It seems that when I travel, Wednesdays are hard.
It’s that “middle of the week” day when exhaustion starts to set in, and I start to question everything. And going home seems so far away (especially now, as my leaving date has been extended). I question my skills at this job. I question my skills as a mother. I question leaving my kids to travel for my job, though I have no choice. I question the work environment that comes with “working out of town”. I question not God’s goodness in providing me my job, but I question Him generally as my time with him seems artificial, limited, and I’m out of my routine. Breakfast meetings, working through breakfast and dinner, then late nights add up and start to mess with me, and not in a good way.
And I miss my crew, very very much.
And I find myself discouraged. Lonely. Lacking in hope. Weary. Worn.
And tonight I’m fighting another battle, one that I have only referenced on here a few times.
The job is stressful. The deadlines are intense. The hours are long. And so the tendency, like it is for so many on business trips, is to end the night at the hotel bar. Right there. In the lobby. That I walk past to get to my room. Where my co-workers are sitting.
And so last night, when invited and cajoled to join them I did. It was too easy of a decision. My convoluted mind starting justifying the move: I’ll just drink soda. I’ll just drink one glass of wine. One glass of wine would actually be good for me. One glass of wine will help me relax and sleep tonight and not fight off sleep. One glass of wine will help me fit in with my co-workers better.
And so I had that one glass of Pinot Grigio.
And I am so disappointed to say that I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the time with my coworkers, I enjoyed the chance to relax, and I enjoyed that I was able to get to sleep–and slept all night uninterrupted.
But today is a different story.
Today I find myself consumed with the thoughts of having another glass. Of how easy it is to do so, when out of town. But I am also ashamed. Disappointed in myself. Angry with myself. Combine that with the general thoughts that I shared above about Wednesdays, and I find myself struggling. Slogging through this day. Planning my escape when we are excused a few hours from now.
I’m reading a book called “Sober Mercies”. It’s written by an upper-middle class, Christian who worked in Colorado Springs in the Christian publishing business and was an alcoholic. Is an alcoholic. She wrote how one glass wasn’t enough. That one glass made her want more. And then some more. And then some more.
Now it’s possible that reading about her has made me become thirsty once again, but I don’t think so. But I do know that her story, and my reaction to last night, is a warning sign to my mind and soul. I can’t go down that road.
Sharing this may harm your impression of me. If so, I am so very sorry that I am not the person you believe me to be. But in being honest, I hold myself to a standard that I set when I quit drinking copious quantities. When I quit drinking. I have to be careful. I have to fight. There is nothing more that the evil one would like then for me to find myself where I have been before.
So tonight, I’ll enter the hotel from a different door. I’ll buy Diet Coke’s before going home. I’ll get some popcorn. Or ice cream. And then I will spend the remainder of my night either studying, reading, writing. I’ll go to sleep, and hit the ground running tomorrow at 5:00 am again.
I was weak last night. But my God was the same. He never changes. He is the same yesterday, today, tomorrow and forever. And He will be the same tonight. Already I know, by His strength, the evil one will not win. By His strength and grace and mercy, I will be strong. After writing this, I feel stronger already.
1 John 4:4 states:
This is the verse I am clinging to today. I am God’s dear child. He is my Father. I am from God. And the one who is in me, is greater than the one who is in the world.
Of course, I welcome and covet your prayers. I also assure you that I am good. My God knows. My God sees. He is El Roi, the God who sees, from Genesis 16:13.
Thank you for reading, my friends. Thank you for praying. Thank you for loving me in spite of all my failures and fallings. Your grace and mercy and encouragement toward me and my crew, keeps me going. I pray that you will allow me this opportunity to be honest and transparent on this issue, and that you yourself may be encouraged in knowing that our God sees and knows and will fight with us and for us, because He loves us.