Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Guilty as Charged!!!


The first post that I read this morning, was Barb's contribution over at "Faith Lifts". Barb is an amazing lady and she inspires me in so many ways, but one thing I've always looked up to, is her faith. It was surprising to me to read how her faith has been shaken the past week due to something her and her husband are dealing with.

It shouldn't have come as a shock, I'm guilty as charged of doing the same thing, and mind you, not just once, but time and time again.

I love the Lord and I'm pretty strong in my faith. I know He's there, I know where my blessings come from, but yet from time to time, when life is going great and everything seems to be running smoothly, I tend to overlook Him. I become complacent, I push Him aside with excuses of not having time, or being too busy. I forget to thank Him daily for the blessings in my life and ashamed as I am to admit, days will go by when I don't speak to Him.

Usually that's when He will decide to send me a wake up call. Something that will phase me, now mind you, it can't be something little, because I'm so caught up in my perfect little life, that I don't see it.

For me there have been a couple of times, and one would think that by now I would have learnt my lesson, but I'm only human and in His eyes, I'm only a child, I'm going to make mistakes over and over and act without thinking from time to time.

One of the biggest wake up calls for me, was about 2 years ago. Again, life was great, my husband had just sewn on his Staff Sergeant stripe, which meant almost $500 extra a month. We were happy, after the two miscarriages, I had just had Nicholas, he was 6 months old, we had extra money, we were all healthy and life was good.

That is until one morning. Hubby was working midshift, which was from 11pm to 7am. He would come home, go upstairs and kiss me goodmorning, before heading to bed himself. I was laying there and heard him come in, he walked up to bed, sat down and said "I almost died tonight". I jumped up and said "WHAT?!?!? What do you mean?".

Seems that one of the airman he was supervising that night, decided to mess around and fill some plastic bottles with liquid oxygen. A big NO NO!!! When my husband went to dispose of these bottles, one of them exploded in his hands. The impact was so big that it shook the hangar doors and the bottle was impaled on a tree a couple of feet away. But my husband walked away with not a single scratch, just deaf for a few days.

That wasn't the only thing, they had just gotten a new commander the day before, and he had expressed the need to "make an example" out of the next person that messed up. Because my husband was the supervisor when this happened, both he and the airman lost a stripe. The promotion that he had worked so hard on getting and studying for, was removed and so was the money.

I remember the day he went in to talk to his commander, to find out his punishment. I stayed home and prayed so hard, I literally begged God to please, please not let him loose his stripe, anything but that. The minute my husband walked through the door, I knew THAT was exactly what had happened.

I was angry, at him, at God and at everything. I felt betrayed, I remember thinking "Why??? would would you say you love me and then let something like this happen? Didn't I beg you hard enough, didn't you hear me pleading with you?".
The reality of what had just happened hit me like a bomb. We had the same bills, but less money every payday, the people my husband had been supervising were now HIS superiors and he was given 6 months to retest for his stripe and if he didn't make it, he was OUT. His whole career thrown out the window because of a stupid mistake someone else made under his watch.

Now became my fight, my fight for sanity and my fight to remain faithful to God. My hardest struggle??? Keeping my husband sane and from turning away from the Father. There were days that I cried myself to sleep, it was hard, it was the hardest time I've ever gone through. Our paychecks were around $400, and now I had to juggle, pay bills and buy groceries. If I paid the bills we wouldn't eat, and if we ate, the bills would suffer.

But in that minute that I found out about his punishment, it was a HUGE wake up call. I yelled and God was there, I complained and whined and God was there, I cried my eyes out and God was there. Then I felt ashamed and regretful for needing something so big to make me remember Him again. I got down on my knees and sat at His feet every night, I told Him how hard things were and how tired I was of trying to make ends meet.

It wasn't easy, it took 6 months of hardship, but one thing that never shook was my faith in Him....not after that first day.

I think I learnt my lesson, do I believe that I'll be complacent again in the future? Oh it's a sure bet.
Do I believe that He will have to use something big again? Probably, but I've grown so much closer to Him the past year that I doubt it will take something as big.

But for today, I'm thanking Him, for everything. For all the good and for all the bad, because if it wasn't for all the struggles I've been through, I wouldn't be the woman that I am today, I've seen the ugly side and I'm still seeing the wonderful and beautiful side of being with God, and I'm going to try my hardest to NEVER let anything come between us again.


23 comments:

  1. I am totally envious of your faith. I honestly believe that a strong relationship with God will get you through the trials and tribulations of life with a much better attitude and perspective. I don't share your faith, but man, I totally respect and admire it.

    Hugs

    Julie Bo Boolie

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  2. Sandra, that was beautiful. Thanks for sharing your story and being such an inspiration to others. Laura

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  3. Thank you for sharing Sandra because I am guilty of the exact thing.

