Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dazed, Confused, and Labor Pains

The past week has been a bit stressful here.  And today just was the icing on the cake.  And not in a good yummy way like icing always is. 

If I had the time and money for a nervous breakdown, today would be the day. But I have neither in excess so no nervous breakdown for me.
To fully understand it all, I have to write it in three parts.  First being the facts.  Second being the stress.  Third being God’s provision. 

Part One: The Facts
The past few weeks we’ve had some happenings here at our house.  Wasn’t planning on putting too much on the blog...this is the internet and not overly private.  But for parts two and three to make sense; I must write the facts.

Most of you know I’ve been trying to sell my house to move east to Connecticut.  While the house has been on the market for 17 months, preparations to go have been much longer.  I started praying about it in January of 2010 and made my final decision in August of 2010.  This has been my life for the past two years.  It’s been a long yet short, fun yet stressful and of course very educational (in God’s curriculum)
About 2 weeks ago I had someone interested in my house.  A week ago I signed a contract with them.  FINALLY!  Next step was the appraisal and other legal/real estate stuff that happens.  The appraisal went well so now I’m just waiting on the next few steps to be completed. 

Technically my house is NOT sold. (Don’t get too excited).  It isn’t sold until closing.  At this point a large variety of things could still happen that could make the sale of the house fall through.
BUT.  I have a contract and an appraisal.  Two things I did not have for the past 17 months.  One must remain positive, right?

Part Two: The Stress
The Stress Part should probably be broken down into a vast multitude of sections.  In comparison to childbirth labor: the pain and agony of labor pains is intense.  But the end result of a new baby is wonderful.  As is the pain and agony of the stress of selling a house (with added and unmentioned complications).  But the end result will be that I can finally move to Connecticut and get on with my life.  And that will be good.  It’s just getting through the labor.

First Stress:
Where to move if the house sells.

I have hinted and mentioned that for legal purposes, I cannot leave the county/state until everything is all wrapped up.  I’m not at liberty to say what the legal stuff is. (For protection of the innocent ;o)  So this means that I will have to rent a place.  No problem, right?  Well. Kinda yea.  Because I don’t know how long I’ll be here, I can’t sign a lease.  Also, I have to be out 10 days after closing (quick, huh?)  and that’s a really short amount of time to find a place to rent.  (And pack). 

Like I said, I will have 10 days to pack and move.  Sounds like a long time, right?  Well, I’ll be working 6 days a week for the three weeks leading up to that date.  I will also be in school, dealing with other legal garbage, my kids in school with a huge 4th grade project and football going on for Riley.  I think there’s more but I forget.
I also will be storing most of my belongings, keeping out only the necessities.  So, I kinda need to do the sorting/packing thing myself instead of begging my amazing sisters, aunts, cousins, friends and mom to do it for me.

Out of all the stresses, this is the least of my worries.  Last night a friend told me I was ‘Hitler-Organized’ and have no worries.  Not sure how much of a compliment that was if it was one at all, but coming from Bonnie*, I’ll take it as such.  Coming from her, it’s as good as it’s going to get.  Haha.   I am uber organized to where it can be a problem so I’m sure in this situation it will only serve me well.
Randy has to be involved.

We have not seen Randy since April of 2011.  So, I’m not sure exactly where he even is.  But because of the lovely laws in Ohio, by dowry rights he has to sign off on the sale of the property even though he signed off on the deed. 
If the first step in the aforementioned legal matters was completed and filed, he would not have to sign.  I will be free and clear.  So my prayer is that the first step of court will be completed within the next 4 weeks or else I have to find him and convince him to sign this paper.  To which he could deny and I could lose the right to sell my house, until the courtdate.  Which means I would most likely lose my current buyer and then be sent back to square one.

The biggest fear in this is actually facing him.  I have grown and changed so much over the past three years; but fear of him still has power over me.  And confronting him terrifies me.

I think that’s all that’s bothering me…there is probably more but I can’t feel it.  In my head, I have it all planned out. I know how to handle each situation and I tell myself to have no worries.  But I’m not convincing the rest of my body.  In making all the lists and organization, my brain must have forgotten to mention to my chest that it was not necessary to be tight and painful at all times.

I have chronic chest pains and stomach aches, waking in the morning to heart attack like symptoms.  Then tonight after being told Randy had to be involved, my hands were clawing and clamming up and I almost passed out.  I think I’m stressed.  Hmmm….  Thoughts anyone?
I’m not telling you this for pity or help or anything.  But simply to set the stage for part three.  Without knowing the previous paragraph, it wouldn’t mean as much.  And glorifying God is what I want through this whole process. 

Part Three: God’s Provisions
What amazes me is how this night was preordained months and months ago.  This fact alone gives me comfort.

Lemme explain.
A few months ago I felt like I needed to change something with my children’s Bible reading.  Like, it wasn’t happening at all and I wanted it to.

