By: Cheri Fuller
"Worry is like a rocking chair.
It gives you something to do,
but it won’t get you anywhere."
God Is Enough
Single moms have even greater financial pressures and often no one to share them with. When Susan’s husband left her and her two young girls, she had no extended family around to help or offer assistance in any way. While some single mothers have parents, aunts, or sisters to give them support, she had no one in the city they lived in.
Susan was a new believer, having accepted Christ shortly after the divorce. One night about a year after the split, she became overwhelmed by grief and guilty feelings about their failed marriage. Added to that load, intense pressures—financial and personal—had piled up and burdened her to the breaking point. It was like the weight of the world was on her shoulders.
Numb from the emotional stress of twelve-hour workdays and trying to handle all the demands of single parenting with little left to give her girls at night, she didn’t know if she had the strength to go on. She called a local hospital in desperation. “I feel like I’m having a nervous breakdown. I’m anxious. I can’t sleep. Can I come in during the middle of the night if I can’t make it through alone?” she asked. Just knowing she had somewhere to go for help settled her down a little.
Instead of going to the hospital, Susan glanced at her Bible on the table next to her and opened it to Isaiah 61. There she read that the Lord was sent to heal the brokenhearted. He could turn her mourning into joy and give her gratitude instead of her heavy, burdened spirit. As she read those words, it was like healing salve over her heart. She realized the strength she needed was available for her in Christ. She remembered that God had been with her all along, even when she wasn’t consciously aware of His presence. And she knew He was right there with her in her lowest moments—He was her husband when there was no one else. That gave Susan the confidence to trust that God would be with her in all the challenges she faced.
Her motto became: “When you come to the point where He’s all you have, you realize He’s all you need.” She found God was enough. His Word gave her the energy to persevere, and His Spirit guided her in every decision.
Through that guidance, she left a position in commercial real estate, which took her away from her daughters until after dark every night. She started a housecleaning business that actually provided more income and the flexibility to be home when her girls were off from school. The five-bedroom house they lived in had to be sold, but it was badly in need of repair.
Houses in their area were sitting for one to two years and selling for $10,000 lower than the asking price, so it needed to be in top condition. Instead of giving in to the what-ifs. . .what if I can’t sell it, what if I can’t afford to get it fixed up. . .she and her five-foot-tall cleaning assistant took off two layers of shingles and put on a new roof, laid a new linoleum floor in the kitchen, and painted the whole house inside and out. With those improvements, the house sold for only a little less than the asking price, which enabled her to buy a nice house they could afford. Every step of the process, God was right with her in a protective, strengthening way.
If Susan had depleted her energy with worry and emotional distress, there is no way she could have accomplished what she did. Maybe you’ve heard of the “three Ds” needed for success—desire, discipline, and determination. For Susan, it was a fourth D that provided the extra adrenaline to press on—desperation!
© 2015 by Back to the Bible.
“From Replacing Worry for Wonder, published by Barbour Publishing, Inc. Used by permission.”