Saturday, November 29, 2014

looking ahead

My birthday was two weeks ago.  Well mine and Logan's birthday was two weeks ago.  For three years now I have shared a birthday with my 3rd son.  Yes some people think it's sweet and amazing.  I think my son is sweet and amazing but the jury is still out on the sharing thing being such as well ;-)

It never fails that I feel a little off around my birthday.  It's not a bad feeling per say, it's just a different feeling.  Many people spend the first of the year reflecting on the past and making plans for the future and while I am definitely a new year, fresh start, list making fool, a lot of my reflecting goes on around the time where the number associated with my years on this earth is about to go up by one.  This year that number went from 32 to 33 and my heart just wasn't sure what to think about it.

In the week leading up to the Saturday celebrations, my mind wandered through the past and what the previous year had brought, but I also spent a little too much time thinking about what it had taken away.  Without even trying too hard my mind kept wandering to the negatives, the hard stuff, the things that make my heart sink and tempt me to forget the wondrous things God has done.  I fell head first into that temptation the Tuesday before and spent the majority of the day in tears, but praise God for not allowing me to dwell there too long.  He took my eyes from the negatives and reminded me, yet again, of where I am now, who I am now, who I have now and who He is always.

Even after all this, it still wasn't until the day after my birthday at our community group that I began to understand where my thoughts needed to go.  As we were sharing our weekly "what is God doing in our lives" a friend talked about how God has been bringing up situations in her life that have initiated conversations with her husband about their future and what they should be looking forward to.  Something woke up within me when I heard that.

This past 15 months has been full of both heartache and joy that has required an immense amount of looking back and while in a lot of ways there was nothing but moving forward, in a lot of ways that moving forward was just to get us back to level ground.  I'm ready to rise above.

Looking back is always a good thing when you are looking back and seeing the faithfulness of God in your life.  I look and see what the Lord has done and it is GOOD, but I think after so many months of looking back I am ready to not just look at the past of what He has done and not just look in the present of where I am now but to look to the future of where He is taking me.  I think I am finally ready to live out the first verse I wrote in this new year 11 months ago.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own.  But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 3:12-14

Friday, November 7, 2014


It's November.  I didn't think I'd make it through October.  I remember eating dinner with Leslie on October 1st and looking at her and asking her to pray because I was already tired from everything that was going to happen that month.  I am so thankful and humbled to be sitting here a week into November not only having made it through October but having made it through, by grace and grace alone, better than when I started.

The Holy Spirit has been stirring within my heart pointing and pricking and pushing and convincing and setting me toward a path that is difficult but one I am finally ready to walk down.  I'm in the early stages, just a few short steps in, but as I continue the trip forward, with no step backs or at the very least no turning around and fleeings, I will continue to share.  We all have hard roads we need to walk and we can't walk them alone.  While my official sharings of clinging to my beloved God of Hope is complete my desire to write about His work in my heart is not.  Whether just for me, a handful of others or enough to fill Jordan-Hare (which is HIGHLY unlikely and not a goal just for the record) I want to continue to bare it all, to process it out and to pray it encourages just one.

I've been nervous about continuing on and letting all the doubt and insecurity try to weasel it's way back in or maybe inviting it back as the case may be.  But then a word from a friend or a well timed verse from the bible or a devotion shared by my husband encourages me and gives me truth, sometimes hard truth, in love.  I don't know why I'm always surprised when God shows up.  Of course with that surprise comes awe and to lose that feeling toward my Creator would be a sad day indeed.

I want Him to use me.  I want to share my heart and to keep none of it to myself.  I want to show others and help others to do the same so that all masks are off and the only thing we see are the beautiful hearts of other sinners who are firmly in the hand of God ready to be on each other's team, on the Kingdom's team, and not fighting amongst ourselves.  I pray this desire never goes away.  I pray it only grows stronger.  I pray that He will continue to surprise me as I see Him show up in this desire or keep in awe as He drives it in different ways.  Will you pray with me please?