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choose joy, uncliche

Well, life just passes by sometimes. I need a daily reminder that I am unable to grasp time. I can’t save it or restart it or rewind it; I’m good at wasting it. I’ve been reading Tuesdays with Morrie(I know, I’m super late to this party). Phenomenal book about a man who is dying from ALS sharing his final days studying his own death with a friend. It’s an honest and refreshing look at death, and how to live in light of death. It aligns in many ways with what the Bible speaks about death. Except, the book fails to understand and grasp that death isn’t the ultimate end. It is an end to life as we know it, but not the final end. However, the book challenges me to live like today might be my last. I am never promised tomorrow; none of us are. And I don’t care how cliche that sounds because it is true. I could be on my deathbed, fully alive right now and gone in a second. Am I making the most of every moment? Am I praising God for all the good gifts He is giving me? Am i even recognizing them all? Am I breathing fresh air and taking each step slower? Am I squeezing my sweet baby girl a little tighter and kissing my husband a little longer?

Well, I’m trying. I’m praying hard about making the most of my time and not being idle.

But then this morning, I just wasn’t. The baby woke up fussy. I woke up cranky. My husband and I had some unresolved issues from the night before that we realized we hadn’t worked through. It was overcast and I was tired. I wanted to go for a run this morning(finally- I was actually excited!) but life just seemed to crush my attitude and excitement. I invited apathy into my life and begged it to stay this morning, and I was perfectly content being blergh about today’s circumstances and a super grump towards Lacie and ignorant towards my husband. I really could have cared less. I was irritated that today wasn’t going my way and since it wasn’t going my way, it mustn’t have anything good to offer. This isn’t really uncommon either for me. It’s a struggle a few times a month.

Today was different. Today the Holy Spirit reminded me that the Lord doesn’t call me to ‘follow my heart’. He did not give me my emotions to guide me. Instead, He gave me the Holy Spirit to guide me and as I follow the Spirit, He will reward me with joy. I am so guilty of following my emotions. I apologized and changed my direction. I had to make a HARD choice against my selfishness to CHOOSE JOY. I had to CHOOSE to stop being apathetic and at least just go for a walk, however short. I at least had to get myself out of the car and take Lacie, and walk. I convinced myself to think about the good things about walking- how I need the exercise; I’ve been convicted about caring better for my body–another post later-; I need the fresh air; Lace needs the exercise to help expel her energy; the outdoors seems to heal both of us of bad moods. I made a choice in my thoughts, and then I made a commitment in my actions. There’s not really a big ending, but I ended up running for a mile and walking about 1.5 miles more with Lacie exploring the forest and the trails. Being outside in God’s beautiful earth really flipped my mood, and Lacie’s too(PRAIIIIIIIISE JESUS cuz who wants a cranky toddler?), and my body just feels better.

How foolish would I have been to have let my emotions control my day? I could have missed out on some cute moments with my daughter because I wanted to sulk in my bad mood. I could have wasted precious time, and time doesn’t stop her from growing, it compels her growth. I will never look back longingly for moments of crankiness and self pity. Ever. I don’t think I’ve heard of anyone who has. Instead, I would have looked back and wondered what I could have done instead, with Lacie or friends, or David, or serving other people- you get the idea. What indulgently sweet mercy of God to let me see this and to give my heart the strength to choose action despite the gloominess that my emotion dictated. He is always so good to His children, to me, when we choose to obey Him. He fulfills His promise to strengthen us and give us every good thing in Christ Jesus. Today ended up being a really good day, because He showered me in grace this morning.

As simple as faith is, sometimes it really does just come down to making a choice to obey and trusting that God will bring joy in the hard choice, as dumb or inconsequential as the choice may seem. What a beautiful reminder as well that God cares about EVERY little struggle we have. He is faithful with the big things, and also with the small. I forget that sometimes.

lacie love sign.JPG

This pic made possible by choosing joy.

God is either wonderfully merciful, just, and kind, or He can’t exist.

