When God Calls Your Bluff

Guest post by Sarah Knepper

Many times I struggle with being a mom, even though I volunteered for it.  Too many days come to an end with me  completely worn out and ready to throw in the towel.

I did not begin this journey as a single parent but found myself there after my third child. The pain I felt over my spouse leaving was almost too much to bear. He had robbed me of my trust for others, stealing the innocence that comes from being married only once.

I raised three small children on my own and it was those days I found myself praying to God to simply survive. I prayed no one would be permanently injured and that my children would grow up believing what I could not. Though I knew it was no way to live it was all I had.

My deeply wounded heart fell prey to the many lies.

You are damaged goods, Sarah—no one will want you after this. Just raise your children and keep your head down. Being alone is the only way to never get hurt again.

I hid these feelings from my children telling them every day they were loved and wanted. But somehow the message never resonated with me. The truth I was pouring into their hearts was rolling off of mine without leaving a drop.

I told God I was fine by myself, I didn’t need a man to make me whole. I would not let anyone in because life was easier that way.

Don’t you love how you tell God something and He calls your bluff? He answers your true heart cry even when your head is convincing you of something else entirely.

God did bring a man into my life and eight months later we were married.I went from single parenthood to having a partner again.

Yet this time it looked so different. I expected the marriage to help my mothering struggles and for everything to be “normal.” I had no clue about the mountains ahead and the self-sacrifice, endurance, and pure love it would take for us to succeed together.

There are moments when motherhood seems effortless like when my kids use those manners we’ve repeated over and over and over. One hurdle is crossed and I let out a deep breath of relief.

Then I look up and see the next one coming only it’s bigger, louder and much taller than the one before. Sometimes I’m scared to stick my big toe out because I cannot see what’s on the other side. I close my eyes and pray I can take the leap one more time.

Then Bryan grabs my hand and I remember there is someone beside me. He’s here to walk those hard places with me, to support and raise this family together. My heart hurts from the past but is hopeful in the future.

Motherhood is not just about me, it’s about our family heritage and that is what drives me to answer their heart cries every day.


18 thoughts on “When God Calls Your Bluff

  1. Sarah, you write the words my heart cannot even express. Thank you for bringing my feelings to life with this post. Although I have never been through a divorce, I completely understand feeling like you are not worth being loved, that it would be easier to go through life without love. Simply beautiful post.

    • I’m glad you were able to see yourself through the words although I sincerely hope you feel loved. We all are. It’s the battlefield of the mind that so easily entangles us. Thank you for reading!!

  2. Time and the Lord will heal the hurts and bring more joy back into your life. Blended families can be such beautiful families when they work together and the hubs and wife remain united in purpose as they raise their children. Sounds like you and yours are on track for being a messy-beautiful family that will be used to point others to the One who makes it all work.
    Gay Idle@CaptiveHeart

  3. “My heart hurts from the past but is hopeful in the future.” I love this. It speaks to my heart so much. Hope in Him is what moves us forward. Thank you for sharing so beautifully! ~Victoria

  4. Sarah, this is so true, so inspiring. Thank you for sharing your story. I just launched my youngest and now enjoy an ’empty nest’ while watching the success, growth and strength of my TwentySomethings. One ‘successful’ God Loving single mom to another…well done. Shandra

      • Thank you Shandra and congratulations! I’m so thankful my words connected us. When I was a single mother most days I felt so alone. I wish I had the community I have now but God takes us through those places for a reason. Thank you for reading!

  5. “Somehow the message never resonated with me. The truth I was pouring into their hearts was rolling off of mine without leaving a drop.”
    This is a feeling I have all too often with my children and others. I’m trying hard to listen to my own words I so easily share with others. Your story and encouragement are beautiful as are you!

  6. My marriage today is an honest miracle and reminder of Gods grace and unconditional love. My husband is so loving and so my hero. He is a gift from God I never thought I deserved. My first marriage was abusive, and left me devastated. I know those feelings of being a single mother. I also know what it is like for God to call your bluff. David has stayed with me when I didn’t trust him. His day to day love for me is like the Neyo song, “Girl let me love you until you learn to love yourself.” I’m so grateful to God that my girls are growing up with him as their father so they will know what real love is.

    • Melinda, you took words right from my heart! My husband is the same way and I’m still shocked how God brought us together. Thank you so much for sharing a piece of your story.

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