I had a meltdown yesterday. It came after a phone call from a dear friend. She is kind and loving and would never say anything knowingly hurtful. The problem is that she just doesn’t “get it” when it comes to my life. She can’t understand the level of our commitment to follow hard after God - even when the going gets tough.

She’s not alone. Many of our family and friends have a hard time understanding our willingness to sacrifice so much (financially and otherwise) for what we believe is God’s calling on our life. If we were missionaries in a foreign land, maybe they would “get it” – but we’re not. We’re right here in America watching our comfortable, upper-middle class, suburban lifestyle disappear by choice, all the while convinced that we are right in the center of God’s will for us.

I hung up the phone feeling angry, depressed, ashamed, embarrassed, and hurt that yet another person I care about thinks my husband and I have gone off the deep end in the name of following God. I think I was also frustrated by our current inability to keep up with the Joneses (even though we are the Joneses) after so many years of being comfortable.

I marched down the hall and unloaded a lethal dose of “meltdown madness” on my unsuspecting husband. I launched into a full-blown tirade about how I was sick and tired of living this way and having people think we were lazy, crazy or delusional. I ranted and raved about having to depend on God’s provision for even the most basic necessities of life; food, gas, medicine, income, and a place to live. (Feel free to insert your own twenty-minutes of faithless, self-centered grumbling, moaning, and complaining at this point). You get the idea.

As the gale force winds of my tirade began to subside, my husband calmly asked, “Do you really believe we’ve got it wrong and aren’t where God wants us to be? Is a season of financial struggle too high a price for our God-given dream of a kingdom business that can touch and impact millions of lives? Has God’s ability to provide everything we need suddenly disappeared? Do you want me to give up on our dream and get a job selling my time to someone else to build their dream?”

My husband knew that I knew the answers. I just needed a reminder. “Well I didn’t think it would last this long or be this difficult,” I said. He agreed and mentioned the children of Israel wandering in the wilderness for forty years before they were ready to enter the Promised Land.

I smiled when it hit me. We have been wandering in our own wilderness – a long and sometimes confusing journey that has cost much financially and materially. But we have gained so much more.

I decided stop dwelling on what we’ve been asked to give up - the financial abundance, material possessions and extra physical comforts we no longer have. I chose to focus instead on our many “wilderness” blessings of late - deeper faith in God, more trust in his provision, new adventures in life, renewed excitement about each day, more time with my husband, a better marriage, an increased sense of meaning, purpose and fulfillment - so many things that money can’t buy.

Suddenly, my perspective changed. I was grateful. Meltdown over.


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