I’m going to try REALLY hard to avoid my typical ‘stream of consciousness’ type brain barf that I usually write. Please read the whole way through and forgive any inconsistencies that may pop up. I am not a philosopher, well, not a talented one.

Here’s something I’ve been gnawing on lately. Don’t miss this.

 

God is either wonderfully merciful, just, and kind, or He can’t exist.

 

Obviously, I make the argument that He is wonderfully merciful, just, and kind. With this comes the assumption that He is all powerful, the premise and foundation that this is all built upon. If God wasn’t all powerful, if He wasn’t the creator of all things, if He didn’t know everything, and exist eternally in each direction- forward and backward- what would make Him worth worshipping? He would be inconsistent and this entire argument would be shredded to pieces. I might write a post more about this later, because the little one’s nap time is only so long.

 

Let’s go back to square one. God makes the world and says it is good. It is all good. Then God makes man, looks over His creation in full and says it is VERY good( Genesis 1:31). It’s a happy story until man starts deciding what is good. Then, sin enters the perfect world that God made. Let me be clear- God did not make sin. God gave man free will ,the ability to make choices for ourselves, and because we used free will, a gift that God gave us, in a way that disobeyed God and made a bad choice, sin was birthed. Sin=disobedience to God, not choosing to honor God. This is the stripped down, kindergarten version of it but for now it will have to work.

Because Adam and Eve, the first humans God made, chose to disobey God, we now all have it in our nature to disobey God. Think about it. Even as a baby, it is in our nature to disobey. Kids want to be independent, to rule themselves and make their own decisions. They don’t have to be taught to be angry when someone threatens their selfishness; otherwise, sharing wouldn’t be so hard and two’s wouldn’t be so terrible, you feel me? Why is it that these sweet precious little humans who have had nothing but love in their life so far feel the need to retaliate and throw a fit against them when you tell them no? Because they want to do what they want to do; they want to be in control of their own life and make their own choices regardless of the consequences of their choices, like Adam and Eve. Babysit a toddler. It’s a theology lesson in sin nature, but also in the loving kindness that God has imparted to us and upon us. Kids are also snuggly and warm and loving. They want your attention, praise, and friendship- isn’t that also like God? Since we’ve been made in His image, wouldn’t you think that we reflect Him since birth? Since our creation in our mothers’ wombs we reflect God(Psalm 139, Genesis 1:27).

 

Can we agree that we all are sinners? All people sin. This is also not what we were created for. Us sinning brings no joy to God our Creator, just like a kid acting out brings no joy to the parent. Yet still, we aren’t punished. Romans says that the wages of sin is death(Romans 6:23). We’ve established that we all sin. Then, shouldn’t we all die? At any point after sinning, death is a fair consequence that should not come as a surprise. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord(Job 1:21). If anything, this makes me think that every day is even moreso a gift, right? In asking oneself “What have I done to deserve this day, when in fact I should be dead according to my actions?” the answer is clearly nothing. Nothing has been done to guarantee another day of life. The deciphering of this knowledge only points to the MERCY OF GOD.

Mercy: compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm.

I can’t think of a more perfect way to use the word mercy than when talking about God’s relationship to sinners. It is merciful to allow, nay, to give someone life when they don’t deserve it. It is merciful to give someone a child, a happy spouse, financial security, the joys of friendship, a home to dwell in, health and wellness, happiness in general, etc. when that person deserves no good thing.

If God is in ultimate control, if He has all the power(which, remember, is the foundation of this argument), then at any point in time, He can squash any person whom He chooses. Looking at God simply as a figure of mightiness and control, that would make sense. I would be terrified of God. Yet, here we begin to see how He is merciful for not squashing anyone. What about kind? How is He kind to us?

