Knowing when to rest

One of the hardest things for me while balancing fibromyalgia, working full-time, church and my family, is how much is just flat-out tired and how much could be depression.

For years I have blogged, taken medication, exercised, worship & danced, painted and photographed away the ‘blues’. But in this season with work and medical changes, I am doing less and less of those things and see that there is less and less energy for the things that brought rest from stress.

I love my job, I find it very inspiring and joyful to work daily with my preschool kids. But I must find a good balance to manage everything. I have decided to take on even more with obeying the Lord’s call to carrying my friends baby/babies and I wonder, God really, can I do this?
This is when God spoke to me this morning and said, “no, you are not limited or depressed, you are tired. You must know when to stop and rest your body and lean on me for strength.”

If I am working full-time, there is not necessarily the energy to run all weekend every weekend and right now that is my reality. I have been running and pushing far too much for far too long.

Also during the week, I can not reach for the quick and easy bite on my lunch break going to the nearest fast food joint. This makes me ill and fibromyalgia flares. I must take time and plan out my meals, do the shopping in one stop and put together those meals, for a better week. I often fuel on coffee and skip the water, so bad for me. I can be consistent with supplements and then forget them for a season until I can’t go anymore because I am deficient in critical vitamins and minerals. I must make the effort to take care of me. Again, this takes time and energy but in the long run will give my body what it needs to encourage health.

When one battles with fibromyalgia, there comes a point when your pain becomes your normal. You just keep pushing through it, knowing the pain itself will not kill you. It isn’t until you keep pushing and can hardly move anymore, that you realize, oh no I did too much. It is a fine balance between living and recovering.

It is time to remember the instruction to REST. The Lord God almighty himself RESTED.
Why do I feel I must do it all. I must make the decision, work full-time which I love, or bring down my hours for more time to keep up with it all and pursue other interests.

In the meantime of pondering this decision. I say yes Lord, I will hear you and I will take the time to REST.

Their dream…not mine

When I first held my tiny newborn, so much stirred within. The biggest feeling that would tend to overwhelm, would be my hope in his future.
As I held him close and prayed over each step that he would one day take, my dream formed in my head.

When his talents began to emerge, again, I would dream about how he would influence the kingdom. I had it all pictured and mapped out, he would go into the mission field and minister to the weary. He would go to college, lead worship before a church and find a good girl by time he was 20, who loved Jesus. Grand babies would be on the way before I knew it.

Then as the years passed by, his adult world began to settle into his own rhythm. I learned how much he had struggled with depression and anxiety and that it would greatly influence his music. The songs that he would write, were not the kind to be brought to a worship service and seemed so dark and heavy. I can’t count how many times that I mentioned, lighten them up for better listening, or,  give hope within them to reach the lost. On and on the motherly advice would go and he would sincerely listen, nod his head and continue to write.

We had many days of playing and singing together. We would write song after song, and I would watch his talent grow.

The days no longer look the same, he has stepped into his own creativity and rarely do I hear, “hey mom, help me with this!”

I know that distancing himself is healthy, but when I saw him distance himself from the church I grieved. He continually told me he didn’t feel he fit the mold to be on a team. He has of lately not even going with us anymore to our church and I see lifestyle choices far different from mine.

For a moment, I began to fear and my heart would hurt over what was to be his future and then like a ton of bricks, I realized that I had raised him. He is a child of God and the Lord has a call on his life. It may look very differently that what I had dreamed and lived out for him. He has his own journey to take. I can look at him with great pride and say, he is mine and I am grateful.

What kind of parent would I be, if I didn’t let my son, discover his own future and world.

Then there is the clarity that comes;  I don’t always completely understand, but with a glimpse the Lord will allow me to see tidbits of the work He is doing.

Do you know, those dark and crazy songs have reached the heart of many!

Do you know that his dream doesn’t ‘fit’ because his dream and call is unique!

Thank the Lord I am slowly learning, their dream, not mine.

God have your way and forgive me as I now intrust my son to you for real, and step back and watch your mighty work.

