Wednesday, February 10, 2016

On the eve of 22 years following Christ...

Since I stopped blogging 5-6 years ago, here is something I just found that I wrote 2 years ago. Today marks 3 years that Claire has trusted Jesus, and almost 22 that I have. Such fun to be reflective in February every year. 20 years of following Christ… I was an immature, hot mess at age 14. At 34 I am still immature sometimes, but a bit less of a hot mess… What have I learned about God, and myself?

 1) God loves me- and won’t leave or forsake me, no matter how many times I screw up. Nothing I can do will make him love me any more or any less. Nothing can separate me from his love.

 2) He gives me grace and mercy. Second chances to right the wrongs I make. No wrath for when I totally blow it.

 3) I am saved by grace by faith, and not from works. This takes a lot of pressure off of my shoulders because it is not about me earning my own way to heaven.

 4) I am a work in progress. Discipleship takes a whole life long, and is measured in the lag time between when God prompts you to act, and you act.

 5) Jesus is the best role model. Every human is fallible save one, and to put anyone else on a pedastool robs Christ of his proper place, (high and lifted up) and puts too much pressure on their shoulders. People will inevitably mess up and let you down, in little ways or huge. Jesus will not.

 6) To become like Christ, I need to know him, to learn about him in Scripture and practice making similar choices with my life, 2000 years later- with my time, money and talents.

 7) The fruit of the spirit- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control feel BETTER than what my own flesh naturally feels.

 8) God’s ways and thoughts are higher than my ways and thoughts. His plan is better than what I conjure up on my own. Trusting him has led me to a vocation, a husband, and all kinds of places to live that I NEVER would have picked on my own.

 9) God’s world and people are so beautiful and worth exploring. Breath-taking , intricate, beauty all over this planet. Some of the highlights for me so far are: Patagonia, SA, safari in Africa, and the Great Barrier Reef. Marvelous creation.

 10) He is before all things- my identity is not found in being a wife, or mom, or whether I have a great job, look gorgeous or not, accomplish a lot or a little… Everything pales in comparison to him. So no matter what my circumstances are- my identity is secure.

 11) He can heal human relationships. Things don’t have to “always be this way” with certain people… there are new mercies every morning. He changed my hard heart towards my dad, has mended friendships, and aided our marriage to get through tough times. He redeems. He restores. He can make things new. He offers us hope.

 12) He meets us where we are. We don’t have to clean up our act before we come to Him, we change as a result of being in relationship with him. The Father scanned the horizon for the prodigal son.

 13) He wants to talk to us. Through the Bible and through prayer and spiritual disciplines, as well as through community, we can discern his voice and how it can impact our lives, offering us mid-course correction.

 14) I need community. Women, couples, mentors to guide me, show me the way, tell us they’ve been there before, offering us companionship/ encouragement as I run my leg of the race.

 15) God is generous. Everything we have is a gift. So we in turn are generous and bless others. Possessions can possess us, but stewardship is a different concept. It is realizing things are not ultimately ours, we are not taking anything with us when we graduate to heaven.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Oh hey there...

Oh hey blog, nice to see you after 5 years! Maybe 2016 is the year of returning to introspection and processing through typing? You never know, crazier things have happened. In the past 5 years, interacting through quick one line "status updates" and photos in Instagram have become the norm. While chasing after the kids, I've lost the ability to sit and think deeply. Perhaps this is the year to regain that ability. I'm sure no one will read this after 5 years away, and that's a- okay with me.