I’m a woman of faith. At the age of 12 God sought me and bought me and I’ve been walking with Him ever since. It’s not been an easy road, and there have been times I’ve drifted from Him. I always know it’s me that wandered — never Him. I have always
believed known that He’s near and wants to be as close to me as I will allow. I have always known, too, that the relationship — whatever form it takes — is also my choice. In the 32 years I’ve been a daughter of the King, I’ve never believed He left me or wasn’t aware of the trials I was facing…until now.
I’ve never been one to cry and complain over my circumstances. I’ve always been a roll-up-my-sleeves-and-take-the-bull-by-the-horns problem solver. I learned that from my mom. You want to meet a strong woman of faith? I’ll introduce you to her.
I’m not sure what has been going on with me to put me in this place of feeling I’ve been abandoned by God, but I think it has a lot to do with the feelings of inadequacy I feel towards God — I know I am the chiefest of sinners and don’t deserve one single speck of the grace He’s doled out on me for years. I’ve been feeling lately like God must have finally realized I’m not worth His time and effort.
I don’t think for one minute that the things I’m facing are any more difficult than anyone else’s problems and struggles. I just feel lately that it’s getting piled on in such abundance that either He doesn’t care or I’ve done something really bad to tick Him off.
I wrote recently about being diagnosed with a rare disease that is basically crippling me. One day I can be fine, the next I’m in agony, or I can’t move/stand/walk. The pain is always there, I just never know to what degree. I just found out it’s in my feet now, too. Sunday the pain was so off-the-charts that I stayed in bed most of the day and I ended up swallowing twice the amount of opiates I was supposed to take by evening. When I have unbearable pain I vomit, so add that to the fun I experienced all day. Oh, and the fact that I was a miserable, cranky pain in my family’s butt. Good times.
So I do my best — and sometimes my not-so-best — to carry the pain and do what I have to do regardless. It isn’t easy, but what other choice do I have? My family depends on me.
We are struggling financially. Some months we are out of money — I mean really out of money — well before the end of the month. I just lost my health insurance and didn’t know it and now we are facing medical bills we can’t pay. Forget about Christmas — I have kids that aren’t old enough to understand that there’s no money for gifts, but really, even my teens are going to have a hard time not receiving a few gifts, even though they know times are super tough. The landlord just raised the rent on the hell-hole we live in and is threatening to evict us for things that the realty which represents them is screwing up.
I pray constantly for God’s will — I ask Him to help me make the budget stretch and I work hard to cook creative, healthy meals on a shoestring. (At the end of last month, Atticus and my boys complimented me on how many creative ways I had made pasta that month and my heart overflowed!) My husband and kids never complain about the meals I make, but my step-kids have no problem letting me know when they don’t like a meal — basically every one I make that isn’t hot dogs.
It’s all wearing on me. I need a break. I mean, somethings gotta give. When the pain is unbearable and my whole body is screaming in agony and the expenses far exceed the budget and even mac-n-cheese has to be criticized, I sit and look at the bottle full of opiates — all 120 pills — and I wonder how long it would take after I ate all those pills till I felt nothing — and I imagine how that must feel. When I’m feeling the pull of those drugs, and the lure of oblivion, only one thing is enticing enough to make me stop — it’s not loving my husband or my kids or my parents. It’s just that it’s wrong. It isn’t what God wants for me — so I set the bottle down and walk away until the next time it’s too much to take. Hopefully I’ll never get to the point where I don’t believe it’s wrong anymore.
I suppose God hasn’t yet abandoned me if He’s still keeping me here, but it really doesn’t feel that way.
I don’t know what to do…except keep hanging out and hanging in…