January 14, 2014

In health or in warfare, there is fullness of joy in the presence of the Lord

Is January zipping by for everyone or is it just me! I need to get back in the habit of posting here, but I'm not making any promises....or resolutions.

I'm just not a resolute type of person I guess. There are many things I should be resolute about, but, ehn. So a few years ago, I gave up making New Year resolutions and began asking God to give me a word for the year.

I began this spiritual practice at the end of 2010, being challenged by a group of other pastors' wives I am involved with. Here is my little history of what God's shown me in the past few years....

2011 Joy ....coming after a few terribly stressful years. The housing crisis hit and we were devastated and humbled by it. I lost 2 jobs because of lay offs.  I felt very unsure of myself and vulnerable. These, along with a lot of other things that involved loss, just made it a difficult series of years for us that led up to 2011. In fact, when I got this word after praying for one, I kept rethinking it. I was in such a state of being humbled and vulnerable that I kept thinking it was just wishful thinking and not something from God. But it was, it kept being confirmed to me and I finally, thankfully, accepted it.

Even though it wasn't a perfectly happy and pain free year, God developed an inner peace and contentment throughout that year that I truly realized the truth I did know in my head, I just wasn't practicing it. Joy comes from within, from being submitted to the Lord, grateful and obedient to Him, not from outer circumstances. The word could have been trust, because I was learning to trust what He was doing in our life, but that was the process....the gift was accepting joy.

The beginning of that year found us packing up our home and moving to a very cheap rental house, wondering what would come next. But it was a freeing time too. We no longer had a huge house payment and I did not have to work. We could afford for me to stay home again and it was...joyful. We were content to live in that little rental house and had plans to be there for as long as we could foresee. But the end of the year found us moving into a large, beautiful home owned by a generous person who charged us less rent than the cheap rental house. We learned to be content and find joy wherever we were. It was kind of an amazing journey of letting go of stuff and trusting what God was doing.

2012 Health ....not striving for health (which was my first thought), but a gift of... an answer to a lot of different health problems that did not seem connected. I was beginning to feel very worn down,  used up and in pain a lot. In February an ultrasound for female things showed that I had a left kidney full of stones. Even though I'd had numerous kidney stones before, I had no idea that was where my pain and problems were coming from. After a grueling 2 lithotripsies and an emergency hospitalization, I remembered an old friend's kidney stone problem was caused by an overactive parathyroid gland, so I mentioned that to my doctor. One simple blood test later, I ended up having one of my parathyroid glands taken out and wow, what a difference! I'm so thankful.

2013 War. Scary word, but I was invited to join in the spiritual warfare that was raging against my family and our church. The word Victory was popping up all over the place, even the day after I got this word, so it was a very hopeful time, even though it was a very hard year....the hardest of my life. There were many victories too. Trust me.

This is the main reason I have not blogged very often this year. The things going on in my life and head were a little too personal and not really about me, so I could not share.

2014 Fullness

 Are you kidding me! Bring it! I am ready. Already I am hearing this word pop up in my husband's sermons....even before telling him my word. And see it all the time in my devotional time.  I made a Pinterest board on it. The verse I'm mainly focused on is Psalm 16:11...

You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.
Psalm 16:11 NAS

Fullness only comes from God, so I am eagerly anticipating this year and what He will show me. God is so good to us in that group of women I meet with, giving us a little glimpse of the year, a little prophetic word to hold on to, to anticipate....  Each woman has a story to tell about their words. He is active and working and teaching us so much.


Shereen Lashua said...

Love it! Excited to hear how God works an blesses in 2014! By the way I like fullness better than war.

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you started blogging again. I check every day to see if there is something new.

The picture reminds me of Maggie when she was little. I miss you all!

pw2 said...

Crick'l.... write girl!!!! Dear friend, pick up your pen, sister-friend. I could use a helping of what you have been dishing up.
Love to you!