On the Other Side of Hopeless

2016 was a really difficult year for myself and my family. It was a year of refining, trusting, praying, trying to find hope, and fighting discouragement and hopelessness. I'm thankful it's over.

We began the year with Andrew, jobless and we ended the year wondering which career would be the best move for him. We have lived frugally since we got married but the last six months have been the most difficult of all of our time together. With our paychecks being only slightly more than half our rent payments, and other bills on top of it, our fridge has resembled Mother Hubbard's cupboards more than I'd like to admit. I go grocery shopping once a month and make our rations stretch for as long as possible, celebrating anytime we go to eat at another's home.

In the midst of that, we've never gone hungry, our kids are still healthy, we have lacked nothing - no matter how desperately I wanted my own car back. We've been gifted groceries, a second vehicle, Christmas money, and so much more that we are so grateful for.

The at home job that I have has paid for our groceries, and every once in a while, something special, like a coffee. We truly haven't known need.

I have been challenged constantly about adjusting my attitude, not only because I know that I should be hopeful, but because I do work with the Lulu Tree. In Uganda, our African family knows need, and yet they give 90% of what they get to feed other, more hungry and needy people than they.

Why do I have such a poor attitude about being short on groceries or "stuck at home" without a car when my sisters in Africa give SO much more than I. They deeply know the provision of God and I
couldDO learn so much from them about trusting Him.

I know His promises, I know He desires me to come to my knees, calling His name in my hopelessness, but I struggle with feeling angry instead. Not angry at Him, mostly at myself, like I should be doing something better or different. Like I have put us in this situation and I should be able to get us out because, responsibility.

I don't understand how to come to Him in surrender and humility and wait on Him to move for me. Instead, I struggle day in and day out to fix things for myself to make Him happy.

I can't comprehend how it's better to reach my knees than to stand and fight.

But I do. Every now and then, I have success at trusting His hand instead of my own doing.

And we see opposition on it. We get criticism and questions. The questions are nothing to be insulted at, for the most part, the criticism, however was deeply wounding from the mouth of the one that said it.

You see, I am 15 weeks pregnant with baby number 4.

Yes, in the midst of our struggling financially, we chose to get pregnant again. We knew that we might not be done at 3 children, although we told everyone we were. At the time we were content with where our family was at size-wise, but our desire has always been to be open to God's plan and leading. I began feeling the tug of desiring another. I thought maybe it was for adopting and I began praying that God would put another baby on Andrew's heart if He wanted it to be.

A couple months later I thought I was pregnant so I tested. I was not, but Andrew admitted to excitement, so we discussed it. We both agreed that it was time, that God was leading us to having another baby. It had been impressed upon my heart that we needed to have another baby even if we had to continue to live tightly. Why? Because expanding God's kingdom and the little souls that are growing up knowing the truth and importance of the Gospel is so much more important than earthly comfort or wealth. Something that Andrew and I both meet our hearts on.

We questioned the wisdom of expanding in the midst of our financial struggles, for sure. It's a scary thing to not be able to provide for your family and wonder if you'll have dinner tomorrow, or face the kid's "I'm hungry, can I have a snack?" questions.

To me though, the scarier thought is missing the leading of God.

So we stepped out in faith and a week or two later, we had a positive pregnancy test.

We know that God will provide for us, He promises to.

I will take the example of my African sisters and know without a doubt that when God says, "I, the LORD, am your God, Who brought you up from the land of Egypt; Open your mouth wide and I will fill it." Psalm 81:10, He means it and will come through for me.


  1. So much wisdom, honesty, and beauty in this post, friend. I firmly believe and will continue to pray that God will keep providing for you, your family, and this wonderful little baby he's blessed you with. PS. Four is awesome. 😉

  2. Thank you, Rachel! We appreciate you and the ways that you and your family have helped us and continue to help us, so, so, so much!!! <3