Recently, “whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,” is taking on a whole new significance for me. I am learning a few things about myself. None of which, unfortunately, are good. Some of which, I never knew before. Some of which, I thought were dealt with and gone, but apparently were only lying dormant.
I find it unfair that it is in the face of persecution, injustice, accusation, and trial that the depth of our character is shown most clearly. It is unfair because isn’t it only natural for people to respond defensively or angrily in such circumstances? After all, how else are we to survive? Is it right that a person be judged based on how they respond when they are wronged? Shouldn’t it be the person who is doing the wrong that should be judged? Yet, I know that life isn’t fair, and the world isn’t a perfect place. I know that we are held accountable for our actions even if it is simply retaliation. (Not to mention that we would all be in heap of trouble if we got everything we deserved! Thank goodness for grace!) Thus, I have chosen the “high road.”
Yes, right now, I am finding myself in a position where I feel I would be justified in verbally lashing out at someone. I am finding myself in a position where I think I would be justified in simply walking away and leaving people to clean up their own mess. I am finding myself in a position where I feel I would be justified in throwing a punch or twelve. Yet, I am refraining. I am taking the high road.
…Except for that tiny fact that Jesus doesn’t care about my so called “high road.” The issue is, my heart is bitter and angry and frustrated, and I suppose that some teeny tiny amount of credit should be given to me for refraining from a physical or verbal reaction, but the truth is…it doesn’t really matter. Remember that whole Sermon on the Mount thing where Jesus’ major point is…yeah so what. I don’t care if you do everything right on the outside. You’re missing the point. The important thing is what your heart looks like…? Yeah, unfortunately, I’m remembering that all too well today. I’m being smacked upside the head with it every time my holier than thou, self-righteousness kicks into gear.
So today, as I am struggling through being like Christ from the inside out, I am realizing how impatient I actually am. I am seeing how selfish and prideful I can actually be. I am seeing that when things aren’t how I think they should be I become stubborn and unmotivated. And, I am quite honestly irritated that this injust circumstance, is pointing out my character flaws. Go figure. I have always prided (there’s my first problem) myself in the fact that I “worship the Lord through whatever position he has placed me in, by working my hardest and giving my best.” HA! Not today, my friends. Today I am learning how hard it is to follow not only the teachings of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, but I am finding it difficult to look past the “working for men” part to remember that I need to be focused on the “working for the Lord” part. So let me try, once more, to dismount from my high horse and actually be like Jesus.
Sometimes this is all a bit harder than it seems.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Lately we have had a lot of decisions to make. With my various health issues surfacing, we have had to weigh the options regarding our move to Portland. Ultimately, with much prayer and debate, it has been decided (by the whole team) that the best solution is to stay put for now. There are no changes in the ultimate plan, and the goal is still the same. But, instead of getting all of our church/ministry experience in Portland, we are going to be getting as much as we can in Dallas.
There are times when I feel like all these planning alterations are my fault, but then I remember that God is the one who is ulimately in control. He has set all of this in motion, and we are all at peace in trusting Him to complete the work He started. For now we will be staying at the church we are currently serving in.
One of the things that has come up as a result of my "medical issues" and of our ultimate decision to stay here, is when we should start having kids. Originally it would have been poor timing and financially unwise to attempt to have a child before we moved, or just as we were moving to Portland, but now things have changed. We are by no means making any sort of announcement. There are many health factors that could very well interfere with any plans we may wish to make. Still, we would like to begin our family on this side of the move. We have such a great church and support system here, and if God allows it, we would like to make that step. We are just patiently waiting on the Lord for whatever He has in store...and we are trying to make sure that we do not get discouraged in the process.
So...once again we are in a new place. It seems like things are always changing, but we are blessed that one thing remains the same. God is in control.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
After a bunch of Dr.'s appointments and poking and prodding...whatever was on my left ovary is gone! Hooray! God answers prayer for sure!
