Saturday, March 16, 2013

It's all in the timing.

It's pretty funny how we can be told the same things over and over, but not really hear it. Until the time is right.

I have being feeling bone tired for months. Not so much from lack of sleep, but just a tiredness in my spirit. Granted, its been quite a month. But even that wasn't it. Until this week, I really couldn't explain it to you. But now that I think I have found the reason, it feels AMAZING to know it can be treated.

Back in the fall I started a Bible Study with an old friend (hadn't seen her in years!) and some ladies from her church. It was such a blessing during a time of big transitions. Not being able to lead youth accountability groups, not really having any thing else to encourage study time, this was just what I needed.

Never could I have imagined how perfectly timed it would be. Getting to know these women has been such an encouragement. And then we started a new study this last week. It's by Linda Dillow, called "Calm My Anxious Heart". Timing! I have always been such a worrier. My husband says it's my "favorite hobby". I can worry about why there is more moss in the grass at 2 AM and find nothing wrong with doing it. At 2 in the morning.

Well, in just the first week of the study, God is bringing me His peace. It's awesome to experience. Of course, I had to read the whole book right away because a good thing is too hard to resist. But as I spend the next couple of months going over each chapter in depth with my little group of ladies, I can not WAIT to see what God does in my heart.

In the very first chapter, the author calls us out on what causes our anxious hearts. Lack of contentment. I don't know that I would have gone right to that, but as she cruises us through Philippians 4 and 1 Timothy 6, our worry and anxiety is so often rooted in a lack of contentment, and a lack of TRUST, in what God sees fit to give us.

Dillow tells of a friend she has, who's mother is the picture of contentment. Just the kind of woman that you want to rub shoulders with. Yet, this woman had lived for over 50 years with pygmie tribes in Africa. No running water, air conditioning, healthcare...the most coarse conditions. Her name is Ella, and Dillow's friend came across an old diary entry that Ella had written..and it is worth sharing:

"Ella's Prescription for Contentment"
1. Never allow yourself to complain about anything- not even the weather.
2. Never picture yourself in any other circumstances or someplace else.
3. Never compare your lot with another's.
4. Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise.
5. Never dwell on tomorrow- remember that [tomorrow] is God's, not ours.

                                                                                  (Dillow, Calm My Anxious Heart pg 13)

WOW. I immediately felt shamed...and the next line the author said the same thing. Coming from a woman who spent her entire adult life "slaving" in a sense, for the love of her Lord and His lost people, how can I not see the truth in it? I had forgotten to really mean it when I said, "Thank you, Lord". For everything.

I am walking around today with a smile on my face. For no other reason but God is good, and His ways are good. He has a plan, and a purpose for each one of us. And that is an AWESOME place to be. God bless you, friend. The daphne bushes are blooming, and Jesus lives. May you look into your OWN cup and thank the Lord for what He has done. The wonderful things that overflow our hearts, the fun things that make us laugh, and the hard things that grow us into a people that look more like Jesus.

Maybe someday I'll be able to say what Paul said in Philippians 4:11-13:
  "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength."

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