The coffee shop is taking much longer to open, much to my dismay...although so many times, I've felt the Lord whisper: "not in your time...in my time."
Okay, Lord, I will wait.
In the meantime, the financial burden seems to be getting heavier, along with other mounting frustrations.
Hours go by so silently that I swear you can hear the crickets chirp.
And if the state of the store isn't enough to drive a sane woman insane, I've got big frustrations going on in my personal life...no matter how hard I try to fix them, it seems like I hit brick wall, after brick wall.
At some point, logic sets in and says if you keep trying the same thing over and over again, don't expect different results.
But, what do you do, when you feel like you've come at a problem from every angle and nothing seems to provide relief??
So, I sit here, completely worn out, broken, tired and weary...feeling like my dreams are shattering before my very eyes.
Today, I had to go back to court, to yet again try to resolve a matter that I've been dealing with for the last couple years. The other party did not show up this time...
I was frustrated at first...until the judge brought us into the court room.
It was a different judge than what I had become accustomed to.
This judge wasn't familiar with the case and started to ask my legal representation questions...he didn't know much about the circumstances, either.
So, in an act of divine appointment, the judge requested that I take the stand, go under oath and answer questions.
PRAISE JESUS...finally, a judge would hear me!
I had to state obvious information, of course, before proceeding and then I was asked to give a recap of the last two years.
I took a deep breath and started talking.
I kept talking...
and I kept talking, still!
I kept talking until I had gotten it all out.
There was silence in the courtroom for a few seconds and finally the judge smiled at me, with compassion and sympathy and asked me if I felt better.
After two years of built up frustration, resentment and desperation, it felt so good to finally be able to speak the way I needed to speak. Finally, my words were falling on the right ears.
The judge and my lawyer continued with their legal banter and I just sat there, feeling for a moment that hope is a real thing after all.
Now, please don't misunderstand my intentions for blogging this...its not to air my dirty laundry...its to share the moment I had when I got back to my shop.
Still frustrated, I walked back to my desk and opened up my devotional.
(I love how God always seems to speak to me, right when I need it most!)
For months now I have felt that my frustrations are really starting to get the best of me. I truly feel like Humpty Dumpty...that the next slightest fall, I will crumble, break and none of the kings men would ever be able to put me back together again.
What I seem to quickly forget is that the kings men will never be able to put me back together again...only THE King...the one and only King of Kings.
Why do I forget so quickly that the King of the whole wide universe has me in the palm of His hand?? That I am a daughter of the King?
Because I'm human.
This is what my devotions told me: that no matter what, no matter how frustrating life can feel on this earth, that when you keep trying and trying and it seems like nothing is getting better, or no one seems to care about how hard you are trying or no one seems to be paying attention, that no matter what, God is watching your efforts...one day God will say "well done" to me, for trying so hard, for scraping things together to try to provide for my family, for trying my absolute hardest to be diligent at work...for always keeping the house clean, even when I'm tired from working, because it teaches my children to care for things. Or, cooking a meal a few nights a week, so that I can show my family the importance of sharing a few moments together, in the extreme chaos of today's world...all of those little things matter...all the things that you do behind the scenes, even though no one here on earth may ever say thank you properly for the hard work and sacrifices you make...GOD is watching you and He KNOWS your heart and how hard you try.
He sees every tear that falls from my cheek when I'm alone because I'm worn out, exhausted and tired.
He hears every prayer I make when I'm frustrated because personalities seem to clash.
He somehow makes $4 appear so that my kids can go to the pool and be with their friends.
And, He somehow had a different judge hear my case today, that wanted to listen to my story.
He knows how hard I try to make ends meet for everyone in my family...He knows how hard I try to be the peacemaker...He knows my heart, even when others seem to misunderstand me.
I sat at my desk and bawled...because I have been feeling like nothing I do matters...that some people don't care if I'm around...that my store is nothing...that no one likes what I have to offer...that no matter how hard I try with my kids, its never enough...that I work everyday and I still fall short...I have felt like a big, fat ZERO.
I don't know why I'm struggling so much right now...I don't know why life seems so incredibly hard at this point in my life. What I do know, however, is that the ONLY thing that is keeping my world together right now is my God.
Even if I have nothing else, I have that...and that is all I need to keep trying. It gives me the strength to get back up, even though I feel like staying down...it gives me the hope to keep going, even though I'm so tired, weary and desperate for relief...I know that God sees my heart, and knows my efforts.
So, what does this all mean?
It means don't give up...don't give in...never stop trying.
While there are some people on earth that we need to try to please, ultimately, their approval rating is not the one who counts.
Because, if you look at it like this...anything you do, purpose in your heart to do it for the Glory of God...when you do that, EVERYTHING else will fall into place...
It may take time...
And it may feel like you are walking blindly along...but then again, walking in faith doesn't always mean you know where you are going....but walking in faith DOES mean that you know who's holding you in the palm of His hand...and somehow, that gives me the courage to take another step.
But when your motives are right and you are living your life to glorify the God who gave you life, your other relationships will flourish.
Remember, you're so much more valuable than Humpty Dumpty. God will put you back together.
Today, this song, which I know I've heard a hundred times play on my Pandora station, came on the radio...when I needed it most...
I've never paid attention to the lyrics before, until today. I heard her say, with so much heart and emotion: "How many times have you heard me cry out, "God please take this"? How many times have you given me strength to just keep breathing?"
It's me...It's my heart...It's how my burdened heart feels to me right now. I refuse to NOT look to God...but I feel weary and I've cried out to Him time and time again, asking for answers...and because those answers seem to be far off, I'm on my knees, pleading for His strength, to help me go one more day...
Maybe it's your story too...I hope it speaks to you.