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Crashing into Reality

Vacations end. We come crashing into reality. What do we do with all that stress?(Last Updated On: July 27, 2015)

Don’t you just love vacations? We get to cast our cares aside, just be present in the moment with our family. We know it ends, crashing into reality, but we hold onto vacation as long as we can. Vacations views are clear and bright at the beach.

This year we were blessed by a decadent beach getaway with my in-laws. We had this tremendous view everyday from the covered porch.

Packing clothes was a waste of time. We spent 90% of the time in swimsuits, damp and sun-baked, but we loved every second.

Even bad weather was more exciting. Our family spent an afternoon watching water spouts, but happily they just hovered on the horizon, far away, nothing to worry about, a bit like real life seems while we’re on vacation.Storms of life in the distance during vacation before we come crashing into reality.

We were driving home sandy and tired, but joyful. Family time had been the priority the entire week. Even phones got put down. We had literally done not much more than eat and swim for a week.

I was singing along to the radio, asking the kids about their favorite memories from the week, trying to hold onto the joy and lightness as long as possible, but I didn’t even make it home before reality invaded our vacation high.

*CRACK*! My husband and I flinched. Something had hit the car.

Quickly, we saw our brand new windshield had cracked, worse than the damage we had initially repaired just days before leaving for vacation.

Vacations end. We come crashing into reality. What do we do with all that stress? And just like that I was crashing into reality:

  • a second $250 deductible in 2 wks
  • $120 we just spent replacing a new tire weeks ago
  • a $400 for yearly termite treatment I had forgotten
  • $500 surgery for our dog (that might not even save her life) after the $350 vet bill
  • a $700 bill for our home warranty
  • plus added expenses of summer vacation/ having the boys right after I unexpectedly lost my job.

My emotions started into hyper-drive, but I knew this was an opportunity to reflect Christ or the world. If I trust that every good thing comes from God, and He can use everything to my good (Romans 8:28), then I have to trust even this is good whether I know His reasoning or not.

James 1:2-3 ESV “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.”

I felt like this moment was a test, so I held my tongue until I could control it. Tears welled behind my sunglasses, but I kept silent. I had a chance to demonstrate my trust in God. I took a deep breath and prayed instead of panicked, remembering –

Matthew 6:28-30 ESV “Consider the lilies of the field, 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 of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?”

A few miles down the road, I commented how it was frustrating, but not worth getting upset about, held my husband’s hand, and turned up the radio.

God has provided for us in everything so faithfully.

Last year, some vandals left our outdoor spigot running for several days before we realized it. Our bill was about $120 more than normal. I prayed for peace. In the mail the next day was a refund from an old rental insurance policy, for $122, almost the exact amount felt like a gift from God even if the check said USAA.

We’ve never been in such dire need that we couldn’t meet our obligations. He has sent blessings through others when we needed some extra loving financially and emotionally.

I don’t know yet how God will provide, or what lesson He is teaching, or direction He is pointing. I don’t even know if my family even noticed my refusal to freak out, but I know I was obedient in that moment.

Reality tried to crash my party, but my trust in God didn’t let it. Life is tough. Expecting it to be easy is folly, especially as a Christian.

1 Peter 4:12-13 ESV “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.”

God didn’t promise me that I would always have a pantry full of organic groceries. He didn’t promise me a brand new window every time it gets dinged. He doesn’t even promise us safety or security, only that every trial will refine us and lasting joy in his kingdom, the kind that doesn’t fade when the vacation bubble bursts.

27 thoughts on “Crashing into Reality

  1. It’s SO easy to get frustrated and angry immediately, especially involving money. I’m impressed at your reaction. Your mind is clearly being renewed and transformed!

    1. Such a slow process. Wish I had realized earlier in my life how freeing it all is to leave everything at God’s feet.

  2. Love how you recognized the moment and obeyed. Waiting for self control to find its way back. Great story of faith and trust in the Lord


    1. Thank you. Baby steps.

  3. What a beautiful moment! Praise God! I especially liked: “God has provided for us in everything so faithfully.”

    1. It was a beautiful moment when I realized that I could truly see His hand in so many moments of need in our lives.

  4. Isn’t life sweeter when we allow Him to be the center? Not saying I do this all the time, in every situation, but knowing I’m secure in Him sure offers the peace I need in this broken world. Praying you continue in that peace. No need to worry.

    1. Focusing on Heaven for myself changed my priorities so much.

  5. I would say it was a well deserved vacation for you all. Sometimes we forget that the wives and children sacrifice as much as our soldiers. Thank you for all you do! I admire you for allowing God to calm you and remember He supplies our needs. Reading this encouraged me.

    1. Thank you! Glad to hear it was a blessing to you as well as for myself.

  6. Sometimes is best to face what we are going through rather than go on vacation and having some temporary relief.

    1. Our family paid for a week vacation, it was the only week my husband had off the entire summer. We were taking a much needed break from military life and a chance for my husband to spend some quality time with his boys before they go back to their mom’s.

  7. I have this on my testimony page on my blog.

    But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. Isaiah 43:1-2

    1. One of my favorites.

  8. Oh, my. I can certainly relate to the times in life when everything seems to be going wrong. Excellent scriptures for us to stand on during difficult times.

    1. I have found the more scriptures I hide in my heart the better I react. Thanks for stopping by.

  9. It’s encouraging to see you’re clinging to God’s promises even in the midst of some serious battleground. I’m sure you’re a mega-watt bulb for the Lord to all who know you.

    1. I really hope so. Some days I feel like the tiniest candle, but every step forward is still a step closer to God.

  10. What a moment! And you could have easily been swept away in it, but instead chose to focus on Him, love it!

  11. I loved this post, especially this line, “I had a chance to demonstrate my trust in God. I took a deep breath and prayed instead of panicked…” There are so many ones where I panic instead of recognizing the opportunity to demonstrate faith in God. Thanks for sharing this!

    1. I definitely felt God telling me to be still.

  12. my pastor always that there’s no testimony without a test…

  13. I enjoy reading reality from other military wives – even if we are “mostly done” with that chapter of our lives, the hits from it seem to come at the worst time. It is hard to keep a good attitude in the midst of damaged household goods, paying copays for the first time in years, and still balancing everything else. I appreciated this post. It came at just the right time for handling another hit of my own.

    1. We’re ending this phase of life as well, not immediately, but soon. It was extra hard since we literally had JUST spent the $250 to repair this window. I haven’t even called insurance yet. Sigh. But it’s not a crisis. Just a minor frustration and a chance to be obedient when it isn’t easy. I’m sorry you’re facing a hit too. I hope you find that God blesses your family through it in some way.

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