Archives for August 2011

De-Busying Life Lesson 2: Make a Menu (or Buy One:)

Those of you who know me, know I am a planner and an organizer – usually.  But, if it’s not something I like, I choose not to plan or organize. So, when it comes to cooking, I just ask my family each evening – what do you want?  We discuss it for 30 minutes, often squabble about it, and then end up going somewhere.  In fact, this question…what’s for dinner? …often causes more tension and stress between Steve and I than most anything because he’s a diabetic, and I am training for a half marathon.  So, we both want something healthy, but no one wants to run to the store, get the stuff, etc.

So, here’s how we’ve resolved this problem:  E-mealz

E-mealz is $15 for 3 months/$5 a month.  Each Wednesday, I download the week’s menu (with recipes and store list) from the E-mealz website.  We opted for the Low-Carb Wal-mart menu because we both each low carb and mostly shop at Wal-mart, but there are tons of eating preference/store combinations from which to choose.  We don’t like everything on the menu, so we choose the four or maybe five we like best, I create a weekly menu, and I highlight what I need to buy on the store list.

So, what’s for dinner? is now…Look at the menu:)  Time saved?  No squabbling and fewer trips to the store!

LINKS

E-mealz

 

Sample Menu

E-mealz Facebook page

(For more on how it all works, click here.)

Connecting with Your Kids

If your church uses 252 Basics as part of the children’s ministry – as FBCW does – consider downloading the free app Parent Cue to your phone.  My friend, Mike, posted it on his blog earlier today, and  I downloaded it this evening.  It seems (so far) like a great resource for parents.  It’s divided into Drive Time, Hang Time, Meal Time, and Parent Time with questions, articles, videos, songs, and activities linked and ready to go – a definite time saver.  Here’s a screenshot from iTunes (although I have an Android phone and had no trouble finding it in the “market” on my phone).

Even though Parent Cue changes with the monthly virtue your child is learning as part of 252 Basics, I think it’s great for any parent regardless of the curriculum your church may use.  And…it’s free – woohoo!  (My favorite part?  Parent Time – Articles – Staying On Task – Creating a Family Plan:)

Links

Parent Cue (from the Orange Blog)

Staying on Task:  Creating a Family Plan

Give Grace

I am feeling a little cruddy this evening, so I headed to my husband’s recliner to rest while I learn my script for tomorrow morning’s UpStreet.  (For those who don’t know, UpStreet is our way cool “children’s church” at FBCW.)  I am sharing the storyteller duties with my friend, Tessa, in the morning.

As I read the script, I was struck by the prayer at the end:  “God, thank You so much for Your grace – thank You for giving us wonderful things that we don’t deserve.  Help us to give grace to others, just as You give us the grace we need.  Amen.”

Not a long prayer.  A prayer intended for those in grades K-5.  But, it hit me square in the heart.

As I walked this evening, my iPod died.  I had just listened to part one of the RE series from Life Church.  The RE topic?  Remember.  My iPod dies just as Part 2 – Repentance begins.  So, I have 5 miles left and no podcast.  Hmmm…what to do?  It’s so quiet and peaceful along the Ohio River that I opt for taking in nature and some prayer time.

The first thing I see?  A super cute squirrel making all kinds of racket as he played with a nut on a branch above my head.  He made me smile and think, “Why do I stress so much?  Look at me.  I am healthy, I can walk, I have a beautiful town to walk in, I am surrounded by God’s creation, and on and on.”  That squirrel’s got nothin’ but a tree and a nut…maybe a squirrel friend nearby…and he’s super happy!  I really am a blessed gal:)

Those thoughts turned to, “If I am so blessed, why I am so hard on myself? Why can’t I accept my blessed status?”  And, the RE sermon comes to mind:  Remember.  I begin remembering some of my past triumphs and failures.  Immediately, the failures overtake the triumphs, and I begin dwelling on a few – mainly, my previous attempt at being a stay-at-home mom.  And, again, I ask myself: Why I am dwelling on the bad instead of reveling in the good?  Why am I so hard on myself?

