Cozy, Rainy Sunday

It has been a good day to stay in, cuddle under a blanket and watch a good football game. Well, a good game...the Broncos could have had a great win today but no. They lost, and it wasn't pretty. It is a sad day in the Freeman family, and the Broncos seem to be having another dismal, just plain disappointing year. I thank my husband for getting my interest in football really going, although I had a good start growing up in a family that rooted for the Cowboys. Dallas is really doing well this year, I guess I can get excited about that...quietly! I hope I will always have someone rooting for me to do my best in life, with my work, my relationships, my hobbies, my passions and gifts. I am watching my three children evolve into such individuals. My daughter is struggling with being a pre-adolescent girl. I remember what it was like to be 10, wanting so much approval, to be accepted, loved and just beginning to figure out who I wanted to be. I see her struggle, and I ache to meet her needs when she is hurting. The hardest part of that is letting God do what only He can do. The needs I cannot meet as her mother, He will always meet as her heavenly Father. I am always going to be her biggest cheerleader, her biggest fan, her greatest ally but ultimately there are so many times in life I will come to this place of letting her go. I don't like that, but I know I must do it so she can find what God has for her, find her own path, find who she is and who she really wants to be. It isn't easy, in fact it makes me squirm quite a bit but I'll do it cause I trust the Father, and I know He knows what is best and holds her life in his hands.

What day is it?

It is odd, but for some reason today has felt like a Saturday. It is the holiday that throws me off, don't know why. It was a quiet Thanksgiving for us, stayed home and did our own thing. Sometimes I really, really like that but other times I would love to be with extended family. I am feeling the effects of turkey, tired and a bit sluggish but somehow I'll bounce back into the swing of things. I need to whip myself back into shape, eat better and exercise consistently. I have been lazy, easy fall into that little pit. That pit can become larger if I am not careful and aware of my need to pick up and step out of it. The reality is I am getting older and it isn't getting any easier to get myself into shape. I know I can do it, I have done it before and I can do it again. I wish it were easier, simpler, somehow programmable...what am I, a robot? God made us the way we are, able to make choices good or bad and learn to live with the consequences. I need to make more of an effort to choose wisely. This can be said for all my choices in life, not just what I consume. I have the chance each day to start fresh, make it new and make it count. I need to do it, I know I can and I must make the choice and just do it. Somehow it sounds easier than it actually is. We'll see....

A thankful heart

I was reading in 2 Corinthians 9 Paul's words to the Greek brothers of his pride in their willingness to give to those in Jerusalem. He reminds them to give wholeheartedly, not reluctantly or under pressure. The greatest result that can come from our generosity to others, is to see that generosity spill from their lives as well. We know everything we have comes from God, so out of that thankfulness we should be moved to give. When the mediocrity of life creeps in to our minds and hearts, we can lose touch with that thankful mindset we should have. Our greatest reminder of that mindset is Christ--verse 15 says, "Thank God for His Son--a gift too wonderful for words!" If our minds are set on Christ, we will carry that thankful mindset with us daily. I have a lot to be thankful for this year. I have a wonderful husband and three sweet children, family and friends who love me and have supported me through so much, and a God in heaven whose Son gave it all and suffered just for me. No matter what this life rolls my way, I want to be mindful daily of how blessed I am.

Fill me up

"There's a God-shaped hole in all of us, and the restless soul is searching. There's a God-shaped hole in all of us, and it's a void only He can fill." --Plum

If you haven't got this cd, get it and listen to this song. I love her stuff, so applicable and relevant to the stuff we go through in this life. Yesterday it came to me as I was driving home from Bible study. I have this hole in my soul that needs to be filled daily, and oh my goodness how easy it is to grab whatever is convenient at the moment to fill it. When the stress hits, my comfort is food. I am working at resisting that, because it is not good for my waistline or my health. When I make an effort, exercise can meet that need but more often I tend to give in to whatever warm, baked goodness is on my kitchen counter. I am struck by how much God must desire for me to choose to reach for him in those moments. I do, but my selfish flesh struggles and gives in to a more immediate relief at times. Why can't we make a habit of in that moment reminding ourselves of the peace He provides, the comfort He gives that is more lasting than any earthly comfort? It is natural for us to relate that peace to something tangible when describing it to a non believer...but it truly is inadequate. That is how living it out daily sends the message to our world. If we are fluctuating daily, but consistently return to His promises and His peace, what an example that can be to others. I am going to make a greater effort, rise to the challenge. It is a habit we must form to fill that void, that hole that exists in each one of us. He will fill it, if we are willing, teachable, usable for His purpose.

