31 days {second}

In any given season, we are tempted to imagine, think, speculate, meditate on, worry about and mull over everything that we do not know about the times in which we find ourselves. The Preacher {in Ecclesaistes} says that they way forward in our seasons is not found in rehearsing what we do not know {aka. second guessing}, but in remaining faithful to what we do. ~ from Recovering Eden by Zack Eswine

There is not one time in my life that I can think I was relaxed about making a decision or moving forward in something. My mind tends to stay so far into the future that it makes choosing what to do today so crazy difficult. How can one make any choice on anything when one isn’t present in the place that they are in?

There is so much wrong with living in the future. There is no safety there. There is no comfort there.
There is only anxiety and fear and worry and concern and ultimately it is us attempting to be God.
But, God is in the future. He knows it (think Jeremiah 29:11) and He has ordained it. That in itself should be enough and plenty.

I am reminded of the passage in Matthew…there is enough trouble with today, why worry about tomorrow? And that is so true. When I seek to live my life 15 steps into the future wondering what choice to make, I lose so much of today. My responsibility is to the right now and the right here. What is in front of me.

It’s like Dorothy and the yellow brick road. Glenda led her to the beginning and set her on her way. All she had to do was keep step in front of step and keep following the road. She didn’t know where it would lead. She didn’t know who she might meet. She didn’t even really know if that road would take her where she really wanted to go. But if she never moved, if she just second guessed what she was being told to do she never would have gotten home.

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31 days {a 3 day catch up}

I’m a little behind on my 31 days of writing. Honestly the weekends are just hard to find the time to sit and write. I thought I would challenge myself today to combine the word prompts from the days I had missed.

Taste. Honor. Fear.

Taste and see that the Lord is good.
Honor him with the words of your lips.
Do not fear for I AM with you.

For years and years I prayed a very specific prayer. After so many years of it not being answered, I didn’t give up praying it, but I didn’t believe it when I prayed it. I just kept on praying and in many ways just tried to take control of the situation myself. I was not honoring the Lord with my lips.

About a year ago I started a “dream big” prayer card for another very specific prayer. There was an area of my life that I knew needed to be renewed. And it was a big prayer. I prayed that prayer card almost daily, thinking in my own way that some sort of spark would fall and the prayer would just be answered in this amazing way. There was a lot of fear involved in this area and I knew that it would take me believing that God could overcome that fear and help me regain trust in an area for Him to begin to answer that prayer.

Then one day this Fall God answered both those prayers.
But the way He answered them was so beyond my comprehension of how He might ever go about answering them. He answered those prayers by exposure, by purging darkness out of a life and honestly His answer to them has involved a lot of pain.

What has happened this Fall has been nothing short of tasting and seeing that the Lord is good.
No matter the darkness.
No matter the pain that has been brought out.
No matter the exposure.
When I focus on what God has done in answering these prayers I am nothing short of amazed at His glory.
He truly does take the downtrodden, the dirty and the bruised and He does make them new.

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31 days {life}

How’s life?
Such a hard question. Hard to know how to answer it.
Hard to know if you should be honest, or just vague.

There is such a trend now to pursue and engage with one another.
A trend. As if friendship is just something that ebbs and flows with the culture.
I see us as women opening up tremendously in so many ways. We are encouraged to be almost brutally honest about how our children drive us crazy, how we don’t want to make supper every night, how mad we are that our husbands didn’t notice to take out the overflowing trash or just the next big cause we all need to get involved with.

But I’m beginning to wonder if that is really helpful?
When I first started blogging and wandering around the internet it was a welcome thing to know that there were other women out there learning how to be wives and moms. But as I’ve watched social media explode and blogging become more of a platform and less of an expression, I have felt myself become more and more depressed and not encouraged. Depressed because we are all seeking that affirmation that life is going to be ok.

But that’s the trouble. We are all looking for affirmation in the wrong place. Our hearts, our lives and every up and down that we go through will only be affirmed through looking to who we are in Christ. I say this to myself every minute of the day…my affirmation need only come from Him. When I look for it in other places I will never be satisfied and my life will never be full.

So how’s life?

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31 days {away}

I’ve made a lot of acquaintances in the virtual world that live literally all over the world. I open up my instagram feed only to see pictures of places in England, Australia, Alaska and who knows where else. Between these glimpses of life elsewhere and us praying about moving overseas I have an amazing wanderlust. A desire to see the world and live in the world. It was one of the things that broke my heart the most when we decided we needed to pause our missions application.

But I read a great quote the other day by Emily Freeman: There are no greener grasses, only different lawns.

While I know that we really were following the Lord’s leading with our missions application, I have to admit there was a part of me that thought life would be better, less complicated somewhere else. My husband and I moved a million different times before we settled in a house for longer than 2 years. It’s like around year 2 or 3 we start to get this itch that we need to move on. There’s a piece of this that I think goes along with the call God has placed on our hearts to follow Him…maybe even overseas, but there’s also a piece of this that is called discontent.

When we bought the house we live in now, we were amazed at where God had planted us. He truly did give us so many of the desires of our hearts…proximity to schools, living in a park, an old house to restore and we are still 4 years later amazed. The kids and I walked around the neighborhood last night and I was swept over with the idea of them really, truly growing up here. Knowing the same people in our little community from first grade on and what a gift that is in this day and age. But that whole “no greener grasses” thing is so true. While the Lord did give us so much of what we had longed for, it’s still tainted. It’s still crazy hard. The school situation isn’t working great for our daughter and remodeling a house with only one major income is crazy difficult.

The fact remains we are where we are for the day that we are there. While we should long for the future and what God is going to do there, we have to stay focused on today. We can become so overwhelmed by letting our minds slip away into the what if, or where or whens. And no matter what grass your standing on, be it in East TN or be it in Germany…it’s still just another lawn.

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31 days {rest & work}

Rest and Work.
Some days it feels like so much more than they other. But our lives are meant to be a mix of both.

My bible study is going through the book of Ecclesiastes and one of the things we’ve been talking about is how work isn’t a bad thing. Before the Fall, God gave Adam a job to do. He set them in the Garden with a purpose. We so often get the idea that work = bad but it’s only because of the Fall that our work became our toil.
We are all searching for that one job or one opportunity that will make our lives here meaningful. For the perfect job. For the dream position.
But to be honest, that’s never going to happen.
As much as I sit in wonder at the job that I do every day to provide a little money for our household, it’s still never going to be that Eden-like position.
I constantly struggle with what I should be doing. How I can bring more money in? How I can be more successful with my shop? Maybe I should go back to school and do something else.
In all of these questions, I am searching for the wrong thing.
When my mind gets overwhelmed with the who’s and what’s and how’s I need to come back to the question of who God is in my life. In all the things I’m doing right now and today I need to do nothing more than seek who He is and how to glorify Him.
My identity and purpose for any work I do isn’t found through an internet search or another order or a successful market, but in knowing more and more of Him.

And rest comes for my weary spirit when I stop searching in the wrong places and sink my soul into Him.

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