Pre-Order So God Made a Mother

My husband and I met just over 16 years ago. We fell fast in love. We married a year after dating and quickly began living the American Dream. We have two children, one daughter in the teen world, a son who is approaching it quickly and two dogs, who add much excitement to our lives. We also live with this uninvited, most obnoxious fifth member of our family, called disease.

You see, what happened in my life and marriage is something called illness, the chronic, incurable kind of illness. My husband was diagnosed with a disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis, which is just one big fancy way of saying he is in a lot of discomfort and pain.

This disease causes much disease in our lives, but we are learning to live with it day-by-day.

When my husband received his diagnosis just over a year ago, it was a relief in a way because we finally knew what was wreaking havoc in his our lives. Several years prior, we knew something wasn’t right. He tired easily and was often in pain, which made life very hard for him and us. He was a practicing physician {and quite an amazing one at that}, which demanded a lot of him mentally and physically.

It was becoming too much and something had to change.

With much prayer, guidance, wise counsel, faith and hope, we decided it was time to hang up the stethoscope. One key factor that you need to know, our family doesn’t look like the average family of four. My husband is twenty-two years older than me. Crazy, right? We think so too! So, for him to quit with a ah-hum, “young(er)” {insert wink} wife and two kids, it just didn’t make sense and wasn’t part of our plan! How would it work? Well, this was and still is the million dollar question. The other thing you need to know is that I am a licensed marriage and family therapist in private practice. I help people deal with emotions, like grief, pain and how to deal with transitions in life and guess what? We were {and are} in a major life transition and I couldn’t fix it!

This is where Hope enters the scene and lots of it.

The Unshakeable Kind.

Paul tells you and me about in 2 Corinthians 1:7. He says:

“Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort.”

You see, I am a woman of strong faith. I believe that if it were not for my faith, belief, hope in and love for Jesus Christ, I would definitely not be where I am today. This has been a journey Like. No. Other.

We were forced, by circumstance, to a place none of us wanted to be.

The serenity prayer has become my mantra. In fact, it hangs on my bathroom wall as a daily, often hourly, who am I kidding, minute to minute reminder of letting go of that which I have no control. Wow, to type those words is chilling.

Why did I want to write this you might ask? That is actually a really good question if I do say so myself. Let me take a moment to answer.

I want to share this Great Unshakeable Hope that I have, that you can also have. The best part is that it is free!

I have become well acquainted with disappointment, sadness and heartache over the last year, yet in each and every single moment I have not been alone. How ironic that a doctor and a therapist {both healers} would meet and then later face a giant, called disease, the size of Goliath together. It has tried to wreck our marriage and our family, but we have chosen to stand strong and confident, knowing we are not alone and certainly not fighting this in our own strength. This free gift and Great Hope is Jesus and He is The One who deserves every single bit of the credit.

So, thank you for meeting with me for a minute and hearing about my struggles. I pray that it encouraged you just a bit and helps you to know that even in the depths of despair, you are never alone.

There is One who cares and wants to know all about your pain.

Will you share with Him?

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Sarah Littlefield

Sarah is a wife/mom and licensed marriage and family therapist. She thrives on helping reunite families, as well as helping people heal from whatever it is holding them back. She views her calling as a wife, mom and therapist as a gift from God and considers herself a avid learner and student of the life He's given her! In her free time she enjoys exercising and being outdoors, but mostly spending quality time with her friends and family. She enjoys reading and learning about all things therapy related and has a special interest in the area of neuroscience.

8 Fight Songs for the Single Mom

In: Faith, Living, Motherhood
Woman holding earbuds in ears

They whispered to her: You cannot withstand the storm. I have had days when the storms hit me while I sat on the shower floor with my knees to my chest feeling completely defeated, letting the hot water beat down on my body. I have had nights when the storms hit me as tears stained my pillow. As time has moved on, I am learning how to beat the storms. This is only possible because of the family and friends that God has brought into my life. This is my fight song. These are and have been my take back...

Keep Reading

Your Brother Is With Jesus Now

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Brother and sister in yellow outfits smiling on park bench

“Thao is with Jesus now,” we told her, barely choking out the whisper. Jesus. This invisible being we sing about. Jesus. The baby in the manger? Jesus. How can we explain Jesus and death and loss and grief to a 3-year-old? And now, how can we not? We live it, breathe it, and dwell in loss since the death of her brother, our son, Thao. Here we are living a life we never wanted or dreamed of. Here we are navigating loss and death in a way our Creator never intended. What words can I use to describe death to...