    I haven't been able to comment so hoping it works this way. LOL!
    Courtney

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  4. You brought tears to my eyes. I know what the frustrated darkness feels like and how marvelous it is to realize that my faith still holds. As I've gone through life, the history of God's presence has reminded me that He's there in the current situation, too. What a wonderful God we serve!

    Thanks for such a beautiful story of your faith and God's faithfulness.

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  5. Thank you for being willing to share that story with us in blog land. The Lord is using you =)

    Stephanie

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  6. I've felt that frustration as well...waiting for what God has in store for us is such a struggle. The most improtant thing is not loosing your faith...knowing he does love you and is with you during the hard times as well.

    Annie

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  7. i don't know anyone goes through life without questioning or shaken in their beliefs..that is part of growing deeper in them, i think. the wonderfully thing, the magical thing, the gift is to always go back and be stronger than we you first left..here from Dr. John's.

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  8. Thank you for being so honest with your story. Most people can relate to it, I’m sure.

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  9. It seems so unfair that he was punished for something someone under his command did but I know that's the way it works. Seems like they punished the whole family though, doesn't it?

    Having done this myself, just yesterday at Faith Lifts, I know this wasn't easy. My stomach hurt by the time I pulled the words in my post out of myself. But I'm finding out there are a lot of people who have been in our boat. In a strange way, it comforts me to know I'm not the only one who had to be shaken up a little to get back on track with my Father.

    Thank you for this beautiful testimony.

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  10. Wow!!! What a story and testimmony! I am sure we are all guilty of this. Like you say, we are human. I like to think I am well grounded spiritually as I have been a Christian for 20 plus years. Yet, I have at times whined when things don't go my way. It sure humbles you when you think of it later!! Praying for you and yours!

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  11. Great post!! I think we all have times where we forget and are hit with harsh reality!! I think that is just part of being human!

    I'm saddened by the thought of people serving our country enduring financial hardships like that! My hubby was in the Army before we met, but he was single then so he made it by fine. However, he did tell me how families he knew of had struggled. I think that is just plain awful!! I think that the men and women who are serving our country shouldn't have to decide between paying bills and eating...something is very wrong with that!!!

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  12. I think we can all say we're guilty of that...but then we come out the other side realizing God is still there. I heard a quote today, "the world may change, but God never does."

    Wow what a story you told about having your faith tested- that would have surely tested mine as well. I can't believe he had to lose a stripe for the stupid thing the airman did! Wow!

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  13. I think when you're with the Lord, what can go wrong?
    Just passing by to say hello from Dr. John.
    BTW, love your blog. It's pretty.

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  14. That was a great post. It's so encouraging to hear others people's stories, what they've learned and how they learned it. It always amazes me how I sometimes have to learn the same lessons over and over.

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  15. Now that I've checked comments on my Faith Lifts post, I wanted to stop by here and thank you for yours. Meant the world to me Sandra.

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  16. Sandra, this was so powerful and it really touched me, that through your hardship you survived and came out a stronger and better person. What a great testimony. Though you husband had to suffer such unfair humility I bet he realized what a wonderful supportive wife he had and God has truly blessed you both!

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  17. You said, "I yelled and God was there, I complained and whined and God was there, I cried my eyes out and God was there."

    So very, very true. Don't we serve an amazing God beyond our wildest comprehension and dreams. He is always there!!! Good times and bad!

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  18. Forgot to tell you I mentioned you in my WFMW post. Head on over and check it out.

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  19. I loved your transparency in this post. I loved more your honesty - will it happen again? You bet. Great encouragement this was.

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  20. It's like I'm reading a blog about me! Only I probably wouldn't have had as strong of faith as you had during that time! It's so easy to get lost in our own little worlds and forget to thank the one who's providing our "little worlds"!

    I also know how tough it can be to be a military family! I was born and raised on a Marine Corp base! Yep! I'm a Marine Corp brat! So, kudos to you for being a strong and faithful mom in the military! The women are what keeps those families together!

    Also, thank you for visiting my blog and adding me to your blogroll! I visit your blog often and love it! :)

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  21. Sandra, thanks for being so open to share. It's great to see the way the Lord has worked in your heart through this hardship. May He continue to Bless you with His presence and peace.

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  22. Sandra - Well-said, what a great reminder. I still say God keeps giving me struggles to remember He is the one in control - NOT ME!!

    By the way - I've emailed you a few times - are you getting those?? Hadn't heard back and that didn't seem like you!!

    Becky

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  23. Geesh...still having probs commenting on these beta blogs.

    Anyway...I read that post of Barbs yesterday too. You know that we're going throught the same thing over here since theFM lost his job. Only I didn't get mad at God...but I did realize that I had been too relaxed in my relationship with Him. I'm now back to trying to not sqeaze in time with Him, but MAKE time for Him. It's hard to get back into the swing of things, but I'm working.

    Flipflop mamma

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Thank you for reading and taking the time to comment. Please be respectful of each other and my blog. Rude comments will be deleted.

Thank you for stopping by, hope you are having a blessed day!

♥Sandra♥


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