When Winter is Long and Lonely

She has a heart after God. Her writing comes from the depth of “real” as she shares her heart for Jesus. Abby McDonald is today’s guest blogger, writing straight for you from Maryland. You will undoubtedly glean from Abby’s words today. Enjoy~ Kristi
 
 

 

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  Do not be anxious about anything, 
but in every situation, 
by prayer and petition, 
with thanksgiving, 
present your requests to God.
Phil. 4:6 NIV
 
 
The weather outside was overcast. Almost oppressive. Winter was fast approaching and I wasn’t ready for it.
 
I tried to hold on to God’s promise that there was a season for everything, that all would be made beautiful in its time. But my faith was wavering. There was another winter that had already started.
 
It had been a year. When we first moved to this area.
 
This wasn’t our first transition to a town where we didn’t know anyone. I knew it wouldn’t be easy.
 
Community takes time to grow and build, and every relationship starts with that first act of trust. That first “hello” or attempt to find a common ground.
 
But after a year of trying to form friendships, I still felt completely alone. I had a new baby and a four-year-old who just started preschool, and I longed for the companionship of another mom who could share stories of triumphs and disillusionments, successes and failures.
 
I questioned our decision to move to the area. I worried whether we would ever find our rhythm, our group of friends, our church.
 
As my youngest child napped, I tried to distract my depressed mind by cleaning. It didn’t work. I sank into my favorite recliner and prayed.
 
Even in our loneliest places,
 
there is a friend who never leaves and always
 
listens.
 
 
A few tears crept down my cheeks as I tried to find the words. They were hesitant at first, but after a few moments poured out like a waterfall.
 
I prayed that God would reveal himself to me somehow and give me a glimpse of the bigger picture. I asked him to show me He had not forgotten his child, and that this season would pass.
 
I had seen God answer prayer before. I knew he could move mountains with the touch of his hand. But I didn’t expect an answer to come so quickly.
 
 
Often, we miss out on God’s miracles 
because we expect something earth shattering, but his hand is usually more subtle.
 
Fifteen minutes after I sent those words up toward Heaven, I heard a knock at my door. I wasn’t expecting anyone. I opened the door to find my neighbor standing there. She was making an impromptu visit to drop off some clothes her youngest son had outgrown.
 
After standing in the foyer talking for a few minutes, she gave me a hug. I felt like the tears might start again. We’d never hugged before, but it was exactly what I needed.
 
I felt God reaching down from Heaven, giving me a sign I so desperately needed.
 
He was still there.
 
 
“I know how hard it can be,” she said, with a look of understanding. “It took years before I felt like this was home.”
 
She and her husband had moved to the area ten years ago. She understood. Just being in the presence of someone who shared this knowledge made the load a little lighter. I felt renewed and refreshed. God was in this.
 
Sometimes, the winters of life are long and we wonder if we will ever see the light again. Whether it’s loneliness, crisis, or simply a period of waiting, the days can seem endless and overwhelming.
 
On a cold day in November, God showed me He was right there in the midst of it, opening his arms.  And all it took was a simple prayer, asking Him to show me the way home.
 

About Abby~

Abby McDonald is mom, wife and southern girl who fell in love with writing at a young age. For most of her life, she never shared her writing with anyone. She started Fearfully Made Mom because she felt God gently pushing her to share her writing with others who may feel alone in their struggles with self-doubt, accepting God’s grace, and finding their identity in Christ. Her desire is to show women they are fearfully and wonderfully made by a God who will relentlessly pursue them, even during their darkest times.
 
When she’s not chasing her two little boys around, Abby enjoys hiking, photography, reading, and consuming copious amounts of coffee with friends.
 

Abby would love to connect with you on her blog,  Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

 
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16 Comments

  1. Abby,
    You took me back to the point in time that we had just moved to Illinois (outside Chicago) in the dead of winter and I had a 4 month old. That was a very depressing winter, but like you, God in His goodness showed up in miraculous ways like my neighbor inviting me to go to MOPS (which I had never heard of, but it turned out to be a lifesaver). God IS there…even in our loneliest times.
    Blessings to you,
    Bev

  2. I love how God knows just what we need at just the right moment. (Well…of course, He does! I just tend to forget!) I pray that I remember His constant presence, love, and care. And I also pray that I am open to the opportunity to be his arms to hug someone who needs it. Beautiful, Abby!

    1. I forget too, Sabra. He is so patient with us, isn’t he? I pray that I am open to be a hug for someone who needs it too. Sometimes it’s so easy to miss those moments. Thanks for your encouragement, friend!

  3. Isn’t He just so good? But I love how you pointed out how we can miss His miracles when we expect something more earth shattering from Him. Such a beautiful reflection of His love for us, Abby. Wishing you the most wonderful, Thanksgiving. Much love. xoxo

  4. It is always so encouraging to read stories of people crying out to God, and Him acting. It renews our hope that He hears. You made me smile on this cold November day!