I heard on Revive our Hearts about a young mother who read a chapter of the Bible every day to her toddlers, starting in Genesis.  She told her story and how it affected her family…obviously only in positive ways.  She said she decided to do the math one day, figuring how long it would take her to read the entire Bible; one chapter at a time.  She figured  reading 5 days a week with missing the occasional day it would take her 9 years. 

I quickly did the math.

Riley is 9, Rhianna 7, and Reagan 6.  Add 9 to those and you get 18, 16, 15.  I would be reading the Old Testament through their adolescence, gospels through their pre-teens, and the epistles through their later teen years.  I’m most likely going to need all the help I can get, raising three teens on my own.  Why not prepare the way for those years?  What better tradition to have in place than to read a chapter of the Bible every night together?
So we started. 

To be honest with you, the changes we have experienced have been amazing.  Of course we still have our issues, but the unity I feel in our little family has grown so deep that I am left standing amazed.  I can only credit this to the time we spend together with God in His word and in prayer.
Back to now. 

Last night I read in Exodus 22.  Verse 22-24 quotes: Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child.  If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto me, I will surely hear their cry, and my wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless.    
K. So God isn’t going to strike anyone dead who hurts our feelings or does us wrong.  I get that and don’t really want that.  But I feel (and correct me) that God holds fatherless children in a special place in His heart and this verse gives a glimpse of that part of God’s heart.  This verse shows how defensive God is to those who are defenseless.

I told the children that God obviously cares very much for them.  To not worry about our future, because He has it all planned and prepared.    
Then we read tonight’s chapter.

Exodus 23, verses 27-30.  I will send my fear before thee, and will destroy all the people to whom thou shalt come, and I will make all thine enemies turn their backs unto thee.  And I will send hornets before thee, which shall drive out the Hivite, the Canaanite, the Hittite, from before thee.  I will not drive them out from before thee in one year; lest the land become desolate, and the beast of the field multiply against thee.  By little and little I will drive them out form before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.”
As I read this, my anxiety melted through me like butter.  I know that there won’t be people being destroyed and hornets won’t be flying and I won’t be farming any land and there probably won’t be beasts multiplying.  But I read it as God is preparing the way.  I can see a glimpse of the road ahead and I see these obstacles and I’m crying out going “God, why aren’t you removing them???  You promised me that I would be provided for so why are the obstacles STILL there??”

He answered me tonight by saying “You aren’t there yet.  These obstacles need to remain in the horizon for a purpose, but once you get there, the obstacles will be destroyed and removed. So don’t fear.” 
All I need to do is take one step forward.  That place in the path will be prepared and smoothed over by God.  I can’t look a mile down the road.  It doesn’t matter what’s up there…I’m not there so why worry?

As I read this, and still thinking of God’s love for us from reminiscing of last night’s reading it hit me.  God knew which day I should start reading.  He knew every time there would be a night when we wouldn’t/couldn’t read. (I only read when all 4 family members are present)  He would have every day planned out so that a few hours after hearing the terrifying news of Randy being involved, I would read these verses. 

That amazes me.

The anxiety is gone.  The stomach has quit twisting.  My hands are still cramped, but I think that’s from typing this huge post novel and not tension…hah. I don’t feel light headed and my heart feels like its beating every beat instead of once every three. 
Instead I feel contentment. 

I cannot describe my graditute to each one of you for your prayers.  I am absolutely amazed at the amount of messages, emails, and words of encouragement.  My intentions are not those of complaining but of a very realistic view of my life right now.  I know I could not do this right now without your prayers…
Thank you readers, you are truly carrying me through this.


  1. Yes, God DOES have a special place in His heart for the fatherless....and that's you too, Julie. You are His precious child, and I can't WAIT to see how He destroys your obstacles and works out the details. In the meantime....we are PRAYING for you. You have been on our hearts so much lately. ((hugs))

  2. Julie,
    I, too, often wonder at God's promise to provide when obvious obstacles obstruct. Sometimes, a microscopic thread of hope & trust in Him to see us through until He clears the way is all I can give, but He has unfailingly provided in the past & wants to do it again in our lives. Hang on & keep are in our prayers!

  3. I'm happy for you Julie and will continue to pray God's will be done.
    B&C Lanz

  4. Julie, I was just googling the " Mustard Seed of Faith" song because I couldn't remember all the lyrics and your blog was the first cite that came up! First I want to let you know that I'm praying for you and hope everything works out! Second I want to thank you! Although you may not know it you have made a huge impact on my life.
    Hi, my name is Erika and a few years ago you wrote me a letter that I did not take seriously at the time. You told me to never go on a single date with someone I wouldn't marry, and to get through my teenage years relying on Jesus. Sadly it took me awhile to accept that you were right. For a longdrive I did the exact opposite of what you said, but about a year ago I pulled my bible out of the bottom of my drawer, and when I opened the front cover I found your letter in there. After rereading your it, I realized you were right. Since that day I have taken you advice and keep it in the front of my bible to help me when times get tough! I want to thank you for taking the time to make a difference in my life. Best of luck and hope to see you in Connecticut! Erika