 

Have you been outside lately? Has the sun warmed your skin? Have you had a good night’s sleep? Have you had a peaceful, quiet moment when your heart was stilled, if only for a second,  a slight moment that all was right? Were you able to take a breath and exhale the tightness that had been building in your chest and feel grounded? HAve you smelled a flower lately, or seen the colors burst forth from the night streaming behind the sun in the morning? Or have you watched the oranges and pinks swirl as the day ended and the clouds floated away for the night? Have you drank a glass of water and chased away your thirst? Life could go on without any weight given to these experiences. They are not necessary to life. We could breathe and not have any emotion attached to it. We could sip water and be unchanged. We could have sex and not enjoy it.  Flowers could simply be acknowledged as part of the ecosystem without beauty or a pleasant aroma. But God, in His GLORY and MAGNIFICENCE chose to make these things good. They smell good, they feel good, they taste good. We have to admit then that God is kind in giving us good gifts.

 

God is merciful, God is kind. Life is wonderful, even on our worst days, and it is by no doing of our own.

The LORD is gracious and merciful; Slow to anger and great in lovingkindness. (Psalm 145:8)

 

God is also just. We see this in the Bible. When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they were cursed to die(There is no mention of death in the Bible before Adam and Eve ate the fruit). When the world was acting continuously immoral, the flood came and killed all on the earth but Noah and his family. It was never in God’s plan for man to die. God intended for us to live forever with Him in perfect harmony. Yet Satan in his lowly schemes tempted Adam and Eve with pride, with knowledge of good and evil, of right and wrong. Unfortunately they chose wrongly and the consequences followed. God doesn’t want us to die(1 Timothy 2:4), but He is just in distributing the consequence allotted for sin. When a child is sexually molested, we want the offender to be punished, if we’re being honest, don’t we? If someone killed your mother, spouse, child, you’d want that person to be punished wouldn’t you? Because you want that person who was in the wrong to suffer the consequences that come with their actions. That is why we have a judicial system in place. That system guarantees to the best of its ability that criminals are brought to justice, that a wrong is punished and made right. Isn’t our love for justice simply further evidence that we are made in the image of God, that our love for justice mirrors His? It isn’t our place to determine whether or not God chose a correct punishment in prescribing death as the result of sin. It is our place to understand that our merciful and kind God gave us the choice. If a+b=c, and I add a and b, then I get c. That’s just life with free will(remember that was a gift from God too). On the opposite side, God is just in the GOOD things of life too, in more than just punishment. God rewards those who love Him! When we confess, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins(1 John 1:9)! He gives good gifts to His children(because of His kindness)(Matthew 7:11, Luke 11:13). God is good and fair and just.

 

What is God’s ultimate evidence of His goodness, kindness, mercy, and justice? The pinnacle of everything; Jesus. The virgin birth, so that sin would not be passed from man onto Christ; His sinless life, so he would not have to die and face the result of sin; His obedience to the Father God, to willingly lay down His life and die on the cross so that sinful man wouldn’t have to, thus atoning for our sinfulness that He carried with Him onto the cross; His resurrection, to prove that He defeated the death he chose to die and overcame the sins of every person in the world, ever; His ascension into heaven, that God is God and is unaffected by sin and still all powerful over everything, and because He is all powerful, He is able to free us from the curse sin put upon us when we drew our first breath.

How is it fair that we had no choice in becoming sinners, thus essentially being born to die? Let me ask you this- how is it fair that you were born with the eye color you have? Or the hair color? Or the genetic disposition that you have? It isn’t particularly relevant. I would be incredibly upset if I was born a sinner and left there. But the KIND, MERCIFUL, JUST, GRACIOUS, LOVING GOD who we are talking about sent Jesus to reverse the curse. YES, REVERSE THE CURSE OF SIN. We aren’t bound to the grave. Because of the death of Jesus on the cross, because His death substituted where ours should have been, we are given the gift of life(2 Corinthians 5:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:10; 1 Peter 2:24). We can wake up daily knowing that we have an incredible, extraordinary gift in front of us. Because living life to serve and live in adoration of a God who would take my place on the cross is a glorious and beautiful thing, it really is the least that I can do. Trying my best to relate and learn more about this inviting and warm Almighty Being seems like a pretty good way to spend the rest of my life. It also seems that I can trust Him to have my best interests in mind.(And from personal experiences, I haven’t once ever been disappointed when I obeyed God. It has always ended better than I could have imagined. I dare you to try it.)