Sadly, I am not the only one.

After my last blog post, Need an Umbrella?, I received a variety of texts and emails – each one a blessing to me.  One email was from a friend back home who is struggling to let go and let God.   Her husband may be without a job soon, and she’s stressing over finances and the future.  She said she wants to trust God in the uncertainty, but her “obsessive side” keeps kicking in.  This friend is one of the most sincere, Godly women I know.  And, I think of her as I walk…thinking…she’s being too hard on herself too.

This has me thinking of friends, situations, and recent conservations.  I notice a thread woven throughout the lives of many women I know:  they are too hard on themselves.  Who set the bar so high?  Why do women feel so pressured to live up to ____________[insert your own thing here]!

Do all of us have issues?  Yep.  Do we all have work to do on said issues?  Yep.  Do we need to trust in Him to help us with these issues?  For sure.  But, through the work and growth, can’t we just take it a little easier on our friends and ourselves?  Quit judging others and self-deprecating?  If you gain a pound, take a look at your week and see what happened, but don’t beat yourself up.  If you have a bad day, make a bad decision, trust in self much and God little – whatever it is – give yourself some grace.  No, don’t make lame excuses and justify.  But, just as you extend grace to others, please extend some to yourself.

Tomorrow’s UpStreet story is about The Prodigal Son (Luke 15: 1-32).  The father definitely extended grace to the son.  But, I wonder how the young son felt?  Did he give himself any grace?  Or, did he beat himself up for (very!) poor decisions and behavior?  I also wonder if the older brother – the faithful one who stayed at home and obedient – ever had a change of heart and extended grace.  I know, it’s a parable. But, still, this grace thing has me pondering.

I hope you extend grace to others – and yourself – today.  No, you don’t deserve it, and neither do those to whom you extend it, which is what makes grace so amazing.

Links

The Prodigal Son (Luke 15: 1-32)

Life Church

RE Sermon Series from Life Church (Remember, Repentance, Renew, and Remain)

Need an Umbrella?

De-busying Life Lesson 1: The Social Media/ Technology Diet

This week I’ve been on a partial technology diet.  I have times when I check email, Facebook, and Twitter.  I leave my phone in the car or at home if I’m going to be with people, especially those who need my attention (Or maybe I just think they do;).  I don’t take my phone in restaurants either.  When I am home, I keep my phone on vibrate and in the kitchen.  If I hear it, fine; if not, fine.  Note:  I’ve yet to miss anything earth shattering;)

I’m not giving social media up completely.  I get too many smiles from reading about the adventures of my friends.  I loved all the back to school pics, and I love reading about my friends’ kiddos making cheerleader or the volleyball team.  I also love Twitter.  I learn a ton from various blog posts and book recommendations.

But, as I started “teaching” I knew I had to find a balance.  My computer is in front of me all day – mainly so I can Google my kids’ questions!  Who knew 3rd and 6th grades would be so challenging?!?!  The downside of having my computer in front of me?  The Twitter and Facebook tabs are right beside my Google tab.   So, they had to go, and email is only allowed if it’s directly related to what I am working on at the moment.

If you’re thinking, “Limiting social media will not help me de-busy my life,” I urge you to keep track (honestly!) for a few days.  I was shocked how much I scroll through Twitter as I wait for a table in a restaurant or wait for my daughter at dance instead of talking to my family (or other people) – and, yes, all three of my family members are usually electronically engaged as well.  But, no more.  We all like technology, but if we’re going to de-busy and really know each other, this is where we’re starting. Baby steps:)

Here’s my fav two blogs posts on this topic:

The Act of Presence by Jeff Shinaberger via Plywood People

Taking a Break from Technology by Jeff Goins

Do you think a technology diet could impact you and your family?  Could the scrolling time become family time?  I am interested to know what strategies/rules some of you use or if you think I am crazy:)

Need an Umbrella?

As I sit in a quiet house and listen to the storm this morning, I keep thinking about “storms” in my life – both literally and figuratively.

