Sunday, December 15, 2013

Purpose in the Fumble


 "Do the next right thing."  Easier said then done, that is for sure. I know that getting up out of bed in a timely manner, going to work, eating and drinking to stay alive are "norms" that are certainly the "next right thing"; taking each day as it comes, with every ticking hour of the clock. But what about the gnawing feeling in the depths of my heart; that little invisible urgency that is telling me that there is something more, something undiscovered or currently not seen with the naked eye. In the New Testament Paul urges us to be "content in all circumstances"(Phil. 4:11-13). As Christians we are called to trust in the least thing shown; we are called to trust that if we seek Gods will for our lives, that is simply enough.

My humanity fumbles and wrestles with this concept.

As I find myself splitting my time between a retail job and a care taking position that looks to be quite temporary, I also find myself looking toward my future as a married woman and all the changes that that will bring. I lay my desires and needs on the altar of my Jesus, knowing that He knows me better than I know myself; believing that there is purpose and even beauty in this fumble.

Tonight at work I was simply doing the "next right thing", which just happened to be standing on my two feet despite severe exhaustion from the pre-Christmas shopping madness. A classy woman came in and bought a few boxes of Christmas cards, then hung around afterwards to ask me if this was my full time job. "No," I replied. "I am here part time and then I am a part time care taker, but much of this could change in the near future." She wrote down her name and phone number, and casually stated that she is always looking for people for her small business. I told her that I've been praying about the next step in my life, and that I would get back to her as soon as I could.

It was then that I was reminded how little control I have. I have no idea what awaits me when I call that phone number, but then again I had no idea that when my current boss and his wife went through my check out lane at Target that just a few weeks later I would be selling meaningful cards and gifts to connect people to other people.

I just simply don't know, and isn't that the point?

By not knowing, doesn't that give us the ability to trust God more deeply? When we throw up our hands in confusion, frustration or even anger, should that not be a relief that your ways are certainly not the best ways, and that He has a plan for your life much more incredible than what you could ever dream for yourself? You can let go. You can breathe. You can stop fighting for an answer that simply isn't to be at that point, or maybe ever.

There is purpose in the fumble. As we fumble, God gives us grace in our humanity. He designed us, so He is fully aware of our shortcomings. May we become so aware of this truth, so that we can remember that we can't do it all, nor are we supposed to.

If you are fumbling, may the grace of Jesus enable you to see the purpose and the beauty that is truly present in the not knowing.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Hope


In the midst of a crazy, understaffed shift at work yesterday, I had a woman come to my register with four boxes of Christmas cards. At buy one, get one for half price this was a great deal that I had been constantly ringing up for guests at the store. By the time I was ringing up this particular purchase, one word literally jumped off the box of cards:

Hope.

At that particular moment I desperately needed that reminder. There is hope that I do not have to be subjected to myself. That in my humanity and sinful error I have hope that there is something beyond me and my limitations; something so much more powerful than our government, the feelings we feel when we don't measure up to an ideal, alcoholism, drug use, food and retail therapy.

Hope.

Hope for a crooked and depraved world of selfishness, greed, anger and belittling. Hope for a world of infertile couples, teenage mothers, and orphaned babies. For the sick, the dying, the sad, the "shoved in the corner" and left to be forgotten. 

All the ornaments, Santa Clause cookies, "Night Before Christmas" books, child Christmas traditions, hot department store sales and Bing Crosby Christmas music are plentiful....but is hope?

Why is it that hope is buried underneath these things, these things and so much more? We live for moments that give us hope and joy during this season, but as children of Christ, that moment felt is never ending.

Our baby Jesus hope...the Prince of Peace, King of Kings, Emmanuel. Our hope wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a feeding trough in a barn, because there was no room for hope in the world.

This Christmas season, may God enable you to make room for Him, make room for hope! This world, whether it realizes it or not, needs hope bearers shining like lights in pure darkness. 

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope."-Romans 15:13


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Engaging Truths about Engagement


As I have been more engrossed in "wedding world" post my November engagement, I have noticed a shocking trend with engaged couples. Somewhere in the history of our world began the norm and the expectation for the engagement ring to be elaborate, expensive and "top of the line". In correlation with this trend, the price, size and appearance of the diamond instantly became connected to the "type" of man that that woman was engaged to, whether or not it put him in severe debt and/or took away from funds needed to start a life together.

I can't  think of a single woman who doesn't/wouldn't appreciate a beautiful, expensive engagement ring. It is in our blood to desire beauty, and desiring beauty is by no means wrong. However, I find that the amount of money and/or the size of the diamond is not anywhere in correlation with the proven love and commitment of the relationship.

Many, many years ago it was not uncommon for a young bride of 20 to have a simple gold band for an engagement ring. Over the years when times became less hard and more money was made and saved, there would be a "graduation" to a larger diamond and ring setting; perhaps for a 10 year anniversary. I remember the stories that past nursing home residents of mine would tell me. How their dress was just a simple frock that their mother made, because the war made it difficult to find special fabric. That for their honeymoon they went just two or three hours away and rented a hotel room by a pretty lake for just a few nights. Their wedding reception consisted of a two tiered white cake, coffee and ham sandwiches in the church basement. There were no white twinkle lights, satin table cloths, a D.J., elaborate bouquets and wedding registries.

As I wait in anticipation to become Mrs. Bolden, I am reminded of how this, my relationship with this man...this is only the beginning. I do not feel worthy to have a sparkly, 1/2 carat diamond ring, as our love and commitment to each other is young and small. It has yet to endure the tests and trials of married life. I do not want to ever give way to the cultural lie that states that I as a loved woman "deserves" to have such a piece of jewelry.

I don't "deserve" anything. That's right. I don't deserve a thing.

All that has been given to me is due to the graciousness and the goodness of God. All that I am....every good and struggling part of me, that is due to God as well. It is in this simplicity that I find truth. Simplicity found in the chaos of a world of Pinterest, Elle Magazine, and subtle messages delivered in various ways telling me what I need and what I deserve. Maybe it is the current reality that neither myself or my fiancĂ©e have any actual money that has helped influence this view point, but for that I am very grateful.

I have found that my lack of resources is directly connected with my ability to see the truth behind why I feel I need or deserve certain things. Marriage is not only a God given gift, but it is an opportunity. God didn't have to bless me with such an amazing man and the opportunity to be His partner and best friend for life; He chose to do this.

