Picking Up the Pieces
A Guest Story by Whitney Davis
"So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ-eternal and glorious plans they are! - will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, He does. - 1 Peter 5:10 MSG
Exhausted. Overworked. Discouraged. Alone. These are just a few words that would describe the season I am leaving behind. I have been a pastor’s wife, mom of a blended family of 5 kids, a full-time night shift nurse, small business owner, and supporter of a husband who worked two jobs and has been finishing his doctorate the past three years. Whew, I am tired just reading that back to myself.
We moved across the country five years ago and had been raising this family of ours without the support of our extended family for several years. I feel as if I have been on an island. Being a mom of “littles” will do that to you. Storms came, waves of utter loneliness and depression, but I had to get back up. I was running a marathon on the treadmill called life, and no one could afford for me to run off track for too long, I had to pick myself up and keep running. I realized that I was being scattered in pieces along the way. I never doubted my salvation or my trust in the Lord and His plans for my life, but years of neglecting me for the cause of doing whatever it took to raise my family left who I was scattered in pieces.
I had big dreams and visions that the Lord had given me about my purpose and future but was so buried in "life" that I couldn't see those things coming to fruition. I would see others achieving things that the Lord had placed on my heart, and I became envious. What I wish I would have heard was the sweet voice of a Savior who was ever present with me during the lonely seasons. He was placing dreams in my heart that He will not neglect to fulfill but He was whispering that it just wasn’t time yet. He was still grooming me while He had me placed in a season of loving my babies and pouring into my family.
As promised in 1 Peter, the Lord doesn’t allow our suffering to last forever. He tells us to hold fast to our faith because He has every intention of fulfilling His great plans in our life. I love The Message translation that encourages us that He will put us back together and on our feet for good. That’s a for sure done deal, no going back. That makes my heart happy. That speaks security to my soul.
In recent months the Lord has been orchestrating many things that are sending help our way. My parents and sister and brother in law have made recent moves to our city. My husband has stepped down from pastoring for a season as we feel called to pour into and shepherd our own family more intentionally right now. My youngest child will soon be four, and I sense my season of motherhood is shifting. As my season shifts, the Lord is encouraging me in my own identity. He’s whispering truth to my heart, assuring me of who I am in Him. The pieces of me that have been scattered in what I thought was a wasteland of diapers, cries, sleepless nights and days, mouths to feed, and needs to meet for others are slowly being pieced back together.
The dreams the Lord has placed in my heart are still there, and I am better for having gone through the marathon this last season. If I had not been on this journey, I would not have been ready to walk out His plans for me. I have a huge heart to encourage others. I don't want anyone to feel like they are alone in the battle. I want to look at the exhausted college girl who questions the next step in her future and say, “I see you and God’s got this”. I want to look at the newlywed woman working her way through the emotions of her first year of marriage and say, “I see you and God’s got this”. I want to hug the neck of all the new momma’s who doubt their ability to be enough for their babies and say, “I see you and God’s got this”. I want to stand with women and families fighting for healing and fighting for their children and say, “I see you and God’s got this”. I want to stand beside those who are nervous to step out into their calling and say, “I see you, I'm with you and God's got this”. I want to extend my hand to the generation that has gone before me, glean from their wisdom and bridge the gap to impart truth and knowledge to the next generation. I want to live authentically before people.
I love that The Kindred is a tool that will equip believers with the very thing my heart bursts to fulfill on this earth. Community and discipleship are how we survive. It’s how we grow and learn from one another. We don't have to have all the answers. Often all we need is to know someone hears us and is believing with us for the things we need.
Wherever you are today, whatever the season, I encourage you to reach out. I wish I would not have been so introverted during my lonely years as a young mom just trying to stay afloat. There are people who long to encourage and stand with you. As promised in 1 Peter, the Lord desires to establish you, and He does get the last word. Don't grow hopeless in your season. Know that He is cultivating things in you right now that you will need to carry out the call on your life. Pray about who He has placed around you who can speak truth and encouragement to your heart and act on it. Speak up, join The Kindred, do something that connects you to others, so you don't walk it alone. I believe God is calling this generation to a deeper level of community and discipleship that is going to change the world and I want you to be a part of it.