Relinquish

I'm in the lull between busy seasons. I'm both relieved to rest and anxious about bills. a slower work flow means a slower cash flow. Less money is not something that a single mama wants to experience.

I was up late last night worrying about my life. I spent countless hours in a state of anxiety and fear. I thought of the worst possible scenarios and let them wash over me. Gross. This is what fear does to me. It sinks its soft little fingers into my mind and then squeezes with a surprising strength. I'm powerless.

Obviously I woke up this morning severely depressed. I staggered out of bed, restless and crushed. I threw myself in the shower feeling completely broken. And then I did what I SHOULD have done last night. I prayed. No seriously, I didn't pray until this morning. Unless you count "Oh God. Oh God. Oh God." as a prayer. Which maybe it is. Who is it that talks about praying like a man falling down stairs, "Shit!"? That's me.

So, I told myself, "Act opposite. You don't feel free, but don't give in." I made a green smoothie, I locked my bedroom door and I went first to She Reads Truth. I just needed SOMETHING. And there it was, like it was waiting just for me.

"The Lord will fight for you. You need only to be still."
Exodus 14:14

I keep forgetting that God is my husband. Not in a creepy way, but in a holy, consuming, powerful way. God is my Provider. God is my Protector. God is my Sustainer. God is my Healer. If I'm in need, God will provide for me. I'm afraid because I'm scurrying around trying to find the provision and it is nowhere to be seen. I'm forgetting that I need to get still. I need to get quiet. I need to press on in my ordinary life, do whatever I need to do to pay my bills and wait on God to fill in the holes.

My entire married life has been overflowing with a negative attitude about provision and money. I've often thought that I could survive on next to nothing if joy was allowed to a part of the experience. It wasn't and I couldn't.

It's not like I've ever lived another way. Ever. My childhood was just as poor. We scraped by, but my dad did things like fun circle k runs and jokes about not having Christmas this year because we ALL knew that God would provide just in time. I didn't know we were poor for a long time. I didn't know that money was something to get angry about. I didn't associate small living with negativity. It just was.

So, this morning, I'm trying to reset my thinking. I'm trying to reorganize my heart and the way it's learned to respond to my life. I'm trying to get small and still. I'm trying to allow joy to creep back in. I'm trying to remember the God who has never let us go hungry, never let our utilities be turned off, never crushed me and left me in darkness. Never.

I had told myself that, this year, I was going to be kind to myself.

Here's my first step.

*January 2013