Faith and the Bus

Standard

Angels and the Bus

When I was younger, I had this child like faith, it was easy for me to follow with the beliefs and morals that my parents bestowed upon me. That child like faith or “simple” faith lasts for a while, only until you start throwing worldly things and ways in its path. When you start believing and acting as an adult this simple faith can be hard to practice. All of the what ifs, should ifs, and could ifs start becoming a part of your daily life and its harder to throw those out the window.I remember my child like faith and views being so simple.

Once, when my mother told me a story about a young girl falling into a well, I thought she was talking about a whale. I related the story of this child being trapped in a well to Jonah being swallowed by a whale. I thought, that this child would be safe from harms way with a little faith, because God will just let this whale spit her out! It wasn’t until she explained to me the difference that I understood. You see, back then, I was able to relate real life events to those that happened in the history of my faith and beliefs.Many years later after plenty of my own trials and tribulations, I found that my simple faith was easy one day, even though that faith without worldly views and ways only lasted for a second. This second carried on for a couple years, now into my present.

I was with a fine group of women. We went on an outing to the store and to fellowship with men and women of the like. As we were inside, a big huge Georgia storm was brewing on the outside. By the time we were leaving, it was pouring down rain outside. We all ran to load up on the bus, a rather undependable bus. The bus wouldn’t start.

After about 45 minutes of men, whom knew what they were doing, it still didn’t start. These men tried to jump it off, they tried to add oil, they even tried to add gas, still no budging with the engine. I remember another man coming and hitting on the starter! These women were not looking forward to jumping in the back of a truck for a 30 min drive in the rain!I went back to my child like faith and said let’s just pray. I started praying aloud for God’s will, for God to cover the bus’ engine with angels. No sooner did the words come out of my mouth that this bus started!

My faith more than tripled in this one instant! To think that we put all of our trust and faith in man, there was no result. When we set our minds on God’s will, his will reigns over all. The worst that could’ve happened would’ve been riding in the rain. Without weighing the choices in advance and putting the smidgen of faith that God is greater than any mess, he prevails!

A couple of years later, I was reminded of this story when my four year old daughter was asking about faith and the power of prayer. I’m always called to give testimony that relates to each situation that is set in front of me, and this was perfect opportunity to share this story. Looking in my rear view mirror and seeing the light in her eyes as I shared it was the best. This story actually clicked with her and she got it.I have to remember in any situation, trial, or tribulation, that there is a force and a power greater that myself, that I can tap into at any given time. I have to remember to captivate and remember these stories (testimonies) to share when it is relevant. I have to be able to bring the younger generation up the best I know how in my current situation. My children are much more vulnerable than I because they have more access to worldly things.

Photo Credit: http://www.usatoday.com

Opened Wounds

Standard
Opened Wounds

Richard Bach once said, “If you love someone, set them free. If they come back they’re yours; if they don’t they never were.”

When I was about 19 years old I purchased a shirt that said this. I remember going to Houston, TX to visit one of my friends. The weather, to me was kind of chilly that week. I know I probably wore that shirt a few times while I was there to visit. The stitching on it was beautiful and it quickly became one of my favorite shirts. It had birds flying away from the words. I believe that when I originally purchased this shirt, that I was trying to make a statement. I believe that a small portion of my pride and ego was involved every time I wore that shirt, although I really don’t believe I knew the true meaning of the statement.

I believe my purpose in originally wearing this shirt was to cover up any pain and hurt. I think that when I wore it, I was making a statement that my life will go on, with or without him. Really I was hurting inside. Really I hoped that by wearing this shirt, maybe one day the statement would come true. At least the part that said they would come back.

Over the years, I have gone in and out of relationships. Never really thinking too much about this quote until more recently.

I faced with wondering and questioning why I have do the things I have done. I am questioning why I’ve said good-bye. About five years ago, the person I thought I’d spend the rest of my life with seemed pretty sincere when he asked me if we could work out our differences. Yet, I said good bye. I walked away, never looking back. Since, he has done very well for himself. We needed that separation to thrive. We have questioned our love for one another since, but have never genuinely tried to make things possible. There have been roadblocks preventing this as well. Turns out, that maybe he was never truly mine.

More recently, I met someone who I immediately fell in love with. Someone who I felt completed every bit of me. Someone who my family and children loved dearly. Someone who I pictured standing beside in a beautiful white gown. Someone who I could laugh with and who would hold me whenever I wanted. Someone who would go to the ends of the Earth to make me happy.

The timing was totally off! I was struggling with my own issues and he was struggling with his. When we combined them, I felt almost like I was suffocating. I could barely care for myself and my children. Adding someone else to my mess was not working. It was obvious that he too was not happy.