I am smiling as I look at my beautiful engagement ring on my left ring finger. It was a gift from Jeremy's granny; a ring that was given to her by a boyfriend of hers that loved the Lord with all his heart, and also loved granny with everything that he was. Granny met this man after her first husband died and planned to marry him, until he passed away unexpectedly.

Granny graciously gave us her engagement ring; she chose to give us her engagement ring. A lost love now viewed as a gain when she witnesses the love between her grandson and myself. Had I been in a Jewelry store I would have never, ever chosen the color ( yellow gold) or the setting of that ring. However, it is the most beautiful, meaningful gift I will probably ever own because of the love behind it. The simple, modest marquee solitaire diamond is exactly enough.

My engagement ring is a representation of my life in Christ. I can plan, dream and actively work towards a specific goal or vision for my life, but when I surrender my life and future marriage to Christ it is more beautiful, inspiring and meaningful in ways that I never could have pictured myself.  " In his heart a man plans his course but the Lord determines his steps."-Proverbs 16:9

Friday, September 20, 2013

Salt, Light, Prison





 Prison. I can't even fathom being confined to a life behind bars. It's a world that exists and is very, very real for many people. Thousands of adults who used to be children that were abandoned and abused by their parents find themselves in this world, wondering where things went wrong as they find themselves under a federal sentence that they themselves are responsible for.

About a week ago I was flipping through the latest "Netflix" additions and came across the Netflix original TV series "Orange is the New Black". I will confess, I didn't read a whole lot about the show but just watched it based on advertisement on TV. When I first started watching it, I was shocked. I felt like I shouldn't even be watching it because it was so crude, so horrific, so evil; and yet, I became hooked.

The first question I asked myself was "Sarah, why do you even care about this?", but something kept attracting me to the the plot line, the characters, the world of female prison inmates, and it didn't take me long to figure out why.

Every single person on this planet deals with hardship at one point or another. Sometimes we feel that we are in our own prisons of an addiction, debt, depression, etc.  It is so easy to get wrapped up in our own worlds of pain and struggle. But there are completely different worlds out there. Worlds that we can't even comprehend; worlds that would make us vomit, faint, and potentially leave us crippled and scarred in ways that could never be healed.

I just finished reading a book called "Dangerous Surrender" by Kay Warren, the wife of author and pastor Rick Warren who wrote " The Purpose Driven Life". In her book she chronicled the call that God placed on her life to minister to people affected by the AIDS virus. She wrote her experience with words so descriptive, so vivid, of the pain and the depravity of AIDS victims in Africa. She wrote about how important it is that we be disturbed as Christians; that we allow our comfortable worlds to be shattered with the horrific reality of others.

Entering into the world of the female prison inmates has disturbed my world. It has given me an even deeper understanding that any existence apart from Christ is a prison. That any of us, I don't care WHO you are, has the potential to become vulnerable to commit heinous and unthinkable acts. That when deprived of Christ, of hope, nourishment and touch we are truly hopeless.

The powerful element in "Orange is the New Black" is the back ground stories of the inmates before they got to prison. Daughters of drug dealers, sexually abused children, homeless, sold to pimps; young girls who knew nothing other than pain and horror; a pain and horror that became their existence. Everyone has a story. What you see is not always what is actually there.

Be disturbed. May this post serve as a reminder of how important it is to get out of our comfort zones in the way that the Lord desires us to do. May you be reminded that the darkness of prison is the same as the darkness within our own hearts, but because of the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ we live in radiant light of freedom in Christ. Our chains are gone and we've been set free, but so many are not free; so many are bound by the hand and feet to chains of their past and their present. We are not just called to be salt and light to people who are sick, hungry or in another country. I believe that God has called us to bring hope to those in chains, whether physically or literally. How will you do this?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Edging Closer




With September upon us and the season of fall casting its blanket over the earth, many families have already taken their summer vacations. Do you remember those family adventures when you were a child? My family didn't take a whole lot of vacations, but we did travel to my grandma's in Minnesota several times a year. Mom would pile all of us in the car with a few duffle bags, pillows, stuffed animals and blankets. She was also known for cruising past the golden arches and instead stopping at rest stops to feed on ham sandwiches, apples, water and Twizzlers licorice.

I remember that feeling when we were almost to grandma's. There was a satellite tower in a cornfield that was the visual marker for our little eyes. Mom would say "See, there's the tower! We are almost to grandma's!" We would all get really excited for several reasons. 1) To see grandma, of course. 2) we didn't have to sit in that van in such close quarters any more, and 3) grandma always had something delicious to eat upon our arrival. All these factors combined resulted in joyful childish squealing, and I'm sure my mother was relieved to have the company of another adult after a day in the car with little ones.

Right now I'm not going to grandmas house (though I certainly wish I was!), but just as that little mini participant in that mini van, I'm edging ever so closer. The difference is that I don't know what, where or when, but I know that I am edging closer to something big that is going to change my life. I am edging closer to a deeper understanding of the Lords fulfillment of His plan for me on this earth. 

The love of my life is finishing his college degree in about two months time, and the plans after that have yet to be completely revealed. There are little bits and pieces that God has pulled back the curtain on, but nothing definitive. I've learned that God marvels in being definitive when it comes to defining our existence and who He is, but that He also chooses to be more mysterious than definitive when it comes to His timing and His plan for our lives. This in turn just creates an opportunity to trust Him more deeply.

So here I sit with my cup of blueberry crumble coffee (with room for cream), knowing that I am edging ever so closely to that definitive moment in time, but that right now is where I am meant to be. I am meant to be ministering and encouraging you through this blog post at this exact moment in time. Last night I posted the following on my Facebook status:

"Right now, right in THIS moment you are EXACTLY where you need to be. You may want to fast forward to the future. You may want to walk up to the angel receptionist of Gods waiting room and tell her how long you've been waiting for God to call your name for "your turn".

Don't lose heart my friends. If you serve the Lord Jesus Christ, you need not fear of where you need to be or where you are going to be...you need only "be". "

As you are edging closer to something....maybe the birth of a baby, a college degree, a first kiss in a relationship, a marriage, a new job opportunity...whatever it may be, may the truths in this post resonate in your heart and give you the ability to wait in patience and in joy.

"Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for the Lord."- Psalm 27:14

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Tedious


For 7 1/2 hours off and on I tackled the accessories/jewelry area of the store that I work in. For 7 
1/2 hours off and on I was unwrapping, sorting, color coding, untangling and trying to read the ridiculous merchandise plan for the new fall line up.



In some ways it was therapeutic to me, working by myself to accomplish a task. But a majority of me felt irritated by how extremely tedious the project was. With too much stock for the space given and nothing really being marked down quite yet to be put in the sale items, I felt like anything I was trying to accomplish seemed like a cluttered mess.

Funny, but that is how this season of life tends to feel: tedious. It feels like untangling a bunch of beaded necklaces and trying to color coordinate earrings. Now, maybe you are one of those people who enjoy tedious projects. You like all those small little details and get a little thrill when you untangle a delicate necklace chain.

I am no such woman.

I love vacuuming for the simple fact that I can see the result of my work almost instantly. Why can't more tasks or challenges in life be like vacuuming? Instead we have to deal with tedious situations in life like working to save money, pay off debt, lose weight, receive a degree in higher education, etc. These are all examples of things that can be extremely tedious; counting pennies and calories, studying and writing what seems like unlimited amounts of exams and papers. However, all of these little tedious aspects eventually add up to a greater reward; a reward with lasting meaning and significance.

If there is anything that the Lord is trying to pound into my head these days, it is patience. During a time that I would like to hurl things across the room and maybe throw a little temper tantrum at how tedious waiting on the Lord can be, my heavenly Father gently tells me to be still. He tells me that what may seem tedious to me is necessary for Him to accomplish His plan.

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we don't give up."- Galatians 6:9

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Patience in Plot Development


Currently one of Jeremy and I's favorite past time is to lay on the couch at the end of a long day and get engrossed in a T.V. series that will help us not focus on the days events. We have recently been watching the Sci-Fi channel series "Warehouse 13", a suspenseful, creative and fun hour long adventure that is about undercover government workers whose job is to find dangerous old artifacts and put them in a secret warehouse. As one of the characters in the show said, it's "the scariest Antique Road Show ever."

On more than one occasion while watching this T.V. show with Jeremy ( or any T.V show or movie with an unfolding plot) I always felt like I was missing something. "Who is that? When did she say that? What is he doing?" are common things that poor Jeremy has to hear. I am often answered with "Sarah, nobody knows that answer yet! It hasn't been revealed yet." or right as I am asking the questions in fear of missing out on something important, they reveal the answer. And often times, my sweet, wonderfully patient man has to pause the program and tell me what they said. ( yes, he really is a keeper.)

One of the gifts and challenges of being in a relationship is that there are things revealed about you that you never really realized before. It wasn't until I started watching sci-fi shows with Jeremy that I realized how impatient I am for things to develop. However, it should be noted that it isn't waiting for the answer that is the hardest part for me; it's the fear that I'm going to miss it when it comes.

Do you struggle with that? Do you struggle with thinking that you are going to miss something important? Sometimes I wonder if I'm just too distracted with life, people, events, thoughts that the important things that I need to know or experience pass me by. As hard of a lesson that it is to learn, this concept gives a new dimension to the classic and truer than life phrase "Gods timing is perfect." I would like to take the liberty of adding a little bit more to that phrase, so that it looks like this "Gods timing is perfect and when you are in tune with His Holy Spirit, it can't be missed."

I feel that way about church sermons. Some Sundays it is so hard to pay attention to the entire sermon. My mind just drifts off to a million different places or I'm trying to keep myself from falling asleep. But more often than not, there is at least one phrase or key point that I really heard. Not just with my ears, but I heard it with my heart. When we have willing hearts and are attuned to the Holy Spirit, we won't miss a thing.

Galatians 5:25 says "Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." Keeping "in step" with the Holy Spirit requires a willingness of the heart. Add a little bit of grace and we won't miss anything important.  "But He said to me "my grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in your weakness." 2 Corinthians 12:9.

To God be the glory that I may use my weaknesses to emphasize His abilities. I pray that you may be able to do the same as you wait for God to unveil every scene of His will for your life.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Do and Surrender


  I love the fact that once I write what is on my heart, I have no 100% assurance of who ends up reading my posts. Although I don't get many comments, I take heart in the fact that the link to my blog is being copied and pasted, printed out, or being put in a "favorites" folder on their personal P.C.

 If you are a regular follower of my blog, you will find that a common thread in the tapestry of my thoughts is the concept of surrendering to God. Recently I have been learning that on some new levels, which reminds me of the fact that the concept of surrendering to Christ is always changing depending on what season of life I am in. Just when I think that I've mastered this concept, God allows me to go to a different level, adding a new dimension to this journey.

 The dimension that God has brought this time around is he concept of do and surrender. There are times where something happens and we must surrender, but we must not forget the importance of doing what is in front of us and surrendering those results to our heavenly Father. The image that comes to my mind is the severely overweight woman who has surrendered every aspect of her health and well being to God. She knows she needs to make a change, so she goes to the gym: the "next right thing. She is surrendering to God all of the possible results, experiences and pain that she is going to experience. But before she surrenders, she must do.

I have been writing on this blog for about five years now, and through the years the Lord has developed some ideas and desires and has clearly told me that I need to continue writing and pursue other avenues for this ministry. I have been trying to work on a book, but don't even really know where to begin. I have edited and re-edited this blog in search of material and hopefully a pattern or a theme of which I can write on, but nothing has surfaced quite yet. But God made something very clear to me: keep writing. It doesn't matter if you don't know what to do next, just keep writing. Leave the rest up to me.

Some of you are aware of the fact that I had been working at a retirement community as one of my part time jobs. In accordance with Gods will, I am no longer at that job. I am at complete peace with this, as I know it was part of the journey and not the destination. One of my responsibilities at that job was to write a newsletter for the residents in that community. Among the marketing for activities, helpful tips, Bible verses and riddles, I wrote a regular column called "Encouragement Corner" in which I took a concept that the Lord had laid on my heart that was pertinent to them and wrote about it. I had received several compliments from the residents, but it wasn't until I had one of them tell me that they cut it out and put it in "get well" cards for people that they visit in the hospital that it really hit me. All I need to do is write. I have no idea where it will go, who will be encouraged and most of all, who may be led to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.

