Anna slid out the door of her travel trailer, closing the door softly behind her. She walked across the church’s grass, away from the incessant sound of the trailer’s air conditioners, away from the noise of all the children, and away from the constant stream of work. The misty darkness perfectly fit her despondency.
She needed to be alone.
Walking over the church’s yard, she came to a tree and fingered its leaves. Anna was painfully aware that everywhere she looked was new and unfamiliar, and nothing she touched was hers. She thought of her husband’s ministry as an evangelist and remembered that only the day before they came to this church, and in two days they would leave for another one. Another week, another yard, she thought ruefully. Or maybe next week it will be a parking lot. She knew that many times, churches allowed them to hook up their travel trailer in the church parking lot. She was always thankful for the Lord’s provision, but sometimes the constant moving was hard.
The days were so very packed with travelling, school, meals, cleanup, and the ever-present laundry. It seemed to Anna that she was running as soon as her feet hit the floor every morning to the time she pulled them up into her bed late at night. Added to her family responsibilities were the perpetual pressures of ministry: the need to be a blessing everywhere they went. Anna so desired to be an encouragement to others, but sometimes, like tonight, she felt there was simply no more of her left to bless with.
Tears mingled with her prayers as she cried out to God for help and strength. For a long time, she stood by the fence in the church yard, looking out into the mist sending her burdens to the Lord. She winced as she remembered the words that a kind lady spoke to her earlier that day. “It seems to me that it must take someone special to do what you do,” she remarked, referring to Anna’s unusual lifestyle. Anna prayed, But God, I don’t know that I want to be special! All I wanted was to raise a family for You, with my house and a few animals on a ten-acre homestead! Glancing back at her silhouetted trailer, she thought of how very different life had become. She didn’t hate her life, she just wasn’t sure she had the strength to do it all.
She was reminded of her family, who were so precious to her. Soon her thoughts and prayers turned to thanksgiving, as she remembered her beloved husband and her many children. Thank You, God, for my family. Thank You for the many miles of safety. Thank you for saving me! Thank You for being so good to me! Before long, tears of thankfulness slid down her cheeks, mingling with her tears of frustration.
Like a gentle prod in her heart, an old saying crossed her mind: “If Jesus Christ is God and died for me, than no sacrifice could be too great for me to make for Him.” Anna remembered that Jesus had paid the ultimate price for her, and now she was His. God, she prayed, I’m not worthy to serve You. I’m not worthy to have these children, this family, this ministry. No, it is no sacrifice that I make for You. It is merely a yielding service. Please help me to yield to You. I am Yours.
The gentle nudge of the Holy Spirit led her on.
(3) Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.
(4) And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.
(5) Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
(6) O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.
Yes, Lord, her heart responded, You can do with me as this potter. You have every right to do with me what You Will.
Soon, another verse flooded her mind:
“Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?”
Quickly, Anna’s tender heart yielded to the promptings of the sweet Holy Spirit. Lord, if it is Your Will that I live this unusual lifestyle, then I am content to do that. I don’t really want to be ‘special,’ but if that’s Your Will for me, give me the strength to be what You want me to be. You have bought me with a price, and You can do what you will with Your own.
Peace filled her heart, and a joy she hadn’t had in a long time swept over her soul. Anna knew that the Lord would strengthen her to meet the daily demands of life on the road with a large family. With her trust in God, She understood that His loving-kindness would give her rest when she really needed it, for He takes care of His own.
No light in the darkness you see?
There’s light for a look at the Saviour,
And life more abundant and free.
Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in His Wonderful Face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.”