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As I stood staring at my empty house for the last time. I realized then, that no amount of preparation could have prepared me for this.
Abandoned by my husband, now homeless, jobless, and grieving the death of my best friend; I knew I had hit rock bottom.
I had felt so prepared before this. My pantry was stocked full of food, we had enough blankets, wood, and winter clothes to get us through the harsh, impending winter. All was well.
I had felt so good about living up to my own standard of what I thought the Proverbs 31 Woman had laid out. But oh how wrong I was.
Strength and honor are her clothing, and she can laugh at the time to come. — Proverbs 31:25
I received this mug for Mother’s Day this year from my church, and while it is a great encouragement to me to drink out of everyday while I’m at work; it is also a reminder of the sin that I lived. A reminder to let go of my pride and let God lead my life in every way.
Because as I stared around my home, I grieved not only for the loss of my husband, my friend, and home; but of the loss of all I had worked for, the loss of what made me who I was.
I had lost my entire pantry. Homelessness had caused me to donate my entire stockpile. I lost all the wood we had prepared for winter. It was quickly sold to a neighbor to help me get gas for the upcoming weeks. My entire house was stripped of everything that made it home. And it wasn’t even mine.
Everything was lost. And I was so alone. Everything I had done, didn’t matter. All of my preparations were just a burden to me in the end.
This event led me to three realizations about my life. (You can apply this to your life too!)
1 | Let Go, and Let God
I held ever so tightly to my life and the plans I had for it. Plans for us as a couple, for our home, for our children. There was a plan for everything. And that plan was going to come to fruition come hell or high water. Yet in a single moment, every single plan that I had carefully cultivated was gone.
I learned that no matter how much I want, or how much I plan: I don’t know what’s best for me or my life, but God does. God knew of the pain and abuse that I was going through, even though I had denied it myself. God knew of the circumstances that I was living. He knew of every tear I had shed. He knew that things had to change.
Many people use planning effectively, but we have to remember that life will wash away even the most carefully laid plans.
So be careful when you’re wrestling with control. It is a tool that the enemy uses to separate us from God. When we think we have a better plan than God, know that we’re always wrong. There is danger in your control, because it spurs from pride.
2 | Pray Hard
I prayed so hard in the following weeks. I had no job. I had no home. All I had was a broken car and a trunk full of my things.
I started praying without ceasing the night my husband walked out; and I haven’t stopped since.
Faithful communication with God has brought so many abundant blessings, and so much clarity and guidance from Him. My life increased tenfold without any planning on my part. But faith, resilience and a will to obey the Lord has kept me afloat through everything life has thrown at me.
So, sisters, I encourage you to take up praying constantly. The Bible commands it.
“Pray constantly.” -1 Thessalonians :17
I practice this in a number of ways.
- I pray when I wake up.
- When I think of someone, I pray for them.
- If I feel overwhelmed, I pray.
- I pray when I eat
- I’ll thank God everyday for the land and beautiful things He has given me.
Seemingly hard, prayer is something that we can achieve as easily as we do breathing. We just have to put it into practice.
3 | Plant Your Faith
And he said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable can we use to describe it? It’s like a mustard seed that, when sown upon the soil, is the smallest of all the seeds on the ground. And when sown, it comes up and grows taller than all the garden plants, and produces large branches, so that the birds of the sky can nest in its shade.” — Mark 4:30-32
Jesus told us Himself to plant our faith. If we only have faith as small as a mustard seed, and we stick to that faith, then what will grow of it will be incredible.
Jesus does not ask us to prepare for the next event, He tells us to have faith, for He has already prepared a way for us.
Jesus Gives Us the Cure for Anxiety
“Therefore I tell you: Don’t worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? Consider the birds of the sky: They don’t sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth more than they? Can any of you add one moment to his life span by worrying?
And why do you worry about clothes? Observe how the wildflowers of the field grow: They don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these. If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t he do much more for you — you of little faith? So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat? ’ or ‘What will we drink? ’ or ‘What will we wear? ’
For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. — Matthew 6:25-34
Sisters, I hope this has encouraged and enlightened you today. Please remember that “Pride comes before destruction, and an arrogant spirit before a fall.” — Proverbs 16:18 It is not the act of preparedness itself that is sinful, but of the pride we put into the work itself.