family pic

family pic

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Crazy enough to handle a crazy life

I think it's time to continue on with my story :) I'm going to fast forward a bit to this past chapter of being a single mom.

I've shared before that I never pictured myself as a single mom. I had a vision of the family we would be, but eventually had to let go of that vision and accept the reality of what things were. I would complain to the Lord "Why me?", but deep down inside I knew that HE had equipped me to handle this season of my life. 

Before I even became a single mom I was always up for an adventure. God has just created me with a personality that loves change and challenges. If I'm honest, I never did things the traditional easy way even before I became a single mom. Part of this has to do with the way I grew up. My dad once took us on a vacation to South Dakota. We literally just hopped in the van and left. No hotels were booked ahead of time and we just took our time exploring on the way down. I also remember waking up on random Saturday mornings to one of my parents telling me "Wake up we are going out to eat for breakfast in 5 minutes". I would proceed to jump out of bed, frantically throw on some clothes, and run out the door. When I was 18 I moved states away and the prospect of not knowing hardly anyone excited me. I wanted to become a missionary and had no fear of moving to a new country and adjusting to a new culture. Most people would say "I hope God just doesn't cal me to Africa", and here I was hoping He would call me to Africa or the Amazon jungle. After having Carter, I drove up to Indiana by myself with a 2 year old and newborn. I'd attempt to nurse him, change diapers, and take my 2 year old potty at our gas stops. After 10+ hours of driving alone in the car we made it... with a screaming baby in the back and a two year old having a temper tantrum with an m&m stuck to his chin.

The list goes on and on.... Some of my ventures were great... and many..oh so many of them not so great. 

So as you can see.... I've never done things the easy traditional way. After becoming a single mom I would think "Why, God, do things have to be so hard?". But He would remind me that I would have a crazy life even if I wasn't a single mom... because that is just how I am. He had given me to personality to handle life as a single mom. And just when life would seem unbearable He would send someone to help me out. 

Now I can see in hindsight God's active working all throughout my life preparing me for this past season of my life. I just had to take a step back from the present and read the past.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Relinquishing Control

My name is Christina. I am a woman... and I am a controller. I'm throughly convinced that control issues and being a woman go hand in hand. Why you ask? Because of our blessed blessed ancestor, Eve. She had everything we long for... intimate fellowship with God in His actual presence and a painless sinless life in the garden. I LONG to be in the presence of the Lord. I still have spiritual fellowship with him, but there is a part of my heart that will never be completely content here on earth and is left longing to be with him physically. She had this, so what happened. She felt like God was holding out on her... so she took matters in her own hands and ate the forbidden fruit. This soon tied in with her curse...

"... and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee." (Genesis 3:16b)

Deep inside she longs for her husband to lead her and love her just as she is. So why is this a curse? It is a curse because it requires vulnerability. She has to expose her heart to receive love, which could result in rejection. This not only could result in rejection, but it must certainly would result in rejection from time to time because her husband now has a sin nature. So what does she do about this? She must take matters in her own hands.

She seeks to control her relationships to ensure love and acceptance. She manipulates her circumstances to prevent rejection. She puts a wall around her heart so she will never be hurt again. She carefully denies and hides the tender vulnerable areas in her heart. She must be tough... She feels weak at times, but must hide that because it will result in rejection. She reaches out in her relationships... out of manipulation to receive love in return. Overall, she must stay in control of her relationships. She cannot depend on others because she is not in control of how they will respond to her. She longs for unconditional love... but that is not something she can control... so she settles for whatever kind of love she can receive from her own efforts.

So yeah, that me. The past few weeks have just been filled with a tornado of events that I cannot control. Many of these events involved my children. Those of you who are mothers would agree that we want to be in control of everything that happens to our kiddos. But sometimes they get hurt and there is nothing we can do about it... and we long to take their pain away. In my sinful nature I have scrambled to regain control and have tried to take matters in my own hands, but the Lord kept whispering in my ear, "Child let go... let me handle this." I envisioned myself telling Him "No, they need me to help them." (Guess I'm a little more like Eve that I want to admit). Now I'm in a place where there is no denying that I'm out of control. I'm completely utterly dependent on God to come through for my family. Honestly, it is a scary place to be, but how awesome is it to know that He won't let me down. He knows all my weaknesses and ugly parts of my heart, yet promises to take care of me... if I will just let Him.

"For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11)