I remember our trailer being flooded (a few times) when I was growing up.  As soon as the downpour began, my dad would pace the hall, peek through the tiny back window, and watch the creek rise.  I remember my grandpa wearing waders as he carried me to “higher” ground during one of the worst floods.

I’ve also had some figurative storms in my life.  My dad’s sudden death at the age of 56 tops the list.  Some storms I’ve weathered alone  – or with a few friends – difficult times through which I have grown, but I am glad they’ve dissipated.

Yesterday, I was walking about an hour later than usual, and I could definitely see and feel the storm brewing as I crossed the Harmar Bridge.  Part of me thought, “turn back.”  The other part was secretly delighted I’d have an excuse to play in the rain!  And, I did!

But, as I neared the gazebo along the Ohio River, I noticed a car following me.  When I turned, the woman motioned for me to wait.  She exited her car, and I recognized her as we’d met while serving together in Honduras on the same mission team.  She said, “I was heading to school this morning and saw you walking in the rain, so I brought you an umbrella.”  Really?   She’s turned around while rushing to school, navigated the side streets, and ventured out in the rain to give me an umbrella?  I was already wet – happily so – but I can’t tell you how much that bright yellow umbrella meant and means to me.

I tried to refuse her gift, but she insisted.  The rain was a mere sprinkle by then, yet she thought I might need it as I finished my walk.  Now, that umbrella is sitting beside me in my dining room as a reminder that we need “umbrellas” in our lives – people who are willing to come alongside us, love us, give us strength when we have none.  People who offer a gift as Linda did this morning or who lend an ear for hours.  In fact, just now my husband came flying down the stairs, keys in hand.  He said, “Oh, I was just coming to get you!”  He thought I was out walking in the storm, and he was coming to get me.  See?  We need “umbrellas” in this life.

All this storm talk sent me to Mark 4:35-41.  Jesus and his disciples are in a boat during a storm.  Jesus is sleeping through the storm, but his disciples awaken him because they’re frightened.  Jesus first calms the storm, then turns and asks his followers two questions I often ask myself:   “Why are you so afraid?  Do you still have no faith?”

I can’t help but think…ummmm…you were with Jesus, and you were scared because?!?! [Insert big sigh here.]  I, too, am with Jesus.  Why do I fear in the storms?  Do I not have faith that He’ll bring me through by being my “umbrella” and surrounding me with “umbrellas” who love me?  Hasn’t he helped me weather storms in the past?  Admittedly, I have been experiencing some fear lately as I transition to being at home:  finances (I have no salary this year), parenting (the weight of responsibility for my children’s education – spiritually and academically – since I’ve never taken responsibility for these before), and time management (wanting to do it all, but knowing I can’t and shouldn’t).

So, as the lightening flashes this morning, I am amping up my faith. Although I know a little fear is OK, I know my faith in Him and my prayers to Him are the consistent umbrellas that will bring me through daily – along with some awesome friends and two “awesomer” accountability gals.

What are your storms today?  Are you scared?  Pray.  Read His Word.  Know He’s God.  And, find an umbrella  – someone whom you can trust to love and stand with you through it.

(Note:  My favorite “umbrella” just made me coffee:)

8/24/88: Memories

This evening I’ve been cleaning out our sunroom, so we can transition it into my husband’s office.  As I sorted books, I came upon two old Bibles – one a gift for my high school graduation and one given to me in commemoration of the day I accepted Christ.

It was emotional to remember that day:  July 24, 1988.  I had gone to church camp with a friend.  I was 12 years old…almost 13.  I remember sitting on a log bench listening as the pastor shared the gospel; I can see and hear him still.   God’s calling to me was unmistakable in that moment.  I knelt at an altar fashioned out of stacked stones amid tall trees.  I remember the sunlight streaming through the trees, my peers singing praises acappella, and my young tween heart praying – knowing I would never be the same.

