2017 was a doozy of a year for me and my family. In case you haven’t heard all the gory details, I wrote about it here. And even though 2018 has only been here a minute, I see much better things on the horizon. The biggest piece of news is that my husband starts work with a brand new company this week. He is brimming with excitement about the COO position with Strategic Government Resources and the opportunities for growth and development being afforded him. In other news, Shelby has surgery scheduled this week to repair the heart defect we discovered, which will then again make her a candidate for an anti-epileptic drug trial that we have high hopes for. And I have just 3 more months of maintenance infusions in my cancer treatment regimen. I look forward to kicking the unpleasant side effects to the curb and only seeing my oncologist for well checks.
So why do I still feel unsettled?
In my adult life, I have never really struggled with fear, doubt or anxiety. Every spiritual gift inventory I have ever taken has me off the charts in the area of faith. And that is honestly how I have functioned in the day to day. I truly believe that everything is in God’s hands and that He works all things for good – even if I don’t particularly like those things in the here and now. But even now, as the Sparks family seems to be turning a corner, I feel insecure. And it’s a strange and foreign feeling for me.
After loosing two jobs last year, I can’t honestly say I feel peacefully secure in Chuck’s employment and our financial stability. Shelby’s health has never seen stable, but that hospital stay in the fall left me metaphorically waiting for the other shoe to drop. I have had some hard relationship issues and at times feel very alone. So friendships seem very fragile in this moment. And even my writing – where I find great satisfaction and a deep sense of calling – makes me slightly uneasy. My desire to be increasingly authentic and real sometimes feels painfully vulnerable.
Nothing feels truly safe.
As a believer in Jesus Christ with a profound conviction of God’s love and provision for me, I don’t mind telling you I’m not ok with this new normal. Proverbs 3:5 tells me, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;” NIV The last part of this command? No problem. The circumstances of the past year have driven me far beyond my own strength and wisdom. I have no delusions about my ability to handle any of it. But trusting God with all my heart? How do I do that when my heart isn’t quite in agreement with my head?
My head knows all the promises of God. “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:8. And Psalm 9:10, “…you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7 (All passages from the NIV). But how – practically- do I align my heart and my mind again?
As I prepared to teach my yoga class this morning, I put on this shirt: