Saturday, January 18, 2014

My Spiritual Roller Coaster Ride

I am going on a journey with God that is insane. I remember distinctly about 8 years ago, I was in the middle of a Bible study called, "Beloved Disciple". I heard God telling me to fasten my seat belt because my life would be a roller coaster journey if I decided to obey and surrender to Him. I had no idea what He had in store for me. I think at that time I was in the middle of having all my babies. Thriving instead of surviving motherhood was my ultimate goal. I was trusting God as Steve and I both felt that we were being led to have a large family. I knew he was going to give me the tools that I needed and I knew by having a large family I was definitely going to face opposition from the world and from my beloved family and friends. What we were doing was NOT normal, but we kept trusting God.

We had a tiny house (975 square feet) and we had just had our fourth child. Our baby slept in a playpen in our living room because there was no room for him in the kid's bedroom. But I knew that we were not supposed to move until we had our debt paid off. As soon as I signed the last check to the credit card company, two days later God gave us this four bedroom, roomy house! I was so glad I waited on Him.

I felt God leading me into homeschooling my children. Again, it was against the norm. I had never even considered it and yet I did it for seven years. They were crazy, wild, fun and hard years. So many goods and so many bads. But I wouldn't take back one of them. God wanted me to experience homeschooling and he gave me a vision for my children so that when he called me out of it, they could stand under the pressure of public school. My mothering was intentional. I always said "character before academics". If that meant we didn't get one lick of school work done that day, that was OK. You could be a successful businessman, but if you have no love or respect for others, you hadn't gained anything. This mentality served my children well when they went into the public school system.

As I sent my children to an institution that I feared practically more than life itself, I kept hearing God whisper in my ear, "you can trust me with your children.". As school shootings increased, my fears would increase. My mind would create all kinds of scenarios and I would not have peace. When they kept getting sick and lice notices were handed to us almost weekly, I kept praying that God would get us through it. So far we have not got lice once! That is a miracle! As the Common Core Standards started being implemented in our school, again I wanted to panic and try to fight it or control it somehow. I have done all I can do (written to my senators, representatives, attended school meetings on it, written to the education department) and all to no avail. I am going to trust God with my children's education. Because I have homeschooled I know that there are a lot of options out there. I can think outside the box and know that my children will be OK when they move into higher education, even if they don't do extremely well in the academics department. When evolution is taught, I tell my children, "Good, don't be afraid of it. You need to know what the world believes. But we can say in our heads, "not true", every time we hear the millions of years lingo." I have taught my children a biblical world view and it has served them well.

Our roller coaster really did a loopty-do when one of my sons made mistakes and devastated us. As we went upside down over and over again, I kept crying out, "I want off this roller coaster, Lord! I am sick, I am tired and I can't keep going!" It wasn't exciting anymore, it was scary and there were too many unknowns. I wasn't shrieking because I was feeling joy, I was screaming because I was in pain. God somehow kept me tightly secured in that seat belt until we got out of the loopty-dos. As we started getting on a more even track, there would be times when we would shoot up a steep hill and then have to come down very fast. But I was learning that God could be trusted. He wasn't going to let that roller coaster fall off it's track.

This last two weeks, we have experienced victories that were unimaginable a two ago. We have had some breakthroughs in our son's situation and in our house situation. Downright miracles! I am waiting patiently for the Lord to work it all out and I know that I have gained a greater patience because God has made me wait. What I once fretted over, I don't fret over anymore. Housing is nothing compared to your hurting children. I would take a housing issue any day than watch helplessly because my child was in emotional pain.

I am alive. I am breathing! As much as I am tempted sometimes to get off this roller coaster called a "Surrendered Christian life", I know I must stay on it because every time we go up that steep terrain or we do a loopty-do, I can praise God and give Him the glory for getting us through it. Christian lives are not meant to be boring. They are meant to be exciting and beautiful.  Our testimonies are our lights that shine before men. They point the way to Jesus. Please share it! We all need to be encouraged.

Has God done something exciting in your life? Please share in the comment section.


Lee Ann said...

your post certainly does sound like a roller coaster. I don't have anything dramatic as that. I find the strength of my faith goes up and down. I've not lost it but there are times that I feel very far away and others where I feel pretty close.

Becky L. said...

life isn't easy and we just have to adjust to the new "normal" whatever that is. And with God on with us,we know He will get us through!
I am thankful daily for so many things. Now I'm keeping a thankfulness journal. I usually don't journal but this is gonna be one to keep up with, daily. It keeps your perspective. God is there, daily, minute by minute. And there are surprises at times. I think He likes to do that for us, don't you think?
Thanks for sharing your heart, Stacie.

Wanting What I Have said...

Oh Stacie!!! You encourage me so much and you help me put things in perspective. Thank you for your honesty! And as I am in the throes of homeschooling and heart issues keep emerging and dealing with them takes away from our time in the books...well, your reminder that character comes before academics is so encouraging!!! Praying for all of you as you swirl and loop on the perfect track He has designed for your lives. Keep trusting. And please keep sharing here as He leads. xoxo

Terri Cheney said...

I read this with great joy. I think of you often.

Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

Thank you all for your loving and sweet comments. You have blessed me and encouraged me. I truly wonder sometimes if I am too transparent and if bearing my heart on here is wise. But knowing that your are being strengthened by seeing what the Lord is doing in our lives is worth the risk. God is so good and He loves us so much !

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