Have you seen this phrase around the internet… “Dear what doesn’t kill me… I’m strong enough… thank you!“? I know I have. And I laugh every time because it really resonates with my troubled past couple of years.
But truth be told… I am not stronger. I am weak.
I remember it like it was yesterday. The day that I realized just how weak that I really am. When I walked into the door, leaving my children to wait for me in the van, I thought I was strong. I made sure I had gone all the way to the other side of town, to help relieve a tiny bit of anxiety. I tried to encourage myself during the 30-minute drive. I told myself, over and over, “You can do this! You need to do this! The truth needs to come out.”
I walked up to the teller window as I felt the stress of this situation well up inside of me. So many emotions. And so much fear. Even though I knew I wasn’t doing anything wrong, I felt that at any minute my (now ex) husband would walk in screaming at me, and everyone in that bank would know why I was there. I wanted to cry. I sent off a text to a few of my prayer warriors to pray for me while I explained to the teller just what I needed from her.
She said, “That will be $3 for each month if you need it on bank letterhead.” I just said, “Yes, please. 7 months worth. I have cash. Please, do not take from the account.” Even though there was obviously plenty there to cover this fee and then some, I feared the consequences of him finding out. I felt that she could see right through to my brain, where I was silently saying, “I do not want to be here! I don’t want to be dealing with this!” But I needed to get this documentation to bring truth to the lies that were being told.
I had to stand there for quite some time, waiting. Printer issues. She came back with one month at a time. She ended up giving me 12 months worth but only charged me the $21 in cash that I brought in with me. Praise the Lord for the printer issues that caused her to print them all by mistake because they were actually needed. Twenty-one dollars is all that I had at that moment in time. And because my lawyer wasn’t getting paid, I had to do this sort of extra leg work myself.
As I waited for the rest, I saw what I knew all along that each one would say. All I could do is pray and read the texts from my dear friends. “God’s got this!“, said one. “2 Corinthians 12:9-10; Joshua 1:9“, said another. (Side note: Joshua 1:9 is the verse on a shield that my son carries around his neck. He wears it to remind him, when he faces the world, that God is with him.)
As I stood there, my heart was breaking into a thousand pieces. My knees were about ready to buckle. I was shaking so hard, it felt like the building was also. It felt as though my soul had been raped. I was so sure everyone in that bank could see everything that was written on my heart. They had to see the devastation that was just caused by one man. I held back the tears. I just prayed, as my heart pounded in my head, “God, I need You. I need you to give me the strength. I am so weak. This is so hard. How do I go on?”
But He replied, ‘My kindness is all you need. My power is strongest when you are weak.‘ So if Christ keeps giving me His power, I will gladly brag about how weak I am. Yes, I am glad to be weak or insulted or mistreated or to have troubles and sufferings, if it is for Christ. Because when I am weak, I am strong. – 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 CEV
Instantly, a sense of peace came over me. I wasn’t strong. Not at all. Surely not in this situation. How could I be? This was my worst nightmare come true, again. Honestly, I wanted to believe the lies. I didn’t want to think that history had repeated itself, again. I wanted to believe that he had truly repented of his past sins and things were different this time. But it was right there. Right in my face. Printed on letterhead with black ink. I could not deny anymore what I had known in my head. Now my heart was convinced of the truth, as well.
At that moment, I realized that I needed the Lord’s strength to get me through this. I could no longer have faith in my husband… I needed to turn it back to where it belonged all along.
The first time my lawyer presented these documents in court, I didn’t have to attend. She knew how physically and emotionally sick I was, at the time. But then when it was my turn to stand up against the lies, a few months after the divorce was final, I relied on God to get me through. I wrote Bible verses on index cards. 2 Samuel 22:33, as well as some from Psalms and Proverbs. I knew I could not make it without Him by my side. The truth was out, even though I was insulted and mistreated. I would not be walking this alone.
Through this, I learned that it is the Lord’s strength that I have. I don’t need to be strong. I was given both Biblical reasons to be released from my marriage. Those bank statements were the truth that I needed to accept my freedom. As hard as it all was at the time, almost two years later I realize there is a purpose. It’s all for His glory. My future is securely in His hands. I don’t need to be strong… I have all that I need, in the Lord.
In my weakness, He is my strength.
Many days growing and learning in Him,
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