The one with the bone

Lately life has been something hasn’t it?! I’ve been attempting to work from home as much as possible since virtual school is our current reality. Earlier this week I was sprawled out across the dining room table, notes for upcoming events and ministries covering every surface. Trying to manage details, think creatively and respond to the barrage of incoming emails and texts, only to look up and see our little brown shitzu Ollie galavanting around the front yard. Last week he escaped to chase deer into the woods behind our home. He came scampering back with an animal leg bone considerably larger than him; femur, kneecap and tibia all still perfectly attached. So gross. Ever since, he’s been eager to find more bones and Houdini’s his way out of the yard on the regular. So…in the middle of work demands, juggling chrome book issues and virtual schooling, I was now out in the yard corralling a dog back home. I can laugh at the craziness of my life, three kids and three dogs and constant chaos, but I also know that it can be exhausting, distracting and overwhelming. 

Most of us are in the middle of seasons the feel overwhelming and exhausting. So much noise and chaos coming at us from all directions, much of it filled with fear and issues that hurt our hearts. All of this is enough to take down even the strongest of people, and a stark reminder that we need something more. We need respite from the storm raging around us, and something to hope in. We need Christ. The enemy seeks to kill and destroy, and finds any means necessary to do so. Overwhelmed. Distracted. Unfocused. Busy. Noisy. 

The enemy is doing everything in his power to keep you off your game and too off kilter to speak to the one that can rebalance it all. 

But Jesus says he came so that we may have life, and have it abundantly. While truly abundant life won’t be fully experienced until heaven, we can find abundance in Christ while here on earth. No, it doesn’t require hours of commentary study of God’s word, digging into timelines and deeper meanings and biblical depth. It starts with talking to God. Intentional prayer time. We need study, and we need to be rooted in the word of God and his truths; but without the relationship, none of that matters. We need to be talking to God. Praying without ceasing. Taking the busy and overwhelmed and distracted to him. The enemy is doing everything in his power to keep you off your game and too off kilter to speak to the one that can rebalance it all. 

In Romans we are told that the Spirit is interceding on behalf of the saints, and Jesus is at the right hand of God interceding for us. As children of God, we have the amazing gift of access to the one that is everything. So take the exhaustion, the chaos, the busy, the overwhelm, and lay them at the feet of Christ. Pray to the one who holds it all in his hands. Pray and then pray some more. Be intentional in carving out quiet time to sit with God. Communicate openly with your heavenly father, allow him to meet you in the chaos, and see firsthand the power of Christ. If God is for us, who can be against us!?

Romans 8:27

And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will. 

Romans 8:34

Christ Jesus who died – more than that – who was raised to life – is at the right hand of God is also interceding for us.

Philippians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds Christ Jesus. 

Romans 8:37-39

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Boldy Tired

I am so darn tired. Deep down in my bones weary. It’s hard to admit that to myself, much less publicly. I’ve struggled to process why as I tend to be an optimist who can push through just about anything, but there is great value in experiencing the seasons that God has us in. Even the ones that leave us feeling tired and inadequate. We all know that life right now is all sorts of upside down and different, which in and of itself can lead to a weariness. But God has been impressing on my heart in a big way where he wants me in this season, and quite simply, it’s stretching me. 

I know that so much good comes from God pulling us out of what’s comfortable and into new and uncomfortable. Much like a fish out of water, although the fish will eventually die without the water. God isn’t calling me to the uncomfortable to die, he is calling me to the uncomfortable to shine. 

“These have come so that your faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire – may be proved genuine, and may result in praise, glory and honor when Christ Jesus is revealed.” 1 Peter 1:7. 

We have an unwavering God wanting to take us boldly into the beautiful unknown, we need only trust in the one that is our everything.

When God calls us to the uncomfortable, he’s calling us to a bigger faith. So I can fight it, avoid the uncomfortable and ignore where he has me; or I can lean into it with all of my being, and trust that he will use it for his glory. We all have some level of uncomfortable right now, but I see how God is moving in his people in ways that are new and different, and it’s exciting. I choose to believe that God is preparing his people to have huge impact in what’s to come, whatever life post quarantine looks like, and my goodness, what an amazing time to be alive! 

I was in God’s word yesterday, struggling to find encouragement and just a little ounce of anything to keep me going, and I was reminded that prayer is so monumental in the Christian life. It is our lifeline to Christ, and a source of power and encouragement. 

“Pray without ceasing…” 1 Thessalonians 5:17 

So often we want the answers and a map of what’s to come, but God just wants us to pray, and walk boldly to where he has called. No roadmap, no clear path, just a faith that is solid in the knowledge of our God. A God who throughout my tumultuous faith life has never abandoned me, and has never called me to a space where he isn’t providing all that I need. So I will put one foot in front of the other and jump headfirst into this new space, trusting that he’s got it.

“If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31

What is stretching you in this season? Where are you finding comfort and peace? I pray it’s at the feet of our heavenly father. And I pray that you are able to walk boldly into the unknown he’s calling you to.

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:24

We have an unwavering God wanting to take us  boldly into the beautiful unknown, we need only trust in the one that is our everything. 

We Just Need to Claim It

Earlier today I was running around doing all of the normal busy things my Saturdays involve. You know, the real glamorous stuff, like cooking, cleaning and laundry. Somewhere in the mundane of these activities, I found my thoughts running and unsteady, feeling unworthy and not enough. I started praying, as that tends to be my immediate posture when things leave me feeling undone. And immediately, God struck me with his truth….you may not FEEL like you are enough, but you ARE enough. I chose you. I paid the price for you. You are my daughter and abundantly loved.

Even on the days we don’t feel it, all we have to do is claim it.

It’s easy to find ourselves off kilter when we only focus on feelings. They are the emotions of the moment, so we tend to roll with them, but they aren’t truth. We can choose to be swayed by the feelings of the day and moments, or we can realize a feeling is false, and run to the one who offers truth. We are CHOSEN. We are LOVED. We are HIS DAUGHTERS. We don’t ever have to question that, even on the days we don’t feel it, all we have to do is claim it. You my friend, are abundantly loved and more than enough for him, your heavenly father. Rest in His love.

For it is by grace that you have been saved through faith – this is not from ourselves but is a gift from God – not by works so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

You didn’t choose me, but I chose you… John 15:16

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved… Colossians 3:12

I will be Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. 2 Corinthians 6:18

...rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him… 1 Peter 2:4

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession… 1 Peter 2:9