Ok so the concept of a “guild” is foreign even to me as far as it’s historical/real life applications. But I play World of Warcraft so I can definitely see it in terms of an MMO world.
I’ve always been a bit of a homebody and a geek. As a young adult, I was never into the social life of night clubs and bars (Reason #1, I was saved and happily married by the age of 19. Reason #2, I’m an introvert). Paul was at first military, then FAA, then worked for UPS before he went into the medical field. Odd hours and three young kids back to back, there wasn’t any real opportunity to go on dates. But we could play video games together at 2am while the babies slept and have a fun time.
Now I’m in my 30s and I still find it more fun to be in comfy leggings playing WoW with my husband and son than “going out”. Because WoW is purposefully designed to be played in community, unlike other games. As in, you CANNOT experience the fullness of all the game developers have created as a lone player.
Well you CANNOT experience the fullness of all God our Creator has developed for us as a lone Christian, either.
World of Warcraft Classic has brought about a sense of community out of nostalgia. It’s a re-release of the original game most of us in our 30s played when the game first came out about 15-20 years ago. This game is a planet unto itself much like the fictional world of Narnia, and you (+ other players) try to be the hero with every quest. But in the modern expansions, you have things like “Dungeon Finders” or “Raid Finders” where game system automatically places you in groups and in places to accomplish objectives. In Classic, there are no such favors. Need to know where how to get to that one cave? You better ask the other players. Can’t kill a bad guy by yourself? Find some other people to join you.
People run around in different races and classes meeting their objectives, but find no problem helping the people they run by. Paladins (holy warriors, my husband’s favorite) run by placing “blessings” on random players because it costs nothing and helps raise stats. Often I’ll run by and see a single player taking on a mob – and I’ll help. It doesn’t give me any XP or loot, but it doesn’t make sense to just let the player struggle alone. Often you find yourself in an area and you can tell there’s four other players with the same objective – so you “party up” (formally create a group in-game that shares objectives, loot, and experience) because everyone turns in faster.
A lot of people feel that the world would be a better place if the community felt more like what it does in these MMOs… but I digress.
Blizzard in all it’s wisdom even designed the group efforts to require people of different skills in order to succeed. When you are going into a “Dungeon” (the enemy’s camp), you’ll set up a group of 5 people (no more, no less) where each person has a specific job based on the skill set of their character. A “tank” (the person that holds the attention of the enemy), a few “d-p-s-ers” (damage per second, the people that take down the enemy quickly), and a “healer” (the person who keeps primarily the tank alive, and then everyone else, so that the mission is victorious).
Did you know that in order for a church to be effective and growing in it’s community, it needs to employ a five-fold ministry?
1 Corinthians 12:27-30 NIV
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret?
Many denominations differ on the definition of these things and I’m simply going to refer you to your Pastor if you have questions. But I can tell you from observation that a church that is only employing the Pastors to do ministry, or that are only relying on teaching, aren’t growing. Any physical body cannot grow or multiply if only one component is active and the rest of it is dormant. #truth
So to help find other people to level up in World of Warcraft with, many people start or join “guilds”. It’s basically a club, a group of players whose chat is in neon green font (to make it easier to catch while you are playing) and who agree to help each other out. Higher level players will help lower level players get through dungeons and objectives that are wiping them out. People will pass on resources to other guildies that they picked up but can’t use on the particular character they play with. You chat, you play through the game together, and you build friendships with people as you tackle more and more difficult/exciting/rewarding activities.
If a video game, which has no eternal benefit and no real life benefit, can take BIBLICAL wisdom of COMMUNITY and apply it to their entirely secular concepts so that they GROW WILDLY SUCCESSFUL – 3.4 million people world wide kind of successful – how much MORE should the Church be growing and thriving! Bringing people into our church is not that much more harder than recruiting players into a guild – go out there, do “life” with people and as you get along or you help someone out, invite them! It’s literally how the Church STARTED and it’s still how the body of Christ grows today – it’s not rocket science… nor does it require a degree in Theology.
