Tuesday, September 16, 2014

in the midst

For the past two nights D and I have been reading a book that is stirring something up inside of each of us.  "Living in Christs Presence" by Dallas Willard is a book that our entire church is reading for our  "Life Groups," and is one that has been both challenging, and eye opening.  Each night before we have gone to bed we have read, and had amazing discussions about what it is to be true disciples for the LORD.  It has been in those moments that I have felt closer to my husband than ever before.  

D and I will be married 16 years next month, and in those 16 years we have gone through many trials and tribulations.  In early 2002 our marriage was struggling, and we were parents to two sweet precious little girls.  D was new in his career and I was "trying" my best to contribute to our little family, but not really knowing or understanding what my contribution should be.  As I have written before about my pain, I don't think I've really thought about our pain.  Last night while talking with D, I realized that even though I may just be realizing some things now, I have forgotten that he was there too, and that in the midst of his pain, GOD met him as well.  

Last night D reminded me of all the times where we as a couple were in the midst of tremendous pain, and tragedy, and how HIS JOY was there to be found.  D reminded me that in those moments where we weren't sure how we could ever smile again, HIS JOY was there, and through our FAITH we found HIS JOY, and it was then and only then that we were able to have a reason to smile, and live through another day.

Lately when I have had a bad day I find myself praying to HIM and thanking HIM that even in the midst of my pain and suffering, I will praise HIM for I know HIS JOY will come in the morning.  I have found that what I "thought" my husband felt about me really didn't even compare to HIS JOY that D has chosen to seek, and how much even when I didn't know D was seeking HIM, he was, and it is because in the midst of our greatest storms in our marriage, HIS JOY was there, D sought it and took it, and chose to live with it.  

I wish I could say that I am the same way, however D and I are wired differently, and while D is calm, cool, reserved, and doesn't get worked up in any way, we are the polar opposite.  I on the other hand am restless, hott headed (temper) and can't keep my mouth shut at times.   My mouth is what gets me into my greatest trouble.  

"But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them." Matthew 15:18

HIS Daily Teachings today is letting me know that the heart issue that I need to be dealing with today is really how I'm so quick to forget that in the midst HIS JOY is there, and is waiting for me to claim it.  HE is letting me know that in choosing to just run my mouth when I am in pain, or feeling any discomfort in my journey with HIM, it is in those moments where I need to choose to see things through HIS perspective that even though things may not be going right the way that I would want them to, through HIS Blessed Assurance I can seek HIM, and trust that HIS JOY is there waiting for me. 

" Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.  If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." James 1:2-5

Today HIS JOY in the midst can be found in my husband D.  D is the only person who has seen me in my most ugliest moments.  The moments where I have all but given up on living, and have lived out the lies buried deep within, and have chosen to fall apart.  HIS JOY was seen in D's eyes the moment we were told in 2011 that we had lost our 2nd precious little baby.  Through his tears, he smiled at me, held me, and let me fall apart.  

In 2012 when my pregnancy went south right at the very beginning, HIS JOY was seen in D's eyes as he lovingly gave me my progesterone shots twice a week.  HIS JOY was there when it became difficult for me to walk, or even move for the first five months of pregnancy.  HIS JOY was there in the midst where I doubted and questioned whether or not I was really cut out to be a Mama of 5.  Through it all HIS JOY was there modeled for me by my loving husband of whom I have been doing this thing called life with for almost 20 years now.

Through our conversation last night D shared HIS JOY that he found in our greatest moments of tragedy and pain.  In thinking about HIS JOY that is waiting in the midst, I can feel HIM saying that is my story that is a part of HIS story that needs to be told.  HE is letting me know that it goes so much further beyond HIS word, and HIS knowledge that is given to me when I seek HIM.  HE is letting me know that true discipleship can only be seen when in the midst of pain and suffering I am living as if though there are NOTHING but rainbows all around me.

Today's Power Thoughts Devotional really spoke to my heart.  Joyce Meyer writes: "You don't get rainbows until you've been through a storm."  This morning those words ring so true to me, as I know that it has been in the midst of my pain that I found HIS JOY, and it has been through those moments where I have done the most growing and strengthening of my heart and FAITH.  

HE is reminding me this morning of those times of where in the midst that I found HIS JOY, and is letting me know that it is my calling to live out my life in such a way, that even though I may be in the midst of a storm, rest assured, through HIS Blessed Assurance, HIS JOY is there, and is waiting for me to claim it.  HE is wanting me to know that when I choose to live my life in never giving into the test, trial or storm, that is how I will model true discipleship of what it means to be a true CHRIST follower.  

HE is letting me know that is goes so much further and beyond my human thinking that my calling is simply to tell my story,  rather it is to live each day like NOTHING shakes me, or rocks my world. This is not to say that I won't cry, or feel upset, rather HIS JOY that I find in the midst, is truly what keeps me grounded in my FAITH, and keeps me from wavering in my FAITH.  HE has proven to me time and again that it has been in the midst of my life's greatest tragedies that HIS greatest blessings have been birthed through my FAITH in HIM.  

In knowing that HIS JOY is there waiting in the midst, I know that many tests, and trials are coming my way.  It is my prayer that I will seek HIM, and choose to see my situation through HIS perspective and know that even though I may not understand the how, or why things are happening the way they are, HE does, and HE is SOVEREIGN.  Today HE is getting right to the matters of my heart and showing me that I am being called to live out my FAITH in HIM, and TRUST HIM that HE truly does know and love me best, and it is because I have chosen to walk so closely, and intimately with HIM, that I know HE truly does work everything out for my own good.  HE is letting me know once again, that HE WHO began a good work in me, is and will continue to work in me and through me, until my time on Earth here is through.

" Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us." Romans 5:3-5

"being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:6

HE is letting me know that in choosing HIS JOY, and seeking HIS perspective means that I am allowing HIM to renew and transform my thinking in choosing to seek HIS wisdom of how HE would handle things.  HE is telling me that it is in the midst where I need to be asking myself, "what would JESUS do?"  HE is letting me know that if I were to do that every single time I find myself living in the midst I would then be able to avoid so much more heartache and tears.  HE is telling me that this is the very reason why I need to know, trust and BELIEVE that HIS JOY is there, and is HIS gift to me, so that I will be able to continue on this journey called life with HIM.

Last night I was finally able to receive a text from a dear friend, and it spoke volumes to my heart.  In her prayers she sought the LORD and HE answered her through HIS word, and it brought her so much comfort, that she shared it with me.  Today HIS word is washing over me, and is reminding me that even though I am finding myself in the midst, of walking into uncharted territories, HE is there HE cares for me, and even though I am sad, and feeling disheartened, I must choose to take heart, and BE still and know that HE is GOD!

"I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them." Isaiah 42:16

"Be still, and know that I am God" Psalm 46:10

Dear Friends, though I may not know what you are going through right now, rest assured that HE does, and HE cares for you.  Though you may be going through a divorce, or suffering through a loss, rest assured that HE is there waiting in the midst for you to seek HIS face, and to receive HIS JOY that is HIS gift waiting for you.  I pray for courage for you to STOP listening to what the world is telling you to do.  I pray that you will know that in the midst HE is the only ONE WHO is truly there for you, and can possibly understand how you feel.  HE is in you, and HE loves you, I pray that you will have the courage to step out in your faith and allow HIM to grow and strengthen your heart, soul, body, and mind so that you will be able to continue on this journey with HIM called life.

Much love, hugs, prayers, and compassion,


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