 

Can you see how if one piece of this puzzle was missing, the whole premise of God would crumble? If He wasn’t all powerful, than He would just be some big jerk who allowed us to be sinners forever and never saved us. Cool(sarcastically). If He wasn’t kind, He would have no care about saving us. He wouldn’t want to give us good gifts, or even see a reason why. If He wasn’t kind, He sure couldn’t be loving. Also, if He wasn’t kind, could He truly love justice? Can you desire justice for someone and not be kind or moved to compassion? Even if it was possible to be kind and fair simultaneously, would He still show mercy? You can’t have mercy without justice. If justice didn’t exist, mercy wouldn’t exist either.

 

Does this all make sense? Thus the only answer HAS TO BE the Gospel, the good news that Jesus Christ is the son of God who came to die the death that we deserved, to conquer sin and its consequences and spend eternity with us.

Doesn’t this sound good to you? It makes me reenergized thinking about it, that’s for sure! What’s stopping you from serving God and obeying Him? His commands can be summed up in this: Love God and love people. Go love. You can do it.

 

For further study and resources, please check out the following:

Letters From A Skeptic by Greg Boyd

A Case for Christ by Lee Strobel

The Reason for God by Tim Keller

https://bible.org/article/why-god-not-fair

http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/god-is-merciful-not-to-tell-us-everything

http://www.desiringgod.org/interviews/why-is-god-just-to-punish-jesus-for-our-sins-when-doing-a-similar-thing-would-be-so-unjust-for-a-human-judge-to-do

http://livingontheedge.org/read-blog/blog/2017/01/17/are-you-missing-god’s-kindness

 

I pray that this will turn your heart to God. I pray that you will be blessed by this and find hope. I pray that this is understandable to you, that God has or will open your eyes. I pray that He will continue opening mine. And again, this is such a small itty bitty bit of the whole picture so please please contact me if you have any questions or comments, constructive criticisms, or just general ideas.

 

PS thanks for reading this all. You’re the real MVP. and forgive my typos.

why don’t i talk in groups ugh

I don’t know that I want this to be along post(but I tend to ramble, so who knows what will happen). I have other things I want to write about instead but the Lord spoke to me this morning. I was nervously sitting in Bible study, listening to prayer requests, waiting to share but fear crippled me. It’s a familiarly foreign feeling, one that you forget you know until it overwhelms you. I hate it. I’d consider myself pretty confident until I’m in a room full of people I’ve known for a whole cumulative 4 hours, maybe? And these are nice women. They love Jesus, they are encouraging to one another. I am encouraged listening to them. Yet, I am feeling a pull to share, to be vulnerable and I can’t. Rather, I can but I don’t. I firmly believe I CAN do many things, I just have to choose to overcome the obstacles in front of me. Then again, the time came for sharing answers from our studies this past week, of which I thought mine were insightful and possibly helpful to others, since I know that the Lord revealed and reaffirmed truths in my life through the answers I had written down. Yet I submitted to a fear of timidity.

A yoke of slavery to my fear.

And the stupidest part is that I walked right up to it. I put my head right into the notch and my hands on either side. And here I am whining about it and asking for forgiveness. Because when I chose to sit quietly and not speak of what Jesus had shown me and taught me, the enemy wins. I am literally doing Satan’s work for him as I bind my tongue and refuse to speak.Why? Am  insecure? Have I forgotten whose I am? Am I scared of judgment? Am I afraid of the awkward pressure? The unspoken person to be holy? These are all invalid reasons in light of Scripture. I love the quote that reads “Speak the truth even if your voice shakes.” I’m just so intimated by the possibility of my shaky voice. And it’s so so dumb. I know it is. I can’t be vulnerable in a group of people, let alone a group i don’t know. At the rate it takes me to get comfortable, I’ll be in heaven before I’m comfortable.

I don’t even know why I’m saying all this. The Lord knows. But what He reassured me this morning, is that when I let fear win, He is silenced. I don’t know what affect my words will have on others. To be silent is to allow others to miss an opportunity that they don’t know they had. Not to say that my speaking will unequivocally bless others, not at all, but my lack of speaking will 100% guarantee that no one is encouraged. It guarantees that my getting to know these ladies is hindered, and that they will have no means to get to know me. If I am speaking truth, God’s truth that He has shown me and spoken to me in, I need not be anxious because He is with me. I need only to share with others, because that is what fellowship is about. Fellowship is what we are commanded to be in, fellowship and community with others.

 

So, I don’t know how to end this. I guess just pray for me to get over myself. yeah.

 

Also, PS, giving into your own fears and letting your feelings trump your life is selfish and self centered. I want to have an attitude more of serving other’s and their best interests- i can’t do that when i choose protecting myself over getting to know them. ugh.

Praying for Protection

Recently, I’ve been convicted about a multitude of different  issues in my life. I am by no means trying to convince anyone that I am well versed on the subject nor that I am right. I’m trying to organize my spaghetti bowl of thoughts and die to my selfish desires.

 

Matthew 6:9-13; The Lord’s Prayer

This is the first example that we see of Jesus telling people how to pray. He gives this example after warning the listeners to not pray to impress man, to consider our words as we speak to God, and that God knows what we need.

After reading this a few times, I realize that there is no mention of protection. None of Jesus praying for a ‘hedge of protection’ or keeping us from death. While there are also other things missing from His prayer here, the lack of protection being prayed for leaves a big gap. I’ve searched online search engines and remembering what I’ve read for myself about protection in the Bible. There really isn’t much mentioned apart from the prayers of David in the Psalms.

 

There’s:

2 Thessalonians 3:3  But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.

Proverbs 2:11 Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you.

Proverbs 4:6 Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.

Psalm 140:4 Keep me safe, LORD, from the hands of the wicked; protect me from the violent, who devise ways to trip my feet.

Psalm 23, 91, 121

Verse after verse, the mighty strength of the Lord is acknowledged. His power is trusted and His prominence is exalted. These biblical authors were so busy exulting El Shaddai, Elohim, the GOD of all who made the heavens and the seas, who gives us each breath, who orchestrates the universe with mere words- they are so enveloped in the fact that He is their God that they are not focused on their fear, but on their Father. So they ask for deliverance, but they ultimately have FAITH in His plan and aren’t consumed by their fear enough to pray about it in depth. At least, that’s the conclusion that I have come to.

I guess that leaves me in a place where I have to reevaluate, am I motivated to pray for protection out of fear or am I allowing apathy to creep into my faith? Its obviously both, but is this an active struggle for me from the enemy or is this as a result of my laziness?

I no longer want to let fear drive my life or my perspective. I want to have a faith that casts our fear, a faith that is not afraid. And maybe there is a fault there, that I am too focused on loving my life that I don’t want to lose it. I’m too focused on loving my husband’s or my daughter’s life, selfishly, that I would rather keep them with me here than have them be in perfect joy and peace with the Lord.

Philippians 1:21 says to live is Christ, but to die is gain.

Live to tell others about Jesus, to love and serve the people He loves, but the GAIN is death. The lottery jackpot is death- life after death in eternity. How foolish I have been in worrying and praying to avoid harm and death. If I am put through trial or temptation, what an opportunity to praise Christ or His faithfulness and speak of it to others. Praying for protection, in the sense that I have been doing so, would remove the subject of my prayers from these opportunities to TRUST God and see His plan furthered, or to not wish and rejoice for them to be in a perfect eternity with God.

