger and more convinced of God’s goodness and kindness, and be crippled by this? I want this breakthrough. I want this part of my journey to be done. Its time to move forward. I want to see money problems and any fear of money only in my rear view mirror.
I don’t know how sharing this problem can help anyone when I have no solution to share, but here it is. All I have is this verse that keeps repeating in my mind.
“My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and give praise.”