So, I have decided that catching up on the last months' events exactly as they happened is not what is important here. What is important is that I share with you - whoever you are - my life and what I choose to do in those difficult moments.
Friday, I was supposed to leave to go visit my family 15 hours away from here. I'd been planning the visit since a few days after Joe left for BCT. So, this past week, I began getting my things ready. I cleaned the house, did load after load of laundry, cleaned out my car, bought a GPS, and finally packed. Thursday night, I came home after having spent the evening with my sister in law. I was doing some last minute packing when it happened. I got this overwhelming sense of anxiety. My heart began to race, I was nauseous...it seemed to come out of nowhere! So, in sort of a panic, I picked up my phone and called my mom. A minute later, I was in tears trying to explain why I felt so worried and anxious about coming to visit. Then, I spoke with my dad. After several minutes, I was convinced that I probably shouldn't go. But, I decided to go to bed and decide in the morning.
Every night before I go to sleep, I read my Bible for a few minutes. Never very long, but I feel the need to read God's Word before I try to sleep. So, because I packed the Bible I usually use, I grabbed one I used in high school and college. It's a student study Bible, so it has little parts used for explanation and life application. I opened it to Psalm 27, I believe. I read it...and I didn't really understand much of it..usually when I read, I get some sort of understanding or comfort. This time, I got nothing. So, I glanced down the page to one of those life application thingies. It began to describe how David wrote this particular Psalm and what it meant. I skimmed down a few lines to a quote from the Psalm, "Wait on the Lord." And then I knew. There was no way I could get in the car and drive 15 hours to see my friends and family. Not when God was obviously telling me to wait. So, I turned off the light and went to bed.
Still denying that God was telling me not to go, I tossed and turned all night. I had a few wacky dreams. I woke up at one point wondering what my husband would want me to do. Would he really want me to drive 1000 miles by myself? Was he worried about me? Would he want me to spend the money? Question after question popped into my head. After some time, I heard what my husband would say to me. "Baby, I don't want you to go. We really don't have the money to spend. I would worry about you driving by yourself." So, I got up at 3 a.m. as planned, went to the bathroom, walked back to the bedroom, turned off the alarm and went back to bed. Then I cried.
When I woke up around 8, I realized that this feeling didn't happen to me instantly. I knew for several days beforehand that I shouldn't go. Normally, when I go visit, I get all excited and happy about seeing my family and friends. That didn't happen this time. My mom said that she could hear that in my voice too. She also told me that she and Dad had been very worried about me driving that far. My mother in law even told me that she'd been concerned about me making a trip that long alone. So, it wasn't just me and it didn't just happen in an instant. God had been trying to tell me for days, days, but I didn't listen. So, when I had gotten as far as I did, He had no choice but to make me sick about going. I'm just thankful that I didn't actually get in the car before I realized God was telling me not to go. Only He knows what disaster I escaped from. I am totally ok with that though. =)
Anyway, with all that said, I went to my church this morning. And, as always, it was amazing. Our pastor spoke on serving others, and what happens when Christians serve others the way we're supposed to. He said that when we serve, we get to see miracles that we wouldn't be able to see otherwise. You see, when we serve others - for example, teaching children at church - we allow them to see God in our lives. They see how we respond to difficult times in our lives, they see our relationship with God. They see God through those that serve, if we serve with a loving heart - God's heart and love. And I think that is why I started this blog. Not so you can learn something about me, or who I am, or what being the wife of a Soldier is like. No. I started this so that you could see, and learn about, God through me and my situations! I just didn't realize it until this morning.
See, here's the thing. When Joe left, I honestly didn't know how I would make it through the day, let alone 2 and 1/2 months! But, I did. How? Well, for the first day, I had my good friends from small group to spend time with. We went shopping, saw a movie...and then we actually went to small group later that night. At that point, just being with people helped ease the loneliness. Then, I read a letter Joe had left for me. He told me that strength, true strength, comes from God. I knew this, but I had never experienced it. The next Sunday, our pastor continued a series on the Holy Spirit. The message was titled (and this is paraphrased because I can't remember!) "you are never alone." Hello! Was that NOT exactly what I needed to hear?! He also told us, that by walking in the Spirit (having a relationship with God and talking to Him daily), God gives us peace (true peace), hope, security, and strength.
How have I made it since my husband has been gone, you ask? God. He is made stronger through my weakness. He lifts me up when I'm down. He carries me when I can't do it any more. Why? Good question! No matter what I do, He loves me. I could screw up every single thing I do...and He would STILL love me. Why? Because that's who He is. I don't have all the answers, and I never will. Well, not until I actually meet Him in heaven anyway. =) And even then I might not know. That's just the beauty of it all. Isaiah 41:10 says, "Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you. I will uphold you with My righteous hand." So, my day may totally suck and I may want to just cry, but God will help me. He will be my strength. That's the only way I can make it through the day (and night). My prayer is that through this blog, I am able to help you - whoever you may be, wherever you may be. Alright, I'm sure this post is long enough now. =)