There are highs and there are lows.
Sometimes, even though you know the truth in your head and you’re trusting God to get you through, it’s hard. Things are just hard. If there was a get out clause available in the last few days, I think either Tim or I, or both would have taken it.
We faced some cold, hard facts this week. The sums don’t add up and the question, the doubt, has hung in the air. ‘Is this self-employed thing going to work?’ It created tension. It deflated us. Our hope wavered.
There aren’t enough hours in the day. Tim is trying to keep up with the work and trying to get new work simultaneously. Then there’s our bathroom which is still gutted and everything to be done. On top of that I’ve gone back to working part-time which is great for a number of reasons, but bad for our bank balance. We’ve lost our back up. Let’s be honest here, humanly speaking, the pressure is on.
We went out one evening to look at showers for the new bathroom. I’d ordered a bath a couple of days before. My tolerance for DIY stores is minimal at the best of times. This isn’t the best of times. We argued about the bath that had already been ordered. I ended up just walking away and sulking, pretending to check out the deck stain. We left.
The next morning we fell out over the car not being filled with gas/petrol.
We went to another store that night and pressed through, got a ton of help from the staff and chose all the stuff – putting it on a store card deal. Temporary respite.
I drove around doing errands in the middle of the week, crying out to God in the car in all the in-betweens. I was so sick of feeling like every nerve ending was raw; sick of feeling like crying all day long, but having to just get on with it; fed up with putting off my own dreams (what are those anyway?) and not seeing how anything is going to happen. Melt down.
I made a birthday cake that afternoon while listening to Christine Caine talking about fulfilling God-given dreams. Fun (the cake) and a little challenging (the talk).
That evening was Life Group at our house, meaning Tim and I couldn’t get irritated with each other – we weren’t at all that night anyway. We managed to laugh. How good it is to worship with friends though! It helps to re-focus. Someone had a word about dusting off old dreams. Okay, that was encouraging.
I’d love to say that we ended the week with a solution and a firm plan of action. We haven’t. It’s all one step in front of the other at the moment. From what I’ve heard, our experience of a fledgling business is not unlike many others. It is all-absorbing, hard work to get established and to work out a rhythm. It’s a learning curve.
In our case it’s shaking some issues to the surface that deserve some attention.
I couldn’t sit down this week and write something fluffy, not that I ever want to do that. Sometimes life is hard and working out our faith in the midst of it is messy. In comparison to many I know our problems are very insignificant, and we don’t ever want to forget to be thankful, but there are challenges we have to face. These things in our lives can cause us to worry and want to give up, but they can also cause us to look to Jesus for help. So we do.
We’re not quite in the dire straits that the prophet Habakkuk describes in the verses below, but these few verses are what I think of when I feel like things aren’t going quite as hoped. It reminds me to put hope in Him and not in the stuff we do.
17Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
18yet I will rejoice in the LORD;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
19GOD, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer’s;
he makes me tread on my high places.
Habakkuk 3:17-19, ESV