fireproof…a great movie with many little lessons about God, His power in our marriages, love and going the distance
Vodpod videos no longer available.
if you were one of the lucky readers who tried to read my last post and found it disappearing off and on today…blame it on the author’s rather lame blogging/computer/html skills. i use word2007 to publish and it is sometimes f.r.u.s.t.r.a.t.i.n.g!
i really enjoy writing and the creative outlet blogging provides is wonderful, it’s just that my blogging platform or process or whatever you want to call it is f.r.u.s.t.r.a.t.i.n.g!
i took a break from blogging a while ago b/c i got so f.r.u.s.t.r.a.t.e.d.
i am not ready to take another break…but there has to be an easier, more efficient way to get a blog post out there!
Any suggestions, thoughts or encouragement???
laura and martin’s story will encourage you to remember HE is MigHty to SaVE…whatever is on your plate today…the ONe wHO Rose and ConquEREd the gRAve…the One who SpokE the sTARs into place…can handle it. Believe Him…Trust Him.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
u·biq·ui·tous (yōō-bĭk’wĭ-təs) adj. Being or seeming to be everywhere at the same time; omnipresent.
cap·ture (kāp’chər) v. To enter (data) into a computer for processing or storage.
If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like be ADD, think about it this way…your brain processes like a Pentium but has 2 MBs of RAM. I don’t really know what that means in computer speak, but in my reality it means I am constantly thinking and processing information, but am unable to capture and remember most of what I have been processing and thinking about.
This is what is going on in my brain over a period of say…30 seconds: I need to remember to drop off the library books…where’s my library card?…Since Hobby Lobby is near the library I can pick up a Valentine’s craft for the girls…but I get so distracted in there, I’ll have to set the timer on my watch…what time is the Brownie meeting tonight?….I should wash the sheets from Lily and Emily’s beds today…I’m out of detergent…I’ll remember to pick some up at big box discount store…On my way to big box discount store I’ll put gas in the van…but the checkbook needs balanced first…I can do that tomorrow after the meeting at work…what time is that happening?…When does my RN license renew…do I have enough continuing education hours?…does graduate coursework count?……AND this stream of thoughts goes on and on all day.
How does a mostly stay at home mom of three girls who are involved in school and various activities and whose dear husband travels frequently keep her act somewhat together when her mind is racing like this? I have an especially useful tool for
ubiquitous capture of pesky thoughts, imaginings, wonderings and reminders: a small notebook.
I keep my notebook with me at all times and capture my ideas, thoughts and thinks in one place to be processed further or deleted. Result: mind like water. My mind is cleared of thoughts, ideas and junk so I can think about what is important now. I don’t have to tell my children to “be quiet so Mommy can think” anymore…I say “Let Mom write this thought down real quick, then I can give you my full attention.”
Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer sponsors WFMW where you can find more ideas that work!
Faith…my response to God’s presence in my life.
Journey…a process or pursuit.
This morning in Sunday School (actually it is called “Discovery Class” individuals considering membership at our church go through this class) we discussed a book titled The Critical Journey by Janet Hagberg and Robert Guelich (Second Edition, Sheffield Publishing 2005). In the book, the authors examine the journey we embark upon when we respond to the presence of God in our lives. I have not read this book and this post is really just my thinking out loud…a lot of thought generated by a discussion and diagram.
The spiritual journey, as described by Hagberg and Guelich is based on the stage-model theory, of which I will direct you to this page for more on that topic and a more thorough discussion of the book by someone who has actually read the entire text.
Through the magic of computers, I was able to sort of reproduce the diagram from our handout.
All credit to the authors for the original and this reproduction.
The Wall…as shown in this diagram should really be a dark line only, but the idea remains. Most of us cycle from stage 2 to 3…learning and serving and learning and serving and…well you get the point. But, to grow, to journey deeper with God, we have to get past The Wall. And the only way out…is through.And that is what got me to really thinking today… for some time now I’ve been hanging out at the Wall. The Wall is kind of comfortable, you don’t go too deep, don’t feel too much pain, you coast. I’ve been through the wall before, yes, but only long enough to journey inward and outward and back to learning and serving and learning and serving. In some ways, it has been an easy place to stay because going through the wall is not without pain. But remaining at the Wall is painful, too, because metaphorically you just “bang your head on it” but only hard enough to bruise yourself, not hard enough to actually break through…and that, my friend is misery.
My journey over the last two years (at least) has been a journey through the Wall. I mean I had been hanging out, like I said before, but I got bored, frustrated and miserable. I had been getting frustrated with the learning and serving routine, I did not believe the pinnacle of spiritual maturity rested in my “Christian Activity Resume.” I began to doubt and question what I believed; why I believed what I believed, wondered what was it that was truly essential in my relationship with Christ and what was clutter I picked up along the way. Was I a Christian or a Christ-follower…is there a difference? My quiet times seemed to be another activity to complete, rather than a time to connect with my Lord. I had been unsettled and restless. I yearned for something deeper, but was too fearful/lazy/comfortable/uncomfortable/proud to go through the Wall. It took a crisis to push me through…and then another one…and then another one.
I might not have known I was “at the Wall” but I did know I was not really growing or going deeper with God…and I wanted to, but knew it would take something more than just “wanting” it for true spiritual growth to happen. So I prayed. I asked God to do whatever it takes to draw me closer to Him…whatever it takes so that I would grow and trust Him more…whatever it looks like and whatever it takes…I yearned to be in a new place with Him.
That is a hard prayer to pray, but trusting Him is harder. I knew He would answer that prayer, I had no idea what the answer(s) would look like…I just had to trust Him.
So what happened?
On this journey inward there has been pain, loss, joy, peace, grace, sadness, fear, gratitude…you know, the messy stuff of life we all deal with. As I expected. But in this whole mess, I have experienced a deepness with the Lord I could have only experienced by journeying through the Wall. This place, which I think is stage 4, is hard to describe, it is a place where “heart work” is done…where spirituality and psychology collide. It is a place where Truth is revealed about who I am and who God is. This place is a place of trust…of prayers sent up fervently and with hope, a place where I cannot go forward on my own strength, but one in which I have to believe His promises.
I know He loves me.
I know He is sovereign.
I know He is my Redeemer.
I know He hears me when I call upon Him.
Looking at the diagram, stages 5 & 6 loom ahead…I am not there, I am pretty sure. There is a lot more decluttering of unresolved issues between me & God, between me & me, between me & my husband…I’ll be hanging out here for a while, I am pretty sure.
And that is okay… He promises me this…
“For I know the plans I have for you,”
declares the LORD,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.
Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.”