As I sit here contemplating what to write for today's Five Minute Friday, I realize that I'm not brave enough to write what I really want to.
I really want to write about how bummed I am that I'm 31 and not married.
I really want to write about how disappointed I am that things haven't turned out how I thought... how they aren't even close.
I really want to write about the fact that my biological clock is doing some SERIOUS ticking and it's really irritating the crap out of me.
I really want to scream from the rooftops that having these thoughts and feelings does NOT make me desperate or pathetic.
I know that God put these desires in my heart for a reason and the fact is I'm just sick of being patient. But these desires are there and I embrace them. I hold fast to God's faithfulness and trust that someday He will give me the desires of my heart.
But to expound on these disappointments is too scary for me. Because then I'd have to admit how lonely I am and how I really don't feel whole without a man. And I'm not that girl.
I'm the strong one. The one who doesn't care what others think. The one that marches to the beat of her own drum & has fun doing it. The one that builds up my single friends with encouragement, but doesn't believe the same truths for myself.
Despite what others think, I'm not the brave one. I'm not.
The calm after the storm...
The boxes are mostly unpacked, the painting is finished, & I'm finally feeling at home in my new place. Thank the Lord.
Moving is tough & something that I really don't want to have to do again for quite some time. But it was SO worth it.
I'm incredibly in love with my new home & am blissfully amazed at the blessings God brought forth during this transition. The move was seamless... the house fell into my lap, the packing was way easier then I anticipated, the actual moving of my stuff was pretty painless & quick, and the financial strain I was so worried about is no longer an issue. Through this process God made it abundantly clear that a new season was emerging. He threw everything into my open hands & said "Go." So I did.
And I couldn't be happier.
This morning I was in my kitchen, waiting for my bacon to cool, looking out into my beautiful back yard... I stood in stillness, amazed at what God had done in just 2 weeks.
After all the worrying, all the planning, all the searching & all the wondering, He brought be here. To a beautiful home in a beautiful city, where I feel so grounded, so connected, and so at home.
Truly, all things are possible with Him in control.
"Maybe I'll skip this week."
That was my first thought after reading this week's prompt. It's official, I'm a total chicken.
But the truth is, I have no desire to write about what fills me with apprehension today. Mostly because I feel like I talk about my fears a lot. I'm scared of a lot & I don't really like that part of myself.
And even though I do have a desire to be vulnerable & to share life with others, today just isn't the day for that. Tomorrow probably won't be either.
Today is my only day off & I'm wanting it to be a day of rest. No work (well, I got a one-hour phone consult in this morning, but now I'm done), no thinking (except for the writing of this blog), no caring (except that my grandma is in the ER & I'm a little worried about her)...
Clearly, truly "checking out" is pretty impossible for me.
Meh, as long as I take the day off from being afraid, I think it will be restful enough.
The second I read this week's prompt my heart fell into my stomach & I thought "Well that's a bust. I guess that means I don't have anything to write about today."
Oh My WOW.
Seriously Satan? That was a low blow!!!
You see, Satan is pissed at me. He's realizing that my self-worth is growing, that God has surrounded me with amazing people who make me feel loved and yes, CHERISHED. And he's trying his damnedest to make me feel anything but. He sees the strides I'm making in my recovery, he recognizes the positivity that has encompassed this season, and He doesn't like it one bit.
So he's spewing lies. LOTS OF THEM.
And even though I hear them, I do not believe them. NOT ONE BIT.
Instead, I hear God's truth about who am I am and who He made me to be. He created me in His image, therefore that makes me holy, blameless, beautiful, perfect, worthy, loved, good, and wise. AND CHERISHED.
So take that Satan. You're a chump & you best be leaving me alone.
I don't know where to begin. It's been 4 days since my meeting with my mentor. A meeting which encouraged me to start aggressively working on breaking down some barriers & truly start acting on my intention to make 2013 a year of release.On Monday she recommended that I make a cost-benefit analysis for one specific thing that is holding me back. As the enormity of what that meant began to sink in, tears started to pour down my cheeks. Who knew that creating a simple pros & cons list would hit such a cord.
But it did.And I'm fully aware of why it did. It hit a cord because I've know for some time that this type of task was coming. I've known that a time would come where I'd need to take an honest look at the strongholds affecting my life and that doing so would bring some (or lots of) pain to the surface. So the past 4 days I've been ruminating... no, avoiding. I'd wake up, see my journal on my nightstand & briefly (VERY briefly) consider doing my cost-benefit analysis. And for the past 4 days I've been putting it off. Probably out of fear of what will arise & probably out of pure laziness. This will be no easy task & I honestly don't want to face what's on the other end of it. But it has to be done & in the end I'll be all the happier and healthier for it. It's the diving in, the in between that I dread.It has to be done. And so today I dive. Willingly. Head first into a sea of
pain, but also a sea of eventual grace, mercy & healing. There is no hesitation in my dive today. Only boldness. Confidence in the knowledge that His timing is perfect and that my obedience (albeit delayed) will be blessed. Selah.
Walking out the door this morning I marveled at the clouds and inhaled the glorious scent of the rain.
I always wonder at the rain. The therapy it provides, the gift it is to our Earth, our lifeblood... where would we be without it?
I wonder at the uniqueness of each raindrop... the formation, the shape, the size, the heaviness.
