I was standing in the bathroom getting ready for bed when Ian walked in from outside. He had been out for maybe 30 seconds taking out our recycling. “We have to pray for our friends on the street tonight… it’s freezing.” he said to me as he took off his coat, his face red from the sting of the cold. “And what good is that going to do?” I snapped back – a mixture of many feelings swirling around in my head these days, some being anger, resentment, fatigue, and sadness.
He looked at me shocked, and I apologized. He responded in the only way Ian knows how to do – with deep encouragement. “Meg, we always pray.” He went on to list many of the ways that God has been so faithful. When we needed a car, our good friends had one that they were willing to let go and generously gave to us for our growing family. When we were short on money, people would e-transfer us grocery money without knowing what we were going through. And just last week when I really needed a friend, someone reached out who had no idea what I needed.
The truth is that I’ve been struggling. Mostly I am tired. Don’t get me wrong, Charlotte is amazing. She sleeps really well – but we are still up at night, taking care during the day, learning so much, walking through this season of being new parents. We have been through a lot of transitions in the last couple of months and it is wearing on me. When I’m tired, I don’t do well handling my emotions, and I think I can say the same for Ian. This leads to more arguments, more sleepless nights, less self worth, and more sadness. The past couple weeks have been rough, and I am almost ashamed to admit it. I don’t want to “fail” as a mother or wife, but it feels like I fall short many days. And you know what? I need to learn that this is where God comes in.
Of course a simple prayer for our friends on the street won’t “fix” homelessness. But it does give God the power and the glory which is what we need to do in this life, isn’t it? There are many people tirelessly advocating, walking alongside people, working hard day after day for our most vulnerable friends living outside. And maybe during this time off work where my hands are less busy shaking those I meet outside and more busy holding a baby, I can still pray. I can pray that someone finds my friends and is generous with their time or money. I can pray for my colleagues and husband who are still working hard on the field. I can pray for a miracle. And God works in many big and small ways as Ian reminded me that night.
In my sadness and fear of failure, it is easy to think that God is not with me. It is easy to remain angry, to continue to fight with Ian, to not tell people how I am doing, to give up on therapy. But that’s not the way things get better. I’m not sure where I wanted this blog to go, but I do want to encourage you that God is so faithful, even when it feels like you’re falling short – He never does. So we pray and give God all the glory. We pray and give Him space to do His work. And we remain faithful. I know it isn’t easy, but it is important.
Peace to you this week.