I absolutely love being married. I have been blissfully married for four and a half years now to my best friend in the entire world.
And nothing brings me more joy than to just go through mundane life by his side- window shopping NorthPark mall, waiting on a table at a restaurant, driving back and forth to Dallas, sitting on the couch on a Tuesday night eating leftovers and watching Frasier on Netflix.
We have been buddies now for nearly 10 years. We started dating when I was 18, a scraggly baby of a freshman at Furman University, and we’ve been together ever since.
So, you can only imagine how I’ve felt letting my politico husband go off to big ol’ Washington D.C. during my third trimester to work on the Inaugural Transition Team. To be fair, my gut reaction when he broke the news to me in November was roughly as follows:
You should absolutely, without a doubt go. Yes, I’ll be alone. Yes, I’ll be tremendously pregnant. Yes, I would rather you not go. Yes, it scares me. But I would never hold you back from a dream (insert crying by myself in the shower four minutes after this mature, responsible response).
With my husband out of my daily routine for about six weeks now, I realized last Tuesday at roughly 6:43 a.m. in a doozey of a come-to-Jesus (literally, I had to go straight to Him), that I have been trying to use my family from Knoxville, my job, and my endless striving for impossible perfection to fill any void I was experiencing in his absence.
And in that realization Jesus made it LOUD AND CLEAR (He has a way of doing that, doesn’t He?) that I needed to check my priorities ASAP, specifically how and where I was seeking my contentment, joy, and overall peace with my life.
Cause y’all, if it ain’t through Him, we ain’t doin’ it right.
My husband is living in D.C. for another month.
My mom is leaving town today.
Christmas is over, and I’m going back to work today.
I may have gestational diabetes.
I am six and a half months pregnant.
And I am alone.
Pathetic, huh? Alas, this was a real conversation I had with myself about a week ago. I was sipping my coffee and having the reality of all of these things hit me at once before heading off to school.
I gotta admit, y’all, I was feeling a little dark that morning. I was scared about being alone for the next month. I was scared about the unlikely things that could go wrong at this point in my pregnancy. I was scared about the complications that could come with gestational diabetes (THAT I DO NOT HAVE!!!).
In that moment of fear, anxiety, and pitifulness, I knew to not push it off and try to forget about it; I’ve learned the hard way time and time again to take these feelings and fears straight to Jesus.
And that’s exactly what I did.
I opened my journal and I started to pour it all out (in case y’all haven’t realized, I thoroughly enjoy writing and find it incredibly cathartic). Here’s a snippet of my exact words from last Tuesday morning:
My soul thirsts for You, but I feel a little empty without Will this morning. But You are gentle and kind and faithful, and You are My Strength. I am satisfied in You. I praise You for the goodness You bring into my life like my mom, my job and team and principal, my son and his activity, Will’s opportunity to be apart of something so big. Shrink this lonliness; I am Yours, and You are Mine.
From there, He provided me with scripture from what I consider the Zanax of the Old Testament- Psalms. Thus, I dove into the Word.
Psalms 100:3 states, “Know that the Lord is God. It is He who made us, and we are His. We are His people, the sheep of His pasture”.
Another fabulous reminder I read that morning was Psalms 143:9, which shares, “Let the morning bring me word of Your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in You. Show me the way I should go, for to You I lift up my soul”.
Within the hour, He made it so clear to me that the only way I was going to find peace, contentment, and joy that day and in this brief season was through Him.
Boy, He sure knows what He’s doing.
Over this past week of adjusting to my solitude and quietness (probably the last time in my life I will experience this), I cannot help but feel oddly grateful to have this realization now, before my son arrives.
I’ve realized I’ve bought into the lies of this world, thinking that my spouse can complete me, or my family can complete me, or my job and perfect standardized test scores and perfect health can complete me.
Yet God quickly decided to snap me out of that by taking away from my daily grasp my husband, my mom, and my seemingly perfect health to help me see the fault of my ways; it is so dangerous to let my joy be embedded in the circumstances of my life and the people in my life.
Nehemiah 8:10 highlights that even when we have those tough, dark, gloomy, hopeless days, we don’t need to wallow and lament and carry on our pity parties, “for the joy of the Lord is your strength”.
My life, my happiness, my contentment and peace are NOT built upon my spouse, though I love him so much more than I ever imagined possible to love another human. My husband, who I respect so much, can’t deliver purpose and meaning to my life like Jesus can.
My life and contentment and peace are NOT build upon my family and my truly amazing mother. She can’t fill me and complete me; she cannot take the place of my God.
My life and contentment and peace are NOT built upon my spotless health. Health can quickly fade and diminish for reasons completely out of our control, like your son’s hormones causing your placenta to react adversely to glucose therefore giving you gestational diabetes (WHICH I DON'T ACTUALLY HAVE!)
If we try to count on anything or anyone else to complete us, we are sorely amiss. God is the only one to complete this puzzle, to help us make sense of this life. This life and its trials can be relentless, and things usually don’t go our way. But the only thing more relentless than this life is the fierce love of our God.
Today, this week, let’s really reflect on where we are seeking our soul satisfaction. How are you fueling your joy? Are you using the cheap, 85% ethanol stuff that will end up damaging your engine in the long run, or are you fueling on the quality, sustaining stuff?
I leave y’all with one of my FAVORITE worship songs I stumbled upon a few months ago through Spotify’s Indie Christian playlist. It’s I Am Satisfied in You by The Sing Team. It’s about 6 minutes, but I think you can carve out 6 minutes of your morning or your day to listen and reflect on how God is speaking to you through it.
Today’s Prayer: Lord, I am satisfied in You and You alone. Everything else in this life is sewage, is garbage compared to Your splendor. Forgive me for seeking my fuel elsewhere. Only You sustain me. Wake me up to what You are doing in me and around me. Help me to be more intentional in my pursuit of You and Your peace. Burrow Your peace and joy into me so I may reveal it to my neighbors, coworkers, and family. I am Yours, and You are mine.
Healthy Happy Texan
I'm a Foodie, Fitness Instructor, and Follower of Christ. Add a passion for teaching others, dark chocolate, bacon, and dogs -- and that's me in a box.
Come on, let's live a little!