But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head-Christ ~ Ephesians 4:15
I am about to be the most transparent I have ever been in my life. You see, my husband is a counselor and I struggle with exposing too much. As his wife, I do not want to shame him or myself however as a Christian I know our stories help one another. It was in talking to a friend the other night before a baseball event I realized how sharing our stories help us grow closer to each other. As I read back through my notes from this study 1 Corinithians 12:4-11 comes to mind where Sarah explains “we belong to one another; we affect one another; we read one another”. This was one of those moments. My friend had no idea what I went through and I had no idea what she went through but it was an amazing thing because we both knew the struggle and we grew closer through that conversation. It was a beautiful moment. So here goes my story of how I discovered I was Worthy of the Calling.
At the time I was doing this, October 2017, there was so much going on in my life.
First, I was struggling with work and the rumors about me not doing my job; questioning my usefulness to our organization and many other things. I felt defeated. I felt like giving up. However, I had an amazing boss at the time who always asked one question: “Did you hear it from me? No! So do your job and quit worrying about everyone else” But isn’t that what we as women all struggle with? Acceptance! I wanted everyone to know what I did. I was mad. I was angry. I was bitter. I was THAT person!
Second, I work in the Medicare industry and from September 1-December 15 life is extra busy. I am rarely home and rarely see my husband and kids. My days start at 6 AM checking email and end at 11 PM or 12 AM checking email. I work sales and I have to have numbers at the end of every day without fail. To say this time period is stressful is an understatement. However, this year was different. I was home more due to our Plano office closing which was very tragic for me. That office was my labor of love for 4 years. There was so much sweat equity in that office it was unbelievable. Hence the reason my family wasn’t use to me being home. In all the years I’ve been doing this, 2017 was the year we had to adjust to a new schedule of me not traveling. It was much harder than anyone realized. I loved being home and my family loved having me but we had learned how to function apart and not together. I wanted things done my way; they were doing things their way. It was tough for this Type-A control freak of a woman.
Third, my marriage is always rocky during this time of the year. Lee goes his way and I go mine and we meetup when we have time. My stress level is super high and I’m so not fun to be around. If we said 5 words to one another in a day, it was too many. He was use to a quick morning phone call (if I had time) or a quick “I love you” text message. He never had to put with the cold shoulder or the hand to the face brushing him off because I was busy. Yep, I did that!!! And if you really knew the old school Type A husband I have you would truly understand how bad that was for his ego. To put this bluntly, I sucked it up at being his wife. When I was home I slept on the couch because I was working and didn’t want to disturb him. Lee requires hours of sleep; I can run on minutes with the right amount of coffee! So you can imagine our intimacy level was at zero. That makes for a very cranky husband mixed with a cranky wife and all we could do is blame the other instead of looking at ourselves. Divorce was looming it was that bad.
Fourth, my son was raising himself. He would send texts like “I know you are busy mom but just wanted you to know”; “Hey mom, is it okay if I call?”; “Mom, are you busy?” When I would receive those messages I would almost tear up because I never wanted to be that mom. I wanted to always be available to my children. And others were getting him to and from everything. I missed a lot every fall. Heck his 8th grade year was his last year of football and I made one game. I only spoke to my oldest because she was one of my agents. My middle child disappeared and I think I said three words to her during that whole time. Not only was I a bad wife; I was a horrible mother.
Finally, I am married to an alcoholic. He has been sober for many years but I worry of him backsliding. This adds a whole other level of craziness to my life. I was constantly worried I pushed him over the edge. I led him to have a beer. I made him feel he needed alcohol to feel loved. It was my fault he had taken a few drinks. BUT never did I address this with him. I just let these thoughts hold me captive.
I was not enough for my job, my husband and children. I was relying on myself and had no where to turn. Have you ever been so engrossed in something and suddenly you looked up and you realize it’s storming? That was my life.
Then I found Sarah’s bible study Worthy of the Calling and slowly God and Sarah helped me peel back the layers. Now, it was October and I’m usually slammed during this time but I made a commitment saying it’s only 10-15 minutes. This made it so easy for me to catch up on the weekend or the very rare downtime I had available. Being on the launch team I was blessed with the ability to preview everything and decide if it was really something I could commit to-it was!
Reading Sarah’s words there was an automatic draw to reading more. In a time of my life where I felt like giving up, I had something to look forward to-her daily emails. You’ve read my experiences in Days 1-15 but in Days 16-30 was where my true reformation of the heart took place. I started going deeper and spending 45 minutes to an hour researching for more answers.
It is in these days that I learned about submitting to my husband. OUCH! I learned that my job is not that important because if I died today, someone would replace me tomorrow. I found out that my children and my husband are always there waiting for me with open arms unconditionally. I found out my past mistakes do not matter because in Christ I am made new again. I discovered that to avoid the crankiness my husband and I had to talk to one another. I had to walk with wise counsel and not fools. I had to up my prayer life and commit to it. But most important, I discovered that even when I think no one else could possibly love me I have the love of a Father in Heaven.
In order to learn these things, I had to humble myself. I had to be open to the lessons before me and hear what God and Sarah were telling me. I had to pray like I had never prayed before in my life. I was on my knees crying. I fell apart. I was broken. I had to look inward and admit my sins and wrongdoings. With God and Sarah daily I put the pieces of my life back together.
Now I work from 9-5 from home if possible but report to my office 1-2 times a week. My husband and family are my priority. I work my work schedule around my family instead of the other way around. My husband and I make sure that at least once a week we have our time together away from technology and everything so we can stay connected. We also take a mini trip every quarter and one big one for our anniversary in July.
Now when we feel we are slipping back into old patterns, we communicate to one another. Amazing how that changes things. My children are use to having mom around and know I’m here for them. They never have to ask me if I am available to them; I am always available for my children. I make time for them. I will now step out of meetings to take calls form my husband and children.
I no longer worry about my husband’s alcoholism. I discovered that was a lie from Satan holding me captive. Does he have moment of weakness? Absolutely! Does he never act on them? No! He’s human and makes mistakes just not drunken stupors. I am blessed with true friends and one of them said, “You knew you were marrying an alcoholic. He’s not a perfect man but you aren’t a perfect woman either. You agreed to marry him for better or worse; unfortunately you are in the valley of the worst”. (y the way, my husband had one beer when we had that conversation!) OUCH! Her words stung a little. But I do that quite a bit. I expect those I love to be held to higher standards. That is something I have learned to let go of a little bit. Now every morning I put on my full armor of God and kick the devil out of my home and my life. Every morning I remind him he lost the battle and victory will not be his.
In this whole study with Sarah, I found a friend in God and her. If you are on her launch team, you will understand this statement. My biggest take away is that I am loved no matter what; I am a child of God no matter what; I am enough even when I feel I’m not. I AM WORTHY of His calling even if others tell me I’m not. Now to figure out what that calling is……..this is where I hope Sarah’s Wisdom Whispers study will help.
My life was blessed to find Sarah Koontz and her beautiful bible studies. May your life be just as blessed.
PS……..There are just 3 more days to pre-register for the Wisdom Whispers Bible Study!! This 31-day study of King Solomon will help you hear Wisdom’s call to salvation, obedience, and humility. Did I mention it’s completely free? Visit “Living by Design Ministries with Sarah Koontz to learn more and sign up today.