Tonight, I’d like to talk to the single ladies out there for a bit. It doesn’t matter how old you are; if you’re a single adult woman, it most likely feels like you may NEVER meet and marry Mr. Right. I know, because I’ve been in your shoes!
I remember being in my early 20’s feeling like an Old Maid! All my friends were getting married and having kids and I wasn’t even dating anyone. Before long, I was the only single young adult in our church! Needless to say, this was not fun, especially when well-meaning elders would come up to me and ask me when I was going to get married myself. I would just smile and politely reply, “When the Lord brings the right person my way.”
Yet, I wasn’t all that confident on the inside. I was lonely, and I longed for a man who I had never met. I did date a little here and there, but became even more discouraged when the relationships didn’t work out.
I’m not proud to admit this, but I actually got to a place where I was angry at God. I felt like he was playing some kind of mean trick on me. I mean, I felt like the Lord promised me a husband and a family of my own someday. Yet, here I was, still single with no one around that I could even consider as marrage material.
I remember one day in church, the service was one of those where the presence of God just saturated the place. Everyone around me was lost in worship. I wanted to worship too, but I felt like I had a stone sitting on my heart. I just couldn’t bring my self to do it, so I knelt at the alter instead. I told the Lord “Okay, God. If this is how you want it, then fine. I will stay single.” I had a pretty bad attitude. I was angry. I was hurting.
As I knelt there, a deacon in our church came and sat beside me. He didn’t know anything about my situation. There was really no way for him to know. Yet, he leaned over and spoke to me. I will never forget the words he said, “Sis, the Lord would ask you a question. ‘Am I not enough?'”
At that moment, something in me broke. I realized I had been wanting a husband so badly, that I had put my relationship with God in second place. I had been feeling like my life was not complete and no, my God had not been enough for me. That is when I began to repent and I decided that God WAS enough! He was ALL that I needed.
That day, my perspective changed and I stopped searching for a husband. I stopped making that my goal in life! My goal was to please the Lord and let him bring the right man into my life in HIS perfect timing.
Not too long after that, the Lord brought these scriptures to my remembrance:
“Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favor of the Lord.” (Proverbs 18:22)
“Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” (Proverbs 31:10-12)
I received a couple of amazing revelations from these verses. First, it is not MY job to find a husband. It is HIS job to find ME! When I understood this, it was like a huge weight had been lifted from off of my shoulders. If I truly believed God’s word, which I did, then I could just relax.
Secondly, verse 12 says, “she will do him good and not evil ALL the days of her life.” That means, even BEFORE she meets him, she will do him good! What an interesting thought!
So these two passages of scripture assigned a task to both my future husband and to me. My man’s job was to simply find me! My job was to pray for him daily, even though I didn’t know who he was. This was how I would do him good before we even met.
I can testify now that this strategy of getting a husband does work! I was 28 years old when I met my husband while visiting his church on a whim one Sunday morning. I wasn’t even supposed to be there that day. I was supposed to be at another church, but at the last minute, my plans changed.
My Babe came to me that Sunday morning and asked me to lunch. That was the beginning of our life together. And you know what? HE found ME! God just put me in his path.
I just want to encourage any single ladies out there who may be struggling. Maybe you’re lonely. Maybe you feel like giving up hope. I can’t pretend to know what God’s plans are for your life, but I do know that if you love the Lord and are obedient to him, he has promised to give you the desires of your heart. (Ps. 37:4-5) I challenge you to take God at his word and trust him, and above all else, put him FIRST. Whatever (and whomever) the Lord brings your way, if you do this, I promise you will not be disappointed!
Babe and I have both been experiencing some significant anxiety the past several days. It’s Monday and I can feel it in the air. It’s a feeling of being overwhelmed and maybe slightly in over your head.
A few months ago, we decided to take on our business full time. He quit his job after 13 years. It was a liberating feeling! Not just because this is something he’s wanted to do forever, but because we knew it was the will of God. (This awesome story will be a great topic for another post!)
Now that the busy season is in full swing, things are starting to get both exciting and stressful. I stay home full time with our daughter, so I help him with office side of the business. This on top of the normal day-to-day of being a homemaker has put some stress on me too.
My workload has increased significantly. Just sitting her typing this post, I feel guilty for not cleaning something (but this is my devotion time, so I am making myself do this!) Grocery shopping, cooking, laundry, dishes, paper work, bills, errands, potty training, and the list goes on! My head is spinning!!!
Babe is also stressed. He doesn’t sleep well at night because his mind is constantly on the business. This further stresses me out, because I worry about him.
So how are we coping besides going insane and losing our minds? Goodness… the only thing I know to do is give it over to God. Pray and trust him and allow the promises of his Word comfort us.
Phillipians 4:6-7 has been a favorite of mine for years, and in times like this it is my “go to” scripture.
“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
The thing is, life is going to bring many challenges, and we are going to experience anxiety and stress due to it. We are human after all! But God’s word says that we can bring these things to him in prayer. We can bring our needs to him and be assured that he is working it all out. This brings peace that we cannot understand. Peace that only comes from God!
So today, I have given all of this anxiety to the Lord. I have asked him to work out the things that I, in my human limitations, cannot take care of myself. And I have left it all in his hands. It’s his now, not mine! So now I am going to get back to my “to do” list! However, I will be sure to give thanks to my God for his sweet peace that overshadows the stress that has tried to envelope me.