Keep Reading

Even When You Can’t Find Joy, Jesus Is There

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Sad woman through pane of rain covered glass

The international church service was vibrant with voices lifted up in songs of praise. Many clapped their hands and some even danced before God. But I wanted to be invisible. Joy felt like a land depicted in a fairy tale. I had returned from the hospital the day before—a surgery to remove the baby who had died in my womb. Watching this church buzz with happiness unearthed my fragileness. I slouched in my chair and closed my eyes. Tears trickled down my freckled face. My mind knew God was in control, but my heart ached as yet another thing I...

Keep Reading

He Mends Our Broken Hearts

In: Faith, Grief, Loss
Praying hands of woman with bracelets

Rays of soft sunlight streamed through the curtain onto the hospital bed. I stepped to the edge of the bed, taking a moment to soak in his face before gently holding his hand. Eighty-nine years is a rich, full life, and each passing day revealed more convincingly it was time for him to go. Grief and relief shared the space in my heart as I carried the weight of understanding each visit held the opportunity to be my last.  When he felt my hand, his eyes opened, and he gifted me a smile. Pop Pop always had a smile for...

Keep Reading

When I Feel Like a Failure, God Reminds Me of His Grace

In: Faith, Motherhood
Child hugs mother in sun flare

I’ve always been a teeth grinder, especially during times of high stress. Striving manifests itself physically through my teeth and jaw. I have even shifted several of my teeth from the grinding, moving my pearly whites to become crooked and a little unsightly. I should’ve known this morning that the night of grinding my teeth before was going to turn into a day of clenching my jaw. The spiritual warfare was intense, the temptations strong. I felt angry and burnt out.  After I finally laid my son down for a nap, I sat on the couch and told God, “I...

Keep Reading

My Father’s Faith

In: Faith, Grief
Man with grown daughter, color photo

I’ve been thinking a lot about legacy lately.  When my dad passed away in 2011, I lost the most influential person in my life. He was sacrificial in his love for me and others. His heart was devoted to the Lord, and it was evident to all who knew him. His death marked me in a significant way, and I still struggle with grief 11 years later. But his life marked me in an even greater way, and for that, I’m eternally grateful. As I reflect on legacy, I think about the impact that my dad’s faith had (and still...

Keep Reading

He’s the God of Small Things In Motherhood Too

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman holding infant, black-and-white photo

Normally, on a Sunday afternoon during the girls’ naptime, I try to get some work done or lie down to rest. But a few days ago, I instead wrapped a blanket around my waist to keep warm and pulled cutting boards and pots out of the cupboard.  Before I had kids, I wondered what kind of mom I would be. In fact, I was pretty sure I knew. My outgoing and vivacious personality attracted kids to my side for years. Their energy matched mine, and we giggled and chased each other before collapsing on the floor. I pictured myself holding...

Keep Reading

Silence the Lie that Says You’re Too Much

In: Faith, Living
Mother and daughter smiling outside wearing sunglasses

As a kindergartner sometimes I tagged along to my mom’s work as a hotel housekeeper. While my mom worked, I played in the recreation room. Her boss checked on me and always had something fun to play with or a story to share.  One day, in a burst of excitement, I shared something special that happened over the weekend with the supervisor. The words bounded from my mouth like a puppy ready to play in the morning.  The boss chuckled, “Whoa, motor mouth! Slow down!” In a split second, my 5-year-old heart crumbled, and the lie that would follow me...

Keep Reading

Let’s Stop the Negative Talk about Marriage

In: Faith, Marriage
Square, wooden arch with floral and fabric in field, color photo

Growing up, I remember hearing many negative phrases used about marriage—on TV, by distant relatives, anywhere, really.  “The old ball and chain.” “All my wife does is nag.” “You’re happy in your marriage? You must still be in the honeymoon phase.” These are just a few examples of the many things I have heard for years that create a negative connotation around marriage. I never really thought much of it until I fell in love and got engaged to the man of my dreams. Can you guess what happened next? “Just wait . . .” I heard entirely too many...

Keep Reading

Dear Momma, I Will Be Your Friend

In: Faith, Friendship, Motherhood
Woman sitting in hammock with baby, color photo

Dear momma, You got this. Every fiber of your being was uniquely designed to do what you say you can’t. Your uniqueness, talents, drive, warmth, and smiles are all part of God’s perfect plan. Being a mother is no easy task. It requires the Lord, patience, endurance, steadfastness, and a friend. Dear momma, I’ll be your friend. We don’t have to have the same beliefs or ways of doing things to share our burdens with each other. Know that my walk weighs heavily on God, His strength, His peace and His purpose. I will share my heart with you and...

Keep Reading