Tuesday, March 29, 2011

2 Steps Back….

One step forward, two steps back.
This saying seems to embody our lives at the moment.

Almost 7 months ago we embarked on a journey. One that we prayed about, we felt led to and one that we thought would create new and exciting possibilities for our family. Those of you that have been with me here for awhile know that Dominic took a job in SW Minnesota. Because of the timing, kids in school, me 6 months pregnant etc. we made the choice that he would live up there during the week and come home on the weekends and I would stay with the family in our current home.

To say this situation has been difficult is an understatement. With the winter we had, bad commutes in bad weather, the stress of being a single mom at home for me and learning a new field of law for him has left us weary. But we pressed forward, trusting that the hard work would pay off eventually.

We started looking for houses in the area and prepared our house to be put on the market in the spring. We cherished…and still do…our nightly phone conversations and our weekends together as a family. Whether at our house or his we haven’t been apart once in 7 months on the weekend!

But what seemed like a step forward for his career and our family has taken 2 steps back. I cannot get into details just to say that the environment Dominic is in can best be described as difficult (putting it nicely). It is frustrating and very disheartening and we wonder where do we go from here?

He likes what he is learning…he enjoys it and when he talks to me about all he knows now I am so proud of him! He can and will be very successful at this “type” of law – I have no doubt. But what do you do when the environment you are in for 12 hours a day is so negative? Even someone like Dominic, who always tries to find the positive in every situation, is wearing thin….

And then last weekend as he was getting ready to leave Beresford to head to MN for the week, he was hit by a teenager in our community. It was an accident….her fault – she was cited and although our car was totaled, thankfully no one was hurt. But her insurance company has refused to pay and so we are once again left a few steps back as we try to figure out…what is next God?!

Why can't we catch a break here?!

I KNOW that we have so much to be grateful for, but my heart has been closed to what those things are. It has been much easier for me to wallow in self-pity and compare myself to others who seem to have things much easier than we do.

And so in my faith walk I have taken 2 steps back.

Folks, it is an ugly place to be. To look at my kids and not see the gift but to focus on the things that frustrate me instead, to see the fortune of others and feel envious, to spend time angry with God because “this was supposed to be our big opportunity…”. Trust me the list goes on and on…..


My mom is a very wise woman…..much wiser than I ever gave her credit for when I was younger!! She e-mailed me something today and I want to share just a part of it with you.

This is one of those moments when God Himself speaks through others….I hope that you hear it here.

Think about how you react when you give Gabriel a “super surprise”. When you gave him the snow globe and he said “Mom, this isn’t a super surprise” you were upset by his response. When you gave him the diamond he said “This is the best super surprise ever!” and you were so excited that he loved his gift. That made me think about how God must feel when he sends me a gift and I don’t appreciate it for the care and thought with which it was chosen and given. Is He disappointed in me? Is he less likely to give me another gift because of the way I responded to this one? Fortunately God’s love is unconditional and he keeps giving me gifts…..

Are you hearing that? That is truth being spoken!!

This is EXACTLY where I have found myself. Disappointed by the gifts God has given me because it hasn’t come in the package that I had hoped for.

I don’t know what will happen in the next 3 months or 6 months or year. We may find ourselves still in this same position…and I have to get to that place where I am ok wherever we are because we have God prevalent in our family and THAT is what is important. Not the package that surrounds us.

I know this too will be a process for me. I am not one of those people that changes overnight. So I just ask that you would pray with me that God would be real to me in all things. And that I would let go of my misperceptions and expectations and just find peace with God right where I am.


Anonymous said...

Oh Kristin--I have been where you are and I know and feel your pain. I am so sorry things for Dominic aren't working out. I had hoped that by now those difficulties would have rectified themselves. I know it's hard, but always know that God is with you--when Dennis had his stroke and lost his job last summer I was pretty angry at Him and questioned him until over the past 11 months He is showing me why and teaching me love and patience. Envy and jealously are so ugly and hard to get over--believe me I've been there--but God loves you, you are all his children, he will not hurt you or let you fail and falter forever-His love is telling you to trust him, to let Him worry and handle your troubles. And that is terrible if the girl was cited that her insurance won't pay. Hey, do you know any lawyers! LOL
Hugs, prayers, thoughts and love from my family to yours.
Sandy Stocklin Hook

Kami said...

Sweet friend, I am absolutely praying for you. It really does seem to be the truth that the enemy attacks most often through that awful thing called discouragement. I know that being home with five kids before Monte is home in the evening gets challenging, and I can't imagine doing it for five days at a time. You are a strong, wonderful woman! Sometimes it's really important (for me, anyway) to get the kids involved when I feel like I'm at the end of my rope. I often will tell them that I'm having a hard day and I don't want to be negative to them or yell at them, so I need their help, too. I explain that they need to do their best to not fight and to be helpful to one another and to me. I'm not even joking - this helps SO much. When my kids are aware that I'm emotionally spent, they really DO work hard to get along (even Colin, my five-year-old!) and to help me in any way possible. It definitely helps to bring more harmony into our home - and then I'm far more likely to do something fun like play a family game together (though my husband recently taught our kids how to play Texas Hold 'Em, so that's all they've wanted to play lately!!). Praying that you find your harmony and your time with God.

I will tell you, though, that my kiddos know when I'm having a really tough day because I walk around repeating "This is the day that the Lord has made, I will REJOICE and BE GLAD in it!" They tend to get the giggles when they know I'm trying to convince myself to have a better attitude! :)

On a final note, my sister was involved in a similar car accident a few years ago (a teenager hit her, totaled the car, she was not at fault) and her insurance company refused to pay. She got in contact with a lawyer (I think you know someone in law, right?!?! *wink, wink*) and pursued a lawsuit with them - the insurance company (the teenager's company) ended up covering everything. That may be a road that you guys have to consider taking. No matter what, though, I will be praying for you that God opens the right doors and leads you in the path that He desires.

I love you, sweet friend! Please let me know if I can help in any way. Once again, you can't be too much of a drive from me - once this RSV leaves us we're more than happy to come help if you need it!

The Smith Family Journey

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