Oct 26, 2015

Life is What Happens While You're Busy Making Other Plans

I don't even know if I can put to words all the changes, growth, adjusting that has transpired in me...in my life...over the last few weeks.  I touched on it here, speaking about God changing my heart towards my sin of idolatry and gluttony, plus throwing in the desire to pursue more exercise!  

Let's just say, if you don't believe in miracles, we should talk!

hahahah! *sigh*

In that post I also mentioned how I've been reviewing my heart, our life choices and overall, examination of my life and where it's at.  A tad mid-life crisis sounding eh?! lol!!!   But then...not so funny. Because I mean, what if? What IF this is my mid point?  What if I only had another thirty some years before I stood before God and had to give an account?  What if I only had three more decades, how would I fill my days, use my time, make an impact?!   What would I do, where would I go, who would I meet, how would I make it all count?

So of course, hubby and I began dreaming, scheming almost, if you will, about what we could do, where we could go, how we should live.  We spent much time in prayer and for the last while thought we might have an inkling of where the days ahead might lead.  But God, His humour...His ways, always get me.  So while my husband and I were pondering ideas of what may lay ahead, of the big things, the little things, the everyday things, God turns us around and drops, of all things, a job into my lap!

A job??  Really??  

And in essence, it's not so much a job as a ministry opportunity....for pay...not a lot of pay but something, which is certainly helpful! lol!!  And it's crazy, it's in these moments when your faith leaps forward because this ministry is exactly something that has been on my heart for a few years now!  I am working with young pregnant and early parenting women, a demographic that has had my heart for some time but one that I never knew exactly how to help! 

My aunt and cousin had come for their annual visit this summer and my aunt had talked about how there was going to be a maternity house opening in her area, a six hour drive from here.  I thought it would be amazing to be apart of that but no way for it to happen.  Then just two short weeks ago, through a local event, I learned of just that kind of home not 30 minutes from my door!  So I met with the Executive Director and a week later began work!  

The organization is Crowns of Life but I will be working specifically for their Susan Shirley Program.  You can check out the Facebook page here or their website here.

I'm working a bit more then part time, in the evenings, to try to balance it with our schedules, as hubby's work will probably slow down over the winter but right now, he's still pretty busy.  I haven't worked outside the home in over eight years! (Other then the occasional photography shoot!)  We will have a learning curve figuring out how to balance everything, and though I worry a bit, I'm also pretty calm as I know God has a plan and He will work it all out!

And it's just funny, funny how we had set our sights in one direction and never would have dreamt this in a million years but yet, this is what God has placed in our laps.  It fell so fast, so perfectly and though I have my reserves about working outside the home again, I can't argue with the peace I have about it all!  I have no idea how long this season will last and so we are taking it as it comes, one day at a time!

My title for this post is a John Lennon quote, not that I'm a big Beatles fan but just something I found articulated my feelings well.  That while we plan and ponder on the days ahead, life just keeps on keeping on.  That we can dream and plan but yet not lose sight of the now, of the things God brings along and places in our path.  I know we, (hubby and I) often struggle with just how much we are to do, how and when we are to be active participants in God's plans or when to just wait patiently.   I wish I had answers to that, but I don't.  What I do know is that when you wait on the Lord, regardless of  your plans, He is faithful to answer.

And so, we will continue to pray about the days ahead.  We make plans, ponder ideas, scheme dreams but in the mean time we live the life given.  Working to not forget that life is all the moments, the big, the little, the mundane and the grand adventures!  

Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans.


Oct 12, 2015

The Irresistible Community by Bill Donahue :: Review

The Irresistible Community is one of those books you just want to dog-ear, highlight and note take, the whole way through it!  Buuuut, I'm not one of those people....so I just book marked many of my favourite spots...and then decided I should just re-read it again after!  Yes, it was that good!

It was that good in that Mr. Donahue writes all about an area that I think is very much neglected and or missing in many 'churches' today!  The theme of the book is all about building a strong, healthy and biblical community within the church(body).  Using three components of the last supper, the table, the towel and the truth, Donahue builds a convincing and inspiring case about the need of community for believers and what that should look like.

The only thing I did not like about the book was the opening of each chapter, and this is truly just a personal opinion thing.  The author begins each chapter with a short piece written as from a first person perspective of each of the twelve disciples.  He writes well but for me, I'm never a fan of people adding to what we know in scripture about the thoughts and feelings of the people in the Bible.  I chose to not watch movies that portray the same idea, not saying there is anything wrong with it and I know people who greatly enjoy this, but it's not for me.

But honestly that was all I did not like!  I look forward to reading The Irresistible Community again and will maybe break my rule of keeping it pristine and really get into it with highlighters, pen and note book!  I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to grow in a community feel with other believers, to better understand how we should respond, care and act with our brothers and sisters in the Lord and what our calling to our local communities should be as children of God.

I received a copy of this book, from the publisher, in exchange for my unbiased review.


