The Mighty Three in the Mundane

Oh yes. It’s going to be another so called normal day. In awhile I’ll be headed to WalMart with mom so she can buy all that is needed for the big Thanksgiving meal. The house is in desperate need of a thorough cleaning. I need to wash mountains of clothes. I need to rest and pray. So much to be done, so normal…

…Except when I sit still and recognize that Jesus is here with me and intentionally bind myself to Him for the day, it’s not so normal. It becomes holy.  A day that is filled with beauty and joy and hope. My son just woke up while I was writing this. He walked in with his sleepy eyes and came over to cuddle me as he was waking up. What a beautiful boy! He delights me so much and I realize again how delighted God is with me simply because I’m here. What a gift.

I release myself to God and get all emotional because engaging with Him touches me deeply. I find it miraculous that I can become aware of the living God while sitting in my recliner. The thankfulness wells up like a wave. Thankful for His love. Thankful that I am leaving the bills that are due in a couple of days to Him. That I have my family. That He is my help, even in the mundane things like house cleaning. That He surrounds me and is my God. I release and confess my fears about money and the bills. I have caverns of need that rise up in a panic… as I look at Him, the panic recedes. I relax about my weak and tired body and all that needs to be accomplished this week. My soul breathes a sigh of relief and I am able to receive His love as He tends to the deep places of my heart. Mystery tumbles into the morning and infuses me with light and hope and joy. I pray to continue being open and aware of Him today as we do all that needs doing and interact with one another and strangers.

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“I bind unto myself today the power of God to hold and lead, His eye to watch, His might to stay, His ear to hearken to my need.

The wisdom of my God to teach, His hand to guide, His shield to ward. The word of God to give me speech, His heavenly host to be my guard.

The Might Three my protection be, Encircling me You are around, My life, my home encircling me. O Sacred Three, the Mighty Three.”

Encircling by Iona. Have a listen. It’s what I was listening to this morning. I hope you have a beautiful day.

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Believe Love

I don’t know how many of you have been keeping up with our situation either here or on Facebook, but long story short, I have been unemployed since August and we have had a whole lot of sickness in our house lately.

Things have been tight as far as finances go, but this month has been so tight that it started to be a bit scary.

Yet, since we’ve decided to trust God as our provider, not ourselves, paychecks or unemployment money, there has been much more peace than I ever dreamt we could have! People have been praying for us. There has been extra chances to work that have come along to help provide. There have been groceries unexpectedly dropped off at our house by friends and gift cards for the grocery store that showed up in the mailbox.

trustcourageAll that being said, some days the fight to give in to self-pity or despair and unbelief has been strong. However, God has shown up in mighty ways. The other night I spent some time hanging out with Jesus in the early morning hours while everyone else slept and it was so beautiful. Money and prayers for money did not come up once – and for me that is miraculous! I was just so full of being loved. And love does call forth love like the scriptures say.

I’ve titled this post Believe Love for a reason. God is love. Believe that He cares and live in Him and things begin to shift in your heart. His love is what sustains. I used to get my (temporary) peace by relying on myself and Patrik to be able to pay all the bills. Not being able to know ahead of time if all the bills will be paid is so contrary to how our culture works – even our Christian culture. How many times have you heard ‘God helps those who help themselves’? but that’s not even biblical. The option to rely on ourselves for our monetary needs was taken away when I was laid off (and at the time I was laid off I had already been looking for other work for a solid year). We couldn’t rely on ourselves anymore to pay the bills and I believe God is all over our situation. My husband always says, “It will all work out,” but I am the one prone to stay up at night worrying. However, I’m learning. Learning that I will be okay if we can’t get a bill paid. I can try to work out payments and I can also ask my God and He can provide Patrik more overtime or other more supernatural things. Since I am learning to trust in His love as our anchor, not our paychecks, life is changing. I am not depressed as often. I do not feel like a constant failure if we don’t have enough. I realize often how easy we’ve got it – bills are piling up, but we’ve still got a home at this point. I’m enjoying spending time with my son – that was one of my heart’s desires! We’ve still got family and friends who love us and are a massive support system. We’re getting over our sickness. This time has enabled me to begin caring more for others. Really praying for them. Really caring what they’re going through. Now, each of us carries our own burdens, worries and pain but when you begin to care about carrying others’ sadness and burdens in prayer or through words of love and giving what you can….. it’s a lot easier to believe in Love in our own lives.

Have courage guys. Listen, I don’t have it all figured out and I often have to tell worry to shut up. I just want to you to hear me – you’re not alone in your worry or fear. Love will free your self and your heart to be able to rest and see that God is good. Whether our situations are good, bad, painful or frightening He is able to do more than we can ever ask or imagine.

I love you guys. Whether we’ve met or not, I love you. Sit and be loved. Receive His love and be yourself. Here’s a good, classic song for you to listen to wherever you are in whatever you are going through. Peace.

Honesty & Consciousness

Sometimes I fear being humiliated or judged when I am honest – even to close friends. However, I’ve decided that being transparent and honest is the only way to go. What others think of me does matter – I’d be lying if I said otherwise – but I’d rather share my struggles, fears, needs and beautiful days and be known than to hide away by myself anymore. On the flip side of that… honesty alone doesn’t even begin to lift the burdens of life.

