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God has been doing some marvelous things in my life, and teaching me some lessons, but he has used the medium of “change” to do so.
I am in the process of either leaving or largely scaling back my participation in a Christian forum that I have been apart of for the last 2 1/2 years. I am not going into all the circumstances or reasoning behind that decision at this point, but let it suffice to say that it was NOT an easy decision for me to make. It is a process that began a few weeks ago and I made a decision to take “a week off” of my role as moderator and top poster. That week was amazing. It seem like my time multiplied and I had found a new freedom. I realized how much the forum had been controlling my life and how much I had neglected certain other areas of my life. I found that this change was something that I wanted to be more than just temporary. I wanted it to be permanent. I wanted to keep that freedom and become a responsible adult that had my priorities in the right place.
I am so thankful for that forum. I can honestly say that, without it, I would not be the person who I am today. I joined at a point in my life where I was angry at God and did not see how God could ever write me a beautiful love story. My heart had been broken beyond what I thought God could ever repair. The forum became a safe haven to ask hard questions, hear the testimony of others, and make new friends. I started to laugh again…I started to heal. Through this ministry my view of pre-marital relationships took on a whole new outlook. I began to have faith and prepare for the man I knew God would bring to my life, even though at the time I was unsure who it would actually be.
It was through that ministry that I met two of my dearest friends, Mary and Rebekah. I chose them to be in our wedding because they had seen me through the hardship of a broken relationship, frustration in a non-existent relationship in which I desired more, and through the beautiful love story God wrote for Russ and I.
After we got married, my place on the forum changed, and I continued to make new and different friends. If I started to name names, I would probably leave someone out. But even up through the end of 2008, different girls touched my life and helped me get through the first portion of this deployment. They were there to bug me on messenger and post silly random stuff that would keep me in stitches and make me forget the real world for a few moments.
I could continue to ramble on and on about this, but let it suffice to say that my decision to leave the forum is not a decision made in haste or bitterness. Rather I view it more like the end of a chapter in a book. Yes it affects the chapters to come, and the book could not be the same without it. But it is time to move on.
Today I put in my notice of resignation at the bank. I will be working through the end of February. Again, a very long story.
When I was offered this position back in August, I was unsure of whether or not I would be able to physically and emotionally carry the strain of working a full-time job. However the people closest to me encouraged me in this new adventure, saying they had faith I could do it and would support me. And that they have. It is only through them (mainly my husband, mom, and mother-in-law) that have seen me through many a rough day out in the workforce.
I am so thankful for the job that God gave me. I do not think I made a wrong decision by taking the job. God placed it in my lap within just 2 days of seeing the ad in the paper (as I was getting my oil changed…amazing how God works!) I am thankful for the financial provision that my working has given to Russ and I. I am thankful for the hours that it filled and how it kept me occupied. Honestly, I think this deployment has gone rather quickly as my time has been filled with working.
But it has also demanded much of me. I had no choice but to work part of the time that Russ was home on RnR, and that was heartrending for me. My holiday time with family was also short-lived and a bit stressful. After Christmas, my world just seemed to stop. It seemed that I could not carry on anymore. I began to have more bad days than good. My fatigue level rose. My health decreased as I was plagued with either allergies or a bad cold (still not sure). Over the months my church attendance had decreased as well. Sometimes I was just too tired to go.
As January progressed, I began to feel like I literally could not handle this kind of schedule anymore. I was tired of working, tired of deployment, tired of the guilt from missing church, tired of life period. And all of this began to wear on my relationship with my husband. (Although he reassures me I have been a good wifey, I haven’t felt like one!)
I realized it was time for a change. But I couldn’t seem to let go of this job because of the much-needed financial benefits that we were receiving from it. But after about a week-long struggle, God showed me through several Scripture passages (like Psalm 23 and Psalm 37) that I needed to stop relying on my own strength (which at this point is almost non-existent), and start relying on Him, the One who knows our needs much better than we do, the One Who’s plan is perfect, and the One who has promised that we shall never lack if we follow Him. He is the provider, not me.
I am still hoping and praying that God will provide me with a part-time job in the very near future. II am still struggling with fear and very anxious about the future. I feel like I can relate in some small way to Abraham, who was called by God away from everything he had known and loved, and its security, to a place that God would show him. He had nothing but the promise of God and his faith. I am encouraged, though, that if God can take care of Abraham, He can most certainly take care of our family.
And so here I am, having gone through a month of change. I would like to say that my spiritual state has changed a lot too, but as of yet, I’m still not sure that is completely the case. But I think these two big changes in my life have taught me a lot about faith, and I am greatly excited to see where God will take me personally in my spiritual walk with Him. I think that the timing of these two big decisions in my life has been completely scripted by His hand, to put me in a position where my life is, in a way, empty…where there is a void that He will fill. I am praying that God will “shew himself strong” to me, and that I might become the woman that He wants me to be.
I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted off of my shoulders, yet I know that the uncertainties and possible loneliness and boredom of the months ahead will not be easy for me either. I ask that you all would pray with me, and for me, that I would turn to God my Father in a way that I have never before, and that He would provide for me in every way.