I could not have imagined that I would have met the man of my dreams with every quality that I prayed for. Lack of faith? I don’t think so...maybe reality in our day with divorce rates as high as they are.
We continued to date through the remainder of October, November and into December. I went with him to his mom and dad’s for Thanksgiving that year to meet his family. That was a nerve-racking time to be on display for his parents, two brothers, their wives, nieces and nephews to look me and my son over to make their assessment. I took my son with me to South Carolina because I came as a package deal...if you want me...then you get my son also. His family was very nice to me and made us feel welcome. Then we came back home so he could be put on display for my family to meet. All in all....it went very well.
Our dates consisted of going out to eat, to the movies, to the athletic club to watch him play tennis but mostly, he was at my house or I was at his apartment. The weekends that my son was with me, his girls were with him so they could get to know each other. They blended immediately and acted like family with ease.
We went looking at houses, talked about marriage but yet we both refused to use the "L" word...love...shhhhhh....do not say it very loud because at this point...we did not use it. Needless to say, we did everything backwards. We were getting very, very close and the feelings were running very deep by now.
Then, all the sudden, the first of December...he walked me to my car when I was at his apartment and in talking and saying goodnight...he said "he did not know if he loved me." BAM! Where did that come from? He said he wanted to go back to being "special" again...friends. I was in shock, hurt, sick to my stomach....but there was a sense of calm also. I knew in my heart that God hand picked him for me and he WAS mine. I tried to talk to him but I felt it was time for me to just go home.
I prayed all the way home and half the night that God would show him that we were meant to be together. I prayed that he would feel the same sense of togetherness that I felt. However, I had to remember that I had been divorced four years and he had only been divorced for months...not years. There was still a lot of pain from his divorce and he missed his girls terribly. He is an awesome father, so not being with them on a daily basis was taking it’s toll on him. I know he felt a certain amount of guilt because he was with my son and was not able to spend that same amount time with his girls. After I had time to think about it, he had seemed distant for the past week but I thought it was job related stress or something simple. I continued to pray all weekend and through the next week. We continued to see each other and talk on the phone...weird atmosphere....like nothing happened or like we were closer than friends but not in love??? I refused to let him get away but I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do for him to see that I really did love him...more than just friends.
A couple of weeks went by....I went to his apartment on a Saturday so we could talk. Now, he lived probably 40 miles from where I lived...so jumping in the car and running right over there was not possible. I was hoping we could spend Christmas together but he was completely refusing.
We talked briefly but he had a tennis match already planned...so he left and I stayed there. I had intended to stay until he got back so we could talk more. After he left, I cleaned his apartment, washed, dried, folded and put his clothes away. Then....I went home. I wanted him to see that I would make a good wife but I was not going to beg him either. It was that evening when he got back to his apartment, he saw that it was spotless and all his laundry was done...then he called. me. In our conversation, he told me that he knew that I loved him and he loved me. God really has a sense of humor....you know what turned him around? What made him realize that he really loved me and I really loved him? The way that I FOLDED HIS UNDERWEAR! I thought I was going to die when he told me that. But he went on to say...if I took the time to fold his underwear in a special way...then I would be a wife who paid careful attention to the other details of our relationship. Go figure! Underwear?
By Christmas, we were back where I had hoped we would be...in love. He left right about Christmas to go hunting in Ohio. While he was gone...he called me and told me to pick out two wedding dates. I told you we did everything backwards....no engagement ring. The night he got back in town...I was waiting at his apartment for him to get home. After welcoming him home and hearing all about his trip...he asked me to get something out of his bag for him. In the process of doing that....I found a little something for me in his bag . . . AN ENGAGEMENT RING! And yes, he asked me to marry him that night and I said "YES!"
We picked out our wedding date all before his parents came down for New Year’s Day. We set the wedding for February 23, 1991....5 ½ months after we met.
When we both let go and let God...then we knew in our heart....it was blessed by God, orchestrated by God and Roger was definitely my "heavenly knight in shining armor".....truly a God send...an answer to prayer.
Just four short months before I was lonely, felt broken, unloved, unwanted and in despair. But God hear my cries and He answered them....just as He promised.
II Corinthians 4:8,9 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair, persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. (NIV)
Psalm 147:3 He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. (NIV)
No matter how small you think your problems are, how small or insignificant your dreams might seem....God cares about each one of them....because He loves you.
