This morning I woke up carrying the world upon my shoulders with David’s refrain running through my mind “why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me?” (Psalm 42:5). I made myself a cup of coffee and went and sat at the bottom of the garden. As I sat and watched the birds in the garden feeding and listened to their morning songs, the heaviness that had settled upon me started to lift. I looked at the house that I have been living in for the past 20 years and once again it struck me how true to His Word our God is. He says in Joel 2:25 “I will restore to you the years the locusts have eaten” and in Isaiah 43 He says “Forget what happened before, and do not think about the past. Look at the new thing I am going to do. It is already happening. Don’t you see it? I will make a road in the desert of your life, rivers in the dry land of your life”.
From age twelve to eighteen I moved every year – sometimes two or three times in a year. I had one suitcase and a teddy bear and that is all I carried around with me. Maybe this is where my love of writing developed. There was no place in my suitcase for any personal ornaments or photo frames so I would write down on paper any sayings or words that struck a chord within me and then stick them to the wall of my room. When it was time to move again I would take them down and lay them flat at the bottom of my suitcase – they did not take up much space.
From about the age of fourteen I started to long for a home of my own. That is all I wanted. A place I could call my own, a place that I could settle down in and make a home. I once calculated that by the time I reached twenty-six years old I had moved thirty-four times!
I also longed for a family although as I grew older that longing dissipated as I came to the realisation that I actually did not want to get married or have children. Who would willingly want to bring children into a world so full of hurt and betrayal?
God says that “He will give you the desires of your heart” and He never forgot that heart’s desire of mine to have a family even though I let go of it along the road of life.
I have been married for 22 years now and have three children and have lived in the same house for 20 years!
I believe God gave me a husband and children in order that I would be able to grow as a person and in my relationship with Him. It is often through my children that my relationship with God is reflected. I bemoan the fact that they can sometimes be very thankless for all that is done for them and given them. They can be disrespectful at times and wrapped up in themselves.
God then reveals to me, not very subtly I might add, that this is exactly how I behave to Him at times. I take the things He has blessed me with for granted and am often far too busy to spend time with Him or to acknowledge that everything that I have and am is because of Him.
How incredibly disrespectful is that of me to Him.
At other times I stand in awe and marvel at the beauty, kindness, care and compassion my children exhibit. My love for them overwhelms me and I would willingly lay down my life for them if they were in danger. I then have a glimpse of how great the Father’s love is for us in that He sent His Son to die on the cross in order that we could have fullness of life here on earth and eternal life with Him.
When my children are hurting or feel betrayed by those around them I long to carry that hurt for them and then I am again reminded of Jesus’ words “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”. (Matthew 11:28-30)
At the end of the day I can say as David said “put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Saviour and my God” (Psalm 42:11)