Thursday, August 26, 2010

Know Thyself

Over the past month, I have had an amazing array of experiences. I have been perplexed, overwhelmed, and torn. I had an internal peace though the storms of life raged in the background. Then my heart was torn as people I love dearly experienced an unimaginable pain, the loss of their child. I grieved. I cried. I prayed more than I think I have ever prayed in my life. In the wake of this life changing event, I began to see all things through a different light. This tragedy was so close that I relearned how FRAGILE life is. When things like this happen, it is not uncommon that we find ourselves examining life.

I had time on my hands for a change, as I was not employed. I thought, a lot. I had no other choice but to be still and examine things. I did not want to. I was used to being busy. I am always on the go. My mind races all the time and my body most of the time. It is hard to sit still, much less be still. I have learned there is quite a difference in the two. Being still requires your body, mind, and spirit to slow down. It did not come easy at first. Life provided plenty of distractions, but because it came to a point that I did not have to BE anywhere, I had to learn to be.

Have you ever set down and thought about yourself, your actions, your motives? I mean deeply examined yourself.

Well during this past month here is what I knew about myself before I began:
1. I am a people pleaser
2. I struggle with low self esteem, complicated by being overweight.
3. I love people very much.
4. I love God even more than that.
5. I am pretty smart, but due to easy distractability, find it hard to study anything in depth.
6. I talk a lot, I love to talk, and I talk alot about everything...
7. My priorities in life are 1. God 2. Family 3. Work and everything else
8. Major life changes that shaped who I am: age 10 accepting Jesus; age 13 my parents separation and eventual divorce (age 15); age 19-22 a 4.5 year abusive relationship; age 22 beginning and graduating nursing school; age 26 marrying my sweet husband; age 32 giving birth to my beautiful daughter; age 33 finishing graduate school; age 34 starting and closing my own business; age 35 becoming obedient in my faith, finally figured out believing is the first step, following is the lifelong spiritual journey and was baptized on Nov 2, 2008; age 35 beginning a position where my job became my ministry; age 36 leaving that job I loved to take some time for family, experience a loss for our family as a dear child went from her mother's womb directly to heaven, and sitting at the feet of Jesus trying to figure it all out.

Here is what I have learned since that month of August
1. To TRUST GOD, no matter how hard, even when you are broken hearted, it hurts, and you do not understand.
2. Even in the midst of pain and you feel HE is far away, God will remain faithful and show you His face in the simplest of ways and smallest places.
3. God's glory is seen in the miracles and the tragedies.....the miracles are obvious..the he sustains us through them and brings a peace only HE can bring.....

Here is what I learned about me:
1. You can be self-centered even if you are not selfish and I am.
2.I amm always so worried about what people think about me that it leaves little time to worry about how they feel, so I can help them by listening.
3. I always want to fix situations or help people...ultimately all I can do is be there and pray, only God can "fix" people....I have to know my limitations..
4. I do have pride, only it is the dangerous kind, because it is subtle....
5. I really do love God and people and I even love practicing medicine.
6. I do have a creative side....I feel a desire to get that out, only I don't make time for that.
7. I really do talk alot, which is not always bad...but I really need to work on listening and thinking about my speech....
8. I love to write and yet I don't often do it...
9. For whatever reason I can experience empathy deeper than I want to and though it can be painful, it can also be elative...and I will just accept the gift from the Lord.
10. As a recovering people pleaser, my life's spiritual journey is to focus on pleasing God.
11. I am a broken, sinful, soul that without God would fall victim to the desires of my own flesh....but because of a Savior, Christ Jesus, all my iniquities have been taken to the grave.

Where does all this leave me? Just a deeper understanding of my brokenness which leads to a greater appreciation for my salvation and a renewed energy to spend my days loving God and loving others.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

A new season

Though the summer sun is still beating down heating up the day to close to triple digits and I long for fall weather, I am getting ready for a new season in life.
My Lil Miss begins kindergarten tomorrow. Her back pack is packed by the door. She picke out the uniform she wants to wear tomorrow. I packed her lunch. The forms the school request are signed. This is really happening. I know it is a natural progression. I am excited about all the things she will learn, the fun experiences she will have and the new friends she will meet.

I am sad that my baby girl is really no longer a baby. She strives so much to be independent. She is so smart and strong willed. She is so beautiful inside and out. I must enjoy each moment, because the pass to fast. I must not take this time which God has given me to entrust me with this little girl to love, raise and build character so she will one day serve Him.

So with tears of joy, nostalgia, and sadness I get ready to take my little girl tomorrow for her first day of school. We will take pictures. We will be excited and once I drop her off I am sure I will cry.

