Monday, February 23, 2015

It's been 2 years.


Ever feel like you’re at a masquerade ball with your mask of happiness on, so people won’t know your true pain?
I know I wear my mask sometimes. It’s understandable that we wear it at times. But if you’re hurting, how do I know?
If I really knew your pain, I’d let you know that you’ll get through it.
Yes, you’ll get through it.
“You’ll get through this. It won’t be painless. It won’t be quick. But God will use this mess for good. In the meantime don’t be foolish or na├»ve. But don’t despair either. With God’s help you will get through this.” ~ Max Lucado: You’ll Get Through This
• God will use the evil for GOOD. (Genesis 50:20)
This is my favorite go to verse in times of hurt and pain. I know everything is for God’s glory – EVERYTHING, so this reminder helps.

• God will be with you at ALL times. (Isaiah 43:2)
• God is with YOU wherever you are in your life. (Genesis 28:15)
When you are wearing that mask, he is with you.

• God has an amazing plan for YOUR life. (Isaiah 55:8-13)
This can be hard to believe, but hold on to this promise!

• God is your HOPE. (Psalm 42:5)
• God is your STRENGTH. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
I’m not a fan of hope deferred because I’m extremely optimistic, which leads me to disappointment at times, but knowing that it all ends up for God’s glory helps me put one foot in front of the other.

• God wants you to REST in him. (Psalm 37:7)
Read His word, sing His praises, follow His people, and take joy in knowing that you don’t have to do a thing, because God has got this.

• God’s ways are PERFECT. (Psalm 18:30)
• God has made everything BEAUTIFUL. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)
• God’s plan is ABUNDANT. (Ephesians 3:20-21)
Everything is for God’s glory – at all times. If we only knew how much He loved us we would never, ever doubt His plan.

“Remember you have a choice. Remember to let peace rule. Remember to believe God’s truth even when it doesn’t feel true. Remember that your life is hidden with Christ in God, you no longer have to manufacture your own safe place.” ~ Emily P. Freeman: Grace for the Good Girl
It’s often easy for me to submit to God with the following understanding: it is well with my soul, it’s all for God’s glory, and Heaven is more than enough.
This has been my motto for awhile now.

Will I worry about tomorrow? Yes, I’m a sinner. I’m working on that. Am I writing this for myself? Yes. Will it help the person who is struggling behind the mask? I hope so.
“There is no magic formula to living life free of masks. There is no automatic mask remover. The masks will never disappear completely as long as we live in a fallen world. I have days where it feels as if my only option is to pull out those well-worn masks and move through life in survival mode, content to be good and invisible. But I can’t stay there for long, because I have tasted freedom. I know the truth about the rescue.” ~ Emily P. Freeman: Grace for the Good Girl
“I know the truth about the rescue.” Let that resonate….
All of God’s glory reigning down on you during this trial and being manifested through you for the greatness of His truth is liberating, door opening, and mountain moving – mountain moving!
When the devil creeps in like a snake to tear apart your faith, rebuke him. I say it again, rebuke him. The devil comes to kill, steal, and destroy. (John 10:10) Command him to flee and claim the victory with God’s word.
If you feel distress, grab your bible. Read God’s word. (Hint: It does help to focus on those highlighted scriptures.) Seek God where he may be found. Run to him, and flee from the devil’s lies.
You are God’s chosen one. He didn’t choose somebody else, He chose you! During our weakness, He is strong. When you’re sad, depressed, and lost, He can be found in a mighty way with miracles abounding – even the really good life changing kinds in the hearts of His people that bring about God’s glory for all His people.
I know you’ll get through it, but to be honest, I do have to remind myself of this.
It was two years ago today that I lost Brynlee, my stillborn daughter, and I almost lost my own life. I wear my mask often. Actually, I get real embarrassed when I take it off and spill my guts. In an odd way, it’s good that I wear it sometimes. If you know me, that makes sense. : )
However, losing Brynlee has been really hard on me. I said so many times when I lost her that I was going to fulfill every purpose for her life and help it lead to God’s glory.
So, what did the devil do? He decided to attack.
Now, I face depression and fears, but God DID NOT put Brynlee in my life to ruin my hopes and dreams and cause me years of depression and fears. That was not the purpose for her life. So, I have to work every day – every single day – to trust God, His plan, and His purpose. How do I do that? I read his word and remind myself that everything is for God’s glory. No matter what tomorrow holds, I know who holds it.
I know I’ll get through this if I keep God as my focus.
Do you have a sick child? Are you sick? Keep God as your focus to heal your pain.
Do you have lost family and friends? Keep God as your focus to help guide them.
Do you struggle with future decisions? Trust God and focus on His word.
Are you worried about your marriage? Keep it in God’s hands. Be still, and know that He is God.
Do money burdens depress you? Trust God will make a way.
Are you lonely in some form or fashion? Cling to God and his word.

