Monday, September 8, 2014

Help Wanted

I have written many personal updates over the years of writing this blog.  Many have been about what God is doing, what God is asking me to do, or what I hope God will do in my life.  Through those years, your prayers, I believe, have been a large part of the work God has done in my life.  I mean, I have a beautiful house, a beautiful healthy child, a new and growing church, and I am meeting new friends through it all.  I have even taken some small steps to improve my health (though I still have a long way to go and really need prayer to have the discipline to watch my diet and for God to protect my health as I really want to be there for my wife and child).  That brings me to the topic of today’s update.  The one area that still lingers large in my life is my commute.  In the grand scheme of things, that may seem like a small thing.  I mean there are brothers and sisters fighting wars, facing persecution of the likes I cannot even imagine, being abused, and being in poverty.  In fact, I struggle with the guilt of asking for something better than what I have when what I have is so much better than how so many others have it.  However, there is one Scripture that comes to mind that assuages those feelings of guilt.  

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,

casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7 NKJV

The Word of God commands us to cast all our cares on Him, and not just what items we feel are worthy of Him.  If anything, I would be disobedient not bringing this earnestly before God for as long as it remains a care in my life.  In fact, and this goes as much for me, it would be a matter of pride to think that we can possibly burden God’s time and resources with our own problems.  God wants us to always rely on Him, even when we think we can handle something on our own.  In fact, this probably why so many Christians are good at not falling in the big things while stumbling in the little things.  Please do not ever think that God is too busy with the “big” problems of the world to handle our “small” problems.  The phrase “God helps those who help themselves” is never in the Bible.  Time and time again, the opposite happens. God helps those who admit they cannot help themselves and those who do try to help themselves usually find themselves in trouble. 

If any of you are my Facebook friends (as most of you are), then you know my prayer and struggle with my commute for some time.  Instead of writing in small snippets from time to time, I want to just lay everything out.  I am not going to write anything today for any kind of pity party.  They are pointless, useless, and not particularly pleasing to God.   I am writing because I want to be clear about what is going on so that you all know where I need help.  I am also writing because it helps me get a better grasp on everything.  The bottom line is that I do not feel my commute is compatible with what God wants for my family.  That leaves two options:  I am wrong about what God wants for me or the thing that is affecting it needs to change.  This is where my prayer starts. 

First of all, there is the financial issue.  My commute is simply unaffordable.  I believe that God wants my wife to be home with our child.  This is not possible for much longer the way things are now.  When you figure what I bring home every month and deduct the $900.00 it costs me to commute, we are not even left with enough money to pay the mortgage.  We had some cushion that has lasted us quite some time, but that time is quickly coming to an end.  We have a small eBay business but even that helped us keep up when Robin was working and it is certainly not enough to supplement to keep her home.  I honestly do not believe God wants Robin back at work, at least not where she was working, and certainly not yet.  I feel no leading at all from God for her to be working and, as far as I know, neither does she.  Yet, the reality is that she cannot stay home much longer if things stay the way they are. 

Next there is the health and safety issue.   One of my greatest fears in life is for Eli to grow up without a dad or Robin to ever have to go through losing me.  While there are things I can and should do, especially regarding my diet, there are other things that I have no control of in this current situation.  I get 5-6 hours of sleep every night during the week and with a baby those are not 5-6 solid hours.  This leaves me in a perpetual state of tiredness.  I am tired at work, I am tired at home, and, most importantly, I am tired while driving.  There is not a morning or afternoon that goes by where I do not fight sleep and drift lanes several times.  This is not hyperbole.  It is only by the grace of God that nothing has occupied any of the areas where I happened to drift.  Furthermore, with eBay, wanting to spend time with my family, and just the fact that I am so tired, doing anything active during the week is nearly impossible.    The lack of sleep along with my sleep apnea and diabetes is not good for improving my health. 

Finally, I cannot be the husband and father I believe I am called to be.  Robin loves hanging out with friends and family.  Robin loves going to church during the week.  Those things are great challenges for me.  I am perpetually obsessed with time knowing that the longer we stay where we are, the less sleep I will get and the harder the drive will be.  I am very selective with that I do during the week and many times Robin goes places without me.  She does not like that and neither do I.  Not only that, but I am so tired and busy that I do not nearly help out at home as much as I should.  I love to cook but rarely do.  I love to work outside and make our house nice, but if I cannot get squeezed into a Saturday it does not happen, and I want to help Robin more with Eli but time just does not allow me to pitch in as much as I should. 

I think the bottom line is obvious.  Either I am wrong on all those things that I believe God is leading me into or I am wrong about continuing in my current employment.  The two do not work together.  I have prayed so long to clearly hear from God and all I hear is that this job is not compatible with my life.  If I knew I heard from God I would resign in a minute.  In fact, my prayer is growing more and more to hearing that from God.  The thing is that resigning without another job lined up or money lined up is jumping off a financial cliff with my family in tow.  I need to be absolutely sure that is what God wants me to do.  I know that I have asked God several times for a fleece and even suggested some when the time is right.  So far all I have is a growing desire to walk away from the commute.  I am not sure, though, if that desire is of the flesh or of the spirit. 

God has given me a great life.  He has given me the most wonderful wife in the world, He has given me a beautiful son, He has given us a great house in a great area, and He has given us a great church family and friends and family.  I am not asking for anything more than that, just the chance to enjoy the blessings He has bestowed upon my life.  God desires us to rejoice in all things, God desires us to pursue peace, and God wants us to live a life of spiritual abundance.  These are precepts I want to be obedient to, but the honest truth is that right now I do not know how.   And that is basically where I am at this point in time.  I see this life God has for me, but I do not see how to get there. 
Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. Mark 11:24

Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”
Mark 9:24

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