Difficult Life – A Tough Beginning
Do you have a difficult life? Does life seem unfair? Read this woman's story of her difficult life journey and see how she found hope in spite of the tough circumstances.
When my mom and dad got married, they were already carrying burdens -- my father had come from Turkey, had been married before, and already had three children. My mother also brought in four children from a prior relationship. In this blended family full of tension, my life was a struggle for survival from the start. My mom feared my dad would flee to his home country and take me with him. The constant fear made me feel very lonely, so my search for God started when I was still a little girl. Could God save me from this chaos?
I was only six-years-old when my mom left my dad and married a man I didn't like at all. He drank too much and had a very negative attitude, which resulted in constant strife in their marriage. As a teenager, I remember calling out to God and asking Him in prayer: "Dear Father, please come get me. I am not happy in this world. I'm sorry I was even born!" The tension in our home became so unbearable that I didn't want to live with my family anymore. I cried out to God, "Please let me meet someone, so I won't be this lonely anymore."
When I fell in love at the age of 16, it only took three months for me to move away from my family and live with my boyfriend. Through hard work, we managed to buy a home when I was nineteen. I had my first baby when I was twenty-six and my second at twenty-nine.
Difficult Life – Tough Choices and Changes
Throughout this time, I continued searching for God. Perhaps He was the answer to my difficult life. I didn't have much support at home since the father of my children was a staunch unbeliever. The loneliness from my youth slowly started coming back. I tried to find solutions, but my heart was inconsolable, even though I now had a family of my own. I kept praying and asking questions, but I just couldn't understand what was wrong with me. Where was God?
One day I had a dream. I dreamt that I had fallen in love with another man and had to make a choice between my husband and my feelings for the other man. Little did I know that this decision would become a reality. I met another man and was facing a difficult choice -- the same choice as my dream. I chose to follow my feelings for the other man and that choice plunged me into a big black hole.
Even though it grieved me to hurt the father of my children and even though this was a tough and painful separation for all involved, we now entered a time of positive changes. My new husband joined me in my search for God. We made plans to start our own business, we bought a home, and we were dreaming of having a baby together. It was a nice season in my life. I was finally able to bloom and shine again.
We lived a happy life together until my husband started having epileptic attacks. The doctors discovered the attacks were caused by a brain tumor. Our dream of a happy life began unraveling. He underwent surgery twice and suffered a cerebral hemorrhage which impaired his speech. Everything was taken from him -- his job, his ability to drive a car and to sing. God, why are these things happening?
Our happy life was replaced by the care for my husband that now rested on my shoulders. My longing for God was tested severely. I wasn't angry with God, but I simply didn't understand. I hoped that God had a bigger plan for us. We tried to survive in these circumstances and started talking more and more about God.
Two years later I became pregnant. I was afraid the time was coming when I would be without a husband, and this way part of him would stay with me. When I was in my twenty-fourth week of my pregnancy, I had another dream. Inside of me, I felt a baby hand trying to push forward, as if it wanted to come out. It was born from my belly -- a baby boy, too small and too vulnerable. I wanted to put him back in my womb, but of course that was impossible. Then a voice said to my heart, "What is born from the mother's womb cannot be reborn again. Unless to a new life." Then I saw a white light. In this light I saw the baby lying on a bed, but he rolled off the bed and his head hit the floor. I saw a man, dressed in white light, who gently lifted the baby's head. I was terrified and asked: "Is his head ok?" The voice said: "It's 50/50." I didn't understand what that meant.
I told my husband about the dream and said: "We're going to have a son." Manuel was born at 35 weeks; he had a cerebral hemorrhage and was very blue. Eight months later they knew what was wrong: CHARGE syndrome. Because of this syndrome, he was born with a number of defects, such as coloboma (an eye defect) and digestive problems. He has a PEG feeding tube.
Three months later, my husband's tumor returned and I had no other option than to leave his care in the hands of a nursing home, so I could care for my three boys. At this time, God sent me a very caring lady from a local church who made sure we received the help we needed. This church never let us go and we never let them go. Prayer was what we needed to sustain us during this trying time.
Then came a turning point... one decision that would change our lives forever!
My husband and I decided to accept Jesus' gift of salvation. We realized that we were sinners and we could never be good enough to earn our way to God. We learned that Jesus died for us to make a way for us to live eternally in heaven. We asked Jesus for forgiveness for the sins in our past and we were baptized. God was with us. Jesus had forgiven us. After that decision, we received a blessing over our marriage. Even my mom and dad attended.
Deciding to trust Jesus as our Savior didn't mean our life was suddenly perfect! We still have struggles. My husband's tumor has returned again and again. He continues to live at a nursing home. I mourn his suffering and I miss him tremendously, especially in the upbringing of our children. Sometimes I am frustrated that I have to do it all by myself. I miss my husband -- the one I used to talk to when I needed a listening ear.
The suffering of my sons' is also a great burden to me. I have learned to hand my worries and my cares over to my Savior. All three of my sons have continuing health problems. My thirteen-year-old lives in an assisted living facility. He cannot read and write very well and has serious behavioral problems. He suffers from PPD-NOS disorder. My ten-year-old son is undergoing daily treatment for ADHD. Just like life for me was a struggle for survival when I was a child, so it is for my boys because of all our problems.
Difficult Life – The Light in the Darkness
Living a difficult life can be all-consuming at times, but what really makes a difference is knowing that Jesus is always there for us! Right now, I am mourning the loss of my husband. His body is still here, but mentally he is letting go of my hand. Everything we had on this earth is fading into a memory. Sometimes I start crying in the middle of the day because I miss him so badly. Comfort comes when I pray and call upon Jesus, my Savior. He brings me hope in my suffering. He is my Savior, my Deliverer.
My walk with Jesus is very special. When I open my Bible it offers me comfort, answers my questions, and provides me with encouragement. I am not afraid. I feel the love of the Lord rush through my heart. He teaches me to be quiet, to listen, and to learn. I might sink deep, but I will not drown. No evil can touch me. Psalm 23:4 says, "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me."
If you're going through a hard time right now, I encourage you to worship God first before you plunge yourself into your daily life. I know the world expects and demands much from you. The pressure is intense. You forget to pray. Remember that before you can drive a car you must fill it up with gasoline. Only then can you go on your daily journey.
You try to read all the road signs, but sometimes you run into obstacles on your way or you fail to see you're going down a dead end. Such obstacles can make you nervous or even sick. They can lead you to stress, anger, or despair, and before you know it you're driving way too fast and in the wrong direction.
At such times in your life, just park your car and rest your head on the wheel for a minute and say: "I just don't know anymore, Jesus." The Lord Jesus has already seen your circumstances. He loves you and He knows what the right direction is. Call out to Him. Ask Him to send you direction. Cry out to Him and He will bring salvation and comfort. He wants You to trust Him.
The obstacles will not disappear, but when you pray and trust in the Lord, He will be your guide. By listening to His voice you will gain insight. Recovery always takes time. Keep praying for insight and wisdom, keep reading your Bible daily, and slowly you'll be able to see the road better and know where you are going. There is no shadow in life that can stop His light!