During church today we were singing, “we believe in God the Father. We believe in Jesus Christ and he’s coming back again.” I do believe this is true, but do I believe it only in the times I think he’s good.
I have also been contemplating how God provides for every moment of our lives. I know he provides blessings. I know he provides and equips us for the awesome moments in our lives. But, what about the moments when there is no money for food, the laundromat and the times you have to pick which bills will get paid.
Is God still awesome? Am I awesome? Is this moment as much of a successful God moment and season, as when life is going smoothly. These moments are often covered in shame and guilt. Shame, because we are in the place where are to begin with and guilt for the same reason.
We all want to donate to the poor, but none of us want to be the poor. Poor comes in so many forms. Some are financially secure, but not mentally secure. While others are mentally secure, but not financially. Neither are secure.
I now believe God has prepared us as much for this moment, of what feels like helplessness, as when he provides physical jewels, a job, vacations or what feels like better provision.
How has he provided? He has provided food, he has given us physical daily bread. There are times when I prepare the food or eat the food, when I feel sick. Sick, because we bought it with a snap card. I hate that we even need it at all. Yet, for the sake of our kids, with tears streaming down my face, I filled out the papers for assistance. Knowing the judgement and glares I would receive. When I am in the check out line, trying to hide the card of shame the best I can.
A dear friend texted me the other day. She said they were having a clothing drive and would our kids benefit from it. Again, with tears streaming down my face, with a brave smile for my kids, we accepted the free clothes.
Again, everyone, including me, wants to donate to the cause. But, no one wants to be the one who needs the cause. We see it as “for someone else, but not me.” Sometimes we even know we are “them” without ever going to the clothing drives or receiving food assistance. We know it would make life easier, but the shame and guilt becomes too much.
During the last several months I have angrily asked God where he is and why our circumstances aren’t changing. Why he doesn’t ride in on his white horse and save us. I realized, today, he has prepared me as much for this moment of need as when life is smoothly sailing.
He has given us family and friends who love us, pray for us and continue cheering us on and watching for God’s amazing hand to direct our path. They, too, know that whatever happens next, when the miracle moment comes, we will know and everyone else will know, it could only be God.
If I cannot accept the blessing when I am in need, I will not accept it when we are in good times. I will fall back on I did it and God wants 100% of the glory in our story.
God has equipped me as much in this moment of what feels icky and ugly. It is only icky and ugly because we humans have decided it should be. God sees where we are and he knows where we are not. He has prepared us for the moments of what feels like, nothing.
It’s ok to be needy and it is ok to get help. I know you are working hard and you still are not able to make ends meet. It means nothing about who you are, it means it is a part of your story God wants to use. Take your experience and let God use you to add value to someone else’s life. Use it to encourage others to keep going.
I know it’s tough and humiliating. Keep going, don’t give up, don’t give into the icky, ugly feelings. That is not who you are, it is not where you will stay. There is hope, there is love and there is acceptance.
God’s got you, he sees you and loves you. You are awesome and you matter. God has prepared you for this moment of need. It’s ok to accept the love and gifts around you. Rest weary one, God has gone before us and prepared the way for us.
Thank you for being so open and honest during this post. This post hits home for me right now and is a great message to read as my mother-in-law’s parkinson’s continues to get worse. Prayers and hugs!
Val, I am so sorry to hear about your mother-in-law. It is hard to watch those we love suffer and struggle. We will be praying for your family as you look for guidance and peace in the days a head. Thank you for being honest and sharing.