Therefore, put on the complete armor of God, so that you will be able to successfully resist and stand your ground in the evil day of danger, and having done everything that the crisis demands, to stand firm in your place, fully prepared, immovable, victorious – so stand firm and hold your ground. Ephesians 6:13-14a
When I am faced with a challenging situation caused by life handing me a bad card, I always remember an anonymous quote my former Pastor would often refer to – “You have to plan to get out of what you did not plan to get into.”
Single parenthood is something many people did not plan to get into. As a teenage girl you did not plan to fall into sexual sin; as a high flyer manager you did not plan on the father to your baby running away from his responsibilities; as a committed Christian businessman you had desired for your marriage to work and did not plan for your wife to run away; and clearly, as a widow or widower you did not foresee the death of your spouse and parent to your young children.
All the above real examples, and many more happening in our communities today were not in the control of these single parents at the time they happened. As we read some of the stories, we might be thinking maybe some of the single parents had a bit more control of their situations than others. Could the teenage girl have done something different to stay away from sexual sin, finish her education, get married at the right age and start a family the right way? Yes. Could the high flyer manager have waited to know this man better, prepare for marriage the right way, solemnize the union and start a family after that? Yes. Could the Christian businessman do something different to get to know the wife-to-be better before marrying her? Yes, maybe. Could the office administrator and the husband do something different to help him overcome his addiction? Yes, maybe. Could the teenage girl from the village have done something to avoid spending time in a strange man’s house? Maybe yes. Maybe no.
As we read through and evaluate our own situations, let’s appreciate that life’s too complicated and will always have maybe-maybe not situations. My point is, we are already in this situation – we are raising a child or children on our own. Life has handed us these cards and there is no going back to how things were before. We have done all we know to do to stand and make things happen.
So now, what’s next? We make a choice!
- Put on the complete armor of God (Ephesians 6:13-14)
- Form New Relationships. (i) (Psalms 1:1-3, 6) If you are struggling with sexual sin and (ii) Isaiah 55:8-13 If we are struggling with grief and disappointments of a failed marriage or deceased spouse.
- Develop New Thoughts (Romans 12:2)
- Develop New Habits (Hebrews 5:14)
SO STAND FIRM AND HOLD YOUR GROUND
In our journey back on our feet, it will feel like we are facing a powerful enemy. I have experienced an intense struggle as if another team is trying to push me back and break me down over and over again. The secret is in standing firm and holding your ground. Whichever direction we choose to take, this program will help us take God’s best option for us, try not to fall back and slide in the mud of life.
My recovery journey was not a matter of my standing firm on my own. We are part of a community – the household of faith. In Philippians 1:27, Paul uses the image of the phalanx with which Philip II of Macedonia once conquered the city of Philippi. In the same manner, shoulder to shoulder, we can all overcome our challenges, stand firm and hold our ground.
Let’s dive right into it!
What is your lowest emotional point in your single parenthood? What question lingers greatly in your mind concerning emotional stability?