He Remains Faithful
Laurie L Gilbreath
Copyright 2014 Laurie Gilbreath
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“Even if we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot disown Himself.”
~ II Timothy 2:13
It was the fall of 2001, and Kelly was restless. Approaching forty, she realized that her life, though blessed in many ways, had begun to feel empty. She had a job she enjoyed, two wonderful children, and a relatively successful life. But none of it fulfilled her anymore. She felt as if her life had turned out differently than she had planned somehow. Their small southern town was close-knit, and sometimes she felt as if her life had been prescribed for her. Often she would look in the mirror and ask herself what had happened to the passionate young woman who used to look back at her.
Her husband, Mike, seemed distant. Whether it was actually true or not, that’s how it felt. The previous year she had lost over thirty pounds, bringing her back to her pre-baby weight. Quite a few of her colleagues had noticed and said she looked great. Mike had not said a word. Kelly tried to see life from Mike’s perspective. He had started a new business two years before, and he had to spend many hours a week getting it off the ground, which meant quite a few late evenings. When he arrived home, he was understandably exhausted. It made perfect sense. However, Kelly worked too, consulting with the advertising firm for which she had worked before Sam’s birth. The hours weren’t as long, but the work was often time consuming, and deadlines were often tight. Then after she had done that work, the housekeeping, the cooking, and the children were there as well. Mike tried to help her when he had the energy, but that wasn’t very often.
In addition, their physical intimacy seemed to be fading. They came together less and less frequently, with several months passing between each encounter. Kelly knew that much of this was her fault. She had begun sleeping in the guest bedroom, first because of Mike’s snoring and then because of her growing frustration with their distance. But it wasn’t as if Mike didn’t know where to find her. Occasionally she attempted to bring them together, but Mike seemed tired or disinterested. In short, Kelly felt as if she and Mike were doing little more than peacefully coexisting.
If that was not enough, Kelly had begun to worry about her health. Frequently her heart raced wildly, and some nights she lay awake for hours, unable to sleep due to the incessant pounding. Kelly had also begun to notice that she was becoming more and more moody. She attributed most of this to lack of sleep. She had always been mercurial and sometimes impulsive; however, it seemed as if she was more so lately. Some days she would be cheery and effusive, some days she would be edgy and irritable, and some days it was as if a dark cloud had settled over her. She knew that the unpredictability of her moods was part of the reason she and Mike had grown so disconnected. Mike usually bore the brunt of her erratic behavior. In the past she had taken antidepressants. But they only made her agitated and even angry. Kelly knew that was not an option for her.
Finally and perhaps most importantly, Kelly’s spiritual life was dry. She was too busy for regular Bible study, and she often felt too overwhelmed to pray. Because Kelly was so tired on the weekends, it wasn’t unusual for her to stay home from church on Sunday evenings or to miss altogether. Even when she attended, Kelly never felt quite comfortable. She knew that she had begun to compromise in small ways, but she had learned to rationalize the seemingly insignificant changes in her life. In the past, she had listened almost exclusively to Christian music; it helped her to maintain a positive attitude. Lately, however, her choice of music had become worldlier, even questionable at times. She occasionally went out with friends from her old office, and she had learned to enjoy the occasional margarita. It was no big deal. The Bible didn’t say not to drink at all; it only said not to be drunk. True, Kelly often felt an occasional “buzz,” but that wasn’t the same as being drunk. Finally, since Kelly had lost the weight, she was proud of her body for the first time in years. Her jeans became tighter, her hemlines shorter, and her necklines lower. Her friends told her she looked ten years younger. Sometimes she felt a whispering in her spirit, but the conviction was inconvenient, so she had begun dismissing the still small voice.
So that fall, even though her heart was troubled, her marriage was struggling, and her heart was drifting farther from God, Kelly determined to do whatever was necessary – whatever she wanted – to be happy again.