One Day At A Time.

Don’t worry about tomorrow. It will take care of itself. You have enough to worry about today. – Matthew 6:34, CEV

When the darkness and madness is most intense, it is sometimes all one can do to make it through one day at a time. Sometimes it is so intense that it takes effort just to make it through the next task let alone the day. I know. It was that dark for me. I lived it.

If you find yourself overwhelmed about finances, living details, and your future in general, I encourage you to listen to Jesus’ words quoted above:

Take it one day at a time.

Jesus says that is enough.

So, it must be.

Rest in that.

April 2012 was when the floor fell out of my life. All I saw was death, destruction, and despair around me. Satan was trying his hardest to get me to chuck it all and especially give up on my call into the ministry. He even tried to get me to kill myself whispering lies trying to convince me of being a worthless failure.

But my God was and is greater!

Let me tell you how bleak it was for me in April 2012:

My (now ex) wife had just left me. I knew in my spirit she was divorcing me the day she revealed this separation, and I was so aware intuitively that it would likely end in adultery that I pleaded with her in tears before she left not to sleep with another man even if she decided to divorce me. That’s what I remember.

This was a very trying time.

As if that was not enough of a blow, my career was stagnant. I had suffered through two years of job hunt disappointment following graduation from Yale Divinity School. I had a part-time job here or there. But it never blossomed into a steady position. It felt like I would get close just to be let down. It was so bad that I had pretty much surrendered my options working first at Target then at a coffee shop in downtown in the college town where I was living. This was very taxing both on my emotional well-being and the marriage to say the least!

One of my job pursuits was to enter the U.S. Navy as a chaplain. To obtain an officer’s commission as a chaplain is a very long and involved process taking upwards of a year on the short-side. I put in the work almost to the point of getting a commission until I ran into a bureaucratic snag that killed it. On May 1st, 2012, I learned my application was dead. The U.S. Navy would not accept my undergraduate degree from Carleton College even though Yale did.

I was devastated.

My wife was gone, my career future looked beyond bleak, and a host of people were attacking me because I was not bringing in “enough” money. It felt like I was down and was being kicked. My calling was assaulted, my manhood was assaulted, and my character was assaulted.

And it looked like I had nowhere to go!

During this time, I had to consciously remind myself to eat or I would not eat. I frequently cried myself to sleep. It felt like I lost a limb with the departure of my–now ex–wife. I had to take it one day at a time. It was during this time my mother worried about me–rightfully so–if she did not hear from me daily on the phone. I learned that my oldest brother even thought of flying out to me when he heard about all of this at the time. My family was concerned.

But my God was and is greater!

So, I was working the coffeeshop job having just been delivered the dual blows of a lost future in the Navy and a likely loss future with my wife at the time (btw, there were even more blows that I have not mentioned). That said, God used that coffeeshop job to provide food for me as it allowed its employees to eat the outdated baked goods and sandwiches that usually would be assigned to the trash. And through that coffeeshop job, God encouraged me to dream again about my calling and try out chaplaincy.

Just as my income was about to be cut due to cut summer hours at the coffeeshop, God opened the door to a summer chaplaincy internship at Hartford Hospital. I applied and within a week I was accepted starting the next week with a group of amazing peers. From there, God launched me into full-time professional chaplaincy opening a door to a VA Medical Center chaplain residency. The rest is an amazing history culminating in finding Mrs. DM and working at my current amazing job.

My point in sharing this is to encourage you. Today might be your April 2012. You might see nothing but death and destruction about you. The thought of the future may be beyond what you can bear.

Take it one day at a time.

And remember,

God was and is greater!


Me just before leaving for my chaplain residency  (Sept. 2012)


7 thoughts on “One Day At A Time.”

  1. Yes, one day at a time. That is a merciful thought. I continue to feel like a failure because the one earthly thing that mattered to me the most, my family, is forever broken and there is nothing I can do about it. I didn’t break it but I feel like I failed. It’s not logical but that’s how I feel and I can’t seem to shake it and this divorce and child custody battle does seem like too much to bear. Thank you for the encouragement. I will continue to look for God’s encouragement in my life too and remember He IS greater than this brokenness.

  2. God Bless you and all you do for us broken hearted folks! I too have had my trials and often thought my life was over, but I am two years out now, won my battle with lung cancer and am a newly minted divorced woman. You, CL and God saw me through! Thank you so so much!!

  3. I feel overwhelmed sometimes, just mentally and emotionally exhausted, but try to remember just “one day at a time”. I have also found a lot of comfort in Psalms 23 lately, particularly verses 2 and 3: He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. (3)He restores my soul.

    I have been a SAHM for the past 16 years, having given up my career to support his, and God is beginning to give me glimpses of how He will restore my professional life when all is finalized.

    1. MYW,

      That’s right take it one day at a time. So glad God is giving you hope through glimpses of your potential future. What wonderful gifts! Know that hope exists on the other side. Many of us have walked similar paths when everything look darker than black midnight. Jesus is walking with you and will see you through! I know because He did the same for me.


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