I Peter 5:7 Casting all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (NIV)
Sunday, May 31, 2009
I could not have imagined that I would have met the man of my dreams with every quality that I prayed for. Lack of faith? I don’t think so...maybe reality in our day with divorce rates as high as they are.
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
The teacher said it was physically impossible for a whale to swallow a human because even though it was a very large mammal its throat was very small.
The little girl stated that Jonah was swallowed by a whale.
Irritated, the teacher reiterated that a whale could not swallow a human; it was physically impossible.
The little girl said, 'When I get to heaven I will ask Jonah'.
The teacher asked, 'What if Jonah went to hell?'
The little girl replied, 'Then you ask him'.
A kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they were drawing.
As she got to one little girl who was working diligently, she asked what the drawing was.
The girl replied, 'I'm drawing God.'
The teacher paused and said, 'But no one knows what God looks like.'
Without missing a beat, or looking up from her drawing, the girl replied, 'They will in a minute.'
After explaining the commandment to 'honour' thy Father and thy Mother, she asked, 'Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?'
Without missing a beat one little boy (the oldest of a family) answered, 'Thou shall not kill.'
One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast on her brunette head.
She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, 'Why are some of your hairs white, Mum?'
Her mother replied, 'Well, every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.'
The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, 'Mummy, how come ALL of grandma's hairs are white?'
The children had all been photographed, and the teacher was trying to persuade them each to buy a copy of the group picture.
'Just think how nice it will be to look at it when you are all grown up and say, 'There's Jennifer, she's a lawyer,' or 'That's Michael, He's a doctor.'
A small voice at the back of the room rang out, 'And there's the teacher, she's dead.'
'Yes,' the class said. 'Then why is it that while I am standing upright in the ordinary position the blood doesn't run into my feet?'
A little fellow shouted, 'Cause your feet ain't empty.'
Thursday, May 28, 2009
It's been quite awhile since I have participated in Thankful Thursday but my heart is overflowing this week and I wanted to share it with you.
I am going to keep it to 3 things that I am thankful for this week, even though, I could list so many more.
If you read my post from yesterday and saw the pictures, you will know immediately what I am talking about. If not, click HERE to read.
God's protection is something that I never want to take fore granted because without it...so many ugly things would happen to us. There are so many things that "could have" happened to us and it wasn't chance or luck that prevented them from happening...it was God's hand of protection on you or your family. At times, I wish I could see what God has spared us from but at the same time...I really don't want to know all the evil that the enemy has intended to harm or kill my family.
But you will not leave in haste or go in flight; for the LORD will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard.
The LORD watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy.
It is amazing to me how you can go from being excited, ecstatic and happy to down, defeated and angry...all over MONEY! I don't know about you but I can. When things happen that "rock" my world, my first tendency is to fret, worry or get upset. Tuesday night was not different.
When Roger changed jobs last year, we knew that our health insurance was going to be very expensive at his new job. The same policy with the same insurance company was going to go from $300. a month to $800. a month. I was sick to think we had to pay that much for health insurance and I tried to find other affordable coverage. We found several companies that would insure us individually rather than under a group policy but with Roger's high blood pressure and cholesterol...it would be pre-existing or excluded from our coverage all together.
I have worked in the medical field for 25+ years and I know that if he were to go to the hospital for any reason, they (insurance co.) could "relate" his health issues to his blood pressure and refuse to pay. So...we didn't have a choice except to go with the insurance offered through his job.
The job offered so many more benefits and they all out weighed the expense of the insurance. He works for wonderful godly, Christian employers, who aren't afraid to stand up, speak out and serve God openly in their work place. What a refreshing environment for my husband to work in everyday. Plus, it is 4 miles from home, he can come home for lunch and never has to cross the Mississippi River bridge to go to work anymore! That is a benefit, in itself.
Well, Tuesday night, I was working on paying bills, making out the deposit for his paycheck from the Friday before and I noticed it was short. I got out the previous pay stub and noticed the insurance had gone up another $20.79 per week. Making our insurance $895.00 per month. I was upset, called Roger at the police department and quite frankly....I was MAD!
What makes it even worse is...you are really stuck and don't have another choice except to pay for it. I certainly don't want to be uninsured.
