“I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—
He who watches over you will not slumber”
There were many problems with our marriage, but there was one particular thing I couldn’t ignore any longer, abuse. I did try to ignore it, for a while. I told myself it “wasn’t that bad” and sometimes, I even blamed myself.
Before I really left my husband, I had actually “left” twice before. Each time he would apologize and tell me he wanted to be better, he would ask for my forgiveness and tell me that I needed to forgive him. The only way I would go back is if he would agree to go to counseling with me. He would, for a few weeks and then he would quit.
To be honest, the counseling with Pastors didn’t help much. For one, I couldn’t be completely honest about exactly what was going on. I was ashamed and scared.
I even went to a crisis center for women fleeing abusive relationships and spoke with a counselor. She told me I wasn’t ready to leave that day, and she was right. However, she gave me some ideas and tools to help me become ready. She told me to get some cash stashed away and to pack a small bag to have ready in the car, and the most important things – to make a plan. And I did. But it was still scary.
Having a plan helped, sort of. But what really helped me was this verse. I read it every night and memorized it, it brought me great comfort in some of my darkest times. My help came from the Lord…truly. Leaving wasn’t just scary because I was worried about what he was going to do to us, but because I didn’t want to be a single mom. I had always wanted to get married and have a family. Never in my wildest thoughts did I think that I was going to have to raise my children on my own. But, as his mood swings worsened and the consequences I received from them intensified, I knew I didn’t want this for my children. I had to protect them, no matter how scary it was.
I also realized I had to be honest, with my family and his. It was one of the hardest things I had to do – to admit and confess what was going on. It was absolutely heart wrenching, I felt like I had failed. It was in that moment though that a tremendous burden was lifted and I received love and support. My parents were relieved, they didn’t know exactly what was going on, but they knew SOMETHING was going on.
When I left my husband, he was filled with rage and acted upon it. He followed me to my parents house and assaulted me and my folks. He spent a year and a half in jail for his crime and I was relieved that I and my daughters could be safe, even if for just a time.
Two weeks before this happened, I had accepted a part-time job at the YMCA. I wanted to do something outside of the home and where my daughter could be with me, so I applied for a job in their nursery. I was making $7.50 an hour when I suddenly found myself a single mom of a 16 month old and pregnant with my second. How was I going to make this work? The Lord stepped in and he helped. Within a week of my separation, the CEO came to me and offered me full-time and $9.00 and hour.
There is so much more to this story, but the point is that the Lord was with me and my daughters through it all and he still is. I have many stories of His protection and provision in my life. Our Lord doesn’t slumber, and he certainly won’t let your foot slip. He is our help and he will send the help we need when we need it.