"That Christ May Dwell In Your Hearts By Faith; That Ye, Being Rooted And Grounded In Love, May Be Able To Comprehend With All Saints What Is The Breadth, And Length, And Depth, And Height; And To Know The Love Of Christ, Which Passeth Knowledge, That Ye Might Be Filled With All The Fulness Of God."
Apparently it has been awhile since I have posted. I logged onto Blogger this morning only to find the layout had changed and I could not find anything anymore. With a little digging I was able to locate the previous posts I had started, this being one of them.
It seems I last posted over a month ago when I was heading out to see Michael W. Smith so I will start there. My word that was a magnificent concert! It was held in a Church so the seating was limited and it was just him and his piano. No blindingly bright light shows, no deafeningly loud drums, no fire, no smoke...
Just sweetly simple. He chatted, he prayed, he sang, but most of all he encouraged us to praise. I would still love to see him in a stadium setting, but this was beyond words.
Not long after the concert I started a second form of school, one that is required by my Church. I go 2 Saturdays a month, in a Church about 2 hours from me, therefore I have to get up at 3:30am (yes that says AM, as in MORNING people) in order to look presentable when I arrive. I have learned a lot, as well as questioned a lot.
All of our instructors are Pastors and it is a blessing to have access to so much wisdom and encouragement. To know each one of them has walked this same road is something I did not expect when I started this journey. They know how we feel, they know the fear, the doubt, the worry, and the utter aloneness that each of us is facing and they do everything in their power to ease the transition (so to speak).
I still have not found my "speaking voice" when I am called on to speak aloud. However, I have found tears, in spades and you all know how I feel about crying. Not just sad ones, but happy ones as well. I find Him moving me when I least expect it and I will admit, if I did not have to mess up my "face" nor sniffle, nor struggle to catch my breath, nor have a hard time swallowing, I would find it beautiful.
The boys are doing well. Eeyore is one I do not see very often, however, I am hoping time will mend that. My Pastor as well as their Dad told me to just give it some time, however, I am not known for my patience. Tigger, well he is just a joy, my shadow as he is called. When I am at the house, he is never far behind me. He has his issues that we are dealing with, however, I can see he has come a long way since his Dad left. He no longer drops the "F" bomb every other word so that in itself is a great thing! :)
One month ago yesterday, my divorce became final. I have not processed that as well as I should have, but I am trying. I would think being separated for almost 3 years would have helped, yet the day I received the final papers felt like I had ripped a too small bandage off of a very large wound.
I would like to say I have moved past the bitterness and hatred, yet there are times it creeps back in. Usually when it has to do with my boys or when I am so overwhelmed that I want to crawl in a corner and bawl like baby. When I feel like my shoulders are so weighed down that I can barely hold my head up straight, when my back feels like it is being crushed under the heaviness of expectations from other people, when I can not, no matter how hard I try, find the light at the end of the tunnel. Then it comes in, as if I am just holding the door open for the enemy, welcoming him with a cup of hot coffee and a smile, to please just come in and wreck havoc on my soul.
I have covered this topic before and will continue to do so, until at least I can understand it. "You can trust me" is something I hear often, however, that line no longer works for me. I have learned the hard way that when you are walking the ministerial path, there are people who want to be in your circle, only long enough to see you falter. I do not say that out of cynicism, I say that out of experience.
Trust.... I have always believed that it should be given 100% freely, however, difficult circumstances have caused me to rethink that stance. I now think that people should receive a certain level of "general" trust upon meeting. You start by handing out a little bit of trust, just enough, because you have finally realized that it is something that needs to grow and be nourished, then (and only then) can the general trust you placed in another, grow into a deep-rooted trust.
Trust.... Once you have the trust of someone, you should do all you can to protect that trust.
Trust.... There are very few people I trust implicitly, very, very few who have crossed the line from "general" to "deep-rooted" and I believe that God has designed circumstances to be that way for a reason. I know, without a shadow of a doubt who I can and cannot turn to and for now, I am okay with that.
Matthew 22:37-39 "Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
All too often we reverse these two commandments and then usually drop off the "love your neighbor" portion, leaving only yourself and perhaps if there is time, God. He should be first in each and every thing that you do. I do not care if you are a janitor in the local elementary school or the president of the United States, do what you do, to glorify Him.
