SO, WHAT’S UP?

God is doing something in my life right now, but I don’t know what it is. For the first time in my life, as far as I can recall, God is leaving me entirely out of the loop. I’ve stepped out in faith before, but with at least a small amount of understanding and larger degree of agreement. When I married John and moved from Kansas to Minnesota almost 21 years ago, it was by faith that I moved with my 4-year-old daughter, Sophie. But I wanted to be married. I intended to be married. And I understood and accepted that marrying John would require a move to another state. The rest I left in God’s hands – where I would work, for example. But to a fair extent, I was “kept in the loop” with God’s plans.

approval

But this blog is different, and today is the first time I really sensed that what happens with my writing is entirely in God’s hands. Even though I wonder if I’m doing the right thing or if I will have enough to write about, I have more than enough ideas to keep me writing something. In fact, it was my younger daughter who suggested I quit posting every day. But I am human, and I do like feedback – you know, a hint that I’m at least on the right track. But I’ve had very little feedback or comments. Ordinarily, I would give up. You know how it goes – you diet for two whole days, realize that you haven’t lost any weight and give up.

butterfly

Yesterday was especially discouraging because it appeared that no one – NO ONE! – read my post. (And I thought it was a pretty decent post.) Then this morning, I see that I’m getting visitors from somewhere, who are looking at something; but I don’t know what they’re looking at. But, then again, I don’t understand blogging anyway. I know writing, so I write.

Bottom line: I have no idea what I’m doing, but I keep doing what I think I should be doing because I feel called to help God’s children know how much they’re loved.

Then I passed by this verse last night from one source and this morning from another source:

2 corinthians 4

I’m learning that even if no one reads another word I write, I’m edifying myself and renewing my mind. And that’s good because I need it! Five years ago this coming July, I had emergency open-heart surgery for an ascending aortic dissection. Since that time, my speech and handwriting have deteriorated to the point where I avoid speaking or writing as much as I can. But I can type, so I’ve decided to do something “meaningful” with what I can do. My body and energy level have been worse than they are now (which is good), but it’s a looong way from where they were before my surgery. I can’t do the things I used to be able to do, which leaves me sitting most of the time…which leaves me here on this blog.

I’ not the woman I was five years ago. I don’t push myself beyond my limits, because the cost of doing so is too high. I don’t talk as much as I used to because speaking clearly is too frustrating, so I economize my speaking. (Trust me, I used to talk non-stop about anything and everything. If I had a thought, I figured I may as well say it!) I tire easily so I choose more carefully where I spend my energy, which I’m pretty sure is what they now call ‘self-care’. And I’ve had to find a new purpose for myself. I spent my life finding value in what I did. Now, I have to find value in who I am.

And I believe that’s what God wants for his children. I believe that what they do is important as long as it doesn’t become a substitute for who they are. I think action is valuable (and required) as an extension of who they are as a child of God. But above all, God wants us to be convicted of who we are in Him. We need to know that we are loved, forgiven, redeemed and His. He wants us to know that we have a Good Shepherd who will take care of all our needs. He wants us to know that we have the Holy Spirit to comfort us when no one else in the world can.

I found this blessing by Susie Larson and think this is a good place to share it:

“May you believe – with all your heart – that God is writing a great story with your life! May the lies that came your way today fall by the wayside and not make their way into your heart. May you instead know and believe the truth about who you are and whose you are. You are loved, accepted, gifted, and treasured. You have important things to do in this life. May you refuse to let anything distract you from God’s highest and best purposes for you. He will make a way when there seems to be no way. He’ll move mountains at just the right time. You can trust Him. So trust Him.”

I would be honored if God chose to use me to help those who feel unloved and unlovable to become convicted of His love for them and their value in Him. But I also know that I may need to spend some time in a wilderness of my own before that can happen. See, the reason I want to help those who have felt unloved and unlovable is that that’s how I spent so much of my own life – even when I was loved and couldn’t accept it. Christ didn’t die for us to have lives with no victory in them. He died to save us from the lies of Satan, who daily condemns us daily, and to be living trophies of God’s glory.

I want more for me and for others like me. So I guess I’ll just keep writing until I am convinced that God wants me to stop.

Peace and joy to you!

 

 

6 thoughts on “SO, WHAT’S UP?

  1. Thank you so much for liking my post on Resilience. Otherwise I would never have found your wonderful, rather amazing blog. Trust me, your words are like a life preserver thrown to another drowning soul. Please do not stop…but then again, do whatever God is calling you to do. I feel just like I gained a sister, if that doesn’t sound too creepy.

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      1. First of all, I love words too! I get excited when I find a new, really cool word. Like I heard the work breviloquent on Blacklist and love it! Second, it was five years ago that my life changed, too. I had an emergency open-heart surgery at Abbott Northwestern in MN for an ascending aortic dissection. Statistics are low for this specific kind of dissection and even lower for surviving one. This is the kind that killed actor John Ritter. Since then, my gait has been unsteady, short-term memory is even shorter than before!, and I slur – like you, more so when I’m not well rested. And my handwriting is completely different! If I’m tired, it’s nearly illegible. I have to write my name because I don’t have a signature anymore, if that makes sense. I miss my signature a lot. I also drive poorly and would prefer to not drive because it unnerves me. I am not the same person I was before the surgery. But that not necessarily a bad thing; it’s just really frustrating! And two neurologists and two MRIs have confirmed that whatever is wrong with me is not neurological. Go figure! So apparently, it’s psychological – somatic.

        Actually, BEFORE the surgery, I was closer to ending my life than I’d ever been before. I had a pretty solid plan and could “justify” the pain my husband and older, grown daughter would go through, but not my 12 year-old daughter. The night of my dissection, I believe God decided enough was enough and took the whole matter out of my hands. I believe he took me as close to death as he could and brought me back – on HIS terms, in HIS time. I was genuinely angry about this for almost a year. After all, the dissection could have put me out of my misery and it wouldn’t have been my fault, right?

        So I’m convinced that he orchestrated the whole thing. And I have to believe that I am currently the way I am by his design as well, although I really don’t like it. But the alternative would be for me to be strong and independent enough to be the woman I was when I wanted to die. And I don’t really want that. I’ve prayed for healing and think I’m being healed the way I need to be healed and not the way I want to be healed.

        In high school, I was in Forensics and loved speaking in public, and I enjoyed community theater in my town. I can’t even read scripture in church now without being incredibly self-conscious. I may slur or trip and be completely embarrassed, so I don’t do it. I talk much, much less than I used to, but I can type. So that’s why I started a blog. I know what it feels like to be hopeless, and it breaks my heart to hear hopelessness in others. I’ll admit it’s much easier to encourage someone else to have faith in God and to trust that He loves them than it is for me to believe it. But I still feel the urge to encourage. I don’t have a big following, but that’s OK because I know that words have power and I know that gives us a whole new level of responsibility as writers, specifically Christian writers.

        So when I read that you like words and read about your accident, I felt certain that I’d been led to your blog – even though I knew I’d found it on my way down a rabbit hole! 🙂 And resilience is something I’d been thinking about a lot. It’s different than persevering. It’s the recovery and bouncing back. It’s the response to the inevitable falling down. It’s the getting back up again. Perseverance is more like the crawling along even though you’re nearly dead. Both move you forward ANYWAY, but I think there’s a different strength in resilience. For whatever the reason, I decided that would be my word until I needed a different word.

        I’m glad I found you!

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