I don’t know why you’re wearing your mask, but trust God to get you through this season. Someday you’ll be able to remove your mask, and I’ll be able to remove mine too.
As for tomorrow, tomorrow will worry about itself. (Matthew 6:34)
“After all, tomorrow is another day!” ~ Gone with the Wind

Today, I will serve the Lord.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

It's Been a Year

 I'm typing from my iPad tonight, and I can't type anything past #4, so I'll make more changes later. #computerproblems

5 Things I've Learned This Year:

1. God's love is real, and it lives and thrives in us. We have the ability to share it in multiple ways everyday. I was overwhelmingly blessed by His love this year through so many of you.


Thank you to Paula, Tiffany, and Colleen for my beautiful flowers!

Also, I'm thankful He put Bonnie in my life. She has taught me how to share God's love.
http://sweetcarolinebaby.blogspot.com/

2. If your world is ever shattered, choose God. A girl in my bible study recently lost her baby and has cancer, but she still chooses God.
http://mrsclarkbar.blogspot.com/

3. Be obedient. For me, this means I choose to submit to my husband's spiritual authority. Particularly, I'm choosing to trust my husband's decision making regarding whether or not we have another baby. Honestly, this is not easy for me. It's really hard. But, it's the right decision for me.

This lady has inspired me as a wife.
http://womenlivingwell.org/

4. God works in mysterious ways. He can use so many people in so many ways to minister to you. He can use scripture, songs, and circumstances. All you have to do is listen.



5. Love the ones you have!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Needing Clarity

I love my blog because it's an outlet I can use when I need an outlet. Unfortunately, most of the time, I blog when I'm sad. I wish I could say otherwise. For a while, I was doing really good, but lately I've had a harder time. I'm tired of wanting. I'm tired of mourning what I don't have. Here's the thing, we really need God to clarify this for us. If he does not want us to have another child, I need peace about that. I need a peace that overcomes waves of sadness that pierce my heart. It's a topic that rattles me so badly, and I'm tired of being shaken. Please pray for clarity as we welcome 2014.

If you are on a PC, you should be able to see the video below.

Lilianna is a huge blessing to me. I burst with love for her!
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=jgDRkssCo6g

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Amen! 100th Post!

I have the BEST news for my 100th post! Jamie has a job!!! We are so excited about his new job, and we are so thankful to Jesus for his blessings. We have been waiting for this for a long, long time. There were many times when I wondered just how long God would want to keep us in the desert, but I knew it was for His glory. I took comfort in that. I chose to be apart of his plan even when I didn't understand. Also, I'm proud of my husband and our marriage. We never let this job issue be an issue that would cause walls to build in our marriage. Even when I had days of exhaust, I kept my faith in God's plan and in my husband. Through it all, God met our needs through our family and friends. Just like the birds, our needs were met!