Friends, what is God calling you to do and surrender? What is the "next right thing" that He is laying in your path? Do not allow the fact that you cannot control the results to prevent you from doing it in the first place. Fear so easily entangles and holds our feet and hearts to the ground. When we surrender our actions to Christ, there is no telling what He can do through you.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Card Challenge: People Are Important. Show them.


 

One of the things I love about my job at Hallmark is that it feeds my heart and soul with inspiration, encouragement and direction. This is done through the stories that I hear from the guests that come in; those guests that I make this Godly divined appointment connection with, and understand that I really am an honest sales woman who really isn't at that job for the money, but really and truly desire to help them find just the right card or gift to communicate something important to someone in their life. Other times it is done when I'm reading new cards before I put them out. A word, sentence, picture or theme of the card has the potential to get my mind moving in a hundred of really good places. I can hardly believe that I actually get paid to for all of this!

There is something that God has really laid on my heart recently to communicate to whomever He sees fit, and that something is a challenge to lay out to you. This is not an expensive challenge, nor is it time consuming. It is a challenge where the only end result is two people who feel more blessed, alive and connected; a challenge where someone in your life is being told in a very special way that not only do you care, but that you see them.

What do I mean when I use the verb "see" in this context? It means choosing one person out of a sea of people in your life; a person who is truly one tiny fish in the large ocean of this world. It is choosing to see that person by initiating contact with them in a way that tells them that they are important in your life and in the lives of others. That in the mundane routine of life they haven't been forgotten. That they are more important to you then catching your favorite week night television program or sleeping that extra hour.

There are so many things that happen in our lives that prevent us from making true connections with people and valuing them for who they are. Maybe this topic is heavy on my heart because I work in a card store, or maybe it is because I am almost 24 hours away from many of my friends and family; there is a strong possibility that it is the combination of the two. However, one thing I am sure of, and that is that everyone has the potential of becoming so self absorbed with their world that they literally get blinded to see the people outside of their personal planet.

Here is my challenge for you. Once a week for one month, I want you to send a card in the mail to someone who is important to you; someone who you have lost sight of. It doesn't have to be an expensive card ( Hallmark has lovely 99 cent options :) ) and it doesn't have to have a long inscription on the inside. The reason I am enlisting this challenge in the form of a greeting card is not because Hallmark is paying me to do this ( trust me, they're not.) , but because with a card you can read it over and over again. With a card you can display it as a reminder that someone saw you and took time for you. With a card you can share it with someone else that may be blessed with the inscription on the inside. You cannot do this with a text or a phone call, and email just isn't the same. 

Jesus loves His children with an everlasting love. He sees all of us and knows our deepest needs and concerns. If we desire to imitate Jesus and follow in His footsteps, that means showing others His love. It means stepping outside of your own needs, desires and time frame. When we show others love, it does our heart good. When we spend time finding the write card to express the write sentiment, it gives us an opportunity for creativity. Can you imagine the look on a forgotten person in your life when they get a bright envelope in the mail with your name in the return slot, and it's not even their birthday? It's a beautiful thing.

You might think I'm crazy, but my hope is that you will see that I'm right and take me up on this challenge. There is absolutely nothing to lose, but there certainly is so very much to gain.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

In-between


 Typically good things are "in between" something. Peanut butter and jelly are in-between two slices of  bread, the cream in an Oreo cookie is in-between two cookies, and when you hug someone you have the love between you and that person smack dab in the middle of that embrace.
A lot of times the in-between's in life aren't as desirable as strawberry jelly or the cream in an Oreo. And come to think of it, when a person is 11 and 12, they are often referred to as being "tweens". Not a child, but not a teenager. Simply just somewhere in-between two stages of life. A lot of times a "tween" doesn't know what is going on in their world. There are so many physical and emotional changes and often they can't even recognize themselves any more.I guess in life we are technically always "in-between" something. There are a whole lot of events, experiences and changes that happen in-between the bookends of birth and death. There are times in life where we are certain what the probability of an event is going to be, and there are other times when we haven't a clue as to what is coming next. 
One week ago I had the privilege and the blessing of being able to fly home for a week to visit my family and have them meet the love of my life. There were many hugs, kisses, conversations and some tears. It became surreal to have the blending of people from both of my homes; to know that one home and family was where I came from, and the other one was where I was led to by Gods hand. 

When we came home to visit my family, one of those days we drove a few hours to Lanesboro, Minnesota for a family "day-cation". My mother was absolutely insistent that we all go tubing down the river together as a family. Jeremy had to remote into the office in SC and do some work, so he opted out of the adventure, but the rest of us marched down to the river, not exactly sure what to expect.

The tubing trip lasted about 2 hours, and in-between the launch into the river and ascension out of the water there were many events that took place. There were moments that were scary, like going right when we were supposed to go left, which landed us in a precarious, rocky part of the river where my brother Aaron tried to rescue my sister and I, only to realize that the current was far too strong and we just had to hope that everything was going to turn out okay (and it did!). There were also moments of pure relaxation as we let the current of the river pull us along at the speed that it wanted to, while we enjoyed the warm sun, the clear blue sky and the serenity of the outdoors. However, we never did know when the pace and the feel of the river was going to change, and when it did we quickly learned how to hang on tight and ride the river the way that the river wanted us to.

There was a bald eagle sighting, which was an answered prayer for my mother who had silently prayed that one would show up, but there were also scrapes and bruises from jagged rocks in shallow portions of the river. I felt like tubing down that river was one very obvious visual and analogy of our lives. As I sit in solitude with a cup of Snickerdoodle flavored coffee and hymns playing through my head phones, I am becoming fully aware of what I'm "in-between".

I am in-between a major life change of being single to being married. From working with seniors to possibly going back to school. I am in-between dreams coming true, new ideas and ambitions taking place and most importantly, in-between where God has me now and seeing where He will be moving me. Some of you who are reading this may be in-between test results, selling a home, funeral preparations, an argument with loved ones or maybe a change of understanding a concept that you've believed in for years. Or maybe you are in-between the death of a loved one and the possibility of a new spouse, in-between jobs or a weight loss goal.

 There are moments where it's tempting to try to push myself out of the middle of the tubing adventure to the part of the trip where I can spot the landing destination, but in those moments I am reminded that I cannot force the pace of the current. All I can do is paddle in the right direction when needed ( as to not run into a large pile of rocks), and to let the current just pull me at the pace it wants to go. 