The joy of parenting is watching them spread their wings and prepare to take flight. I never realized how hard it was going to be when those wings began lifting off.

Thank you Lord for new clarity.

 

1 Peter 5:7
Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.

My sons’ band page :  Summer Fell To Fall

 

He calls the weak to the mighty

I was so blessed today when I got the text that my friends are able to move forward with their end of our surrogate journey. I know God called me, too much has lined up so perfectly for it not to be so. Yet my emotions rose on high with joy and excitement and then the enemy was right there to slam me with the low. Fears coming in and doubts of my own ability to see my end soundly through. What if my body lets them down? On and on the thoughts tried to rise up.

Honestly, with each doubt, the Lord was right there. The enemy said, “what if you have a hormone issue.” God said, ” Well, estrogen will fix this issue.”
The enemy said, “you are ill.” God said, ” I am your healer. I have used much less to do even greater.” On and on the Lord’s encouragement continued, followed by a boldness I have never known.

Even though the enemy throws daggers; over the years and through the depression I have learned that just because the enemy says it, does not mean that it becomes my truth. It does not matter if the perspective looks impossible, I serve a God of the possible. He is my strength and my shield.

God has a child/children that are to be born!  This journey is an amazing example of what truly laying our own lives down for His purpose looks like. The beauty that will unfold will leave me in awe and wonder.

Yes, Lord, I will. Not because I am anything special, in reality I am know that I am not, but because of who I know YOU to be and who I am because you are within me. I am a mighty warrior, that will be holding arrows within me that will move forth in your time to do great and mighty things. I will look back one day and say, “God, you made me able, not my own strength and I will never be the same.

This is a long road ahead. We will be fundraising and preparing both of our bodies. There are lawyers and tests and more tests. But I say yes Lord, continue to do miracles. We have seen SO many already !!!

When I am hormonal and need extra joy, I have a whole history of my joy journey already documented here…. I can read and read and read and see what the Lord ALREADY has done. I see that He is good and I want more. Thank you Lord for calling me, the weak, and making me strong!

YES I will! Lord use me

My parents had dealt with fertility issues after I was born. I saw them hurt and ache for more children. My father was my daddy from day one, but he had no biological children of his own and he hungered for that! He never ever made me feel less, just that he wanted more. I saw them look into private adoption ( it was more affordable) Only to have the leads fall through. I saw mom cry after every fertility appointment.  They loved on other people’s children over the years but I was their only one.  I wonder how things could have been different if they had been able to do a surrogate.

Not long after my own pregnancy journeys came to an end, I began thinking about the gift of being a surrogate. I wanted to be a vessel but had no direction or inkling on when or how. I knew that with my faith I had my own restrictions on what was acceptable for me personally in the process. I had no push to be a surrogate for income but for ministry.

Recently I started longing to be pregnant again. Not to have children of my own, but to carry a child. I was awoken one night and the Lord prompted me, ask ________ if they have considered a surrogate. It was one o’clock in the morning, I had looked at my phone. So the next day I texted my friend if she had considered this route when all the doors were being closed for her otherwise to have a child.

My friend, battling with the thought that she could not carry her own child or adopt had at that very moment God woke me up, been watching a surrogate story and said “God if this is your route send someone” and I said, ” Here I am!” And so with some fasting, prayer, direction from leadership and agreement with our spouses, we are beginning the most amazing journey of my… life together.

We still may run into some roadblocks. The doctors still have a few tests that may tell us no. But we are ready, willing and prayerfully able. I am so excited. She tends to hold her excitement in check for fear of disappointment.

I do have fears, many, but they are always silenced for the moment with, Lord if it is your will, it will happen. God can use our science to make amazing things happen and He can protect my body in the process.

I am so excited at this prospect! I just instantly tear up thinking about the joy of parenthood and the opportunity to be a part of the gift.

God is so good and I say, Yes Lord, use me!

Through a child’s eyes

When it was time to say goodbye to the foster babies, I knew that I wanted to continue working with children in some capacity. However, I did not want to foster any new children yet, as my heart was still raw.