Fast forward 23 years…almost to the exact same day:  July 27, 2011.  I sat and listened as my son, Owen, talked with our children’s pastor – also our friend – and accepted Christ as his Savior.  So, today, as I looked at my Bible from 1988, I was amazed as I thought about God’s plan and work in my life over the past 23 years.  He knew when I walked forward in 1988 that 23 years later I would sit with my son as he accepted Christ.   He knew I’d be a wife and mom.  He knew my dad would be gone, and I would leave the church wishing I could share Owen’s salvation with him.  I could go and on and on with “he knew’s” – I’ve been overwhelmed with them this evening.  And, with each one of them I remember, I am more and more amazed at the God of the Universe’s work in my life.

Since school began on Monday, I have struggled a bit with not returning to my job.  But, after today (although I may still struggle), I find complete contentment in knowing God is sovereign.  He sees the bigger picture, and He knows why and how my life is as it is.  Would I like to know too?  Somedays, yes.  But, as I reflect on the past 23 years…the twists, turns, grief, happiness, joy, devastation – situations that seem unforgivable, deaths that seem unfair and untimely mixed with moments that are unforgettable, joys that know no boundaries…I have decided I like not knowing.  I like trusting in the LORD with all my heart and leaning not on my own understanding (Proverbs 3:5).  And, I am so glad that my thoughts are not His thoughts, neither are my ways His ways.  (Isaiah 55:8).

I don’t know what you’re experiencing today.  My friend’s sister has been sick for a while with no answers.  Another friend’s dad is sick and answers are few.  My mom called me today about a brief she’s prepping for the Supreme Court – a case that touched our lives when I was in college but was recently overturned.  My son’s preschool teacher is fighting for her life as she suffers with cancer.  I could go on.  I know so many who are facing tough times today.

My prayer for each of them and you is that you lean into and rest in Him and his sovereignty.  He loves you immeasurably.  Pray and know that He has a bigger and better plan than any of us could ever imagine.

149: The Series of Unfortunate Events

On Friday night I was sitting on the hotel bed in Columbus, Ohio – Room 149 – when my husband, Steve, asks, “Where’s the toiletry bag?”  He’s referring to the big navy blue bag that I pack for every trip.   It houses all the Farish family beauty supplies:  shampoo, flat iron, hair gel, etc.  I look at him, he looks at me, and we instantly know it’s at home – 2 hours away.   It’s too late to go gather the supplies, so we agree to make due and stop at a Wal-Mart on the way to my son’s soccer games the next morning.

Morning comes. My hair is a crazy mess from hotel shampoo, no flat iron, and no hairspray.  We have toothbrushes, but  I have no make-up.  If you know me well, this is a travesty!  As we drive from Columbus to Springfield, there’s not much of anything – no Wal-Mart or any mart in sight.  Steve opts to take Owen to the soccer fields, leaving Hannah and me to locate beauty products. He gets a grrrr…. because I feel abandoned in my time of need.

My day goes from bad to worse.  The GPS fails me, telling me “I’ve reached my destination” while I am driving on the interstate.  Hannah sees a Target, so we exit – woohoo!  I’d rather go to Target than WalMart!  As we exit the car, my purse strap breaks.  My watch, a part of my cool watch collection, breaks.  I finally locate my sunglasses – in the floor, under my computer bag, earpiece snapped off.  After paying $93.00 in Target for make-up, toiletries, and a flat iron, I discover the Target bathroom has no electric outlet.  My hair remains crinkly.

The entire time Hannah is watching me carefully; I can tell she’s being cautious.  Hmmm…wonder why?   I know why:  usually such a succession of events would put me over the edge.  I might not yell or scream or anything like that, but I am just not as joyful or fun – I’m perturbed.  I can tell Hannah’s thinking…mom’s going to be in a bad mood.

Except, I wasn’t. I show up at the soccer fields with crinkled hair, no make-up, lopsided sunglasses (yes, I wore the broken ones), a safety-penned purse, and a black watch with a blue fastener (yep, I fixed my watch with another one).  I take a seat only to watch my son and husband (his coach) lose their first game of the season.  (Oh, and our sunscreen is in the toiletry bag, so we all get a nice burn!)

