I was a shell of the woman I’d been.
If you’d known me ten years earlier, you wouldn’t have been able to be around me without seeing God’s hand all over me. I beamed with faith.
Even though I’d already been through several tough battles in my life, I was hope-filled and joy-filled and felt called to reach out to other women and share that sense of hope that comes from those who have battled hard and overcome.
I was quick to pray for them. Quick to comfort them. Quick to encourage them that God would never, ever, ever leave them in a bad situation. Because He loved them. They were His daughters, after all. Daughters of the King. And that was no small thing.
But years down the road, as I hit mountain after mountain in my life as a single mom, I began to wonder if those things were even true. That He was real. That He provided. That He protected. Because all I felt from Him was a gaping hole, I’d been financially destroyed, and I lived in fear that my ex would hurt me—if not worse.
And this wasn’t my first faith battle. I wasn’t a good Christian girl who grew up in the church and then one day turned around and questioned what her parents had believed. I spent several years investigating my faith before becoming a believer at the age of thirty. My faith was hard-won. But from the moment I found Jesus, I followed Him with gusto. So happy to have someone in my life that would never leave me. Because, sweet friend, I was the poster child for being left behind.
Until He left too.
And with my head hung in shame, and the minuscule amount of faith that remained somewhere inside me, I approached a group of women that I have ministered with online and told them that I wasn’t sure I believed anymore. That my faith was shot. That God had left me in it, despite what He says in the Bible. And that I was exhausted from trying to believe otherwise when the disproof had become my life.
That’s when they stepped in the gap.
They held me up. They prayed for me. They reached out and messaged me. They told me that they would believe FOR me. They asked the Holy Spirit to pray for the things that I didn’t know to pray for. They stood shoulder-to-shoulder with me propping me up when I couldn’t stand, much less get to my knees.
I cried myself to sleep that night.
But in the days that followed, I began to get a little stronger. I began to long to pray again, even though I couldn’t yet. I began to understand that God wasn’t as far as I thought because He had sent others close to me that could tangibly reach me in His name.
If you feel left by God, I want you to do the same. Find your women. Whether they are in your church, in your family, or even online (like mine were), and get real with them. Tell them you have nothing left to hope for. Admit your lack of faith. Lean on them to hold you up.
If you can’t find them, find me.
Because this single motherhood is not something we should do alone. It’s a sisterhood that no one else can understand. I stand in solidarity with you in this battle, sweet friend. I stand beside you. And I will hold you up to the One who longs to heal his daughter.
Just like my women did for me at the weakest possible moment in my faith. In my life.
We want to. Just ask us.
Laura Polk is a single mom, author, writer, speaker, and friend. She has written for magazines, such as Focus on the Family, Christian Parenting Today, and Crosswalk. She is author of the upcoming release The Single Mom Challenge. She is a graduate of She Speaks and Christian Communicators. For more information, visit www.laurapolk.com.
The Life of a Single Mom is a national, faith-based, nonprofit that exists to see that no single mom walks alone. To date, we have worked with more than 1,500 churches & community groups to start or improve a single mom’s support group in cities throughout the U.S. and beyond. We have a large array of books, curriculum, training materials, and online instructional videos to support ministry leaders who lead single moms. Our single mom programs focus on empowering single moms to grow spiritually, emotionally, financially, and parentally through a number of projects including: Single Mom University, Single Moms Across America, the National TLSM Single Moms Conference, and a variety of programs throughout the U.S. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com