The Fellowship of the Believers – Acts 2:42-47 NIV
42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
The absolute kicker is, we have the power of the Gospel and the Holy Spirit. Simply put, it’s fail-proof. Be encouraged!
I’m familiar with people who are not comfortable with going to church but feel community in their online guilds. Praise the Lord, my “guild” is my church! My introverted, geeky self has a group of people flesh and blood to do spiritual warfare with. The Kingdom of God is far deeper and wider than we can truly wrap our minds around, and the enemy spawning here on earth are far more threatening to our families and our cities today. And I am a part of it. I would love for you to be a part of it too.
I don’t think this blog post will have any context without knowing all that we’ve been through since I started this blog. So for a point of reference, I’ll summarize and link to previous blog posts before I start.
I married my husband “For Richer or For Poor“. And we’ve had our fair share of “poor”. As I mentioned before, “… we’ve been homeless more than once, tried to make ends meet in Oklahoma, Florida, and now Alaska. We’ve changed careers and jobs at least four times; from military, to Subway (making sandwiches), to the FAA, to selling cell phones, to now working in the medical field where he’s finally growing and doing great.” But I would not trade any of it for all the money in the world, because our marriage has been reinforced like gold by a blacksmith.
There was a whole year where we were technically “homeless”, living with our friends (9 people in a three bedroom condo) while we did some major credit repair (no thanks to a military leak) and tried to buy a home. It was a trying time that would have been disastrous for our friendship had God not intervened. But, as I shared in “Unanswered Prayers“, He didn’t answer by getting us into a new home. He answered by saying a hard NO and we moved into a small rental to nurse our wounds like dogs in a corner. My heart and my faith had nearly been destroyed through these “Hard Times” and it took some isolation to heal. Really heal. But as we healed, our friendships and our church relationships were like… lavender essential oil to a burn wound. Or an IV to a dehydrated patient. It brought our family back to life.
Through this experience over the span of 18 months I learned to dance with God in this “Cha-cha of Life“, and I saw God work in miraculous provision, and miraculous healing. Not because we got the house but because of everything He did after the “no”. I saw my mom beat breast cancer, and a lawsuit dropped. I saw the will of a church family in an envelope with $5,000 cash to go take care of my mom and reunite with my family.
And then the dust settled. And we all sang joyfully, “It is well with my soul.” And we took on new adventures, more manageable ones. We paid off our vehicle AND flew to Hawaii. We were making it work.
So this is where I give the glory to God and to God only: We have been pre-approved for a home loan and are in negotiations for our dream house. To be even at this step makes me terrified to share for fear that something goes wrong! But I can’t say it was our great budgeting skills (because mistakes were made) or our amazing credit score (which actually went down after paying off debt) or a real impressive mortgage application. It was God and He alone. It was a night where I was praying instead of sleeping and I asked God, “What am I supposed to teach my children from that rejection? God I want them to have faith in You. I want them to build their lives on prayer and yet we prayed really hard and our prayers were not answered. How do I make sense of that for the sake of THEIR faith?” And then meeting a new friend at a wedding who became our realtor… and who had a good friend at a mortgage company who took all of our stuff… and here we are. Hoping to buy a house.
We are a family of 5 in a 1,000 sq ft, 2 bedroom apartment and a beautiful, blue, sun lit open door has been placed in our path and all I can think is “Thank God for His mercy and grace” because I don’t know how we got here, I’m just thankful we are here now.
Even if this home doesn’t work out, our hope has been revived. And there’s no price I can put on that. Hope that God has always heard and kept in mind every tear we shed. Hope that His “no” at that time wasn’t because of His inability or our unworthiness. Hope because we don’t know and may never know why He said “no” then and seems to be saying “yes” now. But I worship a God who is so far greater than my understanding, I can’t calculate and manipulate His responses or bribe Him to give me my way.
Confession: It’s been really nice being on summer break. I’ve had three days of uninterrupted, unlimited Bible study. And snuggles. And coffee that is still hot when I drink it!
