Our friend Heidi has written a guest post for us this week. We’ve been blessed by it and hope you will be too.
On Monday, we’re fasting and praying for God to do a work in our generation to raise up men, sanctify women, and give the gift of marriage to those who desire it.
Have you ever had those days or maybe it was one of those weeks, months, or years when things just kept happening and your internal response was “if only I had a husband/wife this would be so much easier?” I’m walking through one of those ‘funks’ right now and it’s got me doing a lot of thinking.
We all have those seasons of life – whether we’re single, married, divorced, dating, etc. If only–fill in the blank (my kids were older, my wife hadn’t left me, I’d have a husband, etc). These seasons come about for various reasons but it’s typically during times when life has hit a rough spot…or two…or three. That’s where I’ve found myself the past week or so – walking through some rough spots and finding myself saying “if only I’d have a husband this would all be different.”
Two weeks ago my check engine light came on in my car, no big deal, last time that happened it was something very minor. Oh….but this time….this time it was a big deal, it was a very expensive fix which turned into me trying to sell my car and unexpectedly going through the process of searching for a new car. It’s been a stressful and, at times, overwhelming process. I’m a single female which means looking for a new car is a very vulnerable feeling for me. I don’t know much at all about vehicles – other than if they look nice and if I like the color (oh and if my feet can reach the pedals). It brought up a lot of feelings of inadequacy inside of me. Feelings I didn’t want to face and feelings that I wish would just not exist. I found myself saying If only I had a husband I wouldn’t feel so inadequate because I wouldn’t be making this big decision all on my own and having to carry the burden of it myself.’
Is that truly the case? Is the solution that I need a husband? Not at all – but I so quickly go there. Maybe my husband wouldn’t know the first thing about cars either, maybe he would be just as overwhelmed at the idea of having to look for a new car. God’s Word doesn’t say that when you lack wisdom to wait until a husband shows up at your door. His Word says that ! So often, at least for me, I fail to see how God provides this in my life. I ask Him, I tell Him how inadequate I feel, and I definitely remind Him that a husband would really help this situation but I fail to see His provisions if they don’t line up with my ideal in the situation.
He provided generously for me, but did I fail to see it as I focused on my “if only I had a husband” funk? He provided a coworker who treats me like a little sister, a coworker who knows a whole lot about cars and was able to provide me with much wisdom and insight as I made this decision. He provided an amazing father in my life who was willing to go test drive cars with me so I wouldn’t feel as vulnerable. He provided exactly what I needed – and amazingly it wasn’t in the form of a husband.
The car was the most recent issue in my “if only I had a husband” funk. The past 2 years I’ve been walking through some very trying and frustrating health issues. The past 6 months have been an extremely tough journey as I was diagnosed with Lyme disease and have been very actively treating and battling the disease. If you’ve ever walked through health issues as a single person you know how quickly the “if only” concept rises in your mind and heart.
I’ve said “if only” many, many times over the past few months. If only I had a husband to come home and hold me in the strength of his arms when I feel so weak and drained. If only I had a husband who could remind me that it’s ok and we’ll get through this together. If only I had a husband who could be a soft place to fall when I feel like my world is crumbling around me and that I can’t go one more step.
God’s answer to my “if only” concerning my current health issues hasn’t been a husband – much to my disappointment. His answer has been amazing friends who check in on me to see how I’m doing and to remind me that they are praying for me, a job which allows me to be flexible with my hours so I can attend the many doctor’s appointments, a mom who is that soft place to fall when I just need to cry and whine and get out all my frustrations. by carrying me every step of every day through the physical pain, mental inabilities, emotional burden, and the many, many days of wondering when it’ll all be over and I’ll finally feel myself again.
As I’ve pondered the “if only” concept that I so quickly resort to, I’ve come to the conclusion that when I say “If only I had a husband then….” it really is a slap in God’s face. Without actually saying it, I’m saying “God, You are not enough and You are not taking care of me. You are not providing for me in the way I need provided for.” And that, my dear friends, is the farthest thing from the truth. Would all of my problems be fixed if I had a husband? Would my car not have had issues? Would I not be having to purchase a new car? Would my Lyme disease be gone? No, no, and no. A husband can’t fix or change any of these situations.
I’m not saying it still wouldn’t be nice and a blessing to have a husband, that true best friend, to walk with me through these tough times but what I am saying is that Christ IS enough. Until I recognize that and stop saying “If Only” I will not be able to get out of this funk and actually see who God is and how He is walking with me through these trials.
Let me leave you with a challenge to change our wording when we are faced with the temptation to say “If only I had a spouse.” Let’s instead say “If only I would fully trust God and recognize His provisions in my life.” Join me in changing our perspective and being ever so grateful for the many ways God provides – ways that we so often take for granted.
Lord – forgive us for assuming that a spouse will make these trials in our lives easier. You know the desire of our hearts is to be married and to do life with a spouse, You designed us that way and You created us for relationship. But, Lord, we never want that desire to become stronger than our desire for You and our dependence on You.