According to the free dictionary online to "gut it out" is: "To show pluck and perseverance in the face of opposition or adversity."
The van broke, the dishwasher broke, the clothes dryer broke. We got the van fixed and replaced the dishwasher and dryer. The van started smoking. The couch leather bubbled and is ripping, the lounge chairs in the "teen hangout room" cracked while we were gone. So by the time our other car died last week, I decided I would only put it on my radar when we all needed to get somewhere at the same time. Seriously I don't have time, especially with the kids getting sick with the whole cold/fever thing.
I put my head down and plowed ahead...to getting my daughter to driver's ed and English classes...to grocery shopping and meals on the table and laundry...to getting driving hours in with my son so he can get his license...
I steal moments in the bathroom to read my Bible, I put a sermon on my IPOD or worship music when my attention is not required. It keeps me sane and helps me to talk nice and wear a smile.
People see me and kindly ask, "How's it going?" I know they mean with the adjustment of our four kids to life with us in the U.S. I just say, "Good." It's that short answer or a looooooooong answer, so I give the short one and it's pretty much true. Quite honestly, when it comes to the kids some things are easier than they should be (like how they stay in bed all night, aren't really all that messy for 4 kids and can clean up after themselves when asked, love people and to go where ever we'll take them). And there is hard parts like some behaviors born out of survival and sometimes they are weary of being surrounded by English (boy, do I understand that from our time in Nicaragua). Sometimes I think I am seeing a little culture shock, but no where near as much as I expected!
In the end it's all good and there are daily joys and I am seeking to NOT focus on the temporal things that are breaking around me. We take care of those as we can. It's not the end of the world if my couch is peeling (with a 5 year warranty I've got a few years to call!) or all that other stuff I am trying to kind of ignore. And the hard times? They drive me to my knees which is not a bad place to be!
I focus on the fact that the kids played outside for a few hours today and enjoyed the warmth of spring, or how they saw their school papers and wanted to do them early and get them over with, or how my teen daughter drove for the first time today and had fun, or how my teen son got to hang out with a friend today, or how our church family seems to find some way to support us every day...
God is good and his answer to my every prayer is: "Don't worry, I've got this!" I may be guttin' it out but I'm not doing it alone!
"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you." Phil. 4:4-9