I finished calculating grades and putting together progress reports on Monday and since then I feel like I have nothing to do. Everything for AK Exploring Studies is submitted and I’m just waiting on the Anchorage School District to get back to me. There is nothing left for me to do but wait and rest and recover.
And in all this resting, my Bible reading and my devotionals have all been revolving around one common theme: Do the hard thing.
It doesn’t take a neurologist to see that we are creatures of habit (ok, maybe it actually does, but just follow me here for a moment). We will always do that which we have always done – we will react the same way we reacted last time, we will drive down the same routes we drove down yesterday… And this is what makes weight loss so painfully difficult! If you crave salt and vinegar chips when you are stressed and you give in today, you will crave and possibly give in tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that.
Which is why Paul the apostle told us in 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
Don’t you know that the runners in a stadium all race, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way as to win the prize. Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we a crown that will never fade away.
Therefore I do not run like one who runs aimlessly or box like one beating the air. Instead I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified.
Bringing your body under strict control is not fun. It’s hard. But it’s the hard things that lead to the life God really envisioned for you! We weren’t created to cruise on autopilot until we reach eternity. We are told to do this life as if we were in the Olympics, going for the gold. What does that look like?
Reading your Bible before reading your Facebook feed.
Putting away all the electronics and playing a board game with your kids.
Fasting and praying through decisions instead of making them on a whim.
Eating the handful of snap peas instead of the chocolate chip cookies.
Going for a run when you’d rather watch TV all day.
Listening to your spouse with the intention of understanding, instead of thinking of what you are going to respond because you are angry.
Working with your kid on a chore and guiding him until he gets it instead of just taking over and doing it yourself.
Bathing your own dog instead of paying someone else to do it when the money is tight.
Cutting out foods from your diet that cause inflammation if you are struggling with auto-immune issues!
Cutting cable when funds are tight or the family is on a spiritual low.
The hard things are not fun things. But they are good things. We know that doing the hard things now will plant seeds of victory that we will harvest later in the future.
My husband just went back to school. He was faced with two options: Be a 40 year old C.M.A. or a 40 year old P.A. It will take him that long to get there anyways and the time will pass either way. But his career may be completely different if we all choose to do the hard thing now.
The good thing is that the hard things become easy things once they are a habit. The tough part is making the decision to do it. After doing it enough times, it won’t be an active decision to wrestle with any more, it will be a normal part of your life. And that’s where it gets awesome! Your mind, body and soul will be that much in tune with making the right choice the more we consistently do so when it is the hardest.
It’s hard for me to believe I haven’t blogged in so long.
But sometimes you don’t have anything to say. I had a lot of incoming information and things I was quietly observing and praying about. And just waiting for things to change and shift according to God’s will.
My health took a turn of events that had me resting A LOT. So much so I had a lot of time to think, and journal, and sleeeeeeeep. Delicious sleep.
Nothing happens for our harm though. I’ve learned that full well. In all the events and trials we have been through, it has all worked out to do good in us. The issue is that our definition of “good” is probably not God’s.
We think “good” is comfortable, pleasant, or nice. God says “good” is having strong moral fiber, being like Jesus; forgiving when it hurts, turning the other cheek… Persevering in the face of persecution. Having endurance in the faith while being tried and tested.
It goes without saying that to have good results by God’s standards you will have to be moved from the comfortable and pleasant. You can’t stay safe and happy and develop a Christ-like character, which is the ultimate definition of “good”.
Yes, everything has worked out for my good. I’ll share in subsequent blogs some specifics, but I can see God’s signature in my life and my faith is growing.
It is said that kids learn best if they are learning from rest. But I have come to learn that LIFE is done best if we approach it from a position of rest.
I think it’s the world’s way to be always busy, always stressed, running from one thing to another. Lysa TerKeurst says it well in her book, “The Best Yes”: An overwhelmed schedule is an indicator of an underwhelmed soul.
