I was looking forward to 2018 with great expectations. This is what I wrote in my journal about the coming year.
The Best is Yet to Come
Best Year Yet
When the New Year arrived, it came in a way that I didn’t expect. During January and February I became very discouraged. Three major sorrows had come upon me.
Sorrow #1 – I felt sicker than I ever had in my life
I discovered that I was carrying a new child of destiny in my womb. It was a dream come true, and I was elated! I felt wonderful with my last pregnancy, so I thought this one would be even better. Wrong! I had never felt so weird and nauseous before. I had never thrown up so much before! I have never had hot flashes and cold chills before.
When I believed that 2018 would be the year that I would become an eagle, I imagined writing more. So many beautiful God stories were in my heart, crying out to be crafted into words. Maybe I would even put together a manuscript and work on a book! For Christmas my husband and children surprised me with a new laptop…OF MY VERY OWN! I was so surprised and excited!
I also thought I would be able to be more involved at church. Oh, all the beautiful times of prayer and worship and God encounters that awaited me!
Yet January and February found me sitting on the sofa or sleeping in my bed with a weak body and a fuzzy brain. It was hard to think about anything except how to avoid throwing up again. I tried to write, but I couldn’t. Sitting at the computer even for a few minutes made me feel even sicker! (It still does so this article was a bit of a struggle to produce.) I didn’t go to church at all.
Sorrow #2 – Finances
God was going do wonderful things in our finances this year. I was sure of it! Early in the New Year Chris got promoted to full-time at UPS. This was amazing, happening more quickly than usual. However, it didn’t play out so well in real life. First of all, peak was over, so his hours went from 70 hrs to 50-55 hrs a week. That is normal, just life at UPS. However, because of a rule that says all full-time employees have to be paid for at least 8 hours each day they are called in to work, Chris lost the opportunity to pick up 4 hours of air-rate overtime on Saturdays. This had a significant impact on each paycheck. In addition, full-time employees have to pay more union dues. We had less instead of more, and it was feeling like a struggle again.
Sorrow #3 – Lack of Healing
It has been difficult for me to believe in miraculous healing. I do believe theoretically, but I just haven’t had much experience in my own life. This year I felt faith arising! Perhaps this was the time that I would see healing with my own eyes! We were planning a double foot surgery for Ashlyn, but what if God would heal her first?
I took Ashlyn to a healing room. It was lovely, and the people were beautiful, and I felt the goodness of God. Prayers were prayed, but nothing happened with Ashlyn that I could see.
They also prayed for me for two specific health problems. The following week those two issues became significantly worse. Talk about being discouraged!
One of those issues was varicose veins. I had bad veins in my right leg since my 4th pregnancy which was 14 years ago. 14 years of no shorts, no dresses. 14 years of feeling rather ugly and old. Last June I had the worst vein removed and the faulty vein repaired. It took three days of surgery with local anesthesia. It required one incision and 58 small holes. The recovery was more painful than I had expected, and I wondered if it was really worth it.
It was supposed to heal and leave me with a normal looking leg. Yet I had to attend my daughter’s High School Graduation in baggy, frumpy pants to accommodate the bandages. I developed a dream in my heart that encouraged me greatly. My son’s graduation would be next June. I would attend that important event in a pretty summer dress!
In this New Year, I was so excited to be pregnant without those horrible veins! No pain, no awful compression stockings! As this pregnancy progressed, I noticed pain in my leg again. It was awhile before I realized that it was new veins popping out on the back of my leg. The leg that still bore 59 little scars. Slowly the veins traveled down my entire leg. After receiving prayer, they began to hurt so much that I had to wear a compression stocking.
My beautiful dream had officially died a pathetic and mournful death!
The Sorrows are so small
Now that I am in my second trimester, I can look at my life and see a hundred joys outnumbering those three little sorrows. I can give thanks for a thousand different blessings each day!!!
Still, I feel discouraged. If only things were a little different in certain areas. If only I didn’t feel my faith slipping away.
One Sunday morning during worship I gave my discouragement to God. Still I wished for my sorrows to be gone. Then God helped me to realize.
There is something Deeper (than my reality).
There is something more Real (than my circumstances).
There is something more Important (than my discouragement).
Like this baby growing healthy and strong. Like the delight that God has when He looks at me. Like the fact that this suffering is nothing compared to the glory that will be revealed in me, the glory that will be revealed in my daughter. Like my character being formed into the character of Christ.
Like Becoming An Eagle!
I had asked God to transform me into an eagle this year. To help me to worship Him until the wind of His presence surrounded me. To help me to stretch out my wings in faith. To teach me to fly. To teach me to see EVERYTHING from His higher perspective.
He has been answering my prayer this whole time. No one ever learns to do something new without practice. All these sorrows are training me to rise above and SEE!
“Your eyes will see the King in his beauty, and the highlands of heaven far away.” Is 33:17 Living Bible
This has been His promise to me. I have asked Him to help me live in it. I have asked for a difficult thing…
But it is worth it!
P.S. Just a note to all of my followers. I am so delighted that you enjoy my writing! I probably will not be posting much until August or September when I hope that I will be reconciled to my laptop. Praying you will bask in all the joys!
P.P.S. Ashlyn’s surgery well very well! She has been recovering beautifully and I am so thankful.