In 2008, actually just 2 days from today, I will have been married 10 years. To the love of my life, the greatest blessing God has ever given me and the one who can make me laugh and smile and cry. Yes, cry. In the past few months, we have cried a lot. I have not said much about the things that we have been through because I have been trying to use my blog as a healing place. A place that I could go and not think about my real world problems. But, circumstances have convinced me to share not all, but some of our struggles. If you don't want to read, I understand, I am writing it mainly for those who can relate to what we have been/are facing.
First of all, my husband has held me through so many things and forgiven me for so much. He has accepted me for who I really am and that is something, that believe me, is not easily done. He humbles me with his love and I believe that is how God wants it to be. I see God in my husband. Now, before you laugh at that and think I have lost my mind, it's true. I believe that anytime we offer someone forgiveness, acceptance, love, friendship, affection, etc. we are showing them a little piece of God on earth.
However, my husband has faults. He is human. I am human. We sin. We struggle. We are no different than your next door neighbor, next pew over at church, Sunday school teacher, minister, song leader, prayer leader, worship leader, whatever you want to call it titles, we are all sinners saved by the amazing grace of our God.
I struggle with bitterness. I hold on to hurts for a long time. I struggle with handling money. I am terrible at paying bills. I eat too much when I am depressed or anxious. I lie to protect people's feelings. I worry about what others think of me. I curse sometimes when I am frustrated and I have screamed at my girls and punished too severely. Now, I am sure that some of you will have something to say about all of that but, if you are honest, you struggle, too. Maybe not with the same things, but you struggle. I don't always want to be a mama and a wife, sometimes I just want to run out of my house and drive around by myself or call a friend and go shopping (without kids) or spend the night away from my children (which I have never done since they were born except when I had to be in the hospital)sometimes I don't want my husband to bother me. I don't want to laugh at his jokes, I don't want to cook his meals and wash his underwear. I don't want to sleep with him. Not because I don't love him or because he is repulsive. He isn't. He is perfectly wonderful. It's just because I am human and I am a selfish sinner.
No sin is any worse than anyone else and sin piles up. It builds and builds until you are living and participating in a sin existence that you have no idea how you got where you are or how to get out. It's that simple. Sin breeds sin. For an excellent example of this, please read here.
Anyway, without going into details, he has hurt me this year. I have hurt him. WE have hurt each other deeply. Please don't try to read anything into that other than what I say. When and if we feel like we need to share details, we will. Just please take it for what I am saying and do not imagine worst case scenarios. :o)
We are currently working on our marriage. It will take a while but we are going to get there. We are not going to give up. So, this ten years has been a roller coaster and we are feeling pretty woozy from the ride but we are still hanging on tight. We are NOT going to be thrown off and we are definitely NOT getting off before the ride is over.
We are struggling financially, physically, mentally and spiritually. It seems like the struggles just keep piling up and there are days when I feel like I am drowning. I have had nightmares and panic attacks and I have actually vomited from the stress of too much crying and worrying so much that I made myself sick.
I struggle to stay in the WORD. I struggle to pray. I struggle to sing and read the bible stories to my girls. A lot of times it just doesn't get done and I know that is wrong. Christmas was horrible, in my mind, because I let everyone down with my horrible attitude. My expectations did not measure up to what I was humanly capable of doing and I refused to stop and acknowledge that. I had all of these memories that I wanted to make with Charlie and the girls and I couldn't let go of my bitterness and my hurt and depression long enough to get it together. I kept fighting panic attacks and nightmares and migraine headaches. But, maybe, just maybe, in the week before Christmas, I managed to pull it together enough to focus on the birth of our Savior, which Charlie and I SO needed to be reminded of this Christmas season.
So, for 2008, my outlook is changing. My views and my beliefs have changed, they have shifted. We have went through some storms and we have came out of them worn and weary and beaten but we have seen a glimpse of God. We have felt HIS mighty power at work in our marriage and in our lives and in the lives of our girls. Amy, said something once, in a comment, about just playing church until your life is turned upside down and everything you know is questioned, (forgive me, Amy, because I know that is not quoted exactly right!) and that is just how I feel. My guts are twisted and everything about me is nothing that I know. I am learning a whole new ball game and I feel like I am blindly stumbling my way through and God is leading me through this, he is molding me and His will is being done. And you know, I can either get on board and learn something or I can fight it, either way,HIS will is being done and there is NOTHING we can do to stop the will of our perfect GOD.
Over the next few weeks, I will probably not be posting as much. I have some things going on as you can tell. When I do post, I will try to post some informative and helpful links in with other stuff. Please do not be offended by anything I post. I am not involved in your lives so I do not know where you are with your walk of faith. I know where I am and I know issues that some close to me (husband, cousins, moms, dads, sisters, brother-in-laws, sister-in-laws, friends, nephews,nieces, church members) are struggling with and a lot of them read this blog, so I will post links that I think may help them. If they help you great but please don't be offended or think I am talking about any of you in particular. The links will just be for things that need to be addressed in Christian families today. :o)
Sorry, this is so long, but I figured it would be! In 2008, I have about 4 pages front and back of GOALS that I want to reach and I plan on putting those up tomorrow or this weekend. But, most of all, these are my most important, highest priority goals:
* Spend every day in the WORD and in PRAYER
* Spend quality time everyday with Charlie; pray for him many times daily; find things and make date nights with a sitter to have quality time together and to make him feel more appreciated and loved.
*Pray with Charlie and the girls every night and talk about Christ more, show Christ by showing love to others.
* Hug and kiss my girls many times daily (already do but do it MORE)
* Spend quality time daily with each child separately
*Limit time on computer; spend more time with Charlie and kids or scheduling, finding things to do with them.
* Make special meals more often for Charlie and the girls. Do projects with Claire at least three times a week.
*Keep things more organized, this makes everything run smoother and makes Charlie less stressed and our lives just more peaceful and harmonized.
So, thank you for reading my novel, if you are still here! :o) I really have loved and appreciated all of you who read this blog of ramblings. You have been an amazing encouragement to me and Charlie. Thank you.
God bless and Happy New Year! Love and Prayers, Julie