Disclosure: I do not receive compensation from the entities that I link to. I have not received anything from Lysa TerKeurst or Proverbs 31 Ministries in exchange for my recommendation. This blog is independently owned and the opinions expressed here are my own.
What does it mean to be underwhelmed? It means to lose the WOW factor of God in your life. To be mundane and mechanical about your existence. To feel purposeless or ineffective. To have an “absent father” relationship with God.
Mind you I came from Florida to help with Hurricane Relief, attend court hearings, catch up on doctor’s visits and then move. Even now I’m having to generate income to meet our new set of expenses. God definitely provides, but I’m in no way feeling like I’m on “vacation”.
However I learned to live from a position of a rested soul.
5Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. 6 Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. Psalms 62:5-6 NIV
A rested soul doesn’t panic. Doesn’t worry. A rested soul won’t anxiously berate their family members because they are not meeting expectations. A rested soul finds joy even in difficult times.
It means I don’t have to nag my pre-teen into reading his Bible or attending church because I know that his soul belongs to God first. I can take my concerns about his spiritual upbringing to my prayer closet and leave it there. And I smile as I type this now because we’ve had some very spiritual conversations and his faith is growing.
I’m free from judgment and condemnation. All I’m worth is held by God’s scales, not mine! So my less-than-clean house or my less-than-perfect kids aren’t a source of friction for me. I am His, and He is mine. We can work on the rest together and little by little.
There’s no rush to keep up with appearances. I don’t ever worry, “What will our Pastor think?” I figure if he’s ever truly concerned he’ll call us. Transparency is a beautiful thing.
Our prayer closet is the greatest rejuvinating source for us – more than a nap or a spa day. It gives us the strength and the peace that supernaturally helps us overcome each situation we face. Prayer helps us approach battles from a position of rest. The Bible gives us the wisdom to not put ourselves in battles we weren’t meant to fight in the first place. A solid, gospel preaching church gives a spiritual refreshing in a corporate setting. A small group or bible study setting helps us bear each other’s burdens so we don’t feel overwhelmed and alone.
And actually resting as God has commanded us releases the tension in our bodies, clears the brain fog, slows down the adrenaline, and keeps our emotions balanced! I don’t know why Christians feel like they are always to be “doing” something for the Lord – maybe it’s that one proverb about the ants – but we can sure be a whole truck full of Martha’s in what is supposed to be a Mary walk.
The difficulty lies in that you can’t achieve rest without boundaries. You have to set boundaries for your energy so you don’t spend yourself in meaningless pursuits. You have to set boundaries from your children so you can have your prayer closet time. You have to set boundaries from friends and family when you can’t keep up with all the activities that month. The Bible says that boundary lines fall for us in pleasant places; they are designed to be our comfort, not our restraint.
I wish I knew all this before I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Now my body is a barometer of activity and like a vehicle with a busted fuel tank, I hit my limit more often than others. I pray these words encourage you to find your rest in Him. Together we can tackle this life with the optimism of a three year old who had a wonderful nap! Let us not miss out on the blessing of living with our souls rested.
God is amazing! I don’t know that I have enough time to write all the ways He has been faithful to my family since my last blog post. I’m settled in Alaska, having flown to Florida and then to West Virginia before heading back; the provision of God to be able to see both my parents on the same trip is still beyond me. I was also able to see all my in-laws and have my husband join us for two weeks. I could not have asked for more, but He provided.
I would not have made it to Florida on my own at all. We were scraping money for tickets and I just felt like we would never get there on time! Until members of my church stepped up to help. One, an extraordinary man and veteran, helped me with a very generous check to get the tickets we needed to Florida. Then I was handed an anonymous donation with the cash to purchase the tickets BACK to Alaska before I had even left. I can’t even thank anyone other than God – who must’ve known I had to go.
When I arrived in Florida my mom was very, VERY sick. She has such an aggressive form of cancer that she opted to do 6 rounds of two different chemo medications + antibodies + steroids before surgery and radiation. She spends all day in the hospital getting these medications via a port she had installed in her chest.
