Friday, February 26, 2016

Claiming Truth in the Trenches of Life

Have you ever had one of those weeks.... as a whole the week was generally good, but it seemed as though there were one or two little things each day that pulled you down?  That was my week.  Many good things happened this week, and it was clear that God was working, but it was also clear that the enemy was also working overtime to try to knock down what God had been building up.

Being in a helping profession I find myself at times burdened by the choices of other people.  I feel a heavy heart for them and a burden to pray.  I am so thankful God has given me a heart for people, but there are times when it can be overwhelming as you look into their lives and see the hurt, the pain and the choices.  It breaks my heart... but if my heart is this broken, imagine the level of hurt the Lord feels as we watches his children struggle.

I also struggle to know my role.  This was definitely a struggle while we were away last year in Romania, but honestly I think it is an underlying struggle that has continued to lay heavy on my heart.  There are days in my quest to know what I am called to do that I flourish.... but there are also days in the journey that I just want to "pack my bags" and move on to something new.

I struggle with being overly sensitive.... I know that there are times when people say and do things that aren't meant to hurt, but they seem to anyway.  Times that I work really hard on something just to have it brushed aside.... or thrown out.  I wish I wasn't so sensitive.... I wish I could just let things roll off my back like so many other.  I was just thinking last night... I probably should never write that book that I have been thinking about, because I will never be able to handle the critiquing that comes along with it.  I guess my hard outside shell can't always protect my ultra sensitive core of who I am.

I wonder sometimes if this is God's way of teaching me something.... I also wonder if it is God's way of answering my prayers to continue to drawn me into a closer relationship with him.  A relationship of being more than doing, a relationship of trusting and relying on Him instead of me calling the shots.  A relationship of brokenness turned to beauty.  A relationship of being loved unconditionally without me having to do anything - ANYTHING to earn his love.

So today I will be reminded of these truths to claim as I struggle to not feel defeated:

1.  "I am fearfully and wonderfully made"- he gave me a heart to care for people, he allowed me to be sensitive (though I do know I am at times overly sensitive).

2.  "God is my refuge and strength"  - He is all I need to weather the storms of my life.  I need nothing else.

3.  He has a plan for me.  His plan is perfect and I claim that promise today!  He created me to be a reflection of Him and that is how I must define success.

4.  "Holy and Blameless" - Because of the cross - I am Holy and Blameless.  This one I struggle with an 18 inch problem (the distance from my head to my heart).... I know it to be true in my head, but I struggle to live it and experience it in my heart.  Today I will claim it!

5.  "Be still and know that I am God"  - He's got this.... now I need to rest in Him and his promises!  I give up trying to do for others on my own strength..... today let me be reminded to just BE forgiven, BE loved, and BE still in the presence of the creator.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

An Adoption Story & Reunion Retold

My Mom and Dad
It is hard to believe it has been three years since my reunion with my birth mother. I am so grateful for God's faithfulness though my journey. I am thankful for His perfect timing and wisdom... I am thankful for Nancy who loved me enough to choose life and share me with another family.  I am thankful for my Mom and my Dad who loved me and cared for me the last 40 years (oh my that sounds old). So for this journey filled with ups and downs I am grateful!

My birth mother Nancy, Amanda (my half sister) 
Cindy (my half sister on my birth father's side)

Here is a link to an article that was just in the Daily Item this week.

Monday, February 01, 2016

With All My Heart

Today marks the start of what I hope to be a new February tradition for our family. The wall of hearts were put up last night and each day between now and Valentine's Day my daughter and my husband each get to turn over a heart to reveal something we love about them. Joel and I worked together to make Ella's and Ella worked with me to come up with some for her Daddy. As we were finishing up Joel's hearts Ella asked about mine... I told her I didn't make any for myself, so she decided she would make some for me and she knows what each one says despite the fact that all I see are jumbled letters - they truly are a message of love. 

For each on of Ella's heart we made a point to find a scripture to go along with it so it was not only a message of what we loved about her, it was also an opportunity for us to have a little devotion time together as we talk about who God made her to be and how God has already gifted her in many ways.  

My hope and prayer is that she will always know she is loved not for what she can do, but for who she is in Christ!!