By: Hollie Kowalski, Encompass Outreach Coordinator
Every day, at some point, my mind somehow finds its way to my sister. At 37, she and my nephew are “starting over.” Single mom is her new label. Her thoughts of failure and hopelessness are often almost too much to bear. My mom repeated a conversation the two of them had not long ago in which my sister said to her “why couldn’t my marriage have been like my sister’s?”
The past 22 years of my life have without a doubt, been my favorite. This is the number of years Joe and I have been together, (married 19 of those.) He is my favorite person, my very best friend, and hand picked for me by God. I do feel very blessed, but I remember a time when I did not.
I married my first husband at eighteen years old. What’s the phrase? “Young and dumb?” Yes, I was both. The “honeymoon phase” didn’t last long. After two and a half years of his dishonesty, disloyalty, verbal, and physical abuse, after many tears, much prayer, and a number of late-night talks with my parents, it was time to leave.
During the beginning of the two-year stint at my parents’ I felt just as my sister does, so hopeless. Until… I didn’t. I realized that God had my back in a BIG way. I had a newfound hope. I placed my trust in God and started to get excited about the possibility of a new life for my son and I.
So now, to my sister and all who are in the same season, I can say this: You are in a season of waiting for a reason. God is preparing your heart for something (or someone) perfect for you! Make this season active, not passive.
Make this time of waiting, a time of experiences and memories with friends and family. Use it to further your spiritual growth, your emotional and physical health, and let God take care of the rest!
Lavern & Ronda Nissley are co-directors of Encompass. Married since 1978, both enjoy coffee, riding their tandem bicycle and working together to build strong relationships.