Don't fight the current. When we fight the current, we become tired, stressed and powerless to do anything worth while in life. When we fight the current, we miss the eagle flying above our heads, the purple flowers in the oddest of places and the people who are on the journey with us. Instead let God push you along. Trust Him that He will pull you the right direction when you go the wrong way. Believe that He knows what you are capable of, and believe even more that He knows what He is capable of. 

The in-between's of your life have purpose, despite the fact that it seems to have no substance other than frustration and confusion. Trust that God will allow you to see the eagle soaring across the sky when the time is right. In the mean time, just let go and let God move you in the way He sees fit.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Longing


Hello to anyone who is reading this :)


It's been awhile since I've been able to sit, reflect and eat a cookie. Okay, maybe it's not been awhile since I've eaten a cookie (confession of the day), but it has been awhile since I've been able to sit still long enough to think, process and eventually write those things in a blog entry. 

It's a quiet morning over here in North Carolina. The sky is full of rain clouds ready to do their thing, with the wind creating a cool and calming breeze. Perfect weather for a relaxing cup of coffee outside, but sitting in this recliner has proven to be more inviting at the moment.

How is it that life can seem to go by so fast, and yet seem to take forever, all at the same time? It kind of reminds me of some of those sci-fi movies that Jeremy has been introducing me to in an attempt to broaden my movie horizon. I can hardly believe that it has been a little over 10 months since I moved to the South, and over 6 months since I was diagnosed with mono. I look back and am absolutely humbled and amazed by the unfolding of Gods plan for my life, but struggle to live in the "now"as He continues to reveal His plan and timing.

While we are living on this earth we will always be longing for something more. The 5 year old longs to cross the street by himself without needing to hold someones hand, the 11 year old longs to be a teenager for a later curfew, the 14 year old longs to be able to drive, the 16 year old old longs to graduate from High School. During college the 21 year old longs to graduate from college, the 23 year old longs to meet the love of her life, once she meets the love of her life she longs to be married, once married she longs to have children. The longing continues on and on and on throughout her life. It never stops until our life on this earth does.

While we spend time longing for more, Christ longs for more of us. How I desire to long for Christ as I do for other things. I want to ache for him like I ache for marriage and a permanent home, because in Him I already have those things. But true to my version of humanity, it takes me awhile to come to that understanding.

What do you long for? What are you struggling to have patience for? What seems to be taking forever to happen? Sometimes when we identify what those things are and put them out in the open for us to deal with, we are able to put things into a better perspective.

I pray that the physical things of this earth that you long for will be placed with spiritual longing for knowing Christ deeper, for that is a longing that will be met. A met longing that will satisfy and give you strength to endure the wait for His timing for things on this earth.


Thursday, May 9, 2013

God is Not a Gumball Machine

The giant glass globe of wonder: the bubble gum machine. I'm certain that a bubble gum machine has been a part of most everyone's childhood. Those enticing primary colored, 25 cent sugary pieces of joy that lasted about 2 minutes once chewed. I remember one that resided next to the exit door at a grocery store that we went to when I was a little girl. When ever I was given a quarter for a piece of gum, I always crossed my fingers to get a red one. It usually never happened, but when it did it was an exciting moment indeed.

I have come to realize that Christians often treat God like a bubble gum machine when praying to Him. We claim that we desire His will, but in our humanity we often fall into this trap that if we say enough prayers ( put in enough quarters) that then we will get what we desire ( the red flavored gumball.) We've all been guilty of it, me included. We think that if we get enough people to pray for something, pray about something enough times or long enough that God will indeed hear our prayers and grant us the desires of our hearts.

Matthew 21:22 says "If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." This verse is communicating that if we believe in Him, He will grant you what you ask for in prayer. Also, in Psalm 37:4 it says that "Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." These two verses appear to say that if you believe in faith and ask for it in prayer, that God will grant you the desires of your heart; or, should I say, the red flavored gumball. I think many Christians have misinterpreted these verses, thinking that if they have enough faith they will receive what they want.

In Psalm 139, King David expresses how deeply and intimately God knows His children. to be searched and known ( 37:1) , and to even have Him know what is on our tongue before we even think or speak it ( 37:4). He made us in secret and skillfully wrought us from the depths of the earth and knows all the days of our lives ( 37:15-16). With these truths of how deeply our God knows His children, isn't it safe to say that He knows the desires of our hearts more thoroughly than what we can ever fathom? The key is my friends, to ask God to give you the desires of HIS heart for YOU. To take the imperfectly human condition of our hearts and desires and have it dipped in the crystal blue waters of His purity and majesty, trusting with all our hearts that He is more than familiar with every desire and need of our existence. 

I feel a strong urgency to state that it does not matter the amount of times you pray, the manner in which you pray, the length of your prayer or how many people are praying for you; it will never, ever change Gods plan and the fulfillment of His will. Prayer is not for God, but is for us to have an opportunity to connect with the author of our lives and receive a peace that surpasses all understanding. It is also a reminder of how dependent we are to be on our Savior; that ultimately He is in control of all things and at all times. This kind of trust is a demonstration of our love and faithfulness to Him, and in turn we get to walk in the freedom that is ours for the taking.

This post is derived from my own recent personal temptation to look at God as a gumball machine, trying in vain to get that red gumball. I desire His will for my life, and sometimes I find myself lying in bed, tears streaming across my face, wondering if He really cares about my desires. Sometimes I find myself wondering why I consistently desire the same things as I am seeking His will for my life, but He doesn't open those doors...at least not yet. It is then that I am reminded that I belong to Him and not myself. That although I may desire to be something, do something or have something, it may be that "I" is the very thing in the way of following His footsteps. 

May you have the courage to seek His will with all things in your life. May your prayers change from "my will be done" to "thy will be done". In the meantime, chew on the truths of His love and faithfulness, a flavor to the soul that will never go stale.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Timeless Comfort and Constant Refuge Through the Ages


Few things in this life are timeless. Change is constant and constantly present. Even things such as a classic pant suit undergo adjustments to fit into the acceptable list of fashionable attire, and flowers that have been around since the beginning of time are being arranged, dyed and tinted to appear more "unique", though to me the beauty of an untouched rose is truly timeless.


