So I've been reading Ann Voskamp's book 1000 Gifts.  This book is unlike anything I've ever read before!  It is challenging, but not threatening; encouraging but not patronizing.  It is one woman's journey and yet it could be every person's journey if they so chose.

Our Bible study group is supposed to be reading chapter 10 this week, but I've been having a hard time letting go of chapter 8.  (By that I mean I've only read half of chapter 9 and even what I've read I've barely retained because I keep thinking about her words on the previous pages.)

I thought maybe if I shared what the Lord has been whispering to me with YOU, I might be able to move on - and get the rest of my reading done by Wednesday morning!

I'm not going to give any context here - if you want it, go get the book (or put it on your Christmas list, you won't regret it!).  Here is the quote that begins with a verse:

"For no matter how many promises God has made, they are 'Yes' in Christ"
 (2 Corinthians 1:20)
   Yes in Christ!
   To the Enfleshed Yes [Jesus] who said yes to this moment and yes to last year's illness and yes to the cracks of my childhood and yes to the nail and yes to my name in the Book of Life, hear me say YES!  Not "I'm worried." Not "I'm stressed out."  Not "I'm anxious."  Not "I'm too afraid."  Hear me say thank you.  Hear me say YES!  Watch me live a life of yes.  To all that was and is and is to come.  The power of sin and death and fear-sent-from-the-Enemy are forever ended because we can trust in the bridge even if it's caving, in God even when it's black, in manna-nourishment even when we don't know what it is.  The God whom we thank for fulfilling the promises of the past will fulfill His promises again.  In Christ, the answer to the questions of every moment is always Yes.
  The answer is always YES!

It reminded me of a time when God called our little family to say Yes to the unknown future.  When He asked if we would be obedient to Him even if we didn't know where we would go, what we would do, how we would survive.  It reminded me of the song He used to bring us to our knees in submission to His will for our life.

The song is Yes.

And today I look back and I see that the answers to His promises then were indeed yes - for our good, for His glory.

And today I hear Him ask me again - will you say YES?

Will you let go of yourself and your plans and your idea of what is good and appropriate and deserved and simply say yes to what I have in store for you?  Will you give Me the opportunity to show you all the yes-es to My promises?   I will never leave you.  I will never forsake you.  Do not be afraid.  Just say...YES.

How are you saying YES to God?


it's just me

every once in a while a strange thing happens to me.  i forget who i am.

my husband brought home this beautiful box of mandarine oranges,

and as i opened the box and saw all those perfect pieces of red tissue paper, i thought, i should craft something out of those papers!

and then i saw the solid cardboard base of the box and thought, i should mod-podge that and use it for...something.

and then i remembered - that's not something i would ever do.  that is simply not who i am!

as i laughed and laughed (to myself, at myself) i thought about how bizarre it is that i would even think about doing those things...

i thought about how i guess i'm not always who i thought i'd be "when i grew up."

i considered how i'm still surprised at how uncomfortable i am in social settings - i really thought i'd grow out that!

i wondered about how i became the kind of mom that (sometimes) bakes bread and (mostly) cooks from scratch, considering i wasn't really in to those things growing up.

i marveled again at the gift of my role in our church, the fun and challenge of serving, the joy of doing pre-marriage counseling (when our early years of marriage at times felt like an absolute disaster!).

God had a plan for me, a design for who i could become under His hand, and as long as i don't bother myself with comparison, i can like who i am.  imperfect, with lots of room to grow but uniquely me.  so what if i do things a little differently than others, or don't do really cool things that other really cool friends can do?  my only desire is to hear the voice of the Lord and do what He calls me to do.

it's just me.  some people will like me, some will not.  but my sense of approval and self-worth must come from Him alone.

Can we just embrace who God is creating us to be today?

The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
    for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. 
   Don’t abandon me, for you made me.
psalm 138:8 nlt


back at it

i'm so on-again, off-again with this blog that i probably shouldn't even talk about the fact that i'm so on-again, off-again.....boring.

instead i feel compelled to share something that happened a couple of weeks ago.  truth be told, it was more than something that "happened."  this thing rocked. my. world.

it's a bit of long (and again, boring) story, but the seating situation in our living room has recently changed.  after acquiring a piano (yay!), we had to take out a large arm chair and were left with our sectional.  in our small cozy space, the sectional works well and seats at least 5, so it's generally not a big deal.  until that is, it comes time for g and i to meet at the end of the day to relax and watch a bit of the ol' telly.  you see, he has always planted himself in the arm chair while i've sprawled on the sectional.
(heidi - do you see the plastic strawberry?
looks like i don't have wait until we move to get it! ha!)

again, not a big deal, but he is now joining me on the couch, where there really is a primary position and a less desirable secondary position.

if you know my husband, you know he self-sacrifices and gives me the better spot. (love.)

are you asking yourself if this all is enough to rock my world?

wait for it....

so a couple of weeks ago, i'm all snuggled up with my favorite blanket in the best seat in the house, and my darling husband is stretched out on the "other" side.  he looks less comfortable than i feel, so i suggest that he switches positions and puts his feet up on the coffee table - wouldn't that be more comfortable (and aren't i sooo helpful)?

he replies - wait for it....

i don't like feet on the coffee table.

i. don't. like. feet. on. the. coffee. table.

my brain slowly processes these words and my mind's memory reel flashes with a montage of my feet - in slippers, in flip-flops, in socks, bare, painting my toenails-forgoodnesssake!- on that coffee table.

what?  what? i question. you have a problem with feet on the coffee table? i ALWAYS put my feet on the coffee table!

for the next 24 hours - i am not kidding - i question him about this coffee table thing.  but the thing that i just can't get over is that he has never told me before.

do you know how many things i dislike that i've never told him?

exactly none.

any little dissatisfaction, distaste or dislike that crosses my pretty little mind - i mention.  out loud.  to him.

not just things about him, but about life, people, stuff and the world in general.  every little thing.

and here we've been married for 15 years (of propped-on-the-coffee-table-feet) and he never uttered a word about it.

he is not a saint (sorry sweetie!) and he is not a passive person.  he chose to let it go.  he doesn't like it, but it wasn't important enough to worked up about.  he literally works to live the words of Paul:

Instead, be kind to each other, 
forgiving one another, 
just as God through Christ 
has forgiven you. 
eph 4:32 nlt

kind and tender-hearted.

is it possible that i could keep some of my opinions to myself and just let them go?  that i could chose kindness and tender-heartedness over brutal openness?

with God's help, i believe yes.  and with God's help, i'm working on it.

what's been rocking your world these days?
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