In my head, I am a mess – look a mess.  Funny, no one else thinks so – least of all my family and friends.  In fact, I share my sorrows with them, and we all laugh about this series of unfortunate events.

Fast-forward a few hours.  We’re checking into our second hotel of the weekend; this time in Springfield.  Being the trooper that I am, I unload the car onto the luggage cart as Steve checks in.  As I surprise Steve with my efficiency, the lady behind the desk explains that pulling around to the back would be easier.  No way!  I’ve already loaded the cart, lady!  So, the kids and I begin looking for the room while Steve parks.  OH MY WORD!  We could NOT find our room.  Finally, Steve helps us find Room 149…yes, that’s right…the SAME room number!

I am stuck with 149.  I do what most everyone does when stuck:  I Google.  In fact, I Google Psalm 149.  I know, I know.  That’s the equivalent of opening the Bible randomly, placing your finger on a verse, etc.  Shallow, huh?  Maybe.  But, Psalm 149 said this:  Praise the LORD!  Sing to the LORD.  The entire Psalm is one of rejoicing.  I won’t provide a two-page contextual analysis of Psalm 149; I am not that adept at Biblical analysis anyway.  Yet, I can tell you this:  Praise Him – in all things, at all times.

It’s so easy to get wrapped up in this world.  I should know.  As I told my friend, Tracy, while we watched her son play soccer:  If I were headed to school on Monday, I would not have even come to the soccer tournament.  I would’ve spent the entire weekend in my classroom preparing. Instead, I was honored to be Owen’s mom and Steve’s wife throughout the weekend.  I felt so blessed and content to simply sit on the sidelines and cheer for them – both figuratively and literally.  I also know that teacher Sarah would’ve been stressed to the max by those little life interruptions – especially the crinkled hair!  But, instead I laughed  – and simply enjoyed the weekend.

As summer comes to an end and each of you readjust to schedules this week, I pray you delight in your family – and don’t sweat the small stuff:)  Instead, find contentment in Him, brushing aside and even laughing at the small things – those things that build and often lead to outburst or breakdown.  My prayer is that you follow 149:  Praise him!

Links

Psalm 149

22: Struggles with Prayer

Prayer…I’ve struggled with it since I accepted Christ at age 13 – 22 years ago!  It’s been a recurring topic in my quiet and study times this week.  Even in care group on Tuesday we discussed prayer a bit.  Someone asked, “Can God change his mind?”  My immediate thought?  No   Our pastor’s answer?  Yes.  Huh?  In the past when I have prayed, I didn’t exactly think God would change his mind.  So, why pray?  Honestly, before this week, I prayed because the Bible says to, it’s the way to communicate with God, and it simply makes me feel better about the situation – as if I’ve given the burden over to God and some of my responsibility has been relieved.

I’ll admit:  I struggle with prayer.  I have no trouble studying God’s word or having a quiet time.  I have no trouble fellowshipping.  I have no trouble attending church or serving others.  But, prayer isn’t as easy.  I’ve thought and thought about this struggle since Tuesday, and here are my lame reasons for not prioritizing prayer: not enough time; I fall asleep; seems I am always asking, asking instead of thanking, thanking; sometimes I don’t “feel” like God’s listening.  I KNOW he is, but things aren’t changing so I doubt.

After our care group exchange, I prayed:  God, help me with this prayer thing.  Please, Lord, help to have a new understanding and need within to pray, pray, pray.  The next morning as I walked I listened to J.D. Greear, a guest speaker at the Village Church in Texas.  There was one idea from this podcast that stuck with me:  prayerlessness at its core is a gospel problem; prayerlessness comes from not understanding and/or not believing what the gospel says about you or what the gospel says about God. Now, I am still unpacking that statement and its implications for me.  But, if my lack of prayer – that is, my inability to truly believe that prayer changes things and should be farther up the priority list – is a gospel problem, that’s telling.