Desperate times call for desperate measures

I have yet to get this blog thing down, consistent anyway. I wrote in journals for years, but recently decided to go with a blog instead. So Ryan got home from Indiana yesterday, we are making progress. This past year has been a difficult progression to this point in time. Ryan's job loss has been devastating for us on so many levels. I am so tired, emotionally, physically and spiritually. God somehow provided for Ryan and I to be a good balance for one another. When one of us is struggling, the other encourages, providing the love and support needed to climb out of the struggle. I have to admit there have been some very painful, ugly moments of desperation for both of us. I don't like to be beaten down, feeling like there is no way out of the rut we are in. There have been moments I have felt that way. There have been moments I wondered if our marriage would crumble from the weight of worry and stress we have carried. I admit I have felt at times my husband has failed me, and truly he has. But the reality is we as humans are imperfect, and so of course we are going to fail one another aren't we? That reality doesn't provide any comfort, it doesn't make it any easier to endure. I am a prideful woman, so I know I have not admitted my faults as quickly as I have pointed out his. At some point that pride has been cut down but the conviction in my heart, the love I have deep down for my sweet husband. I realize looking back at who I was when I first fell in love with him is not so different from the woman I am today. Yes, I am a little wiser, a little older, a whole lot more tired, a little heavier, a whole lot more confident and assertive than I used to be. Life truly takes some hard hits at us, and I admit it would be very easy for me to cave in and not bounce back. I'd like to think the experiences I have had made me stronger, better...but there are so many times I feel like Peter, in Matthew 14 where he steps out of the boat and walks to the Lord on the water. As soon as those waves start crashing around him, he is distracted, shaken and takes his eyes off Jesus. In that moment as he sinks, he cries out, "Save me, Lord!" and the Lord grabs him and tells him his faith is weak, and asks Peter, "Why did you doubt me?" Why do I doubt the Lord when times get so desperate, so beyond my control? Because that is the point when I must be broken, I must relinquish the weight of worry and stress to the Lord and see that He truly is the one true God, my Savior, my help in times of need. That isn't easy, and it is not comfortable but it is necessary.

Solid Ground

At some point I know there is a give....I must yield to His will. My human nature does not want to do that. There is a battle within, my nature versus the Spirit. In the midst of the battle I find myself opening my Bible for answers, for comfort and strength. So many times I don't know where to look, because there are so many truths in the Word that meet every one of my needs. Yesterday I found Psalm 40, familiar and such a great comfort at this particular point in time. This week has been long and a bit harder, partly because of the absence of my sweet hubby and also circumstances I have had to deal with without him by my side.

'I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me

and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the mud and the mire.

He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along.'(Psalm 40:1-2)
He steadied me, somehow in the midst of this struggle to stay on the path he has laid before us we have found solid ground. That is faith, trust and obedience--wow God! Where does that come from without having established a relationship with You? Where would we be if we did not have You? How would we get through any of this? I find myself questioning the other side of me, if I allowed it to dominate, to have control. What if...I chose to give up, become bitter and angry, wallow in pity and depression, wondering when life is ever going to be good. There is, in that moment of contemplation and self examination, a whisper of hope from the Spirit that says, "I am here, I am working--so don't give up!" And it is in that moment, I find my footing, a place to stand and know He is there. He is always right there, never moving or changing, always at work. Isn't that amazing?

my Ebenezer...

“…Thus far the Lord has helped us.”-1 Samuel 7:12 There are moments in my life when I look back and can see how God in His perfect yet my...