I bought a new devotional journal for myself yesterday. You may have read it – Wake Up Laughing: An Offbeat Devotional Journal for the “Unconventional” Woman by Rachel St. John-Gilbert. The title and the picture on the cover were enough for me to buy it and start reading as soon as I could!
As soon as I started reading I knew this book was written for me and the timing was perfect. I read chapter one and I felt like it was written for Paul and I and the situation we are facing right now in our lives. I don’t want to give anything away in case you choose to read it for yourselves – and I highly recommend that you do!
For those of you who do not know, Paul has been furloughed from the railroad (again) for the past 5 months. If we count the amount of time he was furloughed last year with this current furlough, since he barely worked 3 months between the two, it makes a year of not working for the railroad. It is no secret that we hate being in this situation for many reasons.
I feel like I am handling this second furlough a little better than the first one, I have more faith that God will take care of us because He has never let us down. As soon as Paul got the call that he was furloughed again I feel like we both went into work mode – he was able to get a job as a handyman, and almost every evening he is at our old house remodeling it and getting it ready to sell. I kept my data entry job that I work from home, but I was able to get a job at a coffee shop. We are juggling a lot of things up in the air and hoping that we don’t drop something!
Every single day is scheduled with work and projects so our minds stay busy. It wasn’t until I sat down this morning and actually thought about our situation that I realized how long we have been doing this… But when I do sit down at times, and think, and realize how overwhelmingly full our plate is right now ….. I can get a little emotional.
When I feel myself falling into anxiety that tightens my chest and makes it to where I can’t breathe, God reminds me of beautiful verses like this:
He gently reminds me, again, that He has everything under control, and that His timing is perfect. He has good things in store for Paul and me, but we still have to wait like anxious little children for Christmas morning to finally get here.
Recently I have started saying, “It’s OK” out loud so I can hear myself say it and so I will hopefully believe what I say. When I start to get stressed, I tell myself it’s OK over and over until I really do feel like it’s OK! 😀 It may sound silly, but it has helped me not blow silly things out of proportion the past couple months so I’m happy it works for me! I speak peace over my life and over my husband.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
Being furloughed stinks. It’s hard not being able to pay the bills on time, or even listening to others complain about their spouses working too much! But it’s OK. I know that God has perfect plans – plans of hope and a better future, and I know He will continue to take care of us in our situation! Instead I try to think about positive things and focus on the good instead of the bad. Again, I speak peace over my life and over my husband who is tired and ready for his old life back.
I don’t know what you’re going through today, but I hope you are reminded that you serve a mighty God who is still in the miracle working business! His timing is absolutely perfect – He is never too late. Focus on what God has done for you so far, remind yourself of the blessings He has already bestowed on your life.
Many things about tomorrow I don’t seem to understand, but I know who holds tomorrow – and I know who holds my hand!