Boy am I glad I make to-do lists. I had no idea it was Thursday. I’m not sure what day I thought it was…but Thursday was NOT it. Ever have a week like that? I’m pretty sure just like I don’t understand time and ages, I don’t understand days of the week. Go ahead, judge me right now. 😉
This morning I went for an early morning walk outside. As I circled the sweet pond in a nearby neighborhood, I found myself on the Rwandan hillside outside of Pastor James’ and his wife Olivia’s home. It was early morning, the dew still on the ground. The sun beginning to rise. Most importantly, God wooing me closer to Him.
You see, this morning I woke up asking God to remind me who I am. Over the course of the last 20 months, every part of me has been stripped in one way or another. Human error took a huge part of me. Life circumstances took others. Still other parts were taken by God Himself (Job 1:21).
Although often beneficial, the stripping process is seldom simple or painless. In fact, much pain has gone into these past few years.
When all is stripped away, what is left? To be honest, I wasn’t quite sure. I had placed so much of my identity in my work, my ministry, my church, my family, my friends, and yes, even my pain. When so much was taken away, what was left?
As I desperately have attempted to figure out who I am over the last few months, I have felt less and less like myself. I have experienced great freedom, but have also lost sight of who I really am. Who am I without my job? Who am I away from being Mama Bear to some amazing college guys? Who am I away from a church that we loved before we were hurt so deeply? Who am I now that the pain and heartache of loss are gone, and I am walking in freedom?
This morning before leaving the house, I asked the Lord, “Who am I?”
And my impatient self continued talking instead of listening. “I mean, I know I’m a wife and a mom…”
My spirit stopped. I felt the Lord say “I have given you Brandon and Brooklyn, but that is not WHO YOU ARE.”
Tears began flowing.
THEN WHO AM I?
That is all.
That is enough.
I am HIS.
My identity is not found in being a wife or mom or coach or teacher. It is found in being HIS. He calls me HIS. He looks at me and says, “She’s mine.”
And that’s enough. Any other role I hold pales in comparison to who I really am – HIS.
You may be thinking, where does Rwanda come into all this?
That hillside is where the Lord called me to fall in love with Him. That is the place He pursued me fiercely. That is where He showed me day after day, morning after morning that He looks at me and with great love in His eyes says, “She’s mine.”
What about you? Do you know who you are? Do you know that the God of the universe looks at you and says, “mine.” ?
He loves you abundantly.
He wants you to see that and know you are HIS.
We have covered the first two. I promise goodness is on the way, but for now we have arrived at vulnerability. I’ve hesitated to write this for a while now. For most people, including me, being vulnerable is not easy. When you put yourself out there, you never know how other humans will react. The funny thing about vulnerability is we are not always given a choice of whether or not we want to be vulnerable, exposed. Sometimes life, or other people, do it to us. Continue reading “Vulnerability”→
Y’all. This week was BUSY. From nature class to flying to Illinois to seeing lots of friends & family in a VERY short period of time to trying to recoup and get focused to realizing IT IS ALREADY THURSDAY, my mind hasn’t slowed down one bit since my last Thankful Thursday post.
Guys. It’s MARCH. MARCH! Can you believe it?! Just last night we told Brooklyn it’s her birthday month. BIG mistake! She’s already singing “happy birthday” to herself…and we still have 27 days to go. SOS.
I’m thankful for YouTube “how to” videos.
I’m thankful for the ability to see my sister’s singing group performing from 1000+ miles away.
I’m thankful for video chats with cousins.
I’m thankful for the amazing group of ladies who work in the Penguin room at church (Brooklyn’s class).
I’m thankful for confirmation that the church we’ve chosen is where we are supposed to be.
I’m thankful for the healthy changes in my mind over the past few months.
I’m thankful for new opportunities.
I’m thankful for the amazing challenge group that offers accountability and support throughout my health journey.
I’m thankful for Brooklyn’s new words each day. She’s so fun!
I’m thankful for Brooklyn’s Grandma & Daddy who read to her and helped her achieve her 100 books award.
I’m thankful for the Starbucks employee who said “I am sorry to say we are all out of cake pops.” (Maybe with a little prompting from a mama who didn’t want her kiddo to have sugar. 😉 )
I’m thankful for really hard nights that lead to really grace-filled mornings.
I’m thankful for a husband who is patient and steady.
I’m thankful for warm weather to play outside.
I’m thankful for bubbles.
I’m thankful for clean bathrooms.
I’m thankful for really tough conversations.
I’m thankful for the goodness we see each day.
I’m thankful for the Lord’s faithfulness in our lives.
I’m thankful for answered prayers and reminders to turn those answered prayers into praises.
I’m thankful for alone time and good coffee.
I’m thankful for my cousin Jill & her 27 years of life.
I’m thankful for my Mama who celebrated a few more than 27 years of life this week. 😉
I’m thankful for clean laundry.
I’m thankful for to-do lists and the thrill of crossing each item off (yes, it’s a thrill for me; I don’t get out much 😂).
I’m thankful for Brooklyn’s compassion for her “babies” and imagination to want them to all nap together. In my bed.
I’m thankful for hilarious group texts.
I’m thankful for High School Musical.
I’m thankful for the tears that flowed when Gabriella broke up with Troy. They reminded me I need to get out more. Yiiiikes.
I’m thankful for a husband who is a great role model for Brooklyn – and that she loves him so so much.
I’m thankful for the Olympics (or as we say in our home “Ympies”).
I’m thankful for memories of friends all over the world.
I’m thankful for Brooklyn’s nap time. What. A. Champ.
I’m thankful for fun shopping carts at Kroger.
I’m thankful for trips to Target.
I’m even more thankful for willpower to not buy everything I see at Target.
I’m thankful for spontaneous lunch dates.
I’m thankful for the anticipation of Rodeo Houston!
I’m thankful for books to read.
I’m thankful for our local library.
I’m thankful for technology that allows me to walk this life with forever friends who live far away.
I’m thankful for God placing people in my life years ago who are now championing for me and who I can champion for as well.
I’m thankful for Dwayne Mills & the HR department at Olivet for taking a chance on me 7 years ago.
I’m thankful for the incredible gift of being able to stay home with Brooklyn while she’s little. Each day I am so blessed to teach her, learn from her, and giggle like crazy. Even on the hardest days, I am so so thankful for these moments.
If I’m honest, I completely forgot last week. I had my days mixed up and by the time I realized it was Thursday, I was already in bed ready to sleep. I apologize.
This week is going to be slightly different. In my gratitude journey, I am currently working on getting back to the basics. While there are a lot of fun things for which I am thankful – especially these last two weeks, I want to go a little deeper as a reminder to myself how richly blessed I really am.
A few months ago, my husband and I received a HUGE victory in our lives. We had been going through a very dark season and we finally received the victory we had been praying for for over a year.
A few days later, I was reflecting on the past several years of my life and really wanted to find out what kind of relationship I have with the Lord (Remember when I told you about my friend’s sweet relationship?). The word I heard over and over again was “gritty.” It was a weird feeling because I wasn’t actually sure what that word meant. Thank you, Google, for helping me with that. 🙂Continue reading “Gritty.”→