Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations; I will be exalted in the earth.Psalm 46:10
The chants of laughter, resounding loud that you could hear from the children who ran into the rushing waves and excitedly waiting for a tremendous wave to come and ride it like we own the vast of the ocean. Its sunrise and morning breeze from the waves are the best-loved moment I had when I was a child. My friends and I loved to dip every morning or afternoon.
Growing up in a place where rushing waves were fun, not even a scary thing, was one of my childhood’s best experiences. But not in the reality of life when I’ve grown up. Its emblem the adversaries in my life’s journey.
“Mommy, I want this. Can you please buy for me?”
My son was begging to buy a toy for him. But my budget was tight and set aside for priority. My heart is breaking every time my son would ask something that I cannot afford to spend in exchange for jeopardizing the budget. There is nothing more difficult to juggle my schedule and money when I became a single mother.
I’ve got married and had my first unborn baby through miscarriage before I have my second child. Then, the enemy betrayed my marriage in the form of adultery. It was the most painful journey I’ve had on my Christian walk. But it was the opening door of God’s revelation about me and my faith.
I grew up in a Christian home, but I did not truly grasp the experience of meeting Jesus Christ until I came to a foreign western country. Being a strong-willed, determined, and nearly perfectionist woman was difficult when the Lord confronted me with meekness. I always look at everything must be right, otherwise, I would be so hard with myself.
Sometimes, from our standard of perfection, God reveals to us our imperfection and flaws. And when my marriage was failing, everything in my ideal Christian family was falling apart, pieces by pieces. My heart could not move on easily from the circumstance that God allowed to happen.
Yet, the Lord gives me the strength to raise my son as much as I could to supplement his needs by God’s grace.
Even though fault comes every single day, the grace of God is enough. The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. God’s grace is an eminent love of the Heavenly Father for us. It does not require our goodness because we are not but saves us from the pit of destruction that we deserve.
Rushing Waves of Parenting
Because of my circumstance, I need to find my schedule to fit into the need of my son’s welfare. Regardless, my comfort is not the priority to consider because of a fact that I am a mother that need to perform four hands and four feet. I worked full time in the hotel at the bewitching Rockies of Jasper National Park, Canada. During summer the town was always full of tourist that make the place immensely busy to work with. In consequence, I had the full responsibility to work long hours than expected alongside of it is to look after my son. I have been in this situation for many years, but God’s sustaining grace and strength never forsaken me every day.
Truly, I couldn’t fit myself to a place of self-care, but I knew I needed it as well for me to give my son a healthy life. As it says, we cannot pour from an empty cup. Thus, in my busyness, both as an employee (manager) and a mother, finding a practical way to balance everything was a must.
Probably, I might not give myself a care too much tangibly. But I made it sure that I decently kept feeding my soul in a quiet place of Jesus’ heart.Are you feeding your soul in the quiet place of Jesus' heart? Click To Tweet
Throughout my journey as a single parent, I certainly come to a place of reflection on my personal walk with Jesus every day. Awaiting the stillness of my heart to receive Jesus’ Word and hear His voice.
Typically, a day of a single mother is one of the most arduous twenty-four hours to live. So, it is vastly fundamental to seek rest in God’s hands. The enemy is always looking to devour us (1 Peter 5:8), especially during our time of weariness. That is why the Lord invited us to come to Him and rest in Matthew 11 :28-30, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
Finding Joy and Peace in Guilt
How can we find joy during disorder time for yourself and your family?
How can we receive peace in times of agitation?
The questions that remain for mothers who truly try their best to be a wonderful mother and a wife. You cannot do everything with your own power, no matter how much you believe you can. People have limitations and that does not exempt the mother, whom a huge part of nurturing their kids and family.
Sometimes I punished myself so hard during my failures as a mother. The guilt keeps me from finding the joy and peace that Jesus offers. It kills my healing. I have blamed myself for everything. If my son threw some tantrums, I blame myself for that. I felt like I was not a wonderful mother to him. I looked at myself as a failure. And it probably the truth that all mothers would feel the same way as I do.
Certainly, I criticized myself for giving up my marriage just because it was unbearable for me and made me sick and got into depression. “I should have done more for my son alone. Did I fight enough for my marriage?” These words were always haunting me down every time my son behaves as other kids do. Thinking if I was overreacting, or just a normal thing to feel from a place of a single mother. Guilt keeps knocking on my doorstep.
Although the enemy was trying to knock me down with guilt, I didn’t stop seeking the Lord. Allowing the enemy to control me would highly discourage my spirit. And I did not enable it to control over me. There were times he slipped into my thoughts and got my emotions so weak. But God pursued me. His amazing love and grace remind me all throughout in the life of my son. I did not give permission to the whispers of the enemy to soak into my thoughts and live it in my heart. Naturally, there were times I was drowning with my weariness and dragged myself down, but the joy of the Lord was my strength. It gives me the prompt that God is always there in times of discouragement and even if the enemy is trying to pull me down to the pit of guilt. Jesus overcame the world and guilt is not an exemption (John 16:33, ESV}.
Waves of Grace
So, if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.John 8:36
Jesus Christ died on the cross to give us freedom and delivered us from our sins. It deemed us to eternal death, but the love of God saved us from hell for those who believe who He is.
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”Romans 5:8
“You are suffering now because you are paying your sins.” these words echoed in my ears but not in my heart. Someone from our church told me these words. However, it did not resonate with me.
Confidently, I knew my faith in knowing Jesus Christ whom who died on the cross for me. He paid for all my sins from the past, present, and future. But the enemy would hardly try to break God’s family and relationships. Despite of the hurtful words that I have received, I did not let myself to take in the discouragement and offence. I’d rather used it to navigate my faith to discover more of what the Lord offers.
Pain is a tool to discovery of what God’s plan and purpose He has in our lives. Navigate it to the road of transformation instead of preservation.
My journey of brokenness and rushing waves came over again and again. Yet the grace of God meets my need for strength, joy, and peace.
The freedom from a negative thoughts and mushy heart I had did not happen overnight. It was a long, arduous process and overwhelming. Many times, I cried over to the Lord and said, “I cannot do it anymore. I am so tired and done.” But He let things fall out to build my godly character. He empowered me to face the reality of trials.
I truly believe that in my brokenness, the Lord would reveal my heart’s position and its condition.
How is my heart keeping the Word of God?
Do I honestly live it by faith, or just by words?
Am I certain of obeying His Words by loving others just as Jesus loves me?
What is the true practical definition of being a follower of Jesus Christ?
These questions resonated me as much as it hit me on my turning point of transformation. The Lord opened my heart and unfolded my thoughts. I considered my inconveniences in life as a phase of building up a Christ-like character. God cannot work in and through us without purification. He cannot work with sin. “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.” 1 John 1 :7.
I have made many mistakes and committed sins and face its consequences with an open heart. When I willingly accepted the consequences of my sin and give the Lord a room to work on me, that’s where true transformation began. What it matters to Him is our free-spoken heart and unreserved mind. Even to this day, I live merely by God’s grace. Slow down and be still in the heart of God’s presence.
About the Author
My name is Irish Gambito, a mom of one adorable boy, blogger, and a contributing author of the book “Christmas with Jesus” by Heather Hart. Lives in a small town of Hinton, Alberta, Canada- the Gateway to the Rockies. I write about how God helped me overcome my life’s struggle and received healing in the Name of Jesus Christ at betoughyetgentleinspirit.com. Courage and faith takes me to a place where God wants me to be. And I want to help other women in different walks of life to find hope and healing in the Name of Jesus Christ.
Coming Soon: Grace Gab
Irish is just one of multiple authors who share their hearts about God’s grace in our upcoming anthology, Grace Gab. Are you tired of trying to do better? If so, let’s come together and do life with grace.