Worry and fear wake me up at night and have consumed hours of my life. I am finding that belief is sometimes a conscious choice in these days when it isn’t coming easily to me. Belief that I am loved by Love Himself. It is easier for me to believe when I sit still…to listen, receive, realize and express my love back to God. Love defuses a lot of fear and brings a lot of peace. I need to be still more often and I’m still trying to figure out why I often avoid it in the most difficult days!

Last night I took a bath and dunked my ears down under the water where all I could hear was my own breathing. And I had to still my self and my fears and remind myself that I live and move and have my being in Him. He knows. He knows me. He knows our needs. He knows our fears. He knows our hurts, He enjoys who I am and who we are, He is pleased with me and with us. He is my provider. He enjoys loving me. I am his child. Eli is my child and when I think of how I love him, well, the love of God pretty much stuns me when I realize how tenderly He cares for me.

A few beautiful thoughts from Brennan Manning that caught my eye tonight as I was contemplating all of this:
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“The love of Christ embraces all without exception.”

Fire of love, crazy over what You have made. Oh, divine Madman.” (Prayer of Catherine Siena)

“Simply do the next thing in love.”

“I have no sense of myself apart from you.”

“Quia amasti me, fecisti me amabilem. (In loving me, you made me lovable.)”
― Brennan Manning, The Furious Longing of God

“Experience has taught me that I connect best with others when I connect with the core of myself. When I allow God to liberate me from unhealthy dependence on people, I listen more attentively, love more unselfishly, and am more compassionate and playful. I take myself less seriously, become aware that the breath of the Father is on my face.” ― Brennan Manning, Abba’s Child: The Cry of the Heart for Intimate Belonging

(this was originally posted on my Facebook page on November 16, 2014)

God wants us to be WHAT?

In addition to God loving you, he also wants you to be happy and full and satisfied.

Go ahead you self-taught theologians. Go ahead and argue that point.

OK sorry. That was purely sarcasm derived from experience. But screw that. I’ll take the joy. He says it’s my strength and I believe Him.

But really, when did we become so… joyless?

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Well? When?

Look up. That’s where our help comes from.

when you think you lose it all

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When you think you lose it all… you actually don’t. I haven’t anyway. And really, when I got laid off I didn’t think I’d lost it all but I did think I’d lost my income and security. The truth is I had lost my income but not my security. I’ve found that. Found it like I never had when I had a paycheck coming in every two weeks.

I may have mentioned it in an earlier post but right around the same time I lost my job our washer had stopped working. Also, the air conditioning in our Expedition went out. Also the truck window is broken and won’t really stay up. Also I’ve been out of work almost a month and up until yesterday my unemployment still hadn’t started coming in. Also one of the hoses on the Expedition started leaking this weekend. Also, two nights ago our stove broke. No, really! Trying to save money and cook at home and the stove just quit.

He’s provided a new washer for us and we hadn’t even asked anyone for one. He has provided money for bills and rent and groceries and even a day out at the movies with Eli to see Guardians of the Galaxy. He has provided peace in our home. I have felt so supported by Patrik during this time. He has provided time for Eli and I to spend together. It’s all such a gift!

The biggest obstacles though are hearts… and God has just blown through the doubts in my heart with love. So much love and peace. From the day I was laid off God helped me to begin to spend more time with him and to be able to choose faith over fear. It has been monumentally awesome.

So, I have this to say to you if you are struggling. Stop doing what you *think* you ought to be doing out of obligation or guilt. Start doing what your heart wants to do. God places good desires in all of us and I believe sometimes he has to push us into them (for instance, being laid off) so that we won’t stay stuck in a rut that is sucking the life out of us because of “responsibility”. Press in to God and believe Him. He cares. He listens. He answers. He provides. He loves you.

I was listening to a song by Gungor this morning called Cannot Keep You. Here are some of the words:

they could not keep you in a tent
they could not keep you in a temple
or any of their idols, to see and understand

we cannot keep you in a church
we cannot keep you in a Bible
or it’s just another idol to box you in

they could not keep you in their box
we cannot keep you in ours either
you are so much greater

who is like the Lord
the maker of the Heavens
who dwells with the poor
and he lifts them from the ashes
and he makes them sit with princes
who is like the Lord

So here’s what I’m saying to you – stop trying to keep him in your responsibility box. In your “I’m an adult and I have to do this now” box. Don’t keep him in your 9-5 job box. Your “if we can save up enough money someday I can do something I’m dreaming about box”.

Heaven stands behind you. God will whisper in your ear the way to go. Your desires are His desires. You are so loved and your life – YOUR life – is meant to be truly lived and enjoyed. Yes, the shit days will come but even in the pain, there is so much peace and love. So, go for it. I say climb into Jesus and let Him love you deeply and then take a deep breath and enjoy Him. Receive from Him and share with Him, be yourself with Him. And then, go. Believe. Don’t be afraid.

Peace

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Sitting with Him. With God. Not to hear something for a new blog post, but to enjoy Him. He enjoys me. I can feel it while I’m with Him.

It’s a game changer.

Eli’s playing Transformers in the living room. Patrik is working out in the shed. Jane the dog is sleeping on the floor beside me. I am being still and knowing that He is God. I need this stillness and peace. To be centered in Him. What a gift.

This is part of how life is changed, how we move in new directions, how we recognize the voice behind us telling us to go to the right or to the left.

We are so loved.

exploring God, being free, living in Love, accepting myself

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