Missing puzzle pieces?

Everything around you has been blown up and as the pieces settle you try to interpret the ruins. This seems to happen at the worst time during a terrible life storm that already has you down. It comes in the form of familiar things that touch our weaknesses. It always causes mental confusion and doubt. It takes your focus from things that are happening back to things that happened. The purpose is the same, to keep you down and ineffective.

People give it different names but the result is chaos and temporal drama in our lives.

Regardless of the trial or temptation, God’s plan for our lives and his direction for us is always forward. To run our race, press toward the mark with clarity. He doesn’t plan for confusion and chaos. He talks about the enemy of the soul doing that. His whole universe is orderly and he states that he is not the author of confusion. His goal for us is to glorify him. Stuck like Chuck in the muck doesn’t move us forward. This causes us to stop in our tracks and try to analyze and put the puzzle pieces together in a way that makes sense to us. Some things do not make sense because they are born out of chaos and sin. They can never make sense. Why a child is killed by a parent, why a 2 month old baby dies, why parents abandon and abuse, why spouses walk away, all of these do not make sense in this life. Trying to make sense of them robs you. If we try to manage the ruins in a way that we can deal with them, we wind up fabricating an answer or endlessly searching for one. When that answer or search fails we become confused again. This leaves us thinking God is being silent. Sometimes we are actually being so loud, trying in our own strength to control our chaos and we miss him and his direction.

God’s plan for our lives and direction always includes a sound mind. This life can have many things that rob us of our soundness that shreds our soul and taxes our mental capacity. These things happen and it is natural to grieve them and to try to understand. God went to great lengths to not only save us but to transform us. When we try in our strength to manage the senseless, we create chaos for ourselves. We misinterpret our interactions with people and their heart. 

When something engages us in life with a situation that is not sound it takes a toll. We are subject to the person or situation’s confusion and deception. If we lose our soundness we can be vacuumed into emotional damage and not only hurt ourselves but become confused.  We can have a lot of head knowledge and process the should have’s or could have’s  but the things that touch us our heart in an unsound way are not good for us if we do not remain sound ourselves. Letting someone hit rock bottom is the hardest thing to watch and even harder to allow. I watched someone self destruct and it’s heartbreaking. Ten years later they are still in the muck and I would love to see them soar with the eagles again. I have seen myself hit rock bottom as well so I am not unfamiliar with this happening. Oh! If only I could spare you the time this wastes.

Resisting change is futile. A sound mind happens when we are raw and real with ourselves and seek that soundness in things that are sound.  

God’s plan and direction for our lives is not to be deceived. Anything that robs us of knowing the truth and moving forward in a truthful real way is not of God. Feelings are the worst deceivers! They change and we also manipulate them to our advantage. This constant analyzing and reviewing the old indicting tapes causes us to begin to deceive ourself if the information we are processing isn’t true in the first place. 

When we are processing information we have to be careful to discern the truth. We tell ourselves things to cope that are not true. Once we think we have something nicely tucked away our hearts settle for a bit. All of a sudden something happens that transforms our nice folded answers into spaghetti. What is the answer? Keep moving forward, do not be deceived and keep your mind sound. Know yourself! I am talking about your weaknesses, strengths and character. Also know that you are priceless to God no matter how flawed you are. Trust what you know to be true beyond a shadow of doubt and test everything else by truth until it resonates and is valued as truthful or dismissed as not truthful. Do not deceive yourself by making excuses and allowances. Think on things that are right and true and quickly cast away thoughts that take you to a place of not being able to be yourself or that creates chaos in your life. You will never find God’s direction apart from God’s truth. I wish this didn’t sound strategic and clinical but we are not talking about the great touchy feeling stuff here. We are talking about the battlefield of the mind and how the world, flesh and devil all interact to bring us down. This is war not for the fainthearted. It feels like war it is ugly and necessary at the same time. It’s part of healthy growth.  

The good news is God loves you and his heart for you is to have peace that passes all understanding, to live abundantly, to love and be loved. I am proof it’s possible to keep going on when the worst of the worst has happened. If this little gal who has been knocked down every way a person can in 50 short years has unshakeable peace, then you can too. I didn’t ask to be strong and truth is when I am weak, and there are times I am, God is my strength. Love strong, think deep and realize that you have to be who God made you to be and there’s no guilt or shame about that. Lay your burden down at the foot of the cross. Move forward dear one in truth. Stand firm on it’s foundation and be blessed.   Nehemiah 8:10

What a year! I am so loved.

I look back over this year and am amazed at how quickly life changes. It doesn’t collapse in a moment but it can change with one phone call, a person’s actions or events so easily that you almost feel like a bomb has exploded. I was waiting to have a biopsy and was thinking about this past year. I was wondering how I was going to tell my children that I have cancer if the results came back negative. This was the last of a long series of test I had in which I fell through the cracks with my doctor. For those having a breast biopsy I want to give you this information. It’s not as bad as it sounds. It was worse emotionally than it was physically.

I was reviewing this past year and tears welled up thinking about my girls, things that I still wanted to do for the kingdom and also oddly enough about how to be a testimony with cancer if that was God’s will for me. I always question my motive and desires because I know just how human I can be. Yet something in me wanted to glorify the Lord if this was to be my lot. I won’t know until Tuesday of the results. I thought I was in the clear earlier but evidently I wasn’t and had to have this final biopsy. I think the main thing I came away with was worth sharing.

Here’s the thing, I sat there looking over 2011 and there were some hard spots. I became an empty nester, lost a dear friend that was the first person I ever trusted so deeply, changed jobs, moved into my own place, celebrated life without my mom who went home to be with the Lord and lived alone for the first time in 50 years.

I know life changes and I am not the kind who jumps for joy each time the pendulum swings and smacks me down when I just got up. Yet I have to say over all with all the hurt and sorrow what a joy I have to know that my Father gives good gifts to me. He is concerned that I grow and serve him and he wants me to appreciate his love for me. God isn’t impressed with me but wow does he love for his children to appreciate his love.

He gave all he had for this little lamb. So as I think about my rough year I have to say I am still thankful. I love this life God is carving for me and I can’t really complain about the hard places. My car is still broken needing a lot of repairs, do I have cancer or not, I don’t know, my new job is starting slower than anticipated but I know that I know that I know that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. God has all this and is taking great care to walk me day by day through this journey. I have to praise him and thank him for his great love. I have to tell you dear ones to rest in that and only be defined by one who sold all that he had to purchase you a precious pearl and treasure. Matthew 13:44-46

For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him shall have everlasting life. John 3:16