I tried for months and months to make things work. I am a very driven person and I believe that when my overwhelmed mind met my exhausted heart, that drive that was deep inside of me slowly dissipated. I started to reach for outside influence. My pride and ego prevented me from disclosing all of my feelings. Slowly I started making my decision based on what other people’s judgments were. Don’t get me wrong, he and I were at a breaking point. Was it worth the fight?

Eventually one day, I gave in to my stress. I was tired of fighting the fight. I didn’t discuss it, I just did it. I told the man that I cared for ever so deeply that I couldn’t take it anymore. You know, it was probably more me than it was him. I had A LOT going on that year. I tried to take a “break” at first. What I saw then as a little obsessive behavior, now looks to me as it was a man who was fighting for the one he loved.

My mind was made up. There was no turning back. It was a struggle every single day to lay my head down at night without talking to him. It was a battle to go through the day without talking to him. I honestly did what I thought was best at that point in our lives. It hurt. He hurt. I know deep down in my being I felt nothing but pain, hurt, and loneliness without him. I covered all of that pain with staying busy. I stayed busy with the kids, cleaning, and friends. I stayed busy doing whatever I could to keep myself from “becoming weak”. We both got busy finding our strength…without each other.

I thought I moved on.

Today, I’m reminded of that quote. I don’t know what my future holds, I will never be able to predict that. I do know that when all of this happened, I just put a band aid over a battle wound. The band aid has since worn off.

Holding my Daddy’s Hand

Standard
Holding my Daddy’s Hand

Very early this morning, I heard the jingling of a familiar sound, a mi-mi. She had tip toed through the hall. I could see the red in her face. There standing in the doorway of my room was my middle child. I asked her what was wrong and she said she had a bad dream.

She crawled up in my bed with me and got as close as she could. She wanted to be held. I hate when things cause fear in the night for any of them, but secretly I love them wanting to be held. As they get bigger, they don’t care for as much of the holding time.

I imagine fear for myself. How do I handle it? My little girl is a lot like me in a sense that she just wants someone to comfort her. Someone to hold her close to their chest while caressing her head. Getting into a safe place with someone that she knows will keep her far from harm. The fear slowly left her little body as we both dozed back to sleep.

When I reach to my heavenly Father, I can find the same amount of love and comfort that my five year old daughter found in my arms this morning. The feeling of holding her small hand with fingers intertwined in mine is the same feeling that I know God has when I seek him for comfort not only in my fear but in my happiness.

God rejoices when we go to him with all we do. He rejoices when we come to him when we’re scared and alone. He rejoices when we share our times of jubilee with him. I envision him being like the dad on the soccer field when his child scores the game winning goal. He’s the one on the sidelines celebrating his children!

Being Broken and Finding Strength

Standard
Being Broken and Finding Strength

When we start comparing man to God, we are destined for failure. Only God can show the unconditional love that our soul yearns for. No man is perfect. They will all fail and fall. God is the only one standing when there is no one around. God is the only one that can catch you as you fall. He may let you get one knee on the ground, but he will always be there to guide you through the darkness.

Sometimes, we just want someone to listen to us.  Maybe we want someone to hold us when it seems like we can no longer carry our own weight. Sometimes, we just need a hug and someone to say that it’s going to be alright. We continue to look to man for these things. Man won’t always be there. The only true and genuine comfort lies in the hands of our Savior.

Is it that we don’t have enough faith? Do we not believe that we can get all of our needs met through Christ?

At times, I can really struggle with the want and desire to be loved. I really have to check myself, because love is all around me without searching for it. It’s in the pitter patter of small feet running on the hardwood floors. It’s in the slobbery wet kiss from one of my dogs. It is even in line at the grocery store when I’m given a friendly smile and wave. Love is in nature. It encompasses me daily.

How many times will we get our hearts broken by what a man can do before we turn to the Man of all Men? How many times will we allow the small hurtful things that people do hurt us until we feel so broken that we feel like we’re unworthy? Why is it so easy to say that love is all around us, yet it is so hard to actually feel it?

We can make ourselves become so vulnerable with people and not be vulnerable with God. We can put our hearts on a platter bare for any man, but not the One who knows our heart inside and out. We can pour our hearts out to the first person who listens, but when it gets stomped on we forget who is still right by our side. It can be so hard to go back to your true king when you’ve allowed human to be your false king for so long.

For me to really grasp who I am in Christ, I had to sit down, and seriously take a look at my life. I had to look at where I placed Christ in my life. He always makes room for me, but do I make the same room for Him? Do I place Him first in all that I do? The bible says that we are being changed in the likeness of Christ. If we are made in His image, we should be able to give Him our all.

I know at times, we may feel undeserving of any one’s love. One thing that’s true, God’s grace is sufficient enough. That should be all that matters. We should never have to crawl around looking for a small piece of bread when our Father has a feast prepared for us.

