Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Time- An enemy and a friend's a very strange concept, really, with it's strength, complexity, and control.  Time cannot be controlled by anyone, no matter your status, money, power, or beliefs.  Sometimes you want to fight it - you don't like what it's doing to your body (yes, it's best friends with gravity), it moves so slowly when you're hoping to accomplish a goal or dream, it creeps along when you want it to heal the worst of hurts, or sometimes it moves too quickly when there are moments so wonderful you want it to completely stop.  Either way, time is a powerful force and we each have a choice of what to do with it.  It can be both refreshing and cruel, and sometimes simultaneously.  I am thankful when time is my friend and I am able to learn, grow, heal, reflect and adapt.  I have a harder task to also appreciate when it resembles my enemy - when it appears to have slowed to an unreasonable trudge when I am just sitting and waiting on what to do next. 
My little brain cannot comprehend God creating time, using it in mighty ways, but yet being above its control.  I guess the best thing is to focus beyond the intangible force of time to the only One who holds all my hurts, triumphs, desires, and relationships, and in all things is my constant.  I can overanalyze this concept, just like I do everything else, but will choose and resolve over and over to commit my time to the Lord.  You know what? I have to believe that my time is not in vain when I'm doing my best to follow God with it. 
Several years ago, I was challenged to write my personal mission statement, which I keep in my office.  It reads, "My heart's desire is to grow in the Lord daily in order to be used by Him to better other people.  Whether in work or play, I want to use the abilities He has given me to enjoy life and be ever moving towards the lifelong goal of glorifying Him."  Time will continue to be my enemy and my friend, but in either case, I will put one foot in front of the other and give of myself, because my heart will simply not let me choose otherwise.   

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Around the Corner

If you know me at all, you know I have a bad habit of rolling my eyes and frequently it's after I've processed a situation or conversation and am retelling it.  Over recent years, I have found much frustration with cliches thrown at me about waiting on things in life: "You never know what's around the corner!" or "You will be blessed when you least expect it!" On my 25th birthday, I remember telling a friend, "I keep going around the corner and nothing is ever there!"  I have since referenced this many times and have laughed with my sister about "running laps around all sorts of corners." 

As I write this, I am less than an hour away from my 29th birthday and have now sadly become one of those people who is in danger of saying one of those previously begrudged phrases to some other skeptical, slightly cynical person who might cross my path.  Prior to the past couple of weeks, my expectations of what could have been right around the corner for me were grossly underestimated.  I have been richly blessed by someone who's been very special to me for over 20 years, but in a very different way than ever before.  I could write more about this than what would keep the attention of most. However, let it be known that this man pursuing my heart is unlike any other! 

My eyes have been opened to God's work in my heart and life over the past several years and I'm simply amazed.  I am honored to be ministered to in such a way that reflects the Lord's work so wonderfully.  I've testified that He's in control and been told His timing is perfect, but can now look back and see how so many things have worked together to bring me to this place. The ultimate lesson in all of these new found blessings is for me to do my best to enjoy every day, take things a step at a time, and trust my Maker with my heart.  You Know What? You really don't ever know what's around the corner... 

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Bye, Bye 2009

As most do, I have been reflecting much on the past year and contemplating another one coming my way.  I have to admit at first mention of saying farewell to 2009, I am quite pleased to do so.  It has officially been a year since I first developed RSD, a nerve disorder I was told by several specialists, would only progress. I had no idea what was in store for me but was certain God spoke to me that I would be healed. Little did I know it would not be overnight, nor did He mean just physically.  It has been a bittersweet journey these past 12 months, full of pain, struggle, patience, rest, emotional cleansing, joy, and freedom.  I'm overflowing with thankfulness that my Creator has brought more to me through these experiences than I could have ever thought possible.  I know most people can't really appreciate how amazing it is that I can even walk, but after researching the condition and living through it, I do not take it for granted at all. Thank you to all who have prayed for me this year and have encouraged me every step of the way.  Although none of us ever know what is in store for us in a new year, I genuinely feel that God always has something special for each of us, if we choose to surrender it to Him. I guess it's nice to have some kind of sense of a new start for many reasons.  So even though I can now appreciate this year, bye, bye, 2009.  I'm happy to welcome a new one.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Happy Holidays? No thanks.

