I’m posting this for our author, Barbara Raschka, who is having some computer problems.
“Have I not commanded thee, be strong and of good courage; be not afraid and be not dismayed for the Lord Thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” Joshua 1:9
Have you ever noticed when reading a novel, that when something dramatic is about to occur, it is often ushered in by a change in the weather? A storm is brewing, or the sky has darkened, or the wind suddenly changes course and begins to have an ominous sound. Thankfully, the change is not always bad; sometimes a lovely balm fragrance fills the air, or the sun seems to be shining where a minute earlier it had been raining. I look for it as I read and understand why authors use the weather as an indicator for change, because we all seem to do better when the sun is shining and everything seems right with the world.
But the truth is, for all of us, the sun doesn’t always shine and our lives occasionally move into paths of darkness where we think the storms of life may completely undo us. I have never adapted well to change and, in particular, change which effects my ability to cope alone. I want those I love to always be near, a safety net if you will.
When I moved, a mere eighty miles from home, I felt as though I had been plucked up and placed in no-man’s land. Without a telephone, a car, or nearby neighbors, I was depressed, anxious, homesick, and in my mind, completely forsaken. It was April 1st, and it rained almost every day for the rest of the month. Having moved into a new home, there was as yet no grass, my two year old had chicken pox, I had a bladder infection, my five year old cried for lack of playmates, and my husband didn’t arrive home until 7PM every night. For me, this move was a terrible change.
But in true fictional form, by June the sun came out, the grass began to grow, I had a phone and a used car, and children galore appeared in out garage to fill the order for my children’s lives. But best of all, we found a church and a church family who helped me fill the void in my life. I signed up to teach Bible School (three hours a day for two weeks in those days) and my life began to feel less like change and more like comfortable.
Looking back, I realize that the challenges I found as a young mom had less to do with the circumstances in which I found myself, and more to do with the spiritual void in my life. I wonder how I would have coped had I carried Christ in my heart to be my rock ,my friend, and my strength on those lonely, anxiety-filled days. I hope and pray that as a Christian, I have grown into a place in which I can be by myself, but not alone. I pray that change will not sweep me away but will move me into a deeper relationship with the author of life …. the One who is in control of the seasons of our lives…the one who loves us and who will never forsake us.
I know that as my husband and I grow older, we at facing a change in our lives. We have no idea how it will come about and when the ultimate change will occur. I know it may not be pleasant and that the storm clouds may be the darkest we’ve seen, but through prayer and God’s help, we will be able to face that change, not with anxiety, but with the assurance that we are not alone, and that the new change will be ushered in by God with more light than any human can imagine.