Saturday, November 15, 2008

Life as it unfolds...

It's been so long since I've actually sat down to write what all is going on in my life that I find it difficult to do so. So much of what I do Monday through Friday is work, come home and cook dinner - and nothing too fancy at that - and crash. It's difficult sometimes - having little energy for other things that are precious to me. There are days I really miss the old days of just taking care of my family and anticipating their arrival home from school and work, having dinner ready and a clean house, and just time to do things like hang out with my friend, Sheryll. (I don't have a whole lot of really close friends here, but, praise God, He's given me an amazing friend in her!) We get together at least once a week and I think we could talk for hours and hours...oh wait, we do! ...but we could talk longer if we had the time.

But, back to what I was saying, I also want to be careful not to have an attitude of ungratefulness. I know the Lord provided this job for my family for this time in our life. I can't even begin to imagine how we would have been able to pay for our daughter's wedding and the travel arrangements without this job. I praise God for this job. He knows our needs long before we do, and just at the right moment this job landed in my lap. Thank you, Lord!

Yesterday I took my lunch break really early - 7:30 a.m. - to help provide breakfast for all the soldiers in my husband's unit. It probably ministered to my heart more than it did anything for them. Seeing them in uniform, gun in hand (except for my husband, of course), coming to enjoy breakfast (some with their wives and children waiting for them) made me feel a part of something bigger than just life as I see it some days. It was nice, and seeing my husband in his element always puts a smile on my face.

Last weekend we were at a marriage retreat with my husband's soldiers and I was reminded of the life so many of them lead. Difficult. Often lonely for one or both. Many without Christ. I found myself very burdened for so many of these young couples. It was difficult to shake, and hard to watch when some would show evidence of a troubled marriage. And then Sunday I felt the burden lift as God reminded me that that's why He sent us here - to bring hope to soldiers and their families. I feel so inadequate. I feel so out of place so often, and constantly ask God to show me how to minister to them. It's not as easy as you would think! Often times they don't want the help, or the Helper.

Only Jesus Christ can fill the void in their lives. Only Christ can bring hope to seemingly hopeless circumstance. Only Christ can change a hard heart. Only Christ can restore the broken-hearted. Only knowing what it means to be truly forgiven allows us to forgive others. Knowing all that, and knowing what a beautiful marriage is because of the grace of God made me want so much more for so many of them. Pray for our soldiers and families as we seek to minister to them and share the love of Christ with them. Pray for us as we seek to live out the life God has planned for us and share His love with those around us.

My mind is everywhere...so many things on our plate and so much moving along so quickly. I honestly cannot believe it's the middle of November! It's hard to believe in a month and five days we'll be giving our little girl away. God is helping us to let go of her more and more...and boy can that be emotional sometimes. It's a huge thing to trust God with your kid's future. I wrestle with God often on this matter! I love her so much that some days I just want to hold on way too tight and God has to constantly remind me that she is His child. His plans are much bigger than ours, His ways are much higher - isn't that what He promises?!!

If you have a child about to get married you know what I'm talking about! God unfolds much to us during these times...and all that we must have put our own parents through. Can I get a witness?! There is fear and excitement all wrapped up in a bundle of love. All of life prepares us for these moments of letting go, yet somehow we're caught off guard. We've been raising them for years and years, training and encouraging them to spread their wings and fly...so why do we struggle when they say their ready to do so? I think it's all a part of a bigger picture; part of growing us and teaching us to trust God with those things we love most - our family. We tend to forget that another little family will be born out of ours! (That just put a smile on my face.) One day our children will be having children of their own and carrying on our Christian heritage. What a blessing!

A few minutes ago I unzipped the garment bag just to take another look at my daughter's gorgeous wedding dress. I know she will take his breath away on that special day. It's exciting, beautiful, dreams are big and life is unfolding... Life is just as it should be, and God is good!

7 comments:

LAURIE said...

I have missed you but I know how busy you are and knowing the big day was approaching I have been praying for your heart. A heart of a Mother on her childs wedding day - oh boy - I have been there and it is very bittersweet. Sad to let your baby go but blessed to see what great things God has in store.

God is bringing you into a new season - when it seems like there is a big cloud hanging over your head because of the stress and busyness remember that the cloud moves but God remains in the cloud.

Praying for you - Laurie

4xblessed said...

My husband and I have been talking about that exact thing over the past few weeks. How we know that God has planned our steps that has led us on this journey towards Chaplaincy. I am working on my Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy and he is finishing his Master's for the Chaplain's Program. We have talked about the different ways God could use us in so many different roles but we have lived the enlisted military life and understand how hard it can be. We know and understand there is a greater purpose to share the love of Christ to those who need it most. So many times people are hard hearted and very prideful but loving people and letting the love of Christ shine through us can melt the coldest heart and let God's love shine through. I thank God for such wonderful people as you and your family.

12-arrows said...

I know exactly how your heart hurts thinking of letting go of a child via marriage. It sure changes the dynamics and of your family. We have three sons who are married. Its bittersweet. We are blessed and thankful each one married a Christian woman. I have always known that they would leave yet it seemed as though the years just flew by. We pray each day that God would continue to refine and mold us as we parent adult married children, its so different from adult children/teen age children/adolescent children/and toddlerhood! My prayers are with you as you walk this journey over the next few weeks and through it all you will enjoy the moments and cherish them always.

Lauren said...

Laura!
I have missed you, but I completely understand being busy, busy, busy!! Hopefully we can catch up soon. :)
-Lauren

Sheryll said...

Oh, I've missed your blogs, though I have the wonderful privilege to get to personally visit and chat with you - you are a blessing - thank you God! I am so glad that we are walking along side of each other as we step out in this new journey of watching our kids get married and move out. I appreciate you!
Love,
Sheryll

The Parson's Wife said...

I understand that your life is kind of busy (after reading your blog) but am wondering if you would be able to share your thoughts on the chaplaincy program. My dh is considering active duty, has 4 years of USAF (18 years ago-enlisted, not a chaplain) and is currently a Lutheran Church Missouri Synod Pastor. We are both military brats, please email me at ilovemypastor@charter.net if you get a chance. Now, I am off to read more of your blog. Blessings! Shawn <><

Wilfredo Mora said...

am missing your great posts, but also understand all that stress...but feel confident in God who usually takes control over all our things even the little ones and those that we dont know or imaging how to deal with...just pass all your loads on Him. you have friends that are constantly praying for you including me and my family. God Bless you..and take it easy..Our Powerful God is incharge...