Greear went on to say that when humility and faith have been formed in my soul by the gospel then prayer will become as instinctive and natural to me as breathing.  Prayer flows out of what we crave – God.  That forced me to ask, “Do I crave God? “  I think so, but I can’t say I know so.  I obviously need work there too.

The kicker for me was Greear’s Biblical examples of bold, persistent prayer changing things.  Sorry, I can’t begin to explain or answer all questions about the sovereignty of God and how this all works – those who know Mike Berry can ask him as he gave our care group a very quantum physics answer that far outreaches my intelligence level.  Yet, while I can’t explain it, I know prayer changes things.  I read through each of these examples:

All of these passages demonstrate the results of persistence in prayer.  I know God’s not surprised by my prayer – he doesn’t say, “Woah, didn’t know THAT was coming!” Both Isaiah 46:10 and Philippians 2: 12-13 speak to this.

Obviously, I simply don’t have all this figured out.  In fact, I’ve been pondering this potential post since Tuesday at 7:00 a.m. trying to figure it all out.  Who wants to share a struggle without supplying the solution?  Not me because I like to have all the answers.  While I don’t have a solution, I do know one thing:  when we start school on Monday, I am starting with the gospel.   I want to make sure Hannah and Owen understand the gospel  – the awe and wonder of it all.  And, I want to explore prayerlessness as a gospel issue in my own life.

I have always believed my prayers matter – to God and to the situation for which I’m praying.  But, I feel a renewed purpose in my prayer  – a new need for persistence and perseverance in prayer.  What about you?  How’s your prayer life?  Is prayer instinctive in your life – like breathing?  Or, do you almost feel a need to schedule it?  Do you agree that prayerlessness is a gospel issue?   Can prayer “change” God’s mind?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on prayer.

I also appreciate each text, email, comment, and phone call I’ve received in support of these 365 days of different; these words mean the world to me. Most of all, thanks for the prayers.  I know they’re key:)!

Links

J.D. Greear

The Summit Church (J.D. Greear’s home church)

The Village Church

Podcast:  Surprised by God’s Willingness – July 31, 2011

 

4: Answering a Hard Question

As I served with my care group this evening, I was asked this question:  Why are you homeschooling?  This question had only four words, but has had me thinking all evening.  Why indeed?  I know exactly why in my heart and mind, but I haven’t been asked to articulate it to anyone.

Why do any of us make drastic changes in our lives?   Something isn’t working, so change is worth the risk.  What’s not working that caused our change?  Our public school system?  Maybe.  But, as a public school teacher, I know the system inside and out.  My fellow teachers are working harder than ever, and while school problems are plentiful, my kids go to a fantastic school with an amazing principal, who cares about kids first and foremost.  A problematic school system may seem to be the obvious answer, but it’s not the heart issue.

How did I answer?  Simple, yet complex:  I am concerned about my kids’ foundation.  Hannah’s 11 and Owen’s 8.  As I talk to them, I realize they do not have a solid Biblical foundation.  I know, I know.  Many of you could say…I didn’t know any Bible at age 8, and I turned out just fine.  Or, they have plenty of time to learn about and grow in Christ; give them a break.  Just think…after Owen spends a few more years in UpStreet (our children’s ministry at First Baptist Church of Williamstown) and Hannah spends a few years in the Vine (our youth ministry), they’ll be good to go.  They’ll learn Bible stories, virtues, and life-applicable lessons.  Just relax, Farish’s – your kids will be fine; they’re at church every time the doors open.

Maybe that’s true.  They are pretty good kids.  But, I’ve felt more and more convicted that it’s not FBCW’s job to lay my kids’ foundation.  In fact, I know it’s not and have known that for a while.  But, in the midst of school, dance, soccer, and all that church going/serving (ironic!), when am I supposed to sit down with my family and discuss Daniel in the lion’s den or John the Baptist or even what they want to be when they grow up?  We have token prayers before meals, and both kids often ask me insightful theological questions about heaven, hell, angels, and salvation.  But, really, when do we study the Word together?  Sadly, never.