So it was time to begin a new chapter yet again and I accepted a position as a preschool teacher. This is a season that I have thoroughly and completely loved. Each day I am greeted with eager smiling faces. They are ready for whatever is planned for the day and to watch them learn and grow is such a rewarding experience. I had spent some years out of a preschool classroom and forgot how incredible these little people are on a daily basis.

The wonderful thing about working with the babies and preschool children; each and every experience is exciting and new. First time standing is EXCITING, first steps are EXCITING, going to the potty is EXCITING, finding a bug is EXCITING, the sun shining is EXCITING, a new toy in the room EXCITING, a snack they like is EXCITING, this excitement continues day in and day out with each and every new discovery or experience. I also see an excitement over their favorite stories or songs, it does not matter how many times we read or sing them, they want it again with the same energy and interest.

I have often thought, when was the last time I felt excitement with such freedom?

Do I  greet my days as mundane and just go through the motions?

I am beginning to see with fresh eyes, why God would call us to be as little children.
Looking with excitement and expectation as we face new situations, or even the same things that once brought us joy to continue bringing us joy.

When the Lord brings us little things and we exclaim with excitement YES LORD…will He not bring to our attention even more things to bring us joy? He has a whole world in front of us to discover, and to see as new. He is limitless with His creation, with His spirit, with His love for us. We just need to keep seeking with expectation and excitement as a little child does with their world around them. Lord grant me the wisdom to look with the eye’s of a child.

Everyone is a friend, everything is an experience, everyone is to be loved, hurt feelings are quickly soothed, tears are quickly wiped away a new adventure sought, no time to wallow for long. Yes Lord, I want to look with the eye’s of a child🙂

 

Blessings friends

 

 

 

Living in a dark cave

When you are walking in a life that brings about shame, knowing that the hidden secrets are not being exposed but the darkness is there regardless, you want to hide.

You will seclude yourself, hide away in your own mess and darkness that surrounds.

When you must socialize you will put on a happy face, but the life free from strongholds has not been your reality and the shame remains.

There is no light in the darkness. Sadly most often, the darkness becomes your comfort. You are satisfied walking in your sin, and hiding. But then when you feel the shame, the anger and resentment will rear it’s ugly head. You will blame others for the sin that has entrapped you, because you are not yet ready to let go. You know you should walk in freedom, but your habits have become your normal and your shame and hiding have become your everyday. You are living in a dark cave, and while others ask you to please, please come out of seclusion, come out of the pit, only you can choose when enough is enough.

If you are in a place of wanting more, but not knowing how to gain freedom. Seek the Lord with all of your heart. Ask Him to show you and free you from the bondage that you yourself have created and hid in. True joy can not be obtained when you are living in a dark cave, hiding and blaming everyone else.

Today is the day to immerge and find joy in the things that bring LIFE.

Praying for you today!

Your sister in Christ

 

 

He gives great gifts

When the babies returned to their mother abruptly, after we had fostered them. My husband and I went away to the beach. We walked on the sand, and found many broken sand dollars. Ahead of me I saw a tiny perfect sand dollar, and not five feet from it, there was a match. Another tiny perfect sand dollar lay in the sand. I picked both up and kept them as a promise.

I looked at those sand dollars for a month as I prayed. God had told me to wait pursuing anything and I wasn’t quite sure why.

Well after a month, the babies mother needed some help and asked me to take the twins for awhile. No DHS, great communication and encouragement from her and time with the babies again. My heart was overjoyed!!

I had them for three more months. Then it was time to return the babies to their mother. She had accomplished some goals she had set for herself. My heart aches from the missing them. But I still look to those whole and perfect sand dollars and know that God has a plan for them. They are whole and in his care, even with the turbulent waters at times that come in this life.  I had to let go and can not see them on the day to day basis, yet I know that He has them.

In the last two weeks, I had started a new job! I am a preschool teacher and absolutely love it. This is so where I belong. Working with kiddo’s and out of the house. I could not handle looking at the big empty space every day.

God is so good to give me this gift!

Often, I don’t understand why things line up the way they do. Yet, if I sit back and let God control the direction, He does just fine!

 

God is good!