Needless, to say...it ruined my great mood that I was in. I just went to bed...feeling sorry for myself and grumbling.
I woke up Wednesday morning and began to remember the first few chapters that I read in my new book that Laurie gave me last Friday...the same day the paycheck was shortened. It is called A Journey into Prayer.
Pray without ceasing - I Thess. 5:17, First Priority: Prayer - Eph. 6:18 and In All Things Give Thanks - Psalm 103:2-5.
I chose to start my day out giving thanks for my husband's job, that we can afford to pay for health insurance (maybe, hard but we can) and for God's provision. My heart wasn't joyous all day but it was a choice not a feeling.
I posted several statuses on Facebook starting Tuesday night and into Wednesday...so, I had several friends praying for us as well.
God is so good! Out of the clear blue, yesterday afternoon at 4:43 PM, I received a text message from my bosses wife...stating she was giving me a raise.
Guess what? It is double the amount that we will be losing with Roger's insurance going up! PTL!!! God is so faithful and He is so good! Why do I ever doubt Him?
2 Corinthians 9:8
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
I am so thankful for the generosity of a bloggy friend that I have never meet in real life but through IM (instant messaging) on Monday...she was helping me with redesigning my blog layout...the subject of vacation came up. I told her that we were coming to Florida, she asked to what part, I told her and she asked if I would be willing to come a little further into Florida.
She offered to let us stay in their cottage for nothing, if we choose to drive the extra distance to the beach this summer. We have been longing to take Tyler back to that area of Florida. We haven't been there since he was 4 years old and he doesn't remember it. We normally used our timeshare but you almost can get a place on the beach anymore. So, it didn't look like we would get back there before he graduates in 3 short years. We are planning a trip up the east coast and out west over the next 3 years. We decided to just go to the panhandle of Florida this year. We would be able to say..."we went to the beach and had a great time."
She has never met me or my family but yet, she offered her cottage to us for vacation. If we can work it out...what a blessing that will be. We will get to return to our favorite area of Florida, meet my precious, generous bloggy sister, see all the sites that Tyler doesn't remember, make wonderful memories for our family and hopefully, meet a couple of more bloggy sisters if we go to Orlando for the day.
Thank you so much, my sweet friend for such a generous offer! You will never know who much that has meant to our family. My God richly bless you and your family.
A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor.
They are always generous and lend freely; their children will be blessed.
God continues to richly bless my family and I am so thankful today for His protection, His provision and the generosity of a friend!
For more wonderful and truly thankful hearts...visit our host, Lynn at Spiritually Unequal Marriage.
Have a wonderfully blessed day!
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say to the LORD, "My refuge and my fortress,
My God, in whom I trust!"
3 For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper
And from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with His pinions,
And under His wings you may seek refuge;
His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.
Or of the arrow that flies by day;
6 Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.
7 A thousand may fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
But it shall not approach you.
8 You will only look on with your eyes
And see the recompense of the wicked.
9 For you have made the LORD, my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place.
10 No evil will befall you,
Nor will any plague come near your tent.
11 For He will give His angels charge concerning you,
To guard you in all your ways.
12 They will bear you up in their hands,
That you do not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread upon the lion and cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you will trample down.
14 "Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.
15 "He will call upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him.
16 "With a long life I will satisfy him
And let him see My salvation.
This chapter took on new meaning for our family last week. Roger was out of town...in the backwoods...Possum Grape, AR. I have no idea where this place is, but God does.
He was on the job site, nearly finished and getting ready to head back home...around or just after noon that day. Keep in mind that Roger doesn't hear real well. There are certain tones that he just can't hear. We now know exactly what one of those tones are...the rattle of the rattlers on a rattle snake. (enough rattle(s) in that sentence?)
He so happened to look around (I believe it was a God guided look) and about 5 feet from where he was standing...he saw this looking at him, ready to strike.
He immediately stood perfectly still, raised his hands over his head (to prevent the snake from striking at them dangling down) and waited. I'm not sure which one of the two went back to the truck to retrieve a shovel and kill this snake...but this is what he looked like when they got finished with it.
I am so thankful for God's hand of protection upon Roger and the other guy that day. It could have been a very bad situation because Roger NEVER heard the rattles. They were so far from the nearest hospital but God knew that too.
