I've lost my kids. I take care of them, but I no longer parent them. Their little hearts are slipping away. I called for my oldest today. He said, "Mom, are you gonna yell at us?"
Have I been yelling? I lack the strength.
But I have been harsh. And as I put myself in their shoes, it becomes clear that most of what they hear from me is correction. I don't play with them anymore. I only occasionally read to them. I'm not consistent. I've lost control.
As a wife, I'm no better. There is no order in my home. My champion husband comes home each night, after a long day at work, to even more work. He has to discipline the kids, help get dinner ready, play with the kids, bathe the kids, put them to bed, clean the house, put away laundry, and take care of his sick, tired wife. He lovingly expects nothing in return.
I'm overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy and failure. And I am helpless to change.
These feelings are familiar to me. I had them not too long ago. The feelings are the same, the circumstances are different. And it is good to remember, because that situation seemed hopeless too.
It was my marriage. Twelve years of bad habits. Twelve years of damage. Twelve years of injuring one another. It seemed irreparable. We tried everything. Every book. Every marriage conference. Each attempt increasing hopelessness. I cried out to God, repeatedly, for years, "Help me! I can't do this!"
And in God's perfect timing, it all changed. In just one moment. God changed our hearts. God repaired years of damage. God healed and restored. Miraculously. In a moment.
That was five months ago. Before cancer.
Have I already forgotten?
Am I like the Israelites of the Old Testament who continually forgot the miraculous deliverance of their God and turned away to idols?
The trial of a difficult marriage didn't teach me how to be the perfect wife. I'm still far from that. What I learned is that my God is faithful. I can trust Him, even when I can't see the finish line. He can deliver me. He can work out all the details of my life, despite my weaknesses and failures.
I'm reminded of my own lack of faith during that trial and I refuse to go back there. Nothing is Impossible with God!