The Peace of Christ is Real

Between packing, moving, and getting settled in Texas, I’m going to be extremely busy this week and next, so I’ve asked a few of my best blogging buddies to pinch-hit for me. This first guest post is brought to you by the irrepressible Dwija of House Unseen, Life Unscripted.  If you haven’t made it over to her blog yet, you must go! She is an absolute delight, whether she’s regaling you with tales of Wal-Mart-ing in rural Michigan or describing the ways their family was shown Christ’s love during their journey.  And for all you Groundhogs out there (because let’s be honest, that should be our mascot. Who among us identifies with a Crusader? A Groundhog, though. We can get down with that.), she’s also a UD alum. So read this lovely post, drop her a comment letting her know that you appreciate her visiting us, and then skip over to her blog and get to know her!

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As you probably know by now, when I’m presented with a challenging circumstance, when the road gets a little bumpy and the things aren’t going the way I wish they would, I clam up.  I need time to process the valleys of life.  The peaks…well, I shout those out eagerly!  Like yesterday, for example, with my celebration of the awesomeness of total strangers.  Today, on the other hand, is different.  Today I’m ready to share something with you that was, or perhaps should have been, more difficult to celebrate.

On the Friday before Mother’s Day, my husband was laid off.

Now see, if I had posted this the day before Mother’s Day or the day after Mother’s Day, there would have been many condolences and true sadness and real concern from all of you, my dear friends, both those I know in flesh and those whom I’ve come to know and treasure over the past few months.  There was absolutely no way that I was going to saddle any of you with that worry.  If my friends were less empathetic or we had another real source of income then I might have considered it, but they aren’t and we don’t, so I didn’t.

He had actually come home early from work that Friday, with a six pack in his hand and a smile on his face.  I knew something was up.  But I didn’t ask him outright and he didn’t tell me outright, because he also needs a little time to process things, and if we were both processing it at the same time, well…that might not have been good.  In fact, it would certainly have been bad.  Better one at a time, truly.

So Friday and Saturday passed, with every suggestion by me that I ought to get to the store before he took the car again on Monday being shrugged off by him nonchalantly.  And then on Sunday, Mother’s Day, as we sat around the breakfast table before leaving for church, I insisted, emphatically, that it didn’t matter if it was Mother’s Day.  We had to go to the grocery store after Mass.  End of discussion.

“Well” he said, “I have sort of a surprise for you.”

Pause.

“Um, I don’t have to go to work on Monday.  Or ever.  Yeah, so, the car will be here and….”

Silence.

“Yay….?”, he suggested cautiously with an apologetic smile.

“Uh, are you serious?”

And of course, he was.  The contract that he’d been hired to help fulfill had fallen through.  No contract means no money means no work.

I hope you’ll know what I mean when I say I distinctively felt the pivotal nature of that moment.  Or better, I felt the pivotal nature of my reaction to that moment.  I could have choosen to be sad , disappointed, worried, or worst of all, angry.  If I had gone down any of those paths, most people would consider my response justified.  But would it have been?  Would it have made my family any more joyful or peaceful?  Would it have improved my relationship with my husband?  Would it give him his job back?  Clearly, the answer to each of those is “no”.

So I took a deep breath and nodded my head.  I forced a smile.  “Well, it’s not like it paid all that much and you certainly weren’t enjoying yourself.”  The look of pure relief that came over my husband when he heard those simple words was undeniable.  I knew he had been nervous, maybe even a little afraid.  Probably a whole lot sorry, even though there’s nothing he could have done.  He wanted nothing more than to make me happy, but he had no choice but to tell me truth.

Remember my struggle with worry?  My tendency to let myself fall into despair?  Ever since I admitted that to all of you and committed myself to trusting Jesus the way my sweet little girl trusts me, the calm I’ve been able to enjoy has been nothing short of incredible.  That morning, Mother’s Day, as I stood next to my husband at Mass, I felt no fear.  There was not a trace of concern in my heart.  Not a bit of frustration.  No anger and no animosity.

I stood there with my dear husband and my four children and was instead overwhelmed with joy.  I almost couldn’t contain myself.  I wanted to tell everyone I saw.  I wanted to holler it from the rafters.  I want everyone I’ve ever known to know it.  And if you already know it, come on and shout it with me.  The peace of Christ is real! He is always there, ready to give it to us.  It’s just so “understandable” to deny Him at those pivotal moments.  But don’t deny Him.  Soften your heart.  Banish the fear.  Take the peace that it is rightfully yours and revel in a life of peace!

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17892924619560880572 Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman)

    My husband lost his job shortly after we married, and I have had some moments of worry–but truth be told, nothing is impossible with God. Our marriage was strengthened, as Christ was wrapped up in all of this with us.I will pray for you.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17887429052179249473 Dwija {House Unseen}

    Thank you, Ellen. Since then Tommy has been able to sell another guitar and is working on a brand-new design.As with most things, it was probably a blessing in disguise! :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08135229596877003069 Michelle

    I need to find this child-like trust when it comes to matters of this sort. Thank you for writing this…

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17486088267364693085 ArtsyNina

    Sorry to hear that Dweej. But things will work out. Glad to hear that he sold another guitar. I have been poking around his site and FB page – he does beautiful work. My gramps supported his family playing the guitar and the harp for 70 years so I have a soft spot for music minded people :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12557248434888642114 Melanie B

    My husband was fired from his job two weeks after our first child was born. It was done in a very cowardly way. They sent an email after the close of business on the Friday before a three-day weekend. Sad to say I'm still a bit angry about it. At the time I was postpartum and majorly hormonal and my reaction was to cry hysterically for a very, very long time. Yeah not so much on the supportive wife thing. Fortunately, my parents were there and were very supportive of both of us. I wish I'd been able to be as positive as you, to accept that peace and let it fill me heart. I never stopped trusting that God would somehow see us through; but I still haven't been able to bring myself to see losing his job as a blessing in disguise or something positive for our family. I still wish he had his old job where he worked from home instead of having to leave the house to go to an office every day. While I do think he's doing good work at his current job, I miss being with him and I regret every minute he has to spend away from our children. My vision for what our married life was going to be like has been very hard for me to let go. I suppose I've still got a ways to go in learning to trust that God's plans are better than mine.God bless you, Dwija. I'll be praying for your family.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17887429052179249473 Dwija {House Unseen}

    Oh Melanie, I'm sorry to hear that. Any employer that would fire your husband the cowardly way doesn't deserve the benefits of having him as an employee anyway!I too love having my husband home, so I KNOW where you're coming from. Perhaps the tug you still feel in your heart is the Lord calling you and your husband to investigate other options? Could he start his own business? If you could do or live anywhere in the whole world, what and where would it be? Maybe the Lord is fanning a new fire that you haven't yet identified! I love new fires! New adventures! If you figure out what it is, tell me. I'll help :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03621288346814793138 my3littlebirds

    Dwija, you have handled this situation with such grace and faithfulness. I hope I'd be able to do the same. My faith, although always an important part of my life, has deepened so much since becoming a mother. When I think about the fact that God loves me infinitely more than I love my children, how could I NOT trust that love? I love your positive attitude : )

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08579815470078229123 Kara

    Dwija, I'm sorry to hear that. I would hope that I would handle my reaction to my husband the same, but I doubt I'd have as much as grace otherwise. Hope you both find some fabulous new avenue or adventure.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17887429052179249473 Dwija {House Unseen}

    Me too, M.L. Having children has made me a better person for sure! :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17887429052179249473 Dwija {House Unseen}

    Thank you, Kara :) We are putting ourselves back into his custom guitar business 100% and praying it picks back up!


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