If your heart is in a place where you can trust God enough to be open to doing anything or going anywhere, following Jesus is a compelling adventure. In the gospels I read about His invitation to follow Him (Matthew 4:19) and I see the response: His disciples dropped everything they were doing and followed. After a process of time, prayer, and soul-searching, Trent and I were in that place: we were ready to sell anything and follow anywhere. We were prayerfully sensitive to the opportunities that came across our paths and sought to determine, “Is this opportunity God’s will for us or is this simply a distraction?” We waded through a sea of possibilities for almost a year. We prayed through business opportunities, selling our home, buying a duplex, moving back to California, and moving overseas. In the process, we discovered more about our passions, dreams and goals and we continued to bring these to the feet of Jesus and ask, “Show us what to do with these things in our hearts.” Some of the particular areas we processed included: Continue reading “anti-lukewarm”
Sunday July 21, 2013:
A nervous unsettling is enveloping me. Reminiscent of the background music that slowly builds matching the approaching crescendo of tension in a thriller movie, I’m on the edge of my seat tapping my toe to non-existent music.
The events of the past month have all borne the consistent theme: let go, reduce, release. My online business of ten years: sold. Our black SUV with dark tinted windows that once made a man nervously approach me at the library and question if I was a government official and if I was perhaps following him: sold. Our extra truck that has been listed on Craig’s List forever: sold. Our trailer for hauling firewood out of the forest: sold. As we wait for someone to come look at our camping trailer (someone who heard from a friend that we might be looking to sell it) I am wondering if I should expect anything but the same to end this day. Moreover, as we empty things out of our life, I am left wondering what great adventure is hiding out behind the veil of God’s grand plan.
Proverbs 27:17 says
As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.
I love that. A beautiful thing happens when we allow ourselves to be used by God and when we are able to speak into the lives of others in a way that edifies and encourages them. This last year I have been sharpened by a number of women though their words and examples. A few of them I have never met, but yet their impact has been profound. Allow me to make a few introductions: Continue reading “Are you iron deficient?”
If you read my last post and still want in, let’s do this.
I previously alluded to being “in hiding” this past year. Hiding is my fancy way of describing fear. It’s important that I start with this because I believe that for faith to grow, fear must be faced.
A year ago I stepped out of a role that I had filled for 10 years when I sold my online website Mom 4 Life. At the time, I looked forward to the change of pace. God had things on the horizon and as I began to see glimpses of His new plan unfolding, I longed to share my new discoveries and struggles through writing. However, the “platform” from which I used to share was no longer mine. I wanted to flush out my thoughts with words, but without readers to share them with, the purpose felt flat. Or was it more than that? I began to question: had my purpose been too tightly tied to “my platform” and “my readers”? Why the desire to share with others rather than just journal for myself? Perhaps it was all a fancy way of saying that I missed being on stage. Was it all pride? Self glorification? I felt conflicted. I wanted to bring God glory but perhaps that was getting muddled? I couldn’t be sure and because of that, I couldn’t move forward with writing for an audience. Doing something good for the wrong reasons felt worse than doing nothing at all. The deceiver manipulated eloquently. Fear crept in. I set down my pen and closed the book.
At the end of May, I began leading a small weekly bible study in my home. The study (Restless by Jennie Allen) focuses on the story of Joseph in the Old Testament and weaves in truths from his story into our own. We have been identifying our natural and spiritual gifts and discovering how our pain and suffering is all closely connected to the unique way that we are made to fit into God’s story. While examining the area of our gifts, we read about Eric Liddell who was born into the home of missionaries to the Chinese people in 1902. As explained by author Jennie Allen, “His story is retold in the epic film Chariots of Fire. Eric felt called to give his life to God and in that pursuit he trained and planned to become a missionary, like his parents. But Eric had a gift. He could run, and every door was opening for him to do it. Doors opened all the way to the Olympics. As the film portrays Eric processing his calling and his gifts with his sister, he said these famous words: “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel his pleasure.” Continue reading “listening to lies”