Only God could create such a beautiful thing as rain and only God knows why I love it so much. Maybe it's the heaviness in the sky that appeals to me. Or perhaps the sense of renewal and cleansing that rain symbolizes. Whatever the reason rain is my favorite, second only to fog.
I wonder at the rain and the amazing process involved in raising it up to the sky only to allow it to fall again. I wonder at the perfection of God's creation and how faithful He is in providing for His children.
I look out my window and see the wetness around me and I'm grateful. Grateful to God for the wonder of the rain. Grateful that I don't have to understand it in order to experience the beauty of it. Grateful for the therapy it provides. Just grateful.
"But as for me, I would seek God, And I would place my cause before God; Who does great and unsearchable things, Wonders without number. He gives rain on the earth,
And sends water on the fields." - Job 5:8-10
There's nothing like climbing into your own bed after being away for a week.
Feeling your comfy mattress underneath you. Cozying up in your perfectly clean, soft sheets. Sinking in. Everything familiar. Everything as it should be.
Ahhh, sweet relief as you doze off to sleep.
As relaxing as vacation can be, there's just something amazingly simple and comforting about coming home. Sure, my fridge & cupboards are empty, I can't find my flip flops and I have to unpack, but being home feels so right.
Going away for a week truly makes me appreciate how much I take the simple pleasures of life for granted and it always brings me into a space of complete humility. Last night as I climbed into bed, I took a moment to reflect on how truly blessed I am. There are no words to describe how thankful I am.
As I sit here & reflect I am in awe at the character of a God who brings all of this about by the simple act of climbing into a bed. What a quirky, gracious, and simply complex God I serve. A God that knows me so well and whispers in my ear "Welcome Home."
Blessed beyond all comprehension... that is where I find myself today.
There are not enough words to express my state of being at this moment. Forward movement has begun after a significant season of being stuck and the feeling of elation & of peace is surpassing all sense of logic or understanding.
I knew it would come, it was just a matter of when. I knew that God wouldn't leave me in that desert for long. And while there were intense moments of discouragement & doubt, in the end I always knew that He would deliver me. And He has.
So, here I sit today... still not completely sure of what's next & still not completely ready to deal with all of the mess from my past, but in such a drastically different place then I was just a month ago.
I could sit here for hours (and already have journaled quite a bit about my thankfulness today) and tell you all about how He's poured His blessings upon me this past month, financially, relationally, mentally, etc. But the one blessing that He has given me more then anything else is affirmation. The past few weeks have been full of friends, strangers, mentors, clients, & general acquaintances affirming me and my worth. This is one area of my life that I continually struggle with & He is so faithful to provide me with not only the affirmations, but the ability to receive them.
They are sinking in. Slowly, but surely.
Blessed I am. Beyond the horizon, beyond the sea, beyond the outer limits of the universe. My hands are open, thankfully & humbly receiving this pouring out & willingly soaking it all in.
Inside these pages there is so much life.
My life. My story. My joy.
I journal because in all essence, I write better than I speak. My journals are full of prayers that for whatever reason flow unrestricted from my heart, to my hand, to the page. No fear of what is being written or who might one day read it.
This was not always the case.
Years ago my journals were superficial, "Dear Diary" kind of journals. Inside were the mundane details of my day-to-day life. There was no depth, no soul. It was all about want, want, want. It was all about ME.
Now they are so far from what they once were.
Now my soul is bared, my veins cut open, my lifeblood pouring out onto the pages. His lifeblood.
God is in them. His Spirit thrives among my words and as I look back and read through my past journals, His presence fills me once again. I am reminded of all that He has done throughout my spiritual journey. I am reminded of the pain, the joy, the victories, the mistakes, and all that lies in between.
I see that my story is no longer about me but about Him. It is no longer about want, but about need. I need Him. Daily I pick up my journal and am reminded that He is ALL I NEED.
In these pages I see how far He has brought me and how much He is going to do through me still.
In these pages He has written my story. He has written His story.
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Yesterday. And the day before.
Two days chock-full of some pretty intense emotions... good & bad. Much heartache and crying, many cleansing words, and in the end quite a bit of healing.
I'm exhausted. I slept about 12 hours last night & am sitting here barely able to keep my eyes open. But despite the heaviness of my eyes and all that emotion, there's a lightness about me. A lightness that has not been felt in quite some time.
And today I praise God for that lightness because He has indeed "turned my wailing into dancing" and has "clothed me with joy."
This lightness is a direct result of talking to my father. Finally.
13 years in the making and God blessed that conversation beyond all expectation.
Now that it's over I'm tempted to dwell on the reasons it took me so long to get here. I'm tempted to kick myself for being so stubborn and for not gaining the courage to speak sooner.
Then I hear God say "Grace, my dear daughter. Remember GRACE. I have extended grace to you, to your father, and you must now extend it to yourself. My timing is perfect. My plan is divine. It took you this long because you needed to be in the right place to forgive and to move on. The waiting was not in vain."
Oh how I take comfort in those words.
And how I want to dance with joy today as 13 years of pain, hurt, fear, and remorse have been lifted off my shoulders to reveal a closeness to my earthly father and to my Heavenly Father that I have sought for so long.
It has arrived. And I am blessed.
"You turned my wailing into dancing;
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy."