Tuesday, September 4, 2012

What a Year Can Bring

I began this blog one year ago today, and I thought I'd commemorate the event with, what else?  Another post.  :)

I started writing here as a place to share my thoughts, however random they might be - to share life with others, and hopefully glean a thing or two along the way.  I haven't been as intentional about writing as I'd hoped to be, and while I don't regret spending less time on the computer, part of my goal for this blog was to literally just write more.  Time to re-evaluate and move forward!

What an amazing year it has been.  It's hard to believe that's all the time that has passed, to tell you the truth.  I now have a little girl who seems so grown up.  At nearly 18 months, she's talking (although much of it is still only remotely intelligible), plays dress up, sings and dances, "reads" books, and can <help> set the table.  :)  My heart swells to the point of bursting every time I look at her with her dimpled smile and curly hair.  I am so incredibly blessed, and amazed that she's mine.

It's amazing what a year can teach you.  I've learned so much about being too self-reliant.  Trying too hard to do things on my own strength, instead of living with grace, toward myself as much as toward others.  I've learned as a Mother (perhaps not for the last time!) that I can't always "fix" everything.  Sometimes my little girl just has to deal with the consequences of being naughty.  Sometimes I can't make the tears from the teething go away.  Sometimes I can't ease her frustration when she's trying to learn something new.  The thing is, I learned that not only is it okay, sometimes it's necessary!  I think about how God "parents" me, and how so many times he lovingly shepherds me the same way.

This year my husband celebrated a milestone birthday, and I realized all over again how deeply I love this compassionate, patient, incredible man that I am privileged to spend yet another year with.  I am still in awe that God brought us together.  This year we will celebrate half a decade of marriage (sounds like so much longer than 5 years!).  ;)  I am amazed that he chose me, of all the girls he could have chosen, and so thankful to belong to such a gracious, tender-hearted man as Nate.

This year has taught us a lot about our marriage as well.  We've learned that marriage is about more than servanthood, it's even about more than modeling what real love looks like day in and day out.  At it's core, our marriage is designed by God to mirror Christ and his relationship with the Church.  A high calling!  A radical one, in the eyes of our culture, and one that we cry out for strength daily to achieve.  It can never happen through our effort alone.

This year been one of sojourning for us as well.  We are no nearer to finding a permanent church family to call home, and while we are discouraged, we have not lost hope!  We continue to seek God's face as we know that His plan is perfect, and our ultimate desire is to glorify Him with our decision, and with all that follows.

A year goes by so quickly!  It's true what they say: the older you get, the faster time goes!  :)  What has this past year brought you?  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

To the journey,

Sunday, September 2, 2012

90 Days, or Not?

Well, Kids, my 90 days were up on September 1st (I guess I missed the 60 day update - whoops!), and I'm now in *drumroll please* Psalms!  Haha.  I really had expected to be further along by now (obviously) but for whatever reason, I kind of got hung up once I hit Nehemiah.  Go figure, right?  I read all the way through Leviticus and Numbers with dogged determination, and once I get to the part about the Israelites returning from exile, I kind of went kaput.

Still, once I got past the "they started re-building the wall until so and so made trouble and they stopped again" parts, I was okay.  Don't get me wrong, I still found in interesting, especially the ways that God changed the hearts of these foreign kings to not only allow the Israelites to return and begin re-building, but also to fund the project!  Can you imagine?

The story of Esther has always been one of my favorites (talk about a strong woman!!), so I breezed right through that book.  Her trust in the Lord in the face of extreme persecution (and the potential extermination of her people) is always so incredible to me.  Something she says near the end of the story when she's about to beg for her people's survival has always stuck with me:

“Go, gather all the Jews to be found in Susa, and hold a fast on my behalf, and do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my young women will also fast as you do. Then I will go to the king, though it is against the law, and if I perish, I perish.”  - Esther 4:16 (emphasis mine)

That's the kind of woman I want to be!

Job always makes me re-think my perspective of "fair".  If you could ever ask for a picture of a Sovereign God who loves us in the midst of allowing us to walk the hard road, Job is it.  I just love the dialogue between God and Job beginning in chapter 38.  Can you imagine God talking to you from inside a tornado??

I am looking forward to continuing on, if not at the pace of 90 days.  :)  Maybe Dad was right, and it will be more like 180.  haha

"Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Father's Son, in truth and love."  - 2 John 1:3

Here's to the journey!