I think now on the day she was born and all the milestones since then. Sitting, talking,crawling, walking, potty training, learning ABC's, learning to read and learning to write. I thank God that I was able to witness all of these things and be a part of them. So in the theme of my life as of late, I must Trust God, and these people whom I am sharing my daughter with to help educate her, so that she continue to meet more milestones.

So in the time in between, I want to pay more attention, close attention, because these days go too fast.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

stuck in neutral

don't want to be complacent
don't want to be overdue
in giving encouragement
don't want to be all these things
but stuck in neutral, so it seems
not used to this feeling
hard to move, no energy
what has happened to what was me?
i could bounce off the walls
and reach the stars
now i just sit here counting
and lost in how far
it all seems away
and my spirit yearns
what is this feeling
that deep within me burns
though i know in quiet times
i can feel the ache
solace does come and peace is granted
but moments can be fleeting
searching for only truth
fighting every day
not to give up the fight
it's okay if i run and hide
for just a moment
let me fall apart
stand guard and protect my heart
in just a moment
i will reform
and stand stronger
than i was before
for now i just wait
patiently and pray
sometimes its getting thru the moment
that gets us through the day

Facing Dragons

I have a dear friend that I met from my husband. I call her my "prayer warrior" friend. She is. When I have a prayer request that involves deep need she is the first person I send it to. She is the first person that helped me make sense of some pivotal points in my spiritual journey. She is also the first person who put into words what I was experiencing, but I knew if I told anyone they would think I am insane. I am speaking of spiritual warfare.

Scripture states that our struggles are not with flesh, but principalities and authorities of evil (Ephesians 6:10-18). My friend calls them dragons. We all have dragons we face. Some linger, some are brief battles, some are life-long adversaries. This season of my life, for a purpose that I do not currently know, except that it is intended for good (Romans 8:28), I am facing some dragons. But victory has already been declared and it is the Lord's and I am His.

This past week I faced minor setbacks, with things breaking down-the prelude air conditioner, the broken bedroom, window and the refrigerator. This piles on an already emotionally overwhelmed soul and so I break down.
It is in those weak moments when you are lying on the floor crying, lacking the strength to stand, much less fight that you realize a truth. All you must do to fight those dragons, is utter through your tears " The Lord is my strength, my rock, my refuge, my ever present help in a time of need. He is faithful. He keeps his promises. He promised that those who dwell in the shelter of the Most High shall be covered with feathers and protected under His wings. He will command His angels to lift you up."
Though you cannot even stand to fight as you lie in a puddle of tears, if you cry out to God. He will carry you and He will face the dragons with you and for you. Victory is His. It has already been declared. So we must hold on to God and trust Him and His promises. Endure the fight, even if you must do it lying down. He will carry you through to victory.
So in those darkest moments before the dawn, do not lose hope. "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Friday, August 20, 2010


So much has happened since my last entry. That peace I had in that rainstorm was interrupted. I learned my grandpa was being placed on hospice and his cancer treatment stopped. My next youngest brother was having difficulties related to work that included heartbreaking stories. So being the eldest, I called my siblings together to do something we never really had on that side of the family: to pray. They were coming. I envisioned a circle of us praying for our family and for God's peace.
My little brother and his wife arrived at my house. I will not retell the details of that afternoon- it is not my story to tell-but in just an hour or so we learned their child who was in the womb, Lydia Grace, was with us no more. Upon reading those words my heart broke in pieces as the thought of the pain my beloved brother and his lovely bride was feeling flooded my mind and clenched tight to my heart making it hard to breathe through the tears.
All of our lives were changed, but theirs was changed the greatest. They left to do what they needed. I,through my tears, told my husband,"we still have to go and pray."
We did. It was not as I imagined it, but we stood in a circle in my father's living room praying for my grandpa,my brother and his wife, and our entire family. We prayed for God's peace for all,but especially my brother and his wife.
That began what has come to be the most prayerful time I have had thus far. It continues now. It is in these heart shattering moments that we come to terms with how fragile life is.
It is also in these moments that voids are created in our lives. We must fill those voids. As my husband says, you can fill that void with anything,but why not fill it with the best thing and that is God. So it is at this moment faith is tested and we must trust God, though it is hard.
We cry out in our hearts, "why?" He understands. He knows our hearts are broken. It is ok to cry, be angry, and ask questions. As long as in the end, we hold on to that faith that has led us this far, and trust God. So the next days and even now, I hold on to God tightly and trust Him, though I do not understand. It is these kinds of moments when we must walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor 5:7).