Photo Source Credit

Writer’s Block

Standard
Writer’s Block

I blog weekly for a Recovery Website called I Have Will. This week, I have been putting it off knowing that I have a deadline in two days. I usually try to get it done on my weekend off so that I will not be pressured to complete. Today, I was trying to come of with a topic, and there’s really nothing that I want to write about this week. There is nothing at all that comes to mind when I sit down to do it. I guess it’s sort of a writer’s block? I felt that if I spent some time in my own head, expressing myself in my own blog, maybe something of recovery will come to mind. I do have extreme experience in the topic!

I’ve been in a kind of pity party the last few days. None of which that anyone really knows about. It’s almost as if I am becoming really unhappy. As if the stresses of daily living are taking a toll on me, I really don’t have the energy to even get out of the bed. Thing is, I’m happier now than I’ve ever been and I’m really quite stress free, especially with the beginning of summer here. My views on life have definitely changed.

Have you ever thought that maybe the things that we complain about the most are our biggest blessings and motivators? For instance, I can complain about how much I don’t like my job when it’s what takes care of me and my children financially. I can complain about how I really hate it when my kid’s misbehave when the truth is, they are the reason I get up every morning. I can complain about how someone else acts to me when the very act can be used as a learned experience.

I had an epiphany moment today. As if the light bulb actually went off. I’d been telling myself this for a while, but today is different. It is as if I’m finally in reality with those thoughts. Like I don’t have to be unhappy or stressed in any situation. One thing that I’ve said over the last few months is that I’m not a tree. If I become unhappy, all I have to do is change or relocate my roots. Today, this became my reality. In order to change the current situation, I can’t change everyone’s actions around me. What I can do is change myself.

Why be unhappy? Why when sit down to express my feelings about active substance use, since it’s my expertise, I get the biggest headache? It’s me. I need to change. I need to pick my own brain as to what is blocking me from this rather simple function. It’s hard to admit when I struggle. I’ve came to realize that there is not a single person on this planet who is perfect and who doesn’t have some sort of struggle. That’s the truth. I’m no different from any one out there.

Photo Source Credit

Don’t Respond

Standard
Don’t Respond

Have you ever had a person in your life that critiqued everything you did? Or someone that had an answer for everything that you do? Someone that feels like they can do things better than you, and suggests a solution when the suggestion has already been tried? Or how about that person that wants to argue with you about every little thing, suggesting that you are the dumbest person alive?

My sister gave me some of the best advice in 4 little words; don’t respond to ignorance. It was absolutely perfect and absolutely hard at the same time. There are some people in my life that insist that I am not always taking the right route. These couple people will suggest that they know better than I.

I have tried to ignore it. I’ve tried to not respond. I’ve tried to word things in a way I think they will understand. None of these have been very easy or productive for me.

Every one thinks that they are right, and sometimes it can be hard for one to simply agree to disagree. We always need to get our points across, even when the other person is unwilling to see things from another’s perspective. It’s insanity to even try to explain to a person when they have their mind made up already. It is talking to a brick wall. And for what? It’s such a waste of time.

What distance are you willing to travel to get your point across? I’ve found that if it takes up the majority of my day, it’s taking up precious moments and space in my mind. Every person in the World is exactly who they are supposed to be at that given moment and time. I am NOT God, nor will I try to play God to try and get the point across to another.

Photo Source Credit

Easter Challenge Failed

Standard
Easter Challenge Failed

This past Sunday the congregation was faced with a challenge. Perry Noble said that it may not be easy, that the enemy may try to interfere, and that we may not get direct results. All who accepted the challenge were to take a light bulb and screw it in to the long string of lights. By doing this, we were making a commitment to invite at least one person to Newspring on Easter Sunday. A celebration that involved seven different services.

I accepted the challenge. My son and I made our way to the front of the sanctuary to plug our light bulbs in, not knowing the challenge that lay ahead. I really thought this would be fairly easy. Invite someone, if they decide to go, so be it. I even had someone in mind while he was announcing the challenge.

I decided to ask someone whom I had asked before. She is a believer and the past attempts had failed due to prior commitments. I wanted to go to the Friday night service. I asked and she said that her husband will be working til the service time. Then we got in to a huge argument, which, was the pettiest I have ever involved myself in. I think that it was miscommunication on both of our part that we simply couldn’t understand what the other person was saying.

Pastor Perry was right. The enemy used this moment of weakness to essentially make us upset with each other so church would be out of the question for her. You see, we began arguing over what was open and closed on Good Friday. I was saying that it’s surprising what is closed, and she was adamant that her husband would be working. Complete miscommunication.

I don’t think the enemy should get too much credit, but I believe that he should be acknowledged for where he can cause harm.

Photo Source Credit