Today you took a big step. An extremely brave step. You told me you were pregnant. It was so obvious that you wanted to hide it and didn’t want to hide it all at the same time. You so desperately wanted everything to be ok.
The truth is this is amazing news! I’m so happy for you. You have been given this gift of life. Something you can cherish, literally, for the rest of your life. Someone to love, to hold, to raise, and guide. You are now raising the next little saint for Christ. What an honor! Do not forsake the importance of the task God has placed in front of you.
Today, I told you I was expecting our second baby knowing that it would cause a storm of emotions inside of you. I didn’t know how to tell you, and honestly, I was afraid. I didn’t want to cause you any pain, yet I knew that there was no way around it.
The moment I found out I was expecting, I immediately thought of you.
Let me start this out by saying I am no expert in marriage. Trust me. 4 years does not make anyone an expert. But you don't have to be married 20+ years to have learned a few lessons here and there. Truth be told, you should be learning something new every day!
As David and I celebrated 4 years of marriage (and by celebrated, I mean really we are unpacking our household goods), I wanted to share the top 4 lessons I learned in the last 4 years.
For the past 10 years, I have seen God transform my world beyond what I would have ever imagined possible. I have seen His work from as far back as I can remember. I have seen Him in the heartbreaks and pain that served a purpose that, initially, wasn't so clear. Reflecting back on those 10 years, I have seen Him in the everyday moments of my life. These moments I classify as "God Moments"; moments in which God was an ever-present being even when I didn't know it at the time.
The number one advice we were given when we got engaged was to compromise in marriage, and it would all work out. But all compromising did was leave me frustrated and a little resentful. My stubborn husband rarely compromised, what was I supposed to do?
You were so deeply hurt you feel like throwing up. Your stomach churns those words, those feelings into a clump of pain stuck in your throat.
You seldom know what to do with that pain. You try to pray; You try to imagine the hurt Jesus carried to the cross; You try to put things in perspective by imagining how often and deeply you hurt God. But in reality you’ve been known to rip your shirts and scream into pillows.
My heart has become an entangled mess; fiercely fighting the reality that I’ve become bitter. The bitterness is controlling of my logic, my feelings. Who I want to be, how I want to love, my words, my reactions are not what I want them to be. If I were to take my heart out of my body; maybe I wouldn’t even recognize it?
What if we were to look at stories around us and find God’s faithfulness in midst of these stories just like we do when we open up the Word? … Looking at our fellow sisters in Christ and hearing their stories may just be the dose of perspective and inspiration we need to live the way we are called to.
I am DONE chasing worldly perfect. I am DONE feeling guilty when things don't go as planned. And I am DONE with trying to do all the things to keep up with other bloggers. Instead, this year I am chasing purpose and progress over perfection. We have a purpose in this life, and that's what I will be chasing.
…I have forsaken you. I have fallen shorter and farther away from you than I ever dreamed possible. My humanness has taken over on countless occasions. Moment by moment, I leaned into my feelings over you. I chose momentary pleasure or comfort instead of filling my cup with your goodness. The feelings that could easily be deflated by your word, ruled the roost…
wrapping, mailing. My schedule becomes event after event. Seldom, do I ask myself “how is this gift (or event) going to help me remember the significance of Christ’s birth?”. Rarely, do I sit and pray before wrapping a gift asking God to bless the person receiving it.
While my heart is to love people well, my thoughts and actions often become too transactional - ok, what’s next on my list? I find myself getting caught up in the action; forgetting the heart.
It’s amazing, utterly amazing, how God can take trauma, pain, desperation and give us life. He can restore life, give life, and continue life in the darkest seasons. With the strength, mercy, and grace of our Lord and Savior, we can take one more thing.
For many people in the Christian community, the church has always been a part of routine, day-to-day life, but for a few individuals, that hasn't always been the case. If the church has been a part of your Sunday routine for as long as you can remember, then it's likely you've forgotten how scary it can be walking into a foreign building, risking being seen by people—truly being seen.
While the levels and deepness of grief and sorrow vary from situation to situation – we all have experienced hardship at some point or another.
Jesus went 40 days and 40 nights without food or water (Matt 4: 1-11). While His body yearned for nourishment and refreshment; His mind experienced isolation. During His many years of ministry, He lost people He loved, He had friends betray Him deeply (John 18), He experienced relationship conflict (Mark 4:35-41), and loneliness. He got angry (Matt 21: 12-13), sad (Matt 26:37), hopeless (Hebrews 5:7), and exhausted (Luke 22:44).
Why is it that falling at the feet of Jesus is so hard to do? Why is it – in the moments of exhaustion, hopelessness, and loneliness – giving Him those feelings feels impossible?
I’m not going to pretend to have all of the answers to my problems – but what I have realized is that the only place to begin is at His feet. So, I don’t know what’s next. I don’t know how the Lord is going to redeem this challenging season of my life but I do know, now, that I have to entrust it all to Him.
When you wake up motivated to live a better today, but somehow manage to get off on the wrong foot. You are not alone. Get right back up, brush off the dirt, and keep after it. I know you can do it. I promise, if you just keep on pushing, you will arrive.