Tuesday, August 16, 2011

How I Had Lost my Faith

These days I've been only able to blog late at night because of the busy, busy days.  Even with working a full day with very little breaks, I'll lay awake late at night not able to sleep.  I guess more in wonder lately.  Just thinking about the day.  Thinking about issues on my heart.

In the last couple of years my faith had really been shaken.  There were definitely some trials.  Several times God has proven to me that He is real and he does care about the big things AND the little things.  I feel like the Israelites in the desert going round and round and forgetting about each miracle.

My kids got to visit me one time but I don't remember much
of them being there.  They camped out for a few hours.
How I lost my faith?  A couple of years ago my husband had lost his career.  I had just found out I was pregnant with my 6th child.  I don't believe any forms of birth control except NFP (The truth about Birth Control).  So although I was surprised by that pregnancy, we knew it was bound to happen.  :)  On top of if, with no income, our house payments were just too much for us.  I lost some friends because they were angry I was having "yet another kid".  ("Don't make friends with someone who easily gets angry. Don't spend time with someone who has a bad temper. If you do, you may learn to be like him. Then you will be in real danger." Proverbs 22:24-35)

It just felt like a disaster at that time.  I went into a depression and didn't really let anyone know about it.  The worst thing I did was stop praying.  Maybe in the bitterness of things crumbling around me, I was blaming God.  Why?  I don't know.  I told my husband over and over I didn't care about the material stuff.  If we lost it all, so be it.  We'll move somewhere.  Anywhere.  I just wanted us to be together.  Then at 27 weeks, as I was getting ready to go somewhere with my family, I doubled over in pain.  It was like going from no pain at all to the pain equal to labor full force.  Except it wasn't labor.  It was my kidneys.  They had been going bad over the years the doctors said.  To top it off I had just had dental surgery a month before and had some bad complications.  I was rushed to the hospital where I was unconscious for 6 days.  I couldn't eat or barely drink. I didn't even know they put me in an ice machine from a very bad fever while I was out. To top it off, my new OB I found accused me of only coming to the hospital for drugs since I had no fever to prove an infection.  That night my fever soared dangerously and that was why they put me in the ice machine.  (Read about nightmare OB here)

3D Ultrasound of Caleb at 28 weeks
Through all of that, I had almost no family around me or friends for support.  It was just my husband and I so he couldn't be with me in the hospital.  My mom mercifully took care of me for a time after I was released.  She is always amazing when she takes over and I remember that about her when I was little.  Even though I was released, the pain in my kidneys was still bad and it puzzled the doctors.  They told me if I couldn't get off the pain killers, my baby would be born addicted to them.  I stopped using the medicine and just endured the pain till a miracle happened (will tell you below).  I wasn't gonna risk my baby.  Finally he was born healthy and we breathed a sigh of relief.  After months of not finding work, Charles was able to find a part time job to hold us up.  He had to look completely outside his line of work but we were just happy he found something.  Anything.  Charles is a very smart guy and it just happened to be that his field was one of the first to go when the economy fell.  When Caleb turned 1, I found out I needed surgery because I had endemetriosis.  It was to be scheduled within a week.

When I was 36 weeks pregnant with Caleb
I had reached an all time low in my spirit through it all.  I had no prayer in me.  No faith.  I just piled the load on my own shoulders and kept my lips silent to God.  Sure I believe in Him.  80% of America says they do.  I was forgetting all the miracles along the way just like the Israelites were in the desert.  Instead of going to the promise land, they went round and round.  God performed miracles right in front of them and they eventually forgot about them and would complain.  I had forgotten my miracles too.

*Sometimes when we lose a friend over something that is completely biblical you believe in, maybe a purging is needed of those types of friends.  (What is real forgiveness?)

*While in the hospital, when I was pregnant and having kidney trouble, the main doctor of the hospital found out of my OB's abuse and came to talk to me.  He said I needed to release her (get rid of her) and they assigned me one of the top notch OB's in the state.  She quickly took me in for the rest of my pregnancy and was just amazing.  I didn't know till later that she is a highly wanted OB but only certain cases she will take.

*God provided a job.  Maybe not in the way I expected but the one he was given happens to be one of the most stable out there and said to be for the future and has GREAT insurance plans.  

*Our house payment was lowered drastically and just so happens to be lowered to the exact amount needed to fit in our budget.  Only 2-3% of anyone who applied were able to get our new interest rate.  We were one of the lucky few.

*When one person stopped giving me their hand-me-downs out of anger of our 6th child, 5 more people stepped in their place.  Every time I've said, "We need to head to the store this week to get this person some pairs of pants", no kidding, someone in church will come up to me THAT week and hand me over the exact items I said to Charles we needed.  

*Caleb was born completely healthy when they said that I could of birthed him at 27 weeks because of kidney trouble.  They were able to get my contractions to stop.

*An evangelist called people forward one service who had kidney issues and THAT night my kidneys were healed.  THAT is a huge miracle for me since they said I would need surgery and if I didn't I would be on kidney dialysis.  (Story here of that night)

*The next night that same evangelist called women forward who had endemetriosis.  Man, God had my number. I went forward and that night my pain completely left. Surgery was cancelled.  God had healed me. 

*Even through all the financial crazy stuff that happened to us, somehow we've been able to make it. I know it's not just by some chance.  God made a promise to us back in 2002 that He was gonna provide and He has a blessing on families. He also made a promise to us in 2004 that if we just pray and ask Him, he will guide us in our important decisions.  He will put the right decision in our heart and just be patient.  We will start to see what God is going to do in our family.  

Baby Caleb safely arrives in September of 2009!
Even through all these miracles I was staying silent with doubt.  I was completely bearing the burden on my shoulders and I almost missed it.  Almost.  Finally, it was Michele Duggar's words in a testimony I recently showed on my blog that brought me to my knees. I was trying to bear it all on my own strength.  Sure we can do it for a little bit.  But it's not by might, nor by power but by My Spirit says the Lord.  I was keeping a smile on my face but my heart was aching to talk to Him again and really trust Him.  Why couldn't I?  I don't know.  I know my heart was discouraged.  IF ONLY I remembered all His miracles along the way.  Every time I even thought about going and just working at night to get that second income, the door would be shut on me.  Not just shut, it would SLAM shut.  Once again I was trying to do it my way rather than give it to God.  (I'm very, very traditional in my beliefs and believe that the man provides and the woman cares for her household)

My faith was here

This week I am studying Faith.  What is faith?

Faith vs. Presumption
Visualizing what God intends to do in a given situation and acting in harmony with it.  Hebrews 11:1

I'm sharing this in hopes that if anyone is going through trials, this post can be somewhat of an encouragement and a reminder. sometimes it can be hard to remember what God HAS done.  We can quickly forget and complain.  God doesn't promise to give us what we want but He does promise to meet our needs.  Speaking life into your family and situation is sooo important.  Words are very powerful.  Thank you, Marla, for dropping me a note of reminder.  :)  A real friend won't just tell you what you want to hear all the time.  Since sending my prayers up to Him and having that faith again, it's like the burden has been lifted.  I can't tell you how wonderful it is to even just be able to give my day to God and ask for peace and the joy through the day.  I need that because working for 15 hours with small breaks can wear on any person.  But when God puts Joy, Love, Peace, Contentment, Tolerance, Patience, Endurance your heart, it makes the daily tasks so much lighter.
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