This is proof once again that the power of prayer is the most important weapon we have in this world. Never take fore granted the power that you are speaking over your family when you pray God's protection over them. There will be thousands of incidents/accidents that will be avoided and we may never know about them, but God knows and He prevents them from happening.
Thank you, Jesus for protecting Roger and the other worker last week from a very poisonous snake.
Have a wonderfully blessed day!
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
I am still in the process of renovating my blog and am steadily finding new things to do...so who knows...I might change it all around including the background again. The dark brown is making it hard for me to find different colors that give it the certain "pop" and have it show up on this background.
Oh, well! LOL!
I wanted to post these pictures showing how my baby is growing. His height has been a huge issue around here for the past few years. He is 6-9 months younger than nearly all of his friends because he has a late birthday, July 14th. We have been telling him since 7th grade...you will grow...we promise. Your daddy and uncles were all late bloomers and look at them now. One uncle is 6'6" and one is 6'8...his 19 year old cousin is 6'8"-6'9".
I am so thankful that it is actually coming to pass! lol Would hate to lie to my son! *sigh*
February '07 (12 1/2 yrs. old)............December '07 (13 1/2 yrs. old)
September '08 (14 yrs. old)...................... May '09 (14 1/2 yrs. old)
Sorry for the lack of clothing on Ty but I have to get the pictures when I can! lol
Have a wonderfully blessed day!
Monday, May 25, 2009
Just to let you know that my blog is under some minor (I think) renovations, but with my computer knowledge...it might be major before it is over with. So, if things aren't in the right spot or things look funny...I'm working on it....MYSELF :-)
Have a wonderfully blessed day!
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009 will always be a day that I remember. It is one that brought me face to face with a precious bloggy sister that I have blogged with, emailed and texted for many months.
When I started blogging over a year ago, I never thought that I would actually ever get to meet any of the ladies that I have grown to love and consider friends of mine. This past Friday changed all of that for me.
Laurie from Women Taking A Stand and I left at 9 AM to drive 2 hours south down into Mississippi to meet Laurie Ann from A Magnolia's Heart Beats. Laurie Ann drove 2 hours north to meet us.
We met at McAlister's for lunch. We knew that we would be spending several hours chatting and we didn't want to hold up any one's table, so this seemed like the perfect solution.
We had beautiful weather and we sat outside for 2.5 hours...eating and fellowshipping before having to head back home. I wasn't ready to leave then! I could have sat there for several more hours but because Laurie had a graduation to attend and my family was leaving for a camping weekend with friends...we had to go. :-(
Meeting Laurie Ann for the first time was like seeing an old friends that you haven't seen in years. There was never an awkward moment, never a lack of things to talk about and such easy talking.
We wrapped up our visit by taking pictures out by the beautiful landscape in the front "yard" of McAlister's and stood together, holding hands in a circle and Laurie prayed a powerful prayer over our time that we spent together and our return home to our families.
We discussed our next get together...I can't wait to spend more time with Laurie Ann!
Laurie Ann and Me (Jennifer)
Laurie Ann and Laurie
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
On Sunday, September 2, 1990, I went to church as usual but after church...I had a blind date. This date was arranged by some friends of mine who would tie my former life to my future life. God always has the perfect plan that we don't always see coming or understand even when it is unfolding before our very eyes. Let me explain how these friends of mine were a part of my former life and would be a vital part of my future. My ex-husband was a farmer who worked for a family that I had know nearly all my life and went to school with one of their sons. My ex-husband worked for this family and was very close to all the members of this family.
After, some hard times, the farmer got out of farming and his son had to find employment elsewhere. He found employment in Tennessee at a environmental company. During his employment there, he became good friends with the division manager. My friend/his employee told him that he had the perfect woman for him to meet when he felt that he was ready. However, the division manager had been married and had just gone through a very painful divorce himself. It took some time but he was finally ready to move on with his life and that was in late August of 1990. We were introduced on Sunday, September 2, 1990.
I was immediately attracted to this man and we connected right away. We were on a "double date" that day and I would have normally been nervous and shy but I was comfortable from the very beginning. We all laughed and talked for a couple of hours...but then it was time to say goodbye. I wasn't sure if I had made the same impression on him that he had made on me but I guess that I would just have to wait to see. We were walking out of the restaurant to my friend's car and he asked me if he could call me sometime to go to lunch. I told him that I would love that. Now after my previous track record in the dating world...I wasn't sure if he would call me or not...so I kept my fingers crossed and prayed he would.
On Tuesday, I received a phone call at work. I had already told the girls that I worked with about this good looking guy that I had met on Sunday, so when he actually called me at work....they were really giving me a hard time. He asked me if he could take me to lunch the next day, Wednesday and I told him that I would love to go. He picked me up at work and took me to Shoney's for lunch. We talked all through lunch and I don't think that I took two bites of my lunch but I was very smitten with this man. He told me that he knew on the Sunday that we met that if he didn't asked me for another date before I got in the car and drove off....he would not get the nerve up again. He was afraid that I would say "no", but he asked me out before I got in the car that Sunday and I never told him "no".
When he took me back to work after lunch, he asked me out for Friday night and I gladly accepted. He called me a couple of times at work between Wednesday and Friday and conversation was always so easy. We went to the movies and out to eat seafood on Friday night. I will never forget the movie that we saw together..."Ghost" with Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze. I cried a couple of times but he didn't seem to mind. He took me home and we talked until 3 AM. We had so much in common and I haven't ever been this comfortable with anyone before. We talked about what we believe family should be, church, being a Christian and what we wanted out of life. It was completely amazing to me that all that I had prayed for and told God that I wanted in a husband was sitting right in front of me now.
We continue to date...several times a week and every weekend. Some of those dates included my son and sometimes, he stayed with my mother. As things seemed to get a little more serious...I insisted that my son's father/my ex-husband start taking more responsibility and keep his son. I had taken full responsibility for my son for the past four years and it was time for me to have somewhat of a social life while he took responsibility for being father. By this time, I had met his two precious, beautiful girls and they had met my son.
My birthday was coming soon and the year that had been promised to me from God through our pastor as 'the best year of my life'....was certainly looking like it was going to be just that. By October 20th, 1990...I was on a trip to New Orleans with Roger. It was the best birthday ever, the best year of my life and without a doubt a blessing from God.
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with who is no variableness neither shadow of turning.
These are pictures of Roger and I in New Orleans on my birthday...October 20th, 1990!
Monday, May 18, 2009
I am taking a quick break in my life story aka My Love Story to post this entry. I will post the next entry tomorrow. Stay tuned...it gets better.
I received these lovely surprises in the mail over the past two weeks. Cheryl sent me the necklace that I won on her site and Tricia sent me a Pay It Forward gift. Both of these precious ladies made these things with their own hands and might I add...they are very talented.
Cheryl made this gorgeous necklace...the colors are hard to make out in this picture...but it is beautiful.
Tricia made me a great CD of songs and personalized note card with two bookmarks. Oh, I just love surprises in the mail.
As I said before...I love surprises in the mail but not in the floor by a dog with an attitude. Now, I know why I named her over 5 years ago...Biscuit With Attitude!!!
Tyler had a party to go to Saturday night, so Roger and I took him to drop him off, get a bite to eat and just spend some time alone...away from the house.
Biscuit is so spoiled and is used to going where we go. When she doesn't get to go...she will find something to get into to let us know she is mad at us for leaving her. I have learned over the past 5 years to close the bedroom door, put my office trash can up on the desk, close Ty's doors and make sure nothing is on the end tables in the living room. She doesn't tear up anything or eat it but will scatter whatever all over the floor...this time was no different.
Well, we were running late and I forgot to check the living room before leaving...so this is the surprise that I came home to. These pictures don't do the mess justice...they were scattered all over the living room, under furniture, in the hall, foyer and even, into the dining room. It was too funny to be mad. She just looked at us and turned around...walked into our bedroom and got in the kennel...put herself in time out!
Have a wonderfully blessed day!
