scraps and finished products

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Oh, it’s almost Wednesday, y’all. When I say I am so ready to get to Saturday, I’m not joking. Not even a little bit.

This week is going to be so big in so many ways. I believe that this day and the ones that follow are preparing me for some pretty interesting waters. And, as much as I enjoy & desire growth, I rarely ever like the process.

One thing I struggle deeply with is my faith, and I think this is the second time I’ve realized why. lol. It’s a tough lesson for me to learn and I know I’ve been at this exact same space before – knowing and understanding this truth – but when the rubber meets the road, I completely blank.

I tend to believe God for things instead of just believing HIM. I had faith that we would get pregnant, that our fertility treatments will be successful, that our (first…. and, second) adoption will go through, or that a situation will end in my favor. So, when these things DON’T happen, I end up frustrated at God. Then, those absolutes and negative thoughts start rolling in:
Good things NEVER happen for me…I should have known that this (failure) would happen… Why did I think this would work out???

All of these thoughts make me feel so horribly about myself, my situation, and frankly about my God. Because again, God…. I’m believing You for things and you aren’t showing up. Great things are happening for others and you have left me on the sidelines. Why should I put so much faith in this when it’s not going to work out anyway?!

Until, I realized that when I believe GOD and trust His will, what happens here on this Earth is secondary. When I believe God to give me good gifts as His child, I know that what hasn’t worked out wasn’t what was best for me at the moment. I know that when I get a door slammed in my face, things are moving slowly, or I’m mistreated, I BELIEVE God when he says that all things work together for good for those who love God & who are called according to His purpose.

WHEN I BELIEVE GOD for His BEST for ME, I am able to accept the ups and downs of life with a broader, more balanced perspective of life. A perspective that grows my faith and doesn’t leave me questioning my Creator.

Tonight, I made little invitation cards for the staff. NOTHING fancy whatsoever. And, I mean that with all of the truth in all the world. lol. As I was cutting the paper, God showed me a pretty amazing lesson.

No one cares about the scraps of paper that have been cut off of this final product.
As fancy as it is NOT, what isn’t needed doesn’t stay.

Just like cutting split ends or damaged hair. Yes, it sucks because we’re attached and our hair seemed longer, but without these dead ends, our hair is able to grow healthier, longer, and it looks ten billion times better! It tangles and sheds less.

The result is all around better because of what was removed. 

I’m considering all the pruning God is doing to my character and person…. Only He knows what the final outcome will be. Only he knows what He has specifically created me to look like. Everything that is cut away and done away with is for my benefit.

It may seem as if I have less “hair” or less “paper”, but the product is much more beneficial.

Believe, beloved. 

Believe that God’s best is waiting for you. Believe God because He is God.
Trust Him and His plans not because we’ve reviwed them and given the blueprint of our life our stamp of approval.
Believe Him because of who he is. HIs character. His promises. His ability & willingness.

God is always good…. even when we’re left out, mistreated, disappointed, and didn’t get what we want. God is working on our behalf. Working in areas we would never imagine to look, working with people we couldn’t network enough to meet.

God is doing good things for us. He is. THAT is what I choose to believe. That God is on my side. That I am His, and He is mine.

So, with that….. no matter what or how much is pruned, no matter how painful the process, no matter what – I believe in my God. Of course, I pray for the things I desire because he tells me to. But, I choose not to focus so much on that THING, that I lose sight of the Provider.

Enter wail emoji…… because the scariest part is that you never, ever know what will be taken away. But, the one thing I do know is that I’m not in a position to dictate what should be kept and what should be tossed aside.

btw, have you ever read God’s response to Job’s (understandable) questioning and depression? Read Job 38 here…. It’ll put so much into perspective! And, if you’re not too convicted keep going… I stopped at 40. I’ll repent and continue to read soon. It just stung too dern much.

.. here’s to trusting God in all things.

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… peace in the mornings

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Being a teacher has a few perks…….. One of them being plenty of breaks & one of the others is cancelled class/school due to “inclement” weather. Southern/Texan/Houstonian inclement weather is worlds apart from Northern/East coast inclement weather, but I will definitely take what I can get! I will NOT complain!!

This morning afforded me time to wake up and enter the day quietly. Without my mind (or alarm clock) bugging and reminding me that I needed to get moving. I have a tendency to stay up too late & exhaust myself which makes mornings pretty rough. So, as much as I’d like to ease into the mornings, my quiet time doesn’t usually come until I’m at school putting on my makeup in my classroom’s bathroom.

(Can you hear the need for quiet? For rest??)

Squeezing in quiet time while greeting my students, making sure they’re turning in homework, going to breakfast, or talking to each other with an “inside voice” is not really quiet time. And, definitely isn’t focused or peaceful.

I was grateful for this morning. Grateful for the peace. And, opportunity to rest in God’s presence while turning over my frustrations/concerns and thanking Him for His peace, our girls, & His very own presence.

Last week, I realized just how much peace & calmness I needed.
I got a deep tissue massage and my therapist was shocked at my “concrete” back. I had so many wound up muscles that had to be released in my neck & back. I realized a few things. One, I hold tension in my back. I’ve come to know that my normal isn’t healthy. Two, I need regular massages. Three, I need to relax. & get back to stretching & practicing yoga regularly.

I need to relax. And, rest.
And, it’s a skill I’m going to have to teach myself that involves turning everything over to Jesus every moment they arise. All of the concerns, worries, fears, & frustrations.

It was a wonderful thing to enjoy quiet mornings and calm, released muscles. I can almost feel myself tightening up again so I’ve been careful about my posture and stretching every moment I can.

I know that self care comes a happier and more joyous spirit, a more patient teacher & wife, & a more available friend…. We’re our best selves when we’re taken care of.
I’m working to teach/train myself to take better care of my body. To rest well. To really cast my cares. And, to be gracious to myself towards myself; especially in those moments when I’m not my best self. Instead of beating myself up about it- cover myself in grace & give my feelings to God to work out. And, rest in His presence. That absolutely means
respectfully & lovingly not responding and being still. 🙂

I hope your mornings were peaceful and easy!!!! It’s definitely a practice I’m ready to learn!

…. here’s to getting my complete fill of Jesus in in the mornings, accepting the peace he offers, & resting in His presence & grace!

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