She had just completed her first round of chemo. Aside from the expected side effects, she had an allergic reaction that had some extreme symptoms; inflammation in her bone marrow, nose bleeds that lasted for 20 minutes, and ridiculously low blood pressure.
She did not feel well enough to stand, let alone go back to work. But the situation was dire; my mom pays all the bills. She had treatment and MRIs delayed because she couldn’t afford them out of pocket and rent was due in two weeks! Well if the chemo didn’t kill her, the financial stress alone would finish her off.
All of July I was cleaning and cooking. Any out of pocket cash I spent this whole trip was in over the counter medicine, groceries and gas. Keeping my kids from getting sick so my mom wouldn’t get sicker. My sister was able to pick up enough part time shifts to earn a full time paycheck. By God’s provision rent was paid August 1st.
It wasn’t until the weekend before round 2 that my mom was eating and “alive” by any counts. Around that time she had already lost all her hair, and my husband joined me.
This round of chemo went smoother considering she took antihistamines before treatment and we got her pretty hydrated. She had 5 really sick days but only vomited once! (This is a miracle!!). After these five days Mom was completely fine without any side effects. Paul and I really enjoyed spending time with her those two weeks, it was such a blessing.
I feel like an infomercial for Jesus is coming along: BUT WAIT! There’s more!
In between all this, my husband and I were gifted with professional salsa dance classes, 10 free tickets to the FROST museum (best in Miami), 3 tickets to Universal Studios Orlando, a Mission’s trip for my oldest kid, beaches, pools, church and good food. And my mom’s health was good enough for us to enjoy these things as we could!
When she wasn’t feeling good, we had friends come over and keep my sister and me company with card games or dominos for long nights.
God also provided tremendously for my mom. Because her cancer has not spread anywhere else, it was downgraded from the original diagnosis of 4C to a 3B! She had a secondary insurance company send her a check for every hospital day and every day at home, plus some of her co-pays. That check equaled what she currently owed in medical bills and then some. And she was able to work full time for about a week just before we left to the Virginias to do a little American History touring and spend some time with my Dad.
As I write this blog update, my mom and family in Miami have no power or cell service. They were hit with some serious winds and flooding with Hurricane Irma, and I could not get a hold of them for 48 hours straight! My mom had a rougher time recovering from round 3 of chemo and had been hospitalized just the week before. But praise be to God, they are alive and well! Not only them, but all my in-laws and friends in Florida. And what I learned from all this is what my kids and I have been reading about during our Bible Time in Matthew 14:22-33:
The power of Jesus is not evident in the absence of storms, but in such a fierce love that He would walk on water and meet us in the midst of it to calm our fears.
Confession: I have not been able to read my Bible since the beginning of this year.
I can do short verses at church on my phone. Opening my book Bible and reading through it makes me nauseous. The words swirl on the pages. But it’s not just the Bible. I walk around with this headache and blurry vision that makes reading mac and cheese boxes difficult for me.
This is a side effect of all that is going on in my physical brain. I am serotonin-negative, which is also known as clinically depressed. I also have ADHD, which can cause random episodes of dyslexia and trouble focusing the eyes.
I think to most people it would’ve looked like I was distraught. I wasn’t. All of me was fully overwhelmed by His love and in worship. But His Spirit was working in me to express a prayer I didn’t yet know I would need. It came from the pit of my stomach, this brokenness, this cry for comfort and strength I wasn’t originally asking for when we first started to sing.
See, I didn’t know my mom had breast cancer, and we would be denied the pre-approval for a mortgage, or that a chiropractor had sued me and was going to levy our entire bank account clean. I don’t think I could’ve mentally prepared for all this to happen in one week had I been warned anyways. But when I was standing there completely dumbstruck by all this, that feeling in the pit of my stomach came back and I realized: God in His mercy had interceded for me, calling down the comfort and strength I would need while – in His providence – not revealing to me the very immediate future.
This is just one example of how God is working in my life even though the chemical imbalances in my brain make it difficult to read the instructions on a box of mac and cheese, let alone my Bible.
