Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Retreat (as in quiet time away) (08/01/05)
TITLE: Oh What a Relief He Is
By Katherine Douglas
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That was the only sound she could make, after long and exhausting years. Time of battle is how she referred to it in retrospect. Daily she woke to an alarm clock at 5a.m. (that seems like nothing some might say) daily she was responsible for how six mouths would be fed on a small salary. (many people have this same problem others chimed in). She was working up to forty five hours a week outside the home. House-note, Car-note, groceries, insurance, gas for the cars, utility bills, shut off notices, bill collectors calling, doctors appointments, after school concerts, practices, and teacher conferences, new shoes, clothing, house maintenance, car maintenance, and all the stuff that everybody needs because they are breathing; and then do it all again in thirty days. She had allowed the weight of this life to bog her down; she was truly exasperated. Twisting and resisting she only tangled herself more, and now the rope was about to strangle every bit of life out of her, and worse yet her families life.
No she was not a single parent; these six included her husband; who had been injured in a car accident that left him incapacitated. He was not in her eyes whole anymore. Daily she was angry, bitter, and confused. “Why!” was her cry. “I did nothing to deserve this”, she would mumble within herself. “How could I be so unlucky?”
She spent far too much time looking at the relationships of her sisters with envy; women whom in her opinion “couldn’t possibly deserve to be taken care of “. They talk back, they are ungrateful, and they don’t even understand how much you love them she would whine in her conversation with her father. “I’ve tried to do everything you told me to do” she bellowed. “I’m good really I am”, was what she tried to convince herself and everyone else of. Something must be wrong, and I don’t know what I did wrong was her unconscious chant.
Little did she know, nor did she understand that it simply was not about her at all. It had nothing to do with whether she was right or wrong, whether she was good or bad; but simply that her father had chosen her to do something for him that would ultimately work for her. So for two and a half long years she whined, she cried, she pouted, and threw adult versions of temper tantrums. Like locking herself in her room for hours (as though that would change the outcome); or retreating to sleep instead of really standing up to her responsibilities like them or not.
One day instead of whining and complaining she asked her father clearly “what am I suppose to do?” He answered her “your only job is to worship.” “Thank... you Jesus she spoke in broken English as though it were her first words. Immediately, she felt relief, again she said “Thank you Jesus with a bit more confidence. She now understood that it wasn’t her job and never had been to take care of the breath that God had placed on earth. “Thank you Jesus” again she said really beginning to feel thanks. He is more than able to take care of what he fathers because he is a loving Father. Again and again she said those three little words until those words became apart of her. She had been trying to carry a heavy load that was already carried. She had been striving to do something that had already been done. She had been working so hard to complete a task that God had completed so perfectly.
Did the circumstances change? No, not immediately, the change came in her. She could believe now. She could live now. The cord that once strangled her brought her joy. She could relax now and say AHHHH!
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