July 9, 2010

Do You Ever Feel...

A bit like Job?

The last eighteen months have been wrought with one trial after another.

First it was odd health issues that led me from one doctor to another with diagnosis ranging from menopause, to lupus, to lymphoma.  Issues that still go undiagnosed. 

There was serious issues within my father and step mother's marriage that left us wondering if they would make it at all.

Then it was a succession of loved ones we had to bury, including one of my dearest friends and, in the absence of my own birth mother, the woman who was practically a mother figure to me.  This pattern of losing relationships that have been pivotal to our lives continued when our Pastor and his wife, mentor and dear friends to us and our children moved away. 

All along the way it was a series of little, unimportant things going wrong within our home which we have spent 8 years of our lives remodeling.  The washer, dryer, refrigerator, broken pipes that ruined the new drop ceiling in the basement, our entire water system (without which our water is full of bacteria) and more recently flooding in the basement (where we not long ago put brand new wood laminate floors down) resulting from an issue within our air handler and even a minor chimney fire this spring.  While they are nothing in the grand scheme of things, just the same they were things that had to be contended with requiring an investment of both time and finances.

Just the same, the Lord has faithfully seen us through each doctor visit and round of blood work, each home repair, and each burial with his constant love and mercy.  Not that there haven't been times that I had to take a few minutes and throw up my hands, but I have felt his loving arms around me each step of the way.

Two weeks ago, when issues arose within my extended family, leaving the entire family (with the exception of one brother we see only in passing) not speaking to us, I began to do the unthinkable.  I despaired.  Even though, I knew He was still with me, at last the enemy had gotten me where it hurt.  Investing in our extended family and trying to unite what is called among psychologists and sociologists, a dysfunctional family has been our number one goal in our many years of marriage.  To see all that fall apart and have everyone turn on us, was earth shattering.  I felt so heartbroken, I felt a physical ache in my heart.

And that's when, for a brief time, I began to wonder, what's the point?  For several days I found it difficult to pray.  Almost a week passed and each time I opened my Bible all I could do was sit and stare at the pages for an hour at a time until I gave up and put it away.

Don't get me wrong.  My beef wasn't with the Lord.  I knew the He was there.  I knew He was in control.  Yet, the pain was so overwhelming that I could not focus on Him.  Truly, I couldn't focus on anything.  But my relationship with Him is the thing that matters most and the only thing that will see me through this.  My adversary had successfully distracted me from that most basic truth.

My husband and children kept asking me if I was okay.  How was I feeling?  And around here that's a lot of asking.  Every thirty minutes someone would approach me.  The truth was, I didn't know and I couldn't put a name on the emotions that were coursing through me.  Despair?  Disappointment?  Depression?  I still don't know.

For days I moped around like that.  Unable to sleep.  Unable to eat.  Unable to face the Great Physician.  Saturday afternoon I napped for a while and then was awakened by a party at the church up the road.  The rest of the family slept on for another 90 minutes.  I grabbed my Bible and sat in my favorite reading spot and was able to really meet with Him.  That's when I thought, "I feel like Job."  My health, our home and now our family are all at stake.

What's next, Lord?  What's the point?  How will you get the glory in all of this?  That's when the peace came.  The total calm.  It doesn't matter what is happening, because He is in control.  He will get the glory and we will come out refined for it in the end.

Am I happy that my whole family has deserted us, yet again?  Absolutely, not!  Am I happy that after looking forward to my sister's visit for 9 months it has turned out this way?  Absolutely, not!

However, I am happy that I know the God who writes the finale.  The peace came to me as some verses reminded me of a great truth I learned some time ago.  These times of trial come to prepare us for something greater.  Therefore, as we struggle on at this time, even in our heartbreak, the Lord is getting ready to do something great!  Something wonderful!  Something that will bring glory to His kingdom!  And I get to be part of it!

And after all.  Isn't that the whole point?

10 comments :

  1. While every family has it's share of dysfunction, each one is unique. My heart breaks for you and I pray for continuing peace each day.

    ReplyDelete
  2. can you feel this gigantic hug I'm giving your thru the miles?!

    I love your spirit about this hard, trying, time.
    we've had times it seems like everything was stacked against us. but, thankful we know the one who holds our future!
    (Hugs)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am so thankful that He loves us right through the pain! I think that one reason God had him go through 33 years of life here on earth was so we could know that Jesus knows how we feel. He was rejected and pushed away by his family and close friends at times and knows how it hurts. During times like what you are going through now, I love Isaiah 43:1-5 - He says WHEN we go through problems, not if, He is walking with us and loves us. I am also grateful that He is big enough and strong enough to listen to our anger and frustration, hurt and despair and hold us tight and love us. Thank you for sharing some of your hurts and healing.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I remember there being tough times way back when I was in Maryland, and I am sorry that these dynamics have again reared their ugly heads. Speaking as one who is dealing with a rather unfortunate filial situation himself (and, as you well know, has been for quite some time), all I can say is that it's times like these that you are grateful for the love and support of those immediately around you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Kat,

    I am truly sorry for the trials you've been enduring this long days. Please know if you need prayer when you can't pray, just email me and let me know.

    I've been in that same boat like you said, we're not made a God but it's during those times that I believe the Holy Spirit intervenes for us and prays for the things we don't know what to ask for. Still lifting you up in prayer my dear sister!~

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

    ReplyDelete
  6. Life can be overwhelming, we we get ahead of ourselves and think we have control, that our sheer force of will change things. It is humbling and painful to be reminded that is not the case, but that is actually when our faith is renewed because we give up trying to steer things and just do our best to live this life. I'm hoping you're continuing to find your feet again.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh, Kat,
    I am so sorry to hear all that you have been going through. I can so sympathize with you. Lately I haven't had the heart to even blog because of the situation with my dad's health and my extended family. It is heart breaking and I feel such a sadness and heaviness about it all. I will be praying for you. Knowing God is in control is such a blessing, but there are still times of such sadness. Blessings to you.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi, Kat~

    We were just discussing Job this morning in Sunday School. I really like reading it.

    He went through so much tribulation in his life, but he remained true to God. I pray that I will do the same under the circunstances in my life!

    Blessings~
    Laura

    ReplyDelete
  9. And it gets more and more. But praise God He sees us through and is there for us to lean on.

    ReplyDelete