For years I have heard the dueling "Happy Holidays" and "Jesus is the reason for the season", but for some reason it really struck a chord with me this Christmas. All of a sudden I am so fed up with politically correct and have been so convicted of leaving our Lord and Savior behind. It makes no sense that we go through all the stresses of what Christmas has become and refuse to even acknowledge what started it all in the first place. If someone is Jewish and wants to wish me Happy Hannukah, so be it...I'll wish them a Merry Christmas because without it, my whole reason for living would be shaken. I will not apologize for wishing that others would know and celebrate Jesus Christ.
I went into this year with a little different perspective because some of the traditions my family had were going to change. As it got closer, I was humbled when I was reminded that all I needed to "stress" and worry about was if my heart was worshipping my Lord for coming to this earth for ME. Overall I hold on to too much in this world without regard for what holds eternal significance for me. So as we face another year, I pray that my heart would be ever changing so that every day might include me celebrating Christmas.  

Friday, October 16, 2009

Are you Green?

"Go green" has become such a catch phrase in our culture that sometimes it's a ridiculous marketing ploy. A certain lingerie store sells "green" tote bags...they're cotton for heaven's sake, of course they are natural. While I think some have carried it a bit far, I do happen to be an advocate of some green behavior. In my opinion, some measures are just an act of basic responsibility, like not littering (this does include cigarette butts, by the way, but that's another entry). Recycling and reusing products, using energy saving appliances and light bulbs, and carpooling are examples of other ways to be environmentally respectful. Like every other kind of lifestyle change, these things take time to become habit but it is certainly possible and very rewarding. In the past 2 years, I have drastically reduced my weekly trash down to one small bag because of all the paper, plastic, aluminum, and cardboard I recycle. Granted, I live inside the city and they pick it up for free, which makes it easy on me. On the other hand, I'm on too tight of a budget to buy all new appliances, I hate flourescent light (it does nothing for anyone's coloring), and I enjoy driving fast when I get the chance. You Know What, though? I think if everyone made small changes in the way they do things and pick a couple of extra measures to "go green", it would end up having a huge impact. So my challenge is a responsible resident of this planet and choose a way that you can be more green. It's not as hard or as cheesy as it sounds.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Joy Comes in the Mourning

One of the many tough things about getting "older" is learning more deeply about the hard stuff of life. When I was younger, I always used to think of mourning as grief over someone dying. I now understand there are many more things to grieve over and mourn the loss of--dreams, friendships, relationships, life seasons, health, jobs, pets, and the list goes on. As I watch some of those close to me going through hard and hurtful battles and experience some of my own, I pray that all of us can find the peace and joy that can only come through the Lord in the midst of these times. 

Several years ago I boarded an airplane and ended up taking off in a horrible storm. As we kept climbing elevation, we pulled through the thick layer of clouds only to see a magnificent sunset above. For the first time it hit me that the sun is always shining, even in the worst of weather. It's no less bright and warm when clouds are in the way or the orbit pattern makes it night at our place on the planet. You Know What? It's the same way through our nasty days/weeks/seasons, except the Son is our Creator and Friend. He's always there and never-changing, even when we can't see Him or feel His presence close.  So like Psalm 30:5 says, "weeping may last for the night, but a shout of joy comes in the morning". You can be thankful that you, as a believer, will ultimately have victory over every trial in this life and will experience the epitome of joy--Almighty God, Himself. In the meantime, look for the little things that you can find joy through, because you absolutely have the opportunity to find joy in the mourning, whatever that means in your journey. Besides, I will take sunshine over dark and dreary any day. Wouldn't you?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Frog vs. Toad

During one of my weekend stays at my sister's mountain top house, a friend and I had walked out on the porch to find a toad sitting in the driveway.  Upon us moving closer, stomping around, and poking at it with a stick (yes, it was a funny scene), the toad did not move at all.  We were joking that it was fearless and definitely not a frog--her previous experiences proved frogs are jumpy!  After some of our conversation that night, I told her she was a toad, firm in her decisions.  Although we said all of this in jest, I really wouldn't mind having that innate attitude of fearlessness.  Of course, I don't desire to make stupid decisions, but want to be in tune with the Holy Spirit and trust His guidance.  Fear can hold us back from so many things in this life and certainly keeps us from the freedom our Creator wants to give us daily.  You Know What?  As I grow in my walk, I would be happy for someone to call me a's not an insult to me at all (unless you are referring to bumpy skin..see older post, My Pore Face)!  By the way, toads can't give you warts, so you can still be my friend.