But I’m not excused from my responsibility to press in to the Lord. Anxiety still starts building walls around me that suffocate me at times. My friend Lo Tanner wrote about her experience with anxiety on her blog a while back, and God brought her very post to mind when I was having a rough time with this issue just last week.
So how do I press in?
I listen to my Bible. I listen to guided meditations based on verses. And AFTER this I listen to worship music. I listen to my kids studying their Bibles. I listen to people who are praying for me and the things God laid in their heart over me. And when I have messages from God through out the day, I try to listen to them too.
I pray. There’s a whole lot of talking on my part through out the day. It feels a lot more conversational. I’m now “that neighbor” who stays in her car, “talking to herself” while sipping a cup of coffee at around 9am.
I take notes. I can’t explain why writing is easier to me than reading except it must be a different process in the brain; I’m regurgitating information and not receiving it. But I have a journal where I write any thought that is worthy and I try to let go of thoughts that aren’t. I also write affirmations to declare out loud daily so my brain can hear me in charge and not the other way around. And I write this blog.
If you look around this blog, you will quickly realize that I’m not an uber-spiritual person. I’ve talked about parenting, frustrations, weight loss, and other things too. But if God impresses upon my heart to share a spiritual word, I have to be obedient. It may be that as a friend you are in a season to receive the instruction to press in and perceive what God is doing in your life right now, and that may have a higher priority than other things in your life right now too.
PS. As a disclaimer I should let you know that the links which lead away from my site are not affiliate links. I am not paid to advertise for any of these services or music, and I will not receive a dime in commission if you click on the link. I’m just an honest Christian mom, giving credit where credit is due, and sharing the resources that are helping me in this season of my life.
Confession: While I believe in all of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, I’m not one to proclaim that I am prophetic, nor do I dwell a lot on the supernatural realm around us. I’m very much a here and now kind of believer with a healthy fear for what the Spirit is doing.
I say all this because *usually* seasons of stress cause me to have random, vivid dreams. I seldom remember details – I just wake up with uneasy feelings that I digest with a cup of coffee as I listen to my Bible app.
Which is why, when I have one of those dreams that I not only remember three days later, but that I also hear confirmation, I stop and take notice. When I woke up from this particular dream, I felt almost instantly a call to share it. That’s not something I do without giving it a few days first.
I was in a forest of sorts, and there were people living there like persecuted refugees. I saw people with really dark skin and assumed they were the refugees, but I also saw Caucasian people alongside them. When I spoke to some of them, a few white men shared that they had been cast out from their communities as a result of standing up for the black people. While we were all in the jungle trying to get away from the city, I felt like this had taken the world by a storm – overwhelmed in the night, like it’s a global disaster. I also noticed a feline creature, kind of unrecognizable but as big as a tiger, stalking the perimeter of this refugee camp.
I was so overwhelmed by fear that I looked straight up into a starless sky and said, “Oh Jesus come soon!” And was dumbstruck by how star-less the sky actually looked. That’s when I was approached by a white, elderly gentleman, in a suit, very pastor-like. He tells me, in a very calm and matter of fact manner that “a third of the stars fell with the enemy down to earth.“
I ask him, “What’s happening here? What’s with all these people?!”
He responds with a voice that almost brings the catastrophe around me to a low hum:
“These are the people who have chosen to stand for God’s Word. Don’t be confused; this is not a catastrophe due to racism or political issues. These are the people who are standing on the word of God, who have chosen to see it as black and white, so to speak. This is the bride, facing the consequences of their actions in a fallen world, where the devil prowls around looking for someone to devour..”
I responded with, “Oh Jesus, help us to be ready for You! We need to prepare!” And he put a hand on my shoulder to calm me down and said, “Maria, they are ready. They are precisely where God wants them to be in this hour. Your mistake is the assumption that the Bride gets it all together and then Jesus returns. But it is God Himself who makes her holy and blameless for His coming, that’s not something you accomplish out of your own merit. None of this is a surprise to Him who brought all these people here together, and this is exactly what He has provided for their refuge. These circumstances out in the world are merely a winnowing fork. Their hope in God’s Word brought them where God wants them.”