So, back to the question:  Why am I homeschooling?  I am homeschooling so I can begin each day with my kids in prayer and in the Word; so Steve and I can fully take responsibility for our children’s Biblical foundation; so Hannah and Owen are equipped to be lights in the world; so I grasp what they know and what they need to learn; so I can REALLY know my kids – who they are, what they love, what they dream.

Now, there are many other, smaller factors related to the decision Steve and I made to homeschool.  But, that is the true heart of the decision.  While I’ve tried to articulate it here, I think Tony Foreman, children’s pastor at FBCW, does a better job in his recent blog Views from the Front Porch.  I hope you’ll read it too:)

I also hope you’ll comment and share ways you take responsibility for your children’s foundation and faith.  Do you feel it’s more the church’s responsibility?  Yours? A mix of both?  How do you make time?  Tips?  Helpful hints?  I bet we can all use help and practical advice on this one.

 

Links

Views from the Front Porch

37: Friends

37:  Friends

Today I discovered a “friend” – someone I respect and have to interact with – betrayed (sorta) me.  This person questioned my integrity and made a few jokes about me.  I hate to be “dramatic” but I really was crushed.  I know – I am 35, not 16, so maybe it shouldn’t have been such a big deal.  But, it was.

So, when the clock turned 5:45, I was in no mood to go to our care group’s get together.   I am a pretty good faker, though, so I thought I’d give it go.  Besides, it was a pool party, so my kids really wanted to go.  I am so glad I went.  In addition to my new Hefty Smurf (thanks, Valerie!),my friend Angie gave me a  card, book, and CD.

It was just what I needed – and God knew it.   I looked at the book and talked to her about it a bit, but I didn’t read the card or listen to the CD until I got home.  I can’t quite articulate how much all three mean to me.  God knew…he knew I’d be in a “I am giving up; it’s not worth it” mood.  And, what did He send me through my friend?  Psalm 37 and a reminder about whom I serve.

My CD had the song “Choose” by Christy Nockels on it.  (Read the lyrics below– my new anthem:)!)  Angie had also written Psalm 37:5 on the CD and placed a note about why Christy and Nathan Nockels had written the song.  So, I Googled Psalm 37 to read the context of 37:5:  “Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this.”  One read through this Psalm, and I was overwhelmed with God saying, “let it go, Sarah.  It’s on (person who betrayed me), not you.  Pray for ____ and rest in Me.”  (See Psalm 37:8:)

I was overwhelmed by how Angie’s words fit my current situation, so I texted her and asked if I could share some of her words with you.  After explaining a tough decision she once made, Angie wrote, “God was showing me that my foundation needed to rest in Him alone.  He needed to teach me to give complete control over to Him.  I think that will take my lifetime to learn:)  He was teaching me that at times I need to ‘let go, and let God’” She then shared Hebrews 12: 1-2:  “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.  And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus.”

Tonight, I am choosing to embrace God’s message through Angie.  (And, if you know me well, you know that I want nothing more than to confront the person and throw a mini fit!)  But, no way.  I will commit my way to the Lord, throw off everything that hinders what I KNOW God has called me to do, and fix my eyes on Jesus. Moreover, I will pray the words of Christy Nockels’ song:  “Let me be in love with what you love, let me most satisfied in you, forsaking what this world has offered me, I choose to be in love with you.”

There’s no way my friend knew the impact of her song or her words, but God did.  He sent me what I needed, when I needed it.  If you’ve had a God moment like this recently, I pray you’d share it as a comment.  It’s so encouraging to see how He’s at work in our lives.  And, if you’re struggling with betrayal, I encourage you to seek Him before you confront the person.  While I am choosing not to confront the person, you may need to, but before you do, please pray and prepare your heart.   Choose to be in love with Him and show his love to others.

Links

Psalm 37

Hebrews 12

Christy Nockels “Choose” Lyrics

Christy Nockels “Choose” Video

The book Angie gave me: Breathe