My perspective has been wrong. It’s not about holding things tightly, but holding them loosely in surrender. Because even if I drop them all from my hands, they will still land in the hands of the God who holds the universe, and that is a much better comfort to my heart.

What are your thoughts on this? When do you think it would be acceptable to pray for protection?

Jeremiah 31:3

“the Lord appeared to him[a] from far away.
I have loved you with an everlasting love;
    therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you”

 

I struggle with this verse. I just forget, maybe even willingly forget, that God doesn’t just love me, but has a faithful, everlasting love for me. This isn’t like shouting “I love you” to your family as you walk out the door to go to work. This is the “I love you” that leaves flowers on your car for you to find after work before you come home to a rose laden, love-noted path leading into  a candlelight dinner followed by relaxing massage, DAILY. Like, the kind of love that will wrap you up on a cold night and not let you go, that you can fall asleep in, that keeps any bad thought or fear away. And God says, gently, fiercely, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you” even though you have hated me, even though you have broken your promise to follow me, even though you have walked away altogether, even though you have been an awful example of me, even though you have been selfish and put yourself first.

I love you!

It’s an eternal truth and I just can’t fathom. My mind believes any way it finds to discredit this truth. Whether it’s convincing myself that this verse isn’t directed at me, but rather the group of Israel, or convincing myself that I have to ‘do’ enough good works to be deserving of love, etc. I simply can’t believe it.Yet, in contradiction, I WANT to believe it. I can almost make myself believe it, but there’s still a reserve within me, like that gnawing feeling of knowing you’re leaving the grocery store forgetting what you came for but not able to remember, or wondering all day if you remembered to turn off the stove this morning before you left the house; that something is missing in my logic, something that isn’t quite right enough for me to be fully confident in what I know. And more than anything, I want, and am beginning, to believe and know this in my core, that it is shaping how I view things. Maybe Lacie is helping me see that? Because I look at her, and I know I would and very like could, fight off anything that threatens her. I can’t bear to watch her cry. Nothing would stop me from loving her, even on her worst day. I’m reminded that God feels like that toward me, but He doesn’t get frustrated and take a 5 minute break from me when I’ve been up crying for 2 hours at 3 am. He doesn’t ignore me because He can’t take anymore whining that day. His love isn’t imperfect like mine and I can feel the disconnect in my understanding of that.

But it’s so lovely and pure and wonderful and overwhelming, to know that I am loved with an everlasting love, that the Lord of the universe who made the stars, planets and galaxies that we may never know about- that this same God sings over me and rejoices and is faithful to me, simply because He is. That He knows every grain of sand, every hair on my head, and still knows that I like when the sun shines just right when I happen to be outside and the baby happens to be calm and my hands are free and I can just be. just breathe, and He creates these moments for me. and says “I love you”. I don’t know how to believe it but I adore the feeling of basking in it while it lasts and praying for the walls to be broken down from around my heart.

Lord Jesus, help my unbelief.

I’m making friends now, Jesus

I have been a full time stay at home mom(SAHM) for 7 months now. I can confidently say that it has been the most unique months that I’ve experienced so far in my life. Unique in that they’ve been the most rewarding, the most challenging, and the most progressively lonely and trying months. When I reconnect with friends and acquaintances that I haven’t seen in some time, they always ask about my staying at home, proceeded by commending both my husband and I for allowing me to do so. While I do agree, it often doesn’t feel like anything I’d want to be commended on. While I do like the recognition, it feels like empty words. It feels like a distant memory for those who are offering the applause yet have forgotten what its like to be in the trenches of constant little hands on you, peeing with an audience and scurrying to accomplish as much as you can as quietly as you can during nap times. While I love these trenches and would re-enlist a million times over(and plan to), I never could have imagined the difficulty that the loneliness produces. It strains my marriage, my parenting, my friendships.