I took the scene in one more time and said, “This is the refuge that God has provided for them. This is for their good.” And he said, “Yes! And now is when you will be able to see God’s glory. This is the place where God provides miraculously and shows His power to save. Even now don’t you feel it? Haven’t you experienced God anticipating your every need? Taking care of leveling your path before your foot hits the floor?”
And as I realized that He has, I woke up.
I believe this is an overall message of encouragement to everyone. And that it will speak to those who are ready to hear it without any further interpretation.
If it ever felt like we take one step forward and two steps back, it’s now!
We did not get pre-approved for a home loan. We ended up moving into a small apartment just to be on our own again.
I’m not even trying to get into a home loan. I’m trying to get to Florida to see my mom and my sister. And then get back.
My mom was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. That blind-sided me.
A chiropractor is out to get me and levied my entire bank account. The only medical place I have not been able to pay decided to help themselves to my husband’s entire paycheck and all we had in savings.
We did a triathlon as a family! Then I injured my foot and haven’t been able to walk pain-free since June 9th.
I joined itWorks! I can’t wait to get my starter kit. Looking forward to making money for using products I would buy at GNC and start losing the weight I gained.
My dog Momo had a major seizure…
One step forward, two step backs. It’s a cha-cha. The Salsa lover in me should find this beautiful… Except I feel violently shaken and disoriented right now! Part of the reason I haven’t been able to blog, other than depression (and I’m seeing a therapist and a doctor for that) is I’m kinda’ stunned speechless! Yet I’ve been very well taken care of by my tribe of believing homeschooling moms and that has made all the difference.
I guess I forget I’m dancing with the Lord as my partner and He takes the lead! Not an original idea, but I heard Amena Brown, a spoken word poet and she NAILED IT, it’s so good I’m sharing with you the lyrics. Not quite as good as hearing her recite it, but it’s the best I got today:
Dance with Him He puts His hand on the small of my back Two fingers pressed into the center of my palm He pulls me close Steps with His left, my right I focus on His eyes and try to ignore my feet as they clumsily count one – two – three I’m trying to trust Him He knows this dance better than me I’m still a novice and it’s obvious I have yet to lean in and let Him control the turns He takes His time and even when I miss a step It’s fine He knows I’m learning He wants me to put my hand in His Close my eyes and trust Him With my life My heart With worry And “I’m so scared” With hurt Worth and unworthy Loving and unlovable And my heart has been hurt before I have been burned before Loved And endured loss before I am in no mood for a dance No mood to be romanced I have become a grace cynic And love’s worst critic He sends me invitations every day And even though I have yet to RSVP He doesn’t mind me He keeps pursuing Taking steps in spite of me He is a songwriter Composing the notes that hold together eternity And He wants to teach my limbs to sing He’s been waiting to watch me let go of woe And worry…until my soul Sings in that beautiful voice He gave me That I have someone come to think Is not so beautiful To dance with Him I must give in And give up Plus The trust it takes to really love And I want to love Him unbridled Believe in Him with a faith that is unshakeable Like tree roots centuries deep Until I learn to follow His time Take deep breaths Rest my head on His chest And my cares at His feet But I never fare well As long as I depend on me Take His hand Take a chance Fingertips in the palm of the One who holds galaxies In His hand Hand on His shoulder Heart in His hand We dance To a down beat That keeps time with His heartbeat Sometimes It feels like He’s letting me go When He’s only letting me turn And sometimes It feels like He’s letting me fall When He’s only letting me learn His is the song that never ends His love Sinners become friends He wants to dance with you Until the only Song you hear Is Him
When I have nothing to encourage you with personally, it’s ok. That will get better. But I’m never without encouragement from the Lord, without His peace, or His provision. As a Christian blogger, the best I can do is share the encouragement I’ve received with you. I pray it lifts you up today.