Oct 7, 2015

This Season of Change

Well, Fall has officially settled in...both on the calendar and in the air.  The leaves are changing to their brilliant colours, giving a feast for the eyes where ever they turn.  My cardigans have been freed from the bottom of the dresser drawers and leather boots have replaced sweet Summer sandals. 

A perfect Sunday afternoon had us all taking a walk.  We sought out our apple tree....well one of the few we have, but one that was promising in abundance.   And abundance it had, and so we harvested a small basket full with plans to return another day for more.

. .
It was neat to taste these red treasures, for only a week ago they were much to tart to enjoy but a week and a frost later, we have some sweet treats to both eat fresh and bake up with!  Isn't it crazy how fast things can change....how a week....a day...a minute can change so much!?

I find the season of Autumn riddled with change...or at least the option/hope/expectation of it.  I mean, there is the obvious seasonal changes, the leaves, the coolness, back to school, new routines and for many of us a want or desire to rearrange furniture, paint rooms, switch out decor items, ect.


But for me this year...Autumn has brought with it, a change of heart!  An answered prayer of God working on my sin of over-eating and (food) idolatry.  He is working a miracle in me and I thank Him greatly for it.  It's been a prayer for a long time now to leave this sin, to not feel it's pull and after many, many prayers He has headed my cry, but not before my heart had to line up with some hard truths. 

This is and will be a slow journey...I cannot undue years of damage overnight but He is working in me and it is one battle at a time!  But I feel the change in my heart, the pure longing to never be a slave to this sin again!  Does this mean that I will not struggle with it?! No.  No...I'm sure I will struggle all my life, this torn in my flesh, but He is great and I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!

. I have not been feeling my usual 'Fallness' as I have many years...the desire to change my decor, the baking up a storm marathons...they just aren't there but I think it's because my heavenly Father is helping me focus, this season, on the changes within.  It's not just this area of sin that has my attention as of late, but a whole life examination.  

What changes are needed, wanted, necessary....what does the Lord want me to do with these fleeting days?  How do I live eternally for Him...to spread the good news that Christ has died to set us free, to give us life?  How do I share the joy of eternal life with a God that is beyond comprehension?  How do I show that He is worth more then anything this world has to offer?


Because He is!  He is worth so much more then this fading life has to offer us.

It is one of the truths my heart finally came to understand.  That all my comfort, all my desires and all my needs are truly met in Him.  I live not by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.  This sin of mine, is more then a love of food, it's about putting something above God. For our Lord did make many wonderful gifts for us to enjoy, food being one of them, but, as with anything, it has it's place and that place is not above my God!  There are many areas that this sin, idolatry, creeps up!  And it's something I would love to eradicate from my life...

...if only it was that easy!

. I understand my fallen nature, my sin filled heart, and so the idea to walk free from loving things of this world more then loving my God, will only fully come when I see Him in all His glory.

How wonderful that will be!

So until that time, when I stand before my God and give an account for the days spent here, I will continue to change my heart, by His great grace, to be more like His.  I will work towards embracing and counting it all joys when I encounter various trials knowing the growth and good they will produce in me!  Will these changes be easy...no not always...will I still fight Him, struggle with fear, worry about tomorrow...all the while knowing better....oh yes, probably more often then I'd care to admit. But will walking worthy of His calling produce a life that will have Him saying, "Well done, good and faithful servant!"  Yes, yes it will.


And how I long to hear those words.

So as this season of change wraps it'self around you, I implore you to consider your heart.  Consider His calling on it, big, small, hard, easy, whatever that nudge is, consider the change and pray for His strength to make it.   

Just as the leaves bud each Spring, then burst forth in lush green hues, growing and reaching for the sun to, as a final testament to His glory, transform into something so unbelievably beautiful, so I want my life to reflect this wonderment we see all around us.  I want my life to be filled with and full of His glory.

Psalm 19

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky proclaims the work of His hands.
Day after day they pour out speech;
night after night they communicate knowledge.
There is no speech; there are no words;
their voice is not heard.
Their message has gone out to all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world.

In the heavens He has pitched a tent for the sun.
 It is like a groom coming from the bridal chamber;
it rejoices like an athlete running a course.
It rises from one end of the heavens
and circles to their other end;
nothing is hidden from its heat.

  The instruction of the Lord is perfect,
renewing one’s life;
the testimony of the Lord is trustworthy,
making the inexperienced wise.
 The precepts of the Lord are right,
making the heart glad;
the command of the Lord is radiant,
making the eyes light up.
 The fear of the Lord is pure,
enduring forever;
the ordinances of the Lord are reliable
and altogether righteous.
 They are more desirable than gold—
than an abundance of pure gold;
and sweeter than honey,
which comes from the honeycomb.
 In addition, Your servant is warned by them;
there is great reward in keeping them.

 Who perceives his unintentional sins?
Cleanse me from my hidden faults.
 Moreover, keep Your servant from wilful sins;
do not let them rule over me.
Then I will be innocent
and cleansed from blatant rebellion.
 May the words of my mouth
and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable to You,
Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.


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