I have admitted I am not a great speaker, my voice is quiet and becomes even quieter when I am called on, which will inevitably bring forth someone saying "I can't hear you" or "Speak up." I am trying to get past this by continuing to do it, because I love Him. I fear like there is no tomorrow, yet I also know He did not put that spirit of fear within me so I continue to face each fear head on, because I love Him. I worry what others think (more than any one person should ever have to do so), yet I can not allow that to deter where He has placed me.... I obey Him out of love.
Love is not supposed to devastate everything in its wake. Love should protect & it should be loyal. The Bible says that out of Faith, Hope, and Love, the greatest is Love. 1 Corinthians 13:13 (paraphrased)
Love can be explosive (not in a harmful way) and it can also be quiet. It can hit you like a firecracker on the Fourth of July or sneak up on you like a calming breeze on a midsummer day. It is a look that passes between the parties involved, a gentle hug, a tender kiss, a firm hand on your back but one thing it should never do is hurt, either physically or emotionally.
Love is a choice, not just a feeling. It has taken me a very long time to accept that my ex-husband made the choice to leave. In the past 3 years I did everything I possibly could for him to know how much I loved him and I tried as hard as I could to give him the best of me. I was so far from perfect it is almost laughable now, because I most definitely had horrific days and I still have soul crushing moments of being terrified and lonely, but I am doing the best that I can.
I do not necessarily advocate divorce, however, because he made the decision to leave, God released me from my marriage because I was faithful to my husband and to God.
That will not define me, yes, it is a defining moment, however I know now that I am more than that. The moments that define me, make me a better person, as long as I respond in the way He calls me to respond. With love.
One of my favorite passages of Scripture is found in Philippians, chapter 4, verse 7 and it reads "and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
The pure peace you seek will never be found in man. This was another lesson I learned the hard way... Seeking anyone who could restore the balance I had lost, yet never finding. I have said it before and I will say it again, I thank God for my Pastor each and every single night. He placed a man in my path who will go out of his way to steer me in the correct direction. I keep nothing from him, because he is the one I trust the most here on Earth. He has no hidden agenda, he does not want anything from me other than to see me succeed, and he does it in a kind way. He knows my secrets, as well as my fears, doubts, and worries. He can look at my face and know if I am "good" or "hiding" and he also knows that in my time it will come out, so he does not push, instead he waits until I am ready.
From suicidal planning, to a new walk in ministry, he has been right there and I am honored and humbled to call him my friend.
We all need someone in our lives like this, someone who will tell you (whether you want to hear it or not) how it is or how it should be. Do we always see eye to eye? Nope... There are days I feel he is "picking on me" and I do all I can to stay out of his line of vision (for fear of having to do some form of public speaking, like my first Bible study tonight), yet there is a part of me that knows he is just pushing me to the next step. He is the one who comes along once I am nice and comfy, and drags me out of my new comfort zone, kicking and screaming and most likely crying and I am grateful for that. Otherwise I would just stay stuck. God will not allow me to become stuck and He seems to use anyone He can to pull me out of the pit I too often find myself sinking in.
That thought right there.... Brings me a peace that is hard to put into words.
I am not alone. He is right there by my side and He has placed some pretty phenomenal people in my path as well.
I never realized how much I missed writing until I sat down to post these thoughts. I do so much writing now, however it is required, and this is freely me... This allows me to think outloud.
These past 3 years have been a walk through hell, however, I have not walked it alone. God has seen fit to walk with me, carry me when I couldn't take another step forward, and allowed me to rest within His embrace, when I was too tired to go on. He is the One who lays with me as I sleep and rises with me when I wake.... Every second of every single day, He is right there.
Do you realize what kind of love that is? I mean do you truly feel it in the blackest recesses of your soul? Does His light collide with your dark? Do you realize that each day you wake up, He made that day for you? Do you hear Him whisper your name in the darkest of nights as well as the brightest of days?
If you do not know of His love, I beg of you to find it....
Seek Him out, He is but only a whisper away.
'Cause All That Makes Me Who I Am To Be
Is Everything In You That I Still Need
It's A Long Road Left For Me To Make It Home
But I Don't Go Alone