As I read a challenge to take some time, slow down the New Year and think about what I learned last year, I thought about my year that I had labeled "Grace". Not only was I given grace once again by God and those close to me, I learned to pour it out on situations and those who challenge me. Here is a gathering of my thoughts.
Surrender - Starting off my mornings with my hands held out loosely was where I learned to start my day as I pray Jesus come. Surrendering to God Almighty to guide and fill me with joy. I ask the Holy Spirit to lead me to His heart and show me who He really is, and who He wants me to be.
Home- As my nest was blown away in 2003 and 2011, I have learned I do not control my life. No matter where God moves me and mine, how many times we re-adjust, whether we own or rent or what circumstances are driving where we are to live. I will survive and learn something new. I miss being fully settled and having a mantel and a fireplace to decorate but its not the end all. The point is God has put me in a new area to pray for those around me and spread his love. To show others who Christ is to us, and who we are to him.
Life and death - Four is the number of funerals that I attended this year. From a man who prayed and spoke hope into my life, to my oldest daughter’s new foster child loosing her Momma, to my precious Aunt, and then my Sister in law. Death always has a initial sting or a spirit of rejoice. Three of these left abruptly and stunned those who loved them. We watched as our middle daughter and husband announced a new unexpected baby to their 3 excited girls. Then only to have a miscarriage open the door to grief. All I know is heaven is more appealing to me then ever before and I will serve my days to the one who numbers mine.
The past - How do I not look back once I have processed my past situations? I now glean it like wheat and find it helpful to use as grace to carry forward. Looking over my shoulder can take time off of my day and after too many trips backwards it makes me lose my forward movement and alignment. The past can teach you but it can also bring sorrow and put you in shackles keeping you from finding your path and destiny.
Gifting - Watching my youngest daughter, in her last year of college, use her gifts was a wake up call to my slumber. Dreaming without action is ineffective. Everyone has gifting. I wasted it by ignoring those heart pulls. Gifting's have been put in my spirit for a reason. They stretch me, build the inner self and touch others. I am currently on a new path with a online group called Hope*Writers. We are making room for each other to dream, to ask for help, getting a course of action and bringing encouragement.
The weight - What goes into your spirit is what weighs you down. For me turning off media’s immorality and even the news that brings despair and weight to my spirit. I am replacing that time with things that are joy givers. Peace and prayer can rock your world around you more than pride of politicians and disheartenment of people and their actions. I believe God made two political parties to bring balance. Instead I see pride and blame. I am learning not to engage. To pray for the state of our country and the world. God has a hope and a future. A Son who died for all of us and our errors. Amen to losing that weight!
Missions and ministry - I realized through my son that I have a distinct purpose and have been created to impact others. My past is my key determining what that path looks like. Watching our youngest son raise money, put his life on hold here in America and take off 6 months to give to others has been so impactful. His life took a turn and made me realize how little I do as a individual and we as a nation. How visually impaired I have been whether watching those in my sphere or further away. I have learned to look deeper at those who serve others in the simple or complex ways. I want to help others as I have been helped!
Perseverance - My oldest son rode in a race here in Colorado called the Triple ByPass Bicycle Tour. He rode for 2 days, 240 miles with 10,000 feet of climbing with gears and bike peddles over 3 mountain passes. The beauty of our land was crossed by those who had the will and handled the pain of the process to feel the reward. His perseverance taught me I could maybe get back my groove. So I started working out again to gain my inner core body strength, and uplift my inner beauty. A decision to help myself where no one else can, because I can.
Control - I learned that creativity breaks the control I use that is self destructive. I have complained and put everything else I do as a wife and mother over my abilities. Maybe even enabled myself to feel empty and miserable. I choose God as my defender over my abilities. The whisper in my spirit to move forward. It is all a choice. We will see what I gain as I lose those things that bind me as I work with more intent on my creative side.
My treasure - is not my material belongings but in those close to me. I am so blessed to be loved and have those around me who encourage me, give me a push and honest words. I say Lord, “Come with your glory. Have your way in me. I give you permission to mold me and take me further in my growth. Remove the camouflage covering over my life and heart.”