This last month as I've been reading Psalms and other books of the Bible, I've had these images flash in my head of all the hundreds of thousands of people who have read the same books, chapters and verses. I would imagine that Psalms 186 of my Bible is not the only one that is tear stained, or that the pages of the book of Romans in my Bible are not the only pages falling out of the binding. I know I'm not the only one who totes her Bible to coffee houses, or to a park on a sunny afternoon. 

I'm not sure why, but knowing this information makes me feel less alone in this life. Lately I have had images flash in my head of an abused and battered woman who appears to have the "perfect everything" retreats to a closest and shuts the door; knowing that is the only place she feels safe. She reaches for the light switch, sits on a box and opens her Bible to Psalms 46:1. "God is our refuge, a very present help in trouble" is what she speaks out loud in between sobs, over and over again until she has enough strength to endure the next physical blow of her husband and assault on her spirit.

The next image flashed into my head takes us back to the 1800's. A black slave who has just seen his wife raped by his owners son, simply because he did not work hard enough that day in the fields. In His sweat and tears,  he breaks down on his hands and knees and quotes scripture that he has memorized, because for his owner to know he can read would be a threat on his life and the lives of his family. "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." Luke 23:24.

A young woman who has applied and applied and applied to medical school to follow the dream and desire to become a pediatrician, only to be rejected over five times in three years. With the fifth rejection, she pulls out a little encouragement card that was given to her by a lady in her Bible study. "For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord. 'Plans to proper you and not to harm you; a plan to give you a hope and a future.' " -Jeremiah 29:11.

The missionary who is being held captive in a jail cell after being caught leading a worship service in her home. As she holds the back of her head after it was beat down with the butt of a gun, she pulls the tattered pages of Romans out of her shoe, and bending on her knees she reads the truth of Romans 8:28. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."

The woman who met an abortion survivor at her work place; satan reeling her into pain, guilt and condemnation, because she herself had had an abortion as a teenager, a choice that she has never revealed to a living soul, but one that has haunted her while awake and asleep. With the pill bottle in her hand and the intent to take her own life, the Father whispers to her "Behold, I am making all things new! These words are reliable and true."- Revelation 21:1

So many stories, so much pain. So many copies in so many translations, so many countries and different places in time... But this one thing remains timeless and true: "...And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."-Matthew 28:20.
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You Don't Belong Here


 Smile. Be nice. Make small talk. Bag their items. See them run out the door.

I repeated this scenario what seemed like over a thousand times in 5 hours last Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday. Towards the end of my shift, an enthusiastic mentally disabled man sporting a Dallas Cowboy's jacket came through my lane. He was so proud of that jacket, and listed off all their stats to me as his care taker payed for his items. The guest that came after him looked at me in awe and said  "You were so good with him." to which I responded that mentally disabled people are people too, and that I've worked a lot with seniors and seniors with dementia. She smiled at me, looked at me straight in the eye and said "What are you doing here? You don't belong here. You don't belong in a place like this." She had such a look of peace on her face, and her eyes were soft and kind. Little did she know how prophetic a statement that was in my life, unless of course she was an angel; a possible factor that I haven't ruled out quite yet.

"What are you doing here? You don't belong here." This statement been resonating in my head and heart for as long as I can remember. To be truthful, I have never quite felt like I "fit in" or "belong", and the times in which I did were few and far between. The only time that I felt like I fit in and belonged was when I was in a choir. My voice was used as one of many, but often used to help lead the other voices or singled out in a solo portion of a song. The other time I felt like I belonged and fit in was when I was taking care of seniors; having one leaning on my arm for support was one of the greatest fulfillment's of my life.

My mom is a wise woman, and most definitely my best friend. When I would have those moments of young adult loneliness, she would look me in the eye and put her hand on my shoulder. "Sarah, you are a leader. Leaders are always lonely." Some things won't ever change. Humans are dynamic; they won't ever, ever stay the same. However, there are some elements that never change, such as Gods design of an individual. No matter if I like it or not, I will always be a leader, even when I am not physically in a leadership position. There is no cap for Gods design of His children.

Since recovering from my illness and the blow of losing another job, God has been working over time in His personal revelations in my life. One of those revelations is that I don't belong here. This earth is just a temporary place in passing until we reach our heavenly dwelling, right into the arms of our Savior. However, He has also told me that because of this truth, I will not ever fit into this world; that because of His love, grace and faithfulness in my life, I will always be that square among circles, the Minnesotan accent among the southern drawl, the deep among the shallow. Not because of me, but because of who is within me.

Who am I to say where I belong? If it is God that has given me my talents, strengths and abilities, who am I to say where they should be used? If I am Gods baby girl, isn't my only job to do the next right thing and seek His will for my life? 

Friends, I urge you to lay aside your pride and need to have all the answers. I urge you to empty yourself before God, to seek His will for your life; to really and truly tell Him that you want Him to take you where you need to go, use you in the way He desires to use you and break you in the areas that need to be shattered. In your need to belong and fit in, you are forfeiting the true sense of completion of your spirit in realizing that you belong to Him. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Not So Nice Girl



I have always considered myself a "nice" girl. I usually try to say nice things, dress nicely and other "nice girl" standards. Most people would never take me for ever being "rough around the edges"; a "don't judge a book by its cover" moment that I've been the amused receiver of several times in my life. 

In fact, several years ago I made the decision to get my nose pierced because A) I thought it would be cute on my nose shape and B) because than maybe people wouldn't assume that I'm not the "piercing and tattoos" goody too-shoes type of gal. It should be noted that I no longer have the nose ring ( which worked out in the long run, due to the fact that my boyfriend does not like nose rings) and I don't have any tattoos simply because I am a wuss. BUT, you get the point.

God is good and faithful, but I must confess that I am quite tired of getting beat down in life. I feel like I've been in a boxing match with life as my opponent. I will be this close to winning a round, when WHAM! Life knocks me on my butt and gives me a concussion. Then I get back on my feet and start strategically swinging my fists at Life, when he comes out of nowhere with a move that hurls me into the rope. But with Gods strength, I'm able to stand on my feet and keep going round after round until the end of the game.

I have lost a total of 3 jobs in the past 3 years, which has produced major financial stress that is never ending. I moved across country and into the south where I met the love of my life, but that wasn't complete without losing a promising job after the first week, due to being sick with strep and mono. It may appear that I'm complaining in this post, and maybe I am...just a little. However, like everything I write, I pray that God will use my life experiences and perspectives that He gives me to bless and encourage others. Removing "me" from the equation and placing Him at the forefront.

I have so very much to be grateful for, and I am grateful for those things, but that is for another post at another time. This is my "not so nice girl" post. I am an honest woman. If you ask me how I am, I'm going to tell you in some way, shape or form the status of my being. I've tried lying and it just doesn't work for me. No poker face possible for this girl, even if a large sum of money or my favorite lip gloss was at stake.

Working as a cashier has its perks, but one of the frustrations that I have ( other than those ridiculous plastic bags that won't open and make me want to swear, as well as people talking on their cell phones while going through my lane) is that I feel like life and pretty items are going right past me. 

Let me explain.

I stand behind that counter with my little zapping gun and conveyor belt, smiling and asking how people how they are doing, ring up their items, take their money, give them them their receipt and then they are gone. They all have somewhere else that they need to be going; a birthday party, a dinner date, work, home, school or another errand. I can usually tell what their "status" of life is, though of course one can't be entirely accurate in a little 5-7 minute interaction. I see those women my age with a gorgeous diamond ring and loads of cash in their coach wallets, those stay-at-home moms with mouths to feed, those career women and rich grandpa's and grandmas giving their grand children $100 to spend on whatever toys they want...and I think to myself:

What about me?! When will my moment come? When will I have a fulfilling career, money to spend on a beautiful outfit complete with a matching hand bag, or wine, pizza and a chick flick for a weekend with the girls?! Not to mention, when will I have places to go other than to work and the occasional grocery store or Good Will thrill?

Now, before you get all "high and mighty" on me, I know how blessed I am. I know that there are a lot of other people in this world who are going through much worse boxing matches than what I am. In fact,  you may be one of those people. However; perspective, gratitude and a good attitude has its place just as much as honesty of the human condition.

And let's be honest.

Sometimes this life just plain sucks. Jesus Himself said " ....in the world you will have tribulation. but take heart! I have overcome the world."-John 16:33. I know this in my heart and believe it within my soul, but that doesn't mean that I can always stuff away my personal tribulations and stamp a big smiley face on the box. And frankly, I don't think Jesus wants me to.

Jesus wants us to be real. He wants us to be real with Him, ourselves and other people. When we are authentic we shine the light of Christ, for Christ is the definition of authenticity. Tonight at work when I made the effort to answer honestly "how I was", facial expressions changed. A smile and a quick "I know exactly what you mean" laugh came out. I had a real connection with that person in a short amount of time, without even knowing their name. 

However, I've decided that I really need friends when I was actually sad that one of my guests left my lane. I wanted so badly to just have a cup of coffee with her, and I will probably never see her again. Weird? Yes. Authentic? You bet. 

Take heart fellow boxers in opposition of life. There is purpose and beauty that can be brought forth from even the worst of tragedies and hardships. My "not so nice girl" post should serve as such an example. :) 

God bless!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Inhabitants of a Powerless World


Job interviews. A time where you dress to impress, try not to talk too much while simultaneously trying to share enough information, try to show that you are well aware of what your weaknesses and strengths are, but most of all, try to trust God that the determination of you getting that job is not the least bit dependent upon those interviewing you.


Yes. You heard me right. The fate of those types of situations are not at all dependent upon the ones that have the power to "make or break" our plan, our hopes, our happiness. We live in a world that appears to have such an immense amount of control; our president and his officials, police officers, court appointed judges, people selected for a jury, etc.  yes, they have power in this world, but their power is minuscule compared to the power of my God.

Yesterday afternoon at 2:00 P.M., I had a job interview for a position in my field of study; a position that I am more than qualified to fill. They asked me to share with them my work history, and once again I found myself listing the sequence of events that have led me 20 hours away from my family, in an entirely  different part of the United States. One of the questions that they asked went something like this. "With you jumping around and moving from place to place and job to job, how would you fit into a position that desires commitment and longevity?". I told them that although my job history and experiences look inconsistent and definitely a risk to hire as an employee, but that I truly believe that I had to have all of those experiences in order to get to where I am now. 

I am at a place that I desire every one of my readers to reach at some place in their lives. I've never been here before, but it's powerful and it's peaceful. It's a full and complete understanding that is not possible without the spirit of God. That place that I speak of, is complete surrender and trust in an Almighty God.

When I left that interview, I realized that there is absolutely NO power greater than my Father. That if He wills me to fill that wonderful position and receive those benefits that would meet my needs, Praise the Lord! However, if I am not chosen to fill that role, it is because God has seen fit for that to take place.

We give far too much credit to the powers of this world, and the people who seemingly have the power over a situation. As children of God, we have the peace and the security of knowing that the events in our life are planned in such a way for our good. It is our humanity that allows us to question this truth, and it is the prince of darkness that preys on our humanity and our soul. My crazy life may appear to be a risky factor for those who desire to hire me, but I know that MY GOD is the ONLY factor that will determine anything in my life. No mistake I've made, past petty and jealous supervisors, ex-boyfriends or budget cuts will EVER hold power over Gods will in my life. He is capable. He is loving. He will take care of me. 

May you find this peace friend, may you find this joy that I experience from the depths of my heart. May you not fall prey to the traps of this world and the lie that our limitations of power and authority on this earth are directly connected to our fate on this earth. Besides, this is a temporary place in passing. All that we have ever known is not what we are destined to know. 

Glory be to God the Father. The author, perfecter and ruler of our lives.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

God's Holding Pattern


Wait. Stay. Rest.Trust.


These are words that are common words for the person in a "holding pattern". A pattern is a succession of events, results or things that eventually overlap each other and start from the beginning. You put the word "holding" in front of pattern, and it's not a pretty paisley print on a bed comforter.

I feel like I have been in this particular pattern for quite a long time. As I am gaining my health back from having mono, I find myself fighting to accept my limitations of this place in time. The money I am making from my little part time job isn't nearly enough to cover even the basics of basics, not to mention the ridiculous cost of gas on a monthly basis just to get to my job. So I do what I know to do...

Wait. Stay. Rest. Trust.

The next right thing is all that a person can do is any situation. I have been hunting for a full time job and a closer job, once again entering the world of online applications, resumes and job interviews. I continue to drive the 45 minutes to my $8.00 an hour job, praying for the strength to rise above how I feel and see the good and be grateful for what has been given to me.

Wait. Stay. Rest. Trust.

