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Monday, March 4, 2013

Learning As I Go

I spend a lot of time on the Internet. Homeschool sites and social media, especially because of my volunteer work with an amazing Online Bible Study. I cherish these people. But I was beginning to feel a tug at my soul. A stirring. An imbalance. It came after reading a chapter in the book we are currently studying, Let. It. Go. by Karen Ehman. In this particular chapter, Karen looks at the life of Esther. Mentions of a fast were brought up. I felt a stirring inside me that this was something I should pursue. My family has been in a waiting period, and currently facing turmoil in many situations. I needed quiet and I needed time with the Lord. I haven't been making much time for one on one time with the Lord lately like I should.

And so it began. Friday night at sundown with the intention to continue through Saturday at sundown. I spent "facetime' with my family and sitting out on my back porch talking to God. Seeing things in a new light. The way I did once upon a time ago. I spent time in His Word. I spent time searching my heart and what the call on my life is. I felt such peace during this evening and began writing many things down. Things that I had been missing due to my busyness. I have often been accused of being a Martha when I should be a Mary-but that is a whole other story.I began to see things that I was clinging so tightly to and trying to manipulate. (thank you Karen for writing Let. It. Go.) 

I had lost that sweet, close communion with Christ due to being 'tuned in' so much. I was comparing myself to so many people and the negative chatter (another great read--Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst) inside my head wouldn't go away. Picture perfect homeschool families. Women in ministry with families that seemed to have it 'all together'. I was only seeing a glimpse of their day-what they chose to show the world. I didn't see the dog throw up on their carpet for the tenth time that day, the teething baby that was unable to be comforted, the kids fighting over whose turn it was to watch TV, the messy floors and the half burned dinner in the oven. Isn't that the way it is? We only see what we choose to see. We never think someone could have it worse than us. We only see our faults. Our wrongs. Our should haves. Do we ever take a minute to look and see what we ARE doing right? This is not a form of pride- you are not being boastful or arrogant. Rather, you are choosing to focus on the positive instead of the negative.

I have a pastor friend (whom is a Biblical counselor as well), often remind me of these words of Jesus:

Matthew 22:37-40:

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’[d] 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’[e] 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” (bible gateway)

Love our neighbor as ourself? Shouldn't we love ourselves too? Not in the way the world tells us to--it's all about me--what I want, what I need. Rather, in a sense that we slough off the guilt and condemnation that tears us down and causes us to loose the battle before it even begins? The kind of love that wants to reach out and help others receive the same grace, forgiveness and mercy that we received when we came to Christ. The kind of love that recognizes our right standing with God is in Christ alone. If He loves us enough to die for us, shouldn't we love ourselves enough to recognize that we are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)? That the God of all the universe knitted us in our mother's womb (Psalm 139:13)? And that while we were yet sinners, Jesus Christ died for us (Romans 5:8)? That it was Jesus Christ who made us accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:6)?

After this period of reflection, I began to have joy. Real joy. As one who has struggled with depression since about the age of 15 (but won't take meds for it because all of them have either caused a reaction or a feeling that I don't like), happiness and joy are not always on my radar. Joy is different than happiness though. Joy recognizes that God is in control. Joy recognizes that no matter what, God will work all things together for good (Romans 8:28) if we just surrender to Him. As I go through life, I am reminded of one thing. God is in control. He always has been, He always will be. He knows all of our days. He has a good plan for us and has peaceful thoughts towards us (Jeremiah 29:11).


  1. I really enjoy your blogs and marvel how much you have grown in spirit. God is really blessing you and your family.