An Empty Cup
“I don’t have anything left to give,” I told my spouse over the phone. “Everything I have goes to the kids. I’m sorry.” Crying, I hung up the phone a complete mess. "I can’t do this anymore" I thought. "It’s not worth it." My husband would be going to bed right about now as the kids and I were starting the day.
Dear Military Spouse,
A little excerpt from my personal life, as I’m sure a lot of you would nod your head and say, “Yes! I can relate!” Or “I’ve been there!” Here’s a thought… Why is it that as a military spouse we tend to feel so alone, yet at the same time there are so many of us with similar struggles? Maybe we are not as alone as we may think or feel we are?
Are you the person that constantly gives of yourself? Do you wear the many hats in your household? I know for me, it feels at times that there are stacks of pressure (like reams of computer paper) on my back, heart, and mind. When my spouse is gone, I have to be Dad, Mom, Coach, Teacher, Cook, Maid, Spiritual Leader, Chauffeur, Nurse, Nurturer, Protector… just to name a few. There are days where I break because the pressure of trying to be what everyone else needs me to be is too much to bear.
I love my family, and I would do absolutely anything for them! I never knew what sacrifice truly meant until I became a mother, and then add a military spouse- on top of being a mother! A double whammy! Ha ha. Everywhere I look, there are broken families, divorces, and mental health diseases all around me in my military community. A lot of my military community is drowning, and this fact kills me.
Psalms 40:1 (MSG)
“I waited and waited and waited for God.
At last he looked; finally he listened.
He lifted me out of the ditch,
pulled me from deep mud.
He stood me up on a solid rock
to make sure I wouldn’t slip.”
“Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.”
“But whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.”
Let me ask you friend, is your cup empty? Nothing left to pour out? I’m sitting over here crying as I write this because my cup is empty quite often. I would never get a divorce from my husband, but I can see why it’s so prevalent amongst military families. This lifestyle is not for the faint of heart. It will and can break you.
A person can only manage and do everything on their own, and go, and give, and give and go, for so long… but eventually there will be a breaking point. A point of utter exhaustion. A point of extreme burn out. A breaking point mentally where you say, “God I can’t do this anymore!” Are you empty?
Be careful not to sin in your pride, in thinking that you can do it all- all the time, without God. We were meant to do life WITH the Lord, not apart. Guess what? We can’t do it on our own! No. We must constantly run and embrace the feet of Jesus every day. God in his mercy, grace, and great love for us, cares so much about what we are going through! He cares about your marriage, your children, your worries, and the load you carry. He is here though saying, “You don’t need to carry this load by yourself. Lay your burdens down. I am with you!”
I lift up the military spouse who is really going through it right now. Lord draw near to the broken hearted. You said in your word, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor 12:9) God I pray that you would show up and meet us, where we are.
I pray for wisdom, direction, supernatural strength, joy, and peace to flood our souls. Thank you, Lord, that we can come to you just as we are… broken, sinful, and hurting. Thank you, Lord, that you don’t let us leave your presence, the same way we entered it. Thank you, Lord, for the work you are doing right even right now in us.
I pray that you would take our empty cup and fill it overflowing so that we may be the mom/dad/spouse you’ve called us to be. When the pressures of life stack higher and feel heavier, you never leave nor forsake us. You are with us, holding us through every trial and every hard thing that comes our way. Lord, we place our trust in you, for you alone are our hope!
Lord, we surrender to you, have your way in us. Mold us, shape us, renew our mind and thoughts in your word. You are the source of our strength. Lord, we choose to drink from the living water. I pray blessing, restoration, healing, and favor on every single military family. I pray that you would protect our marriages, our children, our home, and I cement this in your holy name. Thank you, Jesus!
Military spouse, you are loved. You are seen. You are worthy, and always remember that God is more than enough to sustain you and see you through the good and the bad. You are a mighty warrior, chosen and set apart. Never doubt your purpose or why you are here. One day at a time. Love E