I barely slept a wink last night. And when I say barely, I mean 1 1/2 to 2 hours, tops. Crazy, I know. It wasn’t because I was sick or had a sick kiddo. It wasn’t because I was worrying about said kiddos. No, it was just because my mind was BUZZING. The thoughts on this page were flying around in my head. Now, when this has happened to me in the past, I have panicked. I usually watch the clock, and with every passing minute, I get more worried about my lack of sleep and what that will do to me the next day. I’ll be exhausted. My immune system might tank. I probably won’t be able to workout. On and on and on….I’m exhausted just typing it out. But not this time.
If any of you have been following me for very long, you probably know that our family has had a myriad of health struggles over the past ten years. The last four months have been especially grueling. It got to the point where I wasn’t sure how much of my life to share on social media because it was simply too depressing to recount. We were a mess. Who wants to hear about that? It was truly hell on earth in so many ways - both physically and emotionally. If there was a real pit of despair in Dallas, we were in it. I had built my business on a base of hope, and yet I felt almost none myself. How could I ever share what I did not have myself?
About a week ago, Matt and I saw a counselor for the first time in our marriage. Not because we were on the brink of divorce, but because we were desperate. We had tried everything else we could think to try. And I thank God that we took that step. Because our eyes were opened to the most powerful thing that we had left almost entirely out of the picture. God.
It’s not that we didn’t pray. Oh we had prayed. I had prayed to the point that I was numb. I didn’t know another way to do it. And it had accomplished nothing (that I could see), and so I had been reduced to occasional prayers that felt like a chore. Like something on my to do list. And who has time for another item on the to do list when they have “real work” to do? I was resigned to asking other people to pray for us because my prayers felt dead. Is that sad, or what?
We had been trying to get God to move in our lives by something we did. Everything we tried was of this world. I thought I could fix enough potions and shakes, research enough supplements and juice enough celery to save Matt myself. I could raise my kids myself. I could run my business myself. I was relying on myself for virtually everything in my life. And let me tell you, that pressure is suffocating. I was drowning. And that was the last thing Matt or our kids needed. I was there, but I wasn’t whole.
After meeting with our counselor, he explained some life changing truths that I had just never really experienced in my life. I have been a Christian for over 25 years, and yet, I don’t think I have ever felt what I have experienced in the past week. God has already moved in my life. He has already provided everything I have or will ever need. He is so much bigger than my problems. I professed to believe that, and yet I expected nothing of him. My heart was full of fear to the point where it had hardened to the possibility of anything happening outside of me. How could I accept grace or healing when I was in that state? Well, I clearly could not.
As we came to these realizations, I started getting more and more hungry to read the bible and pray in a way I never had before. With confidence and belief that these truths were meant for me. That my life was not meant to be one of constant suffering. That I had joy and peace in my heart that could spring up if I would just let God do that. And it has made all the difference. Matt and I have had hope before, but it was in things of this world. They very well may have been sent from God to us, but they were not supernatural. We would find a new book or remedy that would help us for a while. But none of those brought lasting healing or wholeness.
Now we have hope from a spring that never runs out. Joy everlasting. And let me say, that a few weeks ago, I would not have understood this. I would not have believed it. My eyes were shut and my heart was hard. I would have thought this was a little “over the top.” Which is sad to me. But if that’s how you feel reading it, I’ve been there. I’ve been the judgy girl thinking people who talked like this were just spouting off something they heard someone else say. There’s no way they could really feel like that.….except now I know.
So, all this is to say that the “hope” is back in Hopeful Fitness. I am renewed in my mind and spirit, and Matt is too. Our bodies may not always show it on the outside, but we are healed. We are whole. A massive weight has been lifted, and we are now living like we haven’t in a long time. In his rest.
My son, pay attention to what I say;
listen closely to my words.
Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;
for they are life to those who find them
and health to one’s whole body.
Above all else, guard your heart,
for it is the wellspring of life.
Hey there! I'm J-L (short for Jennie-Laurie), and I'm a wife, mom of 2, and I love all things health and fitness. Welcome to my blog!