On the way back home from getting a part on my car replaced that was recalled, I expressed my frustration to my wonderful boyfriend. He lovingly reminded me that both of us are in a holding pattern, and that is is going to be awhile until things start to change. As I pondered this thought, I realized that as  children of God, we are to always be in a holding pattern of trusting in our God. Could it be that those periods of time where we are called to wait, those wretched holding patterns that seem to never end, are actually allowed and placed in our lives so that we consistently have reason to trust our heavenly Father? 

Wait. Stay. Rest. Trust.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Oh, the Places It's Been




Tattered, slightly dirty, worn and "with character" are words that I would use to describe my Bible and its cover. My Bible was given to me for confirmation from my parents, over 12 years ago. The Bible itself is highlighted, underlined, rabbit eared and smudged in places, while the case itself holds special letters, cards, and other things pertinent to my walk with Christ and/or something I do not want to ever lose, such as my passport. 

I have been a lot of places, and every where I have moved; every adventure and assignment I've had, my Bible has come with me.

It has been in countless coffee shops, evident of the coffee stains. It has been in many vehicles, on planes, and nearly every state in the United States, not to mention Cambodia and Singapore.

It has been in many churches, Bible studies, personal homes and outdoor park benches. It has been at several summers of summer camp, evident by the bird poop stain that I can't get out of the vinyl.

 My Bible has been a constant, unchanging tangible item. From time to time, I have thought about maybe replacing the cover with something cleaner and updated, but then I always come back to the conclusion that I want to keep it the way it is, the way it has always been. In a world with constant changes, and for a woman who seems to always be living out of a tote and "half packed", ready for the next transition and move... to know that that Bible is coming with me, when I can't take my family, friends, or anything else as comforting, is truly the greatest comfort of them all.

I don't read it as much as I should. I'm horrible with memorizing verses, and have on more then one occasion tried to start the Bible from beginning to the end, barely making it through Exodus. However, my Bible is a source of hope; a representation of stability. Gods word is inherent and everlasting, so I can always count on Psalm 86 being applicable to my life, always on the same page number of my Bible as it was when I was 13. My Bible is also living and active, capable of not changing content but of the Holy Spirit enabling me to receive and learn things in new and different ways.

May the everlasting, unchanging word of God give you a comfort and peace that surpasses all understanding, the direction that you need and joy your heart seeks. May you find your stability in the unchanging in a constantly changing life. 

Tracing His Face



From the moment I was able to read, history has always held a place in my heart. I loved reading about heroes and heroines of long ago who defeated odds and made great accomplishments and contributions to our world. I especially loved stories about people with disabilities and significant  challenges that they overcame. The story of Helen Keller always inspired me. Deaf and blind from birth, Helen had to choose to learn a way to cope with life and make necessary connections with her world. God brought a stubborn and determined teacher in her life, Anne Sullivan. Anne taught her how to communicate through sign language and touch, and later Helen learned to communicate with others through signing in peoples hands. 

Many of us will never experience being blind or losing one of our major senses,  but I know for a fact that as Christians we experience a special kind of blindness. Our sin and humanity tends to rob us of our sight of Jesus and His capability of miracles in our lives. This morning as I was writing to God in my journal, the following sentence flowed from my heart and through my finger tips:

" I seek your face...tracing it as a blind child would, feeling with my fingers the pattern and shape of your holiness and perfection."

Can you picture that? Can you picture a small, blind child sitting in the lap of his Father, carefully using all 10 of his fingers to trace every curve, soft and rough spot, nook and cranny, because he is unable to see Jesus with his physical sight? He can't see his smile, but he can feel the curve of his lips; he can't see how large, strong and capable His hands are, but he can feel their grip.

I can see myself in this child of my imagination. My sin, fears and anxieties make me blind to how beautiful, how capable, how strong and how powerful my God is. Through prayer and the Holy Spirit, my sight is restored. Not only is it restored, but I am reminded that my periods of blindness served a greater purpose. If I was not blind, would have I sought as hard to seek His face? If I was not blind, would I not have ever realized that I needed that sight, and that something was inherently wrong in my ability to live?

May the giver of vision restore your sight in His perfect timing. While you stumble in darkness, maybe you stumble on His grace; may you jump into your Fathers lap and trace His face. Once your sight is restored, may you go to your knees and praise your Lord. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Blessed Weakness, Gauged Strength


Weakness....nobody likes it. I can't think of a single person who would see the word "weakness" and in turn have a good feeling. Weakness indicates that something isn't "up to par", and that there are limitations at hand. Someone would rather be "weak in the knees" over an individual that makes your heart beat wildly ( or for some, it can just be a good cup of coffee or a piece of high end chocolate) than be weak in body, soul and spirit. Not to mention horrible weak tasting coffee... need I say more?

God promises to give us strength in our weakness, but what we so often miss as Christians is that allows weakness so that He can be our strength. If we were always strong and if we were able to foretell the future and gauge all the information that we felt we needed...if we had enough money to cover bills and have multiple luxurious choices in life and knew if and when we were going to get sick, when our mother would pass away, or when the last opportunity to travel to Scotland or that place that we've always wanted to visit...would we really need God? 

Once again the sinful and wayward world we live in preaches a message opposite of what is true in the realm of Christianity; the only realm in which we are to serve and gain our personal worth and understanding. Day in and day out, year after year, we are taught that weakness is not only wrong and undesirable, but that it is absolutely something to be avoided. Weakness threatens appearances, reveals secrets and forces vulnerability. Weakness is what prevents you from getting that job promotion, from achieving your dreams, from being the "best you can be".

And Christ, what does He say? He says that I (Jesus Christ) am at my best..I shine and do the most amazing, incredible work in your life in your weakness. He delights in us being flat on our backs, in gasping for breath, in losing much so that we can gain so much more. Not because He is a cruel God that needs a power trip, but because He knows How He designed His children. He designed us in such a way that the only way to survive is to be completely dependent on Him.  

"Each time he said, "My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness." So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me."-2nd Corinthians 12:9

I am in a season of life in which I am physically weak. Every day is different, never sure what type of energy is going to be supplied for that day or how much I can handle. But one thing has been impressed upon me: Through my Lord Jesus Christ, I know my strength is gauged through the hands of my Provider. As I lean into my weakness rather than fight it, I am victorious because of who is supplying me with the ability to do so.