When Setbacks Get You Down

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I haven’t blogged in…well…months. On this site, or my staciestoneycoaching site. And I want to talk about it. Because talking about what’s got us down is healthy. And I feel I best get my emotions out writing, and then I feel better. So bear with me today.

SO, the title to my blog here is The Whiskey Lover’s Wife. And gosh, I’d like to think that through this passion for smelling and tasting quality ingredients made from small craft distilleries has shown that, as a family, we have had some great adventures, seen beautiful places, and learned valuable lessons. Today, I hope you will learn a valuable lesson.

But you need to know, my husband obviously loves more that whiskey. In fact, we just thought it was a cute name for our blogs. What my husband truly loves is God, his family, and his passion in his career to lead others in education. In that order.

Understand, that while I am telling you my story today, it is really the story of my husband that creates this story today.

Right before Spring Break, my husband learned that his current role of a Jr./Sr. High School Principal would be reabsorbed into the current Superintendents role. Meaning, my husband is losing his job.

He knew this was something that was a strong possibility due to increased budget issues the district is facing. However, NO ONE likes to hear, “Hey, you are amazing at what you do but you don’t have a job after school is out!” Setback number 1. And man, yeah, it got our whole family down.

I’ve got to hand it to the man, he moved forward, helped us all to enjoy our vacation we took to Canada, and started right away applying for administration jobs. Early on, he was called to interview for a couple in Eastern Washington. Ultimately, the choice was made that while we would love to move to Eastern Washington SOMEDAY, that time is not now as we have a freshman son who is really rocking and rolling in high school, and it would not be in our sons best interest to move him now. Besides, as my husband said, there were many other opportunities for him on this side of the mountains.

Setback number 2 came when he interviewed in a district south of where we live. Going into it, we were aware the district more than likely already knew whom they wanted to hire, but had to do the legalities of interviews. Yet, my husband was optimistic and said he can always give them a “run for their money” and be the best candidate. Then then “NO” phone call came. And no matter the circumstances, that is very hard to hear.

Now, let me briefly take a step back in this story to explain to you that five years ago, almost the same exact thing happened. His position as an associate administrator was dissolved, and that spring and summer, my husband had 27 job interviews, all resulting in “No” or “It’s between you and another person…we went with the other person.” Finally, in the 13th hour, the current district my husband works in called him and praised him and I am forever grateful for all that he has learned and grown through there.

But why tell you this? Because it is incredibly important to the story, that’s why! And again, this is his story. But I live it with him as his wife every single day.

Yesterday, my husband interviewed for the job we have prayed for, for years. The. Perfect. Position. The job that would allow him to no longer commute, would allow him to have a great collaborative team, and that would allow him to be able to be an active participant in our sons daily lives.

I can not tell you if this is setback number three or not as the interview was yesterday. But I know that my husband came home because he said he messed up. He wanted it too badly and was nervous, and rushed, and he knew he wasn’t himself. He wanted it so bad that he lost confidence in himself. Do you know that feeling?

And that is why I am writing today. What do you do when setbacks get you down?

I have only one answer to that. You continue to PRAY. Yes, CONTINUE to PRAY.

My husband and I pray. I would say he is more academic in his prayer time, as I see him reading devotionals and listening to sermons and studying in books on the Word. I, on the other hand, am different as I use my morning “running” time (it’s really a very slow jog) to talk to God, I find myself finding odd connections through the day with God (for example, yesterday I yelled at my dog, and my dog reacted my simply laying his head on my leg and in his eyes I was reminded of Agape Love, the absolutely unconditional way God loves us. And I thanked Jeb the Dog for being God’s reminder), and I use prayer time at night when I lay in bed helping our youngest son fall asleep.

I can’t remember a time, since my husband and I committed to Christ, that we didn’t pray. I can tell you, we have leaned most heavily on Christ in these times of trials, praying for strength, praying for courage to move forward, thanking him for what we are learning through the setbacks. And the funny thing is, when life is really good, I honestly don’t think we rely on Him as heavily. I mean, I thank Him still daily, but what am I LEARNING? I don’t think I sit back and reflect on the lessons HE teaches when our times our good.

So, Setbacks do get you down. They totally bum you out. But then, a setback isn’t forever. And a setback helps you move forward.
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I have always loved the analogy of an arrow. You know, the archer must pull back the arrow, back behind it’s start point, but when the archer releases, that arrow flies through the air so far!!! And hey, even if the target was missed, it still went forward. You can still make your way because you are so much closer!

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When set backs get you down, it’s okay to take a moment and be down. God gave us emotions, after all!!! But more than emotions, HE have us HIM. So after you have had your quick little “well gosh, that bummed me out” moment, quickly praise HIM for all he has blessed you with, all HE is teaching you, and all HE will continue to do with your life!

My biggest hope is that one day, my husband will understand that HIS STORY will help others. God is using Josh is such a big way. Even if he can not see it now. How many times have you been through trials you don’t believe will even end? And yet, you came out of them for the better. Job didn’t ask for all the trials God brought forth, but in the end Job continued to have faith in God, and praise and thank Him. Let’s all try to do what God asks us to do…Trust Him, have Faith in Him, Thank Him…and ALWAYS LOVE HIM.

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