 

When Lacie was born, I slowly lost friendships especially with my friends who didn’t care much for children. For the first 6 months, I couldn’t be apart from her for more tthan 30-45 minutes at a time(yay for a baby who loves her some boobies). I didn’t know how to balance my new precious, perfect, cute, snuggly ball and chain with my previous non-mom life.Church was difficult and discouraging to sit through because I’d get called out within 15 minutes to come get my poor screaming little. Bible study? No way would she sit still for that long on my lap.

And slowly, I gave up. I stopped trying because my friends did. “I don’t want to pressure you to hang out. I know you’re busy. Just let me know whenever you’re ready.” I get it. I’m sure I’ve even said the same thing to some of my friends with babies in the past. I’m sorry that I have. It’s unintentionally isolating. Because I will honestly never be ready to hang out in the same way I used to. Never again. My world has changed, my daily tasks are different, my joys have exploded exponentially and revolve around a 3 foot tall human.

 

Insert the transition from non-mom friends to mom friends. Insert GOD’S GRACE, because really that’s what it is, that’s what it was, that’s what it always will be.

I remember crying to my husband about feeling so lonely and not having friends anymore. Not just not having friends, but not having a depth in my friendships that I once had. That depth had been flooded by little tiny baby cries and made shallow as it filled with poopy diapers. The daunting task of navigating my way back to a depth scared me to the fact where it was almost easier to remain where I was in my self pitying loneliness. David told me to make friends, he’d set up double dates for us, he urged me week after week(to the pint whee I told him to stop) to hang out with my friends and go take some time for myself. Finally, and much thanks to a friend who joined me, I decided to go to the MomMe group at church. Socialization! And with other moms! We could relate and it was like the heavens opened up and poured out blessing after blessing in form of conversations that didn’t feel forced, that I could relate to. And praise Jesus that Lacie stayed in nursery for hte full 2 hours, and continued to stay and play, week after week. Still, my heart was sad. I was missing that depth of doing life with people, the depth of learning about Jesus together and really the spiritual challenge that went BEYOND mothering. Again, he answered prayers as the women’s Bible Study started up at church. Other women, of all walks of life with DEPTH! Praise! Despite my excitement, I wrestled. I was scared, I still am! Nervous, to have to make new friends, worried because I’m broken and empty and haven’t spent hours each week studying Scripture like I used to. I have no memory verses, and can barely remember to say grace before my meals. Yet I ave this idea that I have to go and be sharp to sharpen others, but I did go, just barely, and the Lord gave me a peace about where I am. They understand that I have a baby, that I my soul is panting and thirsty, and we are all searching for and helping each other drink from the River of Life together. College students, young wives, young moms, older widows, middle aged wives, empty nesters. People to pour into and to receive from. From the fellowship of these women, I can finally feel the Lord telling me after 7 months(if not more) that I am not alone, that I can come as I am, that He will do the work in me. He has placed in me the desire and reassured me of the importance of fellowship. I think I’ve found my home; I think I’m ready to make friends and finally put in the effort. I’ve been challenged to pray big prayers, impossible prayers for impossible things, and to be honest I didn’t know what that meant for me in this season.

I think the biggest thing for me right now is making friends and chasing vulnerability within these friendships, making room to be humbled and to be built up by the truth that will be shared. I’m thankful for the God who gives courage and never leaves my side, who sends bold words and challenges to my husband to encourage me, the God who sends women to fight these battles with me, even if they don’t realize they’re fighting.

 

I guess this is my long winded way of saying being a SAHM is freaking hard and making new friends is freaking hard, but nothing is too hard for my God and I am crushed by the beautiful weight of that glory. I have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m following the God who not only makes my path, but makes it straight

Also, please hang out with your mom friends and just endure their kid stories and the things that bring them joy. Offer to help them and hangout with them(and their kids if need be), and do life WITH them, not while they have a babysitter. Maybe even be their babysitter so they can take a shower without having to simultaneously patrol what gets thrown in the toilet. And definitely pray with them, because I promise you they need it. It will bless your heart too.