May 14, 2010

The Final Step, The First Step

(You'll be completely lost if you don't read Part I, Part II, Part III & Part IV)

News of R's pending unemployment crashed over me, a tidal wave of grief and despair. The force broke the chains of bondage R had wrestled with for so long. He was walking away, yet maddeningly unsure of his steps. I selfishly denied him time to gain his strength, to heal. His trepidation fueled my need for control.

I plotted and planned, wheels spinning and getting us nowhere. Exhausted and spent, I finally gave up.

And my sweet husband started to smile again.

I could only hang my head in shame. I'd allowed my dreams to crowd out his. I'd put myself first and stifled him in the process. I'd been unwilling to sacrifice my comfort for his.

I was heartbroken. Amazed that my husband and my Savior could still love me, knowing there was nothing beautiful about my ambition, pride, and selfishness.

We wanted a new, different life.  With no clear direction on how to get there, we resigned ourselves to waiting on the Lord.  For a woman who likes to know, it was excruciating. All I could do was pray.

I waited patiently for the LORD;
he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock,
making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear,
and put their trust in the LORD.
~Psalm 40:1-3 (ESV)

With great joy, awe and humility, I'm happy to announce that our wait is over. After 17 years of wandering, of pursuing what we thought best for our lives, God has given us a way to go back to the beginning.

This fall, R returns to college. The same university as when we married.

It astounds me how God has used the past two years to prepare our hearts.  Too merciful to allow us to wander anymore, He has ended our self-directed detour. Granted us a fresh start.  (Except, as CJ quickly reminds us, we now have our fantastic daughter.) We are also older, wiser, more willing & ready to submit to His leadership.

Whenever R talked about returning to school, I tuned him out. There was no way we could afford it. By God's grace, we don't have to. Oh, He is good!

Today is the last day of our old life, the one we chose for our own comfort. Where this new road goes from here, I honestly don't know. But I'll be holding His hand, and my dear husband's, all the way.

(P.S. - I'm allowing comments so that you can praise the Lord with me!)


Leslie said...

I'm so glad this tale has a happy ending!!! Praise the Lord for a new beginning!!!

mholgate said...

Thank you for sharing this awesome journey with us! Praise God for His direction and guidance! Many blessings as you trust Him along this path.

Carrie said...

Melissa, this has just been a breath taking and beautiful journey. God is SO good to us and this story of yours affirms everything I've been coming to know and understand - God moves in His own time. Sometimes that's 17 years.

He's amazing!

jenmom said...

Isn't God an Awesome God!!! His mercies are NEW every morning! I am praising Our Awesome God for the new things He is doing in your family's life!!! Thank you so much for being so transparent in sharing this journey with us. It encourages and challenges my heart and walk with the Lord!!
God's Richest Blessings on you and your family!

Jillian, Inc said...

And I am praising with you, sweet friend. Yesterday, today and tomorrow!

His Girl said...

Finally got to get all caught up today. How proud I am of you for allowing God to teach you this really hard lesson. How proud I am for buckling down and learning it.

In a way, you've been in college this whole time... learning and preparing for this next chapter. One in which you get to support your husband and model for all who are watching what it looks like to use what you've been given.

Glory to God in the Highest!

2cats said...

This was a hard and difficult road you were all on. You have learned from your trials. And Praise God, he showed where to go next. He will be there to guide you and help you when you stumble, and if you fall he will pick you up. Praise!
Blessing to all of you!

Lisa writes... said...

Praising the Lord with you! I love your determined faith that was fully confident that what the Lord has promised, that He will do. He will! Our faith is sure because He is strong and immovable--glory to His name!

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

And now I read the "why" behind no comments :)

Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

I've been reading and reading, but this is the only post it will let me comment on! :) Thank you for sharing this journey with us. Besides the fact that your writing is beautiful, it strikes a chord deep within me, on lots of different levels...

I love to hear about the journey God is taking others on. He never gives up, always keeps pursuing. Amazes me every time. Can't wait to hear the rest!

Claire said...

i needed this more than you know tonight. thank you for sharing your heart.

calvin and i face the same road that you have travelled.