The last few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions. Last fall, my daughter’s boyfriend proposed to her. She was so excited to marry her best friend. We were also happy for both of them and were excited to welcome a son-in-law into our family. They originally planned the wedding for May. That gave us about 7 months to prepare. As plans were started, it became apparent that May was not going to work. Sara is not a fan of summer and did not want to have a summer wedding. They decided (in December) to move the wedding to February–the 14th. They both despise Valentine’s Day and figured getting married on that day would be a reason to celebrate. That gave us 6 weeks to pull the wedding together. They made it easier by deciding that the ceremony would be just family, but still, it was a bit stressful getting all the logistics worked out. As you can see by the picture above, the wedding went well and the bride was beautiful–although I may be a bit biased.
All the stress that came with wedding festivities and the emotions of watching my baby girl marry a man and change her name has been more difficult than I imagined. Add to that, the Tuesday after the wedding, I was scheduled to speak at the MOPS group that meets in our community. Public speaking isn’t really my gift and although I was able to get through it without tears, it was emotionally draining sharing those very painful memories. At the same time, I enjoyed the opportunity to share what God did in our marriage and pray that there are similar opportunities in the future.
All of these things have taken a toll on this mom’s heart and health. I was anticipating a reprieve from the stress. Funny thing about life though, there is always something to be stressed about. (And it isn’t really all that funny most of the time) Maybe this just comes with being a mom. I don’t remember being this stressed out when they were little. Tired? Certainly. But not stressed. I’ve thought a lot about this and believe I’ve come up with why that may be. It hit me tonight in a text conversation I was having with my son.
This world is not an easy place. It never has been, of course. When man chose to sin, that action plunged the earth and its inhabitants into an existence that would be characterized by pain, toil, sickness, stress and a host of other negative things. As a mom of young adults, it is even more obvious that this world is fallen. Teaching kids to read and add or subtract was easy compared to watching them figure things out in a world that is not on their side. This evening, all of this stress came crashing down around me. My insides were in knots and shaking at the same time. Tears flowed as I fretted over how things would be worked out for my young adults.
As I sat by myself in an otherwise empty house, I opened my Bible to the familiar and well highlighted book of Psalms. I went to my favorites and read those verses that have been so calming to me in the past.
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (46:1)
“In my distress I called upon the Lord; to my God I cried for help. From His temple he heard my voice, and my cry to him reached his ears.” (18:6)
“I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.” (16:2)
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” (27:14)
“The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.” (28:7)
“I sought the Lord and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” (34:4)
I can’t say that I am smiling and leaping for joy; I still wonder how God is going to work things out for my kids. As I told my son tonight, I know God has a plan. I just wish he’d share it with us. I suppose, though, if God worked that way, we wouldn’t need much faith.