Strange how time passes for me these few days. My husband is a union employee and his union has been on strike for the past three days. There has been a threat of this every year for the past three, but this is the first time they have taken a stand; said ‘no’ to the offer in front of them. It takes courage. I should be thankful for the power of collective bargaining.
We hang in the balance. We don’t know what is being negotiated. We are only trusting that those who represent us are being wise. There is a lot of unknown. My husband has been home now for three days, which has seemed like a much needed pause; a mini-vacation. But soon that respite bears a burden. How long are we waiting?
I seemed to be challenged each day, sometimes it feel like each moment, with the unknown. This weekend, while playing on the playground, the Eldest had quite a fall and cut his lip, inside and out. There was blood. There was crying. It took me quite some time to even get a sense of the damage –any loose teeth? Did he need stitches? And my boy, my strong, stubborn boy, would not let me hold him. I, again, felt uncertainty. My only choice was to live in the moment, the very one that God had given me. Over the next few days his lip has begun healing, but it wasn’t without a few panicked phone calls to my mother, and even one to the doctor’s office (Did you know that when a significant cut in your mouth heals it actually get this nasty white layer over it? Ew).
Then, because life is just this messy, my children have been knocked down with this nasty croupy cough and a fever. (Poor guy — busted lip AND all that coughing). Of course there is all the normal mommy worrying over my sick little ones. I trust in their bodies ability to fight for them. But I admit to my own complete weakness in the middle of the night. The first night, as we sat in the humid bathroom with the Eldest, the shower running hot to make some good steam, I almost felt crippled at the unknown: How long would this go on? How was I going to do this? How could I face another night of lost sleep and rise to the challenge again in the morning? Had I only known what the next night would bring, I would have enjoyed the blessing of snuggling on the bathroom floor! The following night, my sleep was consistently broken by tending to these babes. While the unknown continued to stare me down, I could only turn my gaze upward. I cannot count on my strength. I need only to exist in this moment, here, now, to know God’s provision.
I don’t know what will happen with my husband’s job. I’m not sure when things will be resolved, how they will be resolved. I don’t know what challenges the little ones and I will face today, tomorrow, next year. And I never know if I’m going to get a good night’s sleep.
We step out into the unknown. We take steps of faith — in God, in each other. I do know a few things, certainly: God loves me, loves my family, and we will be taken care of. I am also certain that this may be substantially different from my expectation of a tidy solution. I have needs: there are things that I know I need, things I think I need, things I don’t even know I need. But God does. And He provides the exact right thing. The bills continue to come in; the house needs tending. The children need especially tender love and care; we strive to be loving and gracious with each other.
“Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.” Luke 12:27-30