Saturday, May 16, 2009
4 Years of Anger, Resentment, Bitterness, Forgiveness, Submission & Restoration (Originally posted 2/27/08)
Life was a struggle from day one of being a single parent to a two-year-old son but I had the help of my parents, which was nice. My mother kept my son four days a week, free of charge, while I worked and he went to the babysitter once a week. I could not have made it if I had to pay for daycare, mortgage payment, car note and utilities on what I made plus $75.00 a week in child support. Getting the child support was a struggle from the beginning, I usually had to call hi or go by his apartment to pick it up every week...which was very frustrating, to say the least. In addition, having to see him every week, he never seemed to be completely out of my life. I know that you would think that because we had a son together that he would never be out of our lives, but that is not entirely true either. He lived on the opposite in of town....less than 5 miles and yet, he hardly ever came by to see his son, get his son to come spend the night, call to see how his son was doing and did not take advantage of his every other weekend visitation rights. Now, you have to understand that I usually drove right by his apartment on the way home or to pick up my son at my mother's house...so I saw the "party" that went on during the week nights and every weekend. His apartment was the local hangout for all his buddies and vast majority of the females (of age and those who were not) in town. Yet, he could not find the time to come see his only child.
The first two years, it did not seem to bother me as much as it did the last two years except for the fact that he like to flaunted the other women in his life including the one he had an affair with while he was married to me, in my face frequently. We agreed that he would not take our son anywhere with them...the younger one and her older sister (formerly, my best friend) and I would not take my son with me and a guy. I kept my end of the agreement but he did not and took our son to the zoo with both of them. I guess, I should have been happy that he was spending time with our son, however, he did not go anywhere with me and his son when we were married...so it did not set well with me.
I dated a guy from Texas that a friend fixed me up with for about nine months but the long distance relationship just did not work for me...so I was alone again. I did not have a social life because all I had time to do was....go to work, come straight home, pick up my son, fix dinner, play with him, clean house, do yard work, get baths and go to bed to start all over the next day. Since my ex-husband did not take advantage of his weekend visits, there was no down time for me then either. The lack of personal free time when I was not working or taking care of my son, no social life outside of co-workers and a toddler...the stress, anxiety and depression began to set in during the second year.
It was on April 13, 1989, my son's 3rd birthday, my daddy had surgery and found out that he had lymphoma. They began treatments immediately but nothing seems to be effective. You would have to know that my daddy was my life....I love my mother dearly, but my daddy was my best friend. I was daddy's little girl, the last of four children and the only one who looked just like him. I loved my daddy with all my heart. I began to pray and pray that God would heal my daddy but on August 4, 1989, my daddy died...a short four short months later. I have never felt so alone, hurt, angry and just plan lost. What was I going to do without my daddy? I was 27 years old and I still needed my daddy desperately. My world began to crumble down around me. I really believed that God would heal my daddy but He chose not to on earth. I was devastated and was afraid for many, many years to believe in healing again. My world had been turned upside down again.
I began to have panic attacks and depression plus the rage began to dwell in me. I was full of anger every time I saw any one of the three of them (my ex-husband, my "then former" best friend and her younger sister). For the first time in my life....I felt so much hate for another human being. I prayed all kind of evil things on him...not as much the girls but mostly on him. I wanted him to feel the same pain that I felt. I felt like I did not have any way to vent all my anger and frustrations...no where to turn. I continued to pray but nothing seemed to help at that point. I never stopped going to church, loving God, serving God, paying my tithes, praying and believing He could turn things around but I just did not know when He would feel the time was right...I was not sure that I could hold on if it took much longer either.
By this time, it was October 20, 1989...my 28th birthday....Happy "Stinking" Birthday to me! My wonderful pastor and his wife, who were dear friends and neighbors of mine, gave me a birthday card that year. Inside, Bro. Bob wrote..."Jennifer, God has impressed on me and Debi to tell you that He (God) said to tell you that this will be the best year of your life." Ok....maybe things are going to get better.
During those last two years, from early 1988 to early 1990, I had two dates. Both guys seemed like perfect gentlemen, very kind, respectful and fun to be around. Our first dates were normal....went out to eat, talked and seemed to enjoy each other's company. The second date was another story, all they wanted was to have sex and when I told them "no"...the date seemed to suddenly get cut short and I was taken home. They both said "I'll call you later" but you know what....I never heard from them again. I found out shortly after the second guy's date...that he was actually married. Needless to say, I did track him down and gave him a "small" piece of my mind. Did I regret saying "no"...absolutely not. Was I depressed at my social life? You better believe it. All I could see was my ex-husband on the other end of town living it up with all his female friends, my two lousy dates, being a full-time mom and he was foot loose and fancy free. The resentment and bitterness were just about all I could stand by this time.
