It had been one of those weeks, the kind of week when one felt like resigning from the human race!
As a single mom to three young children, I spent my days racing from one responsibility to the next. Often arriving a bit a late, a bit disheveled, and a lot frustrated, it seemed my life consisted of one very long to do list.
My children once secure and happy, now greeted me as I arrived to pick them up at after-school care with,
"Mom, I'm hungry" or "Why do we have to stay here so long?" or "I'm tired of this place, why can't we go home after school like we used to?"
They'd fight as we drove to counseling appointments, grumble when we ate fast food for dinner and cry as they drifted off to sleep.
I felt like a hamster on one those little wheels that turn round and round, yet never get anywhere.
Scrambling to make it to my new job on time, the brakes on my aging car gave out. Though I slid safely into work, I knew the car would have to be towed. Besides figuring out transportation for the next few days, my biggest challenge would be paying for the repairs. My children's father was contributing little and my only other financial resource was my family. This meant once again asking for help.
My grandparents, ever gracious, paid for the repairs, my brother and his wife, ever willing, provided transportation for a few days. It was a happy day when my little yellow Celica was once again parked in its usual spot in the carport.
Crisis resolved, time to move on, or so I thought.
That evening while sitting at the kitchen table, trying to make sense of the impossible budget in front of me, I heard the little avocado-colored refrigerator I'd once been so proud of, gasp its last breath.
Would all this stress and strain ever end?
I cried, I prayed, I searched my well worn Bible. As always, it brought comfort that went straight to my overburdened heart,
\"Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." (Isaiah 41:10 NASV)
"Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you." (Deuteronomy 31:6 NASV)
The next day, with shaking hand, I signed for my first credit card purchase as a single woman. I'd been granted just enough to purchase a new refrigerator that would serve our needs. Once again, crisis resolved.
Nevertheless, I felt so alone. This was most certainly not how I had envisioned my life. Although I dearly loved my children and lived to make a wonderful new life for them, I felt overwhelmed and lonely. God seemed ever so far away. What exactly did He have planned for me anyway?
I trudged through the last day of the work week with problems to solve, unhappy children to comfort, and one last appointment to meet.
Arriving home exhausted, I shifted hastily through the mail, expecting only bills and throw away ads. However, a colored envelope caught my attention and I sat down to take a look. As I opened the lovely card, a check fell into my lap. It was for $50. While that amount would never solve all my monetary woes, the unexpected gift brought tears.
A friend from my high school years heard about my life crumbling around me and was sending her love and encouragement and a "little bit" to help out. I will never forget the scripture she included in her note,
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit." (Psalm 34:18 NIV)
I was not alone, a friend, living in another state, was thinking about me. My Lord sent a reminder that He was close by, and my precious children were always right there to tend and to love.
So we carry on, my Lord and I, as God provides my needs step by step. He never leaves me alone.
Through all the years of my life, God has brought blessing upon blessing to me; yet I consider receiving that card, check, and scripture verse to be one of my most bountiful blessings ever!
~Deborah K. McDade~
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