The day (November 19th, 2014) started out fairly normal! I went in for my weekly OB check up, and all was well… until the doc went to check to see what position Little Miss was in. Come to find out, she was breach and was not going to budge any time soon. Not only that, but my fluid was leaking. So the doc decided a C-Section right away was the best option.
Well, I sat in the chair and cried like a baby as he told me what was about to happen. This is not how I had planned it! Not at all! I wanted to have my baby vaginally, and I wanted to do it as natural as possible… No C-Section! I was scared and disappointed and excited all at the same time! I was going to get to meet my baby girl today!!
The C-Section went well, thank God. It was a little surreal. I delivered my baby not feeling a thing! Not even one contraction! Many women might think I was lucky, but I felt like I missed out somehow. I wanted to experience child birth… but it was a procedure. A surgery. Not a delivery. I did nothing to bring this baby into the world, but lay there. I was completely numb. Let me say again. It’s not what I had planned on or what I had wanted.
I was awake during the whole thing and my husband was right there with me. When my dear baby entered the world, I could hear her cries, and I cried too. They brought her around the sheet for me to see. She looked just like her daddy! I got to kiss her cheek. It was the most amazing feeling in the world, and I no longer worried about the C-Section. I was just so full of joy to see my daughter!
They told me that they would have to keep her in the nursery for about three or four hours, but then they’d bring her to my room. In the mean time, I could get cleaned up and rested. Because I had just undergone a major surgery, I was not allowed to get up out of the bed right away, so I couldn’t see her in the nursery. However, family members where coming and going looking at her and telling me how precious she was. Needless to say, I was very jealous, but the thought of having her in my arms in just a few hours kept me going.
Then the nurses came in and broke the news. Little Miss had fluid on her lungs and she was breathing too fast. She needed some help getting her breathing under control and getting the fluid out of her lungs. They explained that this was normal for C-section babies who are breach because the amniotic fluid was not naturally expelled during delivery. They told me that most likely she’d be ready to go home with me in a few days. I was disappointed, but reassured that it wasn’t anything serious.
In the meantime, I learned how to pump for breast milk. I wouldn’t be able to breast feed her until she was off the breathing machine, so I’d pump breast milk so they could feed it to her through a tube. After about a day, I was finally able to go up and see my sweet angel. It was heart wrenching. She was attached to monitors and machines and she had wires and tubes all over. She was so small. She weighed 5.13 lbs at birth. She looked so fragile.
My husband and I were able to hold her, but we had to wear gloves and masks. I remember just wanting to be able to smell her… but all I could smell was paper and plastic. The days went on, and no one could tell us when she’d be able to go home. She didn’t get released the same day as me as we had hoped. I was so disappointed.
Finally, she was off the breathing machine and they said I could start breast feeding her. After a few days, as she gains weight, they said we could bring her home. I was able to get a hospitality room so I could come and feed her every three hours. However, after a day, they needed that room for new patients coming in, so I was asked to leave.
That was a hard day. I cried and cried. I didn’t want to leave my baby! But I had to. I wasn’t able to come every three hours, but I pumped as often as I could and brought milk to the hospital several times a day. Needless to say, this was a very emotional and exhausting time for me and my husband. I cried so much and I had no appetite, and I began to dehydrate. This was not helpful since I was trying to breast feed.
Thanksgiving Day, I had my husband take me back to the hospital to the ER. I was shaking uncontrollably with cold chills and ached all over. I had a 103 temperature, yet I was freezing! What a mess!!! They ended up admitting me back into the hospital. The ER doctor said I had Mastitis as well as an infection in my incision and my bladder. They put me on some pretty strong antibiotics. Plus, I was dehydrated, of course. So I got to be at the hospital with my baby after all, just not as I had hoped.
After a few days, I was able to finally get up out of bed and I went to see my sweet daughter regularly. I decided after this whole ordeal that breast feeding was not the best option for me. As soon as Little Miss started taking formula instead of breast milk, she began to gain weight and was ready to go home in just a few days.
Let me say that I felt some major guilt in two different ways here. I felt guilty for WANTING to breast feed, because if I had just done formula from the beginning, we would have been able to bring her home much sooner. She just wasn’t gaining weight on breast milk. In fact, she was losing it. But after I made the decision to quit breast feeding, I felt guilty for that too! I mean, breast feeding is the best way, right? Thankfully, I realized that the guilty feelings is just all part of being a mom. They were irrational feelings. I did what was best and I now do not regret that decision.
So Little Miss and I spent a total of 13 days in the hospital. What an adventure! It was a time that I will forever hold in my heart as special, yet traumatic! I still do not really understand why God allowed it all to happen the way it did. I prayed for a vaginal, natural birth. I prayed for my baby to not have to go to the NICU. I prayed I wouldn’t have any medical issues that kept me in the hospital. Each of these prayers were answered with a “no.”
Now, I know my God is faithful and he answers prayers, so I know there is a reason for the way he allowed it all to go down. I am not sure of what it is yet… Maybe it was just a simple test of my trust and faith in him. But whatever it is, I’m just so thankful that my baby is healthy and she is home with us now. Every time I look at her, I see a miracle. An answer to prayer!