I have to say that I was extremely miserable in my life. I was working full-time and raising a toddler by myself...then mix all the other emotions in on top of that and I was a walking time bomb. During this entire time from the divorce until now, God had still been so good to me regardless of my lack of self control (emotions & thoughts), maybe lack of faith and trust in His perfect will and timing. Financially, on paper, there was absolutely no way that I could make ends meet but there was always enough. I never missed a bill, was never late paying a bill, never borrowed a single penny from anyone, paid my tithes and managed to put a small amount in savings. I had bills just like anyone else...I had a mortgage payment, car payment, car insurance, utilities and medical bills...but God was always faithful.
Philippians 4:19. And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (NIV)
I am not saying that during this time that I did not have a loving relationship with my son because I did. We were a team...we were all each other had. Where he went...I went, where I went...he went or he was with my mother. We were always together. We managed to go on one vacation with my mom to Florida but the luxury items were unaffordable so we did things that were inexpensive, free but fun. I always made sure that he knew where I was and when I was coming back. There was enough insecurity in his life with his father or lack of a father, I wanted to make sure he could always count on his mom to be there for him, keep him safe and to love him unconditionally.
God began to deal with me around the first of August 1990 about my anger. He dealt with me for a couple of weeks regarding letting it go, giving it all to Him and let Him deal with those who had wronged me. I began to quote over and over...what seemed like a million times a day...anytime I felt the anger rise to a boiling point....
Romans 12:19 Vengeance is mine saith the Lord, I will repay them.
Now, had I released all my anger toward the others to Him ? No, but it was a start. At the end of those two weeks, I knew that I had to let it all go, lay it at the feet of Jesus and leave it there if He was ever going to be able to bless me. That very Sunday, August 19, 1990, Bro. Bob had intended on preaching on something else but felt the Lord direct him to preach of anger and releasing it. I fully believe that God knew I was at a critical point in my life and he changed the sermon...if not just for me...to at least include me. I cried all through the service and I was the first one at the altar that Sunday...the third Sunday in August. I can honestly say that I never picked that anger up ever again toward them from that day forward..on that subject. I’m not saying that he never made me angry again, however, I did not let it control me again. I had to submit to the Will of the Father and let Him restore me.
Ephesians 4:26,27 (26)In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, (27) and do not give the devil a foothold. (NIV)
Ephesians 4:31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. (NIV)
Following the service, I was talking to both Bro. Bob and Debi after they had finished praying for me. I asked them both if they remembered the birthday card they had given me the previous October and what it said. They both quickly said "yes" and they remembered exactly what they wrote in it. I was crying when I told him that I believe that God told them that...but this has been the worst year of my life and God had a two months and 1 day to turn things around...if not, it had been the worst year in 28 years...not the best. They assured me that God was more than able.
Ephesians 3:20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, (NIV)
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (KJV)
After that Sunday, I told God that I would be content with my life as a single parent, if that is what he wanted me to do. I had been praying for a couple of years that God would send me a good-looking Christian, family man who would love my son the same as he loved me and would be financially stable. There is nothing wrong with being specific in telling God what you want. Even though, my friends laughed at me and told me it was a tall order even for God these days. But, regardless, finally for the first time, I felt that precious peace that passes all understanding. My physical mind could not fully understand but I had a peace in my spirit. I was finally free...free from the anger, depression and no longer worried about whether I would find another husband or not. Whatever God wanted me to do...I would do.
Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and mind through Christ Jesus. (KJV)
Philippians 4:11-12 (11) I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances, (12) I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. (NIV)
Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. (KJV)
In September 1990, my daddy had been gone a year, my emotions had been all over the place but I finally felt completely content with my life. Well, you know, God has a sense of humor at times...especially after your finally repent and submit to Him. It was like He said "ok, Jennifer...now that I have your full attention, the commitment to let me be Lord of your life and you are finally content with the life that I have given you....I'M GOING TO SHAKE IT UP A BIT! Some good friends of mine set up a "date" after church on September 2, 1990 with a handsome, Christian man, who was a father of 2 beautiful girls who he loved very much and he was financially stable...oh, did I mention his name was Roger W?
James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with who is no variableness neither shadow of turning. (KJV)
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