Monday, January 12, 2009

Where Does My Confidence Lie?

I have written and rewritten this post in my head and on the computer many times.
I already know how I am going to close this post. That is the easy part.
You see, there are moments in my life that I am perfectly content to keep to myself.
I think the downfall of the blog world is only seeing one side of the coin, so to speak. You only see the part of my life that I want you to see.
But, my intentions are for you to get a well-rounded view of what a family goes through when they walk into grief.
So, I thought I would write on last night's experience. It was not pretty. It does not highlight my greatest qualities but rather the weakest part of my character.

I crumbled in my closet and just weeped as I cried out to God. Why would He ask me to raise six children on my own? I just can not do it all and yet that is what I feel I have been asked to do.
The vulnerability of my soul and being at the point of surrender is a good thing.
I understand this but my flesh is weak. What I want to do and what I need to do are two totally different things right now.
My first priority is to raise godly children but all I can manage to see on nights like the last are huge barriers standing in my way. Those barriers are hard to define but if you will bear with me I will try to explain.

One of the barriers that I see is dealing with kids who are all in different phases of life. I have an eighteen year old son who is itching to become a man (job, wife, etc.) that is living in the same house as a three year old who is constantly pushing the envelope of obedience. There are huge differences in personality and needs for each child. They all seem to need something from me and there is no sharing the burden now. It lays squarely on my shoulders along with the finances, the schooling, and all the household management.

The other barrier is a lack of time and energy. Raising these kids was much different when there were two of us. There seemed to be much more time to develop relationships and work on issues in each child's life. But, now twenty-four hours just doesn't seem to be enough. Added to the lack of time is the energy it takes to grieve. It is physically exhausting and yet life must go on. The world continues to spin whether you feel like spinning with it or not. Grief also messes with your physical well-being. Sleeping soundly through the night seems to be a luxury that I am not able to have at this point in time. This physical exhaustion is a liability when it comes to raising a family. It is hard to keep on an even keel when you are dealing with a foggy brain.

One last barrier is kind of complicated to explain. When a father dies there is the sense that the job of head of household is up for grabs. It really isn't but maybe in the confusion of the situation there is a time period that everyone gets entangled in a power struggle. I had authority before Eric died but not to the extent that he did, rightfully so. Now I am finding, as we approach the year anniversary, that I have to define my position in the family to each child. They need to know that I am the final authority answering to God for our family. Yikes! I really don't want to be in this position. Yet, I am being asked to fill these big shoes. And, the kids are not so keen on the idea as well. They are pushing to see how firm I will be. Another part of this journey that is utterly exhausting.

These barriers have become burdens. And those burdens and my lack of faith is what caused my meltdown last night. I believe in the perseverance of the saints and it was proven again last night. My flesh wanted to walk out that door and start a new life away from it all. The Spirit insisted that I just wait on the Lord. I did not find much physical rest but I found rest in His Word. I have explained before that I use memorized scripture to get me through those times. Just quoting the words over and over. This morning the Lord used KLOVE's verse of the day to bring me back to His reality.

Hebrews 4:14-16
14Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.

15For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

16Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

There it is...the end of the post. That was the easy part. Those words were a gift this morning like the morning itself.
I love my children and I love the life I have been given. I can't say that I enjoy the tough moments but I do hold to the promise that these times when life seems overwhelming are all good gifts given from above. As I fail and succeed I am growing and becoming more confident in His graces and mercies.


Kathyb1960 said...

Heather, I know you know this since you listen to K-Love, but rememeber they have pastors you can call and talk to. I know you probably have some pastors and others you probably talk to all the time, but remember, in the middle of the night, when it's the darkest before the dawn, they are there for you.

You are in my prayers.

Anonymous said...

I hear all you are saying, Heather and understand what you are saying. My prayers are continually with you and anything else you need.
I love that Scripture too!!!
Jeannie 1Cor:1:3

Anonymous said...

Scripture reference is 1 Cor. 2:3!

Christine said...

I so wish you were not having to go through this valley. We're still praying for you and the children every day.

BTW, If you make it this way again, we're not on dial up anymore... I'm using my new Blackberry and I can listen to the music on your blog now :)

Hugs to you

Lazy D Ranch said...

You are too I am going to make your connection to the world be my reason to not visit! Glad you have better connectivity though.
It looks like this year we won't be going through Missouri. We are headed home north this time. Have a lot of people to visit with in the Pittsburg and Chicago area.
So glad we made the effort last year.

Quinne said...

Hi Heather :) This is beautifully written. Thank you for continuing to share your heart here. Keeping you close in prayer with love, Q

Valerie said...


Thanks once again for your honesty and giving me a glimpse into yourself. They were timely words especially the Hebrews passage.

You are a very gifted writer. I think God will continue to use you in that area.

To God Be The Glory!

Lisa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lisa said...

Thank you for your transparency. You didn't really think that those of us who visit here often didn't think you had these moments did you?

Much love to you sister.

Anonymous said...

I am signing in as anonymous in case my own kids read this, and your kids don't need to know who said this either!

When kids reach 18 or 19, the power struggle is on whether or not they have both parents. Yes, even if they are "christian kids". Don't think it all stems from being widowed, dear sister! You'd be facing this anyway... And, it's really not a bad thing! You (and Eric) have done a wonderful job with them, and they need to take this next step in their lives. They will always look to you for wisdom, but need to establish themselves as adults now.

As I see it, you are now raising four kids, not six. Your job with the upper two is to give them wings to fly on their own.

Sounds harsh, but, having been there, done that, I think it is correct.

We'll be praying for you, as always!

six2love said...


I love the clarity of thought with which the Lord has gifted you. You are courageous, my friend. Those crying in the closet moments are all part of the package, I'm afraid. At least, I believe they are. God is with us in those moments walking through these times right beside us, He'll never leave us nor forsake us. It's hard not to have a human husband to turn to and hear, "you're doing great honey, etc." But, I believe God is giving us opportunity to trust Him in this unique circumstance. Others have unique and difficult circumstances also, they're just different circumstances.

I am so encouraged by you and your faithful walk. I wish I could help you as much as your writing has helped me. May the Lord grant you extra grace and strength in these next few weeks. I will be praying.


godlover said...

Hang in there, Heather. Seems like such an easy statement to make on my part but what prompted those words is a heart that wishes the very best for you and your family. God loves you and He NEVER leaves you. He was with you inside the closet when you gave way to tears. And His tears mingled with yours as He put first one then another reassurance in your heart. That things are going to be okay and that He is always there for you. That He loves you and is doing everything right even though you can't see it or feel it. I pray God's best for you and wish I could somehow be more active in the healing in your life, part of the mortar that holds it all together. Lean on Him for He is the only answer to your every question. Thank you for continuing to stay open and honest about your walk with the Lord.