In other news...I am in the midst of working on my reading list, and have completed one book. I will make sure to post when it is finished. I now have #23, a Texas Driver's License...check! I have started #41, crocheting a blanket...check! My friend Zach needed some vocals on a song he recorded, so, #46, I did that!...Check! And... #44, the hedges have been trimmed (although, I cannot take credit...Amber did it while I was gone)...so sort of check! And finally... #38 I redid the pictures in my bedroom. Check! It's coming along. I'll post pictures soon. So far...I am also keeping up on journaling, blogging (mostly), and date nights! (not doing so well on the working out...I'll get better though!)
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
they selected one of my pictures! They didn't have thousands of entry's or anything, but today I was surpised to hear that the City of Carrollton selected one of my photos for 2nd prize. Not too shabby. Plus, I get $100. And the winner is....
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Good news! I have accomplished a goal! Actually...I have accomplished more than one, but I will wait and post about those when I get a picture.
First, let me apologize for not being particularly timely with this post. I wrote this big long post about goals, and then I didn't post for over a week.
This has been a really crazy week for me, though. In fact, I could really use all of your prayers. I have been having some health issues, and the doctors found a large growth, among other things, on one of my ovaries. Over the next few weeks I am going to be having a lot of tests done to see what we do from here. At this point we do not know if the growth is cancerous or not, but given my age, we are optimistic that it is not. So, will all the Dr.'s appointments and such, it has been a fairly busy and stressful time.
I am doing great though! I really am sure that God has this whole thing in his hands! So, on to the good part!
The city that we live in, Carrollton, TX is rebuilding its website. So, they had a contest where people could submit photos of the city. This was a perfect opportunity to accomplish something on my list! I have absolutely no expectations of winning anything, but it was definitely fun. You could submit 10 photos, so I figured I needed all the chances I could get!
Monday, January 26, 2009
My cousin Shannon has inspired me. She decided to make a list of 101 things to do in 1001 days. I have lately realized that I spend much of my time without any purpose. So, in an attempt to live intentionally, to live with more purpose, and to accomplish some goals both serious and fun, I have adapted Shannon's idea for myself. I made a list of 50 things to accomplish by the end of 2009. In fact, after I decided to make a list, the rest of the people in my house made lists! We posted the lists in our "office" so we can keep track and help each other along.
I have also decided, again from the inspiration of Shannon, to blog about my goals as I accomplish them. Lucky you. :)
- Start graduate school
- Keep up with my journal
- Go to Disney World
- Eat an oyster
- See my best friend get married
- Lose five pounds
- Have a date night at least once a month
- Go white water rafting
- Take a cooking class
- Make and complete a new reading list of 25 books
- Start working out on a regular basis
- Go camping (I haven’t been in five years!)
- Go to an Indian restaurant
- Cook a Thai meal
- Go skiing
- Pay off all non-school debt
- Finish memorizing Hebrews
- Go golfing
- Have a garage sale
- Enter a photo contest
- Take a photography class
- Get my name changed on all of my documents
- Get a Texas drivers license
- Get Owen obedience training
- Grow my hair out to the bottom of my neck (super long for me!)
- Go to the symphony
- Visit Portland
- Build up my collection of Disney movies
- Get new glasses
- Finish a jig-saw puzzle with Amber
- Have a girls night
- Write a song with Chris and Zach
- Stick my feet in the Pacific Ocean
- Go on a weekend retreat with my “Family”
- With my D-group, create plaster molds of our faces.
- Keep up with my blogs
- Go to the dentist
- Re-do my framed pictures to match my bedroom
- Blow up and frame some of my best pictures
- Sell Blanch (the Lumina)
- Start crocheting again
- Organize/re-organize a filing system for important documents, receipts, bills, etc.
- Make a quilt
- Trim the hedges
- Paint pottery
- Record with Zach
- Get enough money for three months worth of expenses in savings
- Read the Old Testament
- Learn to drive a standard
- Go to five states I have never been to.
This is my list, in no particular order. I'll keep you posted!