Triumph over trial

By Lauren Estes-Velez

Hartselle Enquirer

I’m going to be vulnerable, open and transparent with our readers for a moment as I share something that many would recommend I not share.

I tell you guys all the time things that are on my heart, events I’m doing and things I am passionate about – but I haven’t shared about my personal life in a long time.

From the moment that I got engaged until six months later when I got married, I was told over and over “how hard” the first year of marriage is.

I pushed that thought to the side when I said “I do” in April of this year, and as I’m writing this, I’m celebrating seven months of marriage.

These seven months have literally been the most stressful and hardest of my life.

Have there been fun, exciting, wonderful moments when I truly felt joy and love for my spouse?

Of course! Without a doubt.

But have there also been moments of the near opposite? Sadly, yes.

My husband has been without a job since August, and these last three months have been the most trying on our marriage.

During pre-marriage counseling, our pastor told us one of two issues that newlyweds face the most is financial issues. To say we’ve faced that burden is an understatement.

We’ve hidden our burdens and all the while managed to keep smiles on our faces and fight for our marriage in a time when I thought, “I don’t know if we are going to make it through this.”

Thankfully, we have.

Edwin started his new job last week, and he loves it already. It couldn’t have come at a better time, and I feel so thankful and blessed.

I say all this to share that sometimes the most trying obstacles are the most rewarding.

I’ve had to learn how to be patient and give full control over to the Lord, and that’s something I’ve never been good at. It’s hard to give financial struggles over, especially when your only prayer is to find a job, any job – when you need to be praying for the right job.

I feel like this time helped us build a stronger bond together because he was dependent on me during this time, and I was completely dependent on God.

Last, I feel like our characters were further developed. Without struggle, there’s no compassion. If we don’t occasionally have to battle problems, we will never truly understand others when they go through trials. I think this time helped us become better people, better spouses and overall build a better relationship.

So, just a reminder, if you’re currently going through a tough time: don’t give up hope. Just know, when you’re down to nothing, God’s up to something!

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