Monday, September 2, 2013

Sad but Happy

I've had many unanswered prayers so far this year, but I'm so happy for what I do have. I have a Savior who loves me and has plans to use me to advance His kingdom. I have a husband who LOVES me. I have a beautiful daughter who fills my world with joy. There are so many things I have to be thankful for each day! I use those thoughts to get me through rough times. I know I'm never alone! God is always, always next to me!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Busy Bees

Summer life before Lilianna was always boring. Summer life with Lilianna has me as busy as a bee, but it's a good kind of busy.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The Chair

I haven't made a post in awhile. I haven't made a post because it means I have to sit on "the chair" again. "The chair?" Yes, "the chair" I sat on night and day in the computer room while I was finishing all of my work for NBPTS. "The chair" that carried all my stress and burdened my back, which still aches when I sit down.

Another reason why I haven't sat on "the chair" is because I have been enjoying life again. I feel like a mom again to Lilianna, and it means the world to me. Everyday, I find myself consumed with busy, fun activities, and I'm loving it. There was one day before the business of summer that I worried that summer boredom was going to consume me, but that has not happened. A two year old constantly surprises me, and there is never a dull moment.

Yes. I'm happy.

However.....ugh, I hate to add a "however" at this wonderful time, but there is a however. :(

For five years, I have been waiting for a very specific prayer request to be answered.

At my last bible study, we learned about "discontent." We are reading Stuck by Jennie Allen.
 The topic wouldn't leave my mind, so I emailed my GFN group a long message. This is some of it.

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Wow! Thursday night's topic was so deep that I can't get it off my mind. I felt I needed more supplemental materials, so I have spent a few hours surfing the web looking for the right message to help lead me to contentment. I found many websites that helped, but I did not find a particular message that I could copy and paste in this message that I felt the need to send. Then, I thought of this:  

ESL students go through five stages (I reviewed this for my NBPTS test.). 
1. Optimism
2. Culture Shock
3. Superficiality
4. Frustration
5. Acceptance

This totally relates to my spiritual life when it comes to praying about....-you guessed it-....Jamie's job. 
1. I felt optimism in 2008 when Jamie graduated and the economy was still rolling pretty well.2. I felt culture shock year after year when the economy kept crashing down, and the state of Arkansas kept pushing back plans to certify all PE coaching positions.3. I have been very superficial when I've "faked" being happy for others. 4 & 5. I go in and out of these two phases each school year.

But, here is what God says:

1: Optimism

Psalm 37:4 

Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
2. Culture Shock

Romans 8:28 

And we know that for those who love God ALL things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

3. Superficial - I know I should be thankful, but sometimes I'm superficial. 

2 Corinthians 9:11 

You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.
4. Frustration

1 Corinthians 10:10 

Nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.

(Thursday night we discussed if it's okay to be upset even if we shouldn't be upset. I think that is human nature. Jennie alluded to this when she wrote, "He wanted us to need him.")
5. Acceptance - Accepting God's Will

Philippians 4:10-13 

I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity. Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Jennie wrote, "While we compare and long and wait and ask and save and spend and flaunt and pretend and cry and whine and tear down and puff up and stare and wish and ignore and complain and demand and search and find...we miss something...we miss the most important thing...maybe we miss the only thing."

What do you think that is??? I think it is....

1 John 4:16 

So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.
I will choose to believe that ALL things work for the glory of God today because I know He loves me. Today I will not submit to discontent.

Am I preaching to myself? Yes, but it's like Beth Moore. She says she writes studies to find healing for herself. 

I'm also going to do last week's project. I'm going to celebrate someone's good news - I might even do it on Facebook. It's like the Good News book! Ha! That goes back to what we have said a few times about Facebook. :) 

Again, wow! Thursday night was so deep but so good for me! It called out to me and hasn't left my side. I needed this, and I'm so thankful for all of you! 

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So, what is my prayer request? Our family needs the job my wonderful husband deserves. He went to college, got a degree, and he's got his foot in the door, but he can't seem to get the job he deserves - the job he is really good at. Mostly, I think it's because of the economy and politics. However, it's really because this is where God has us. So, I'm going to get off "the chair" now and go sit in the "palm of His [God's] hand." I will not submit to discontent.