I haven’t walked on my right leg in 15 days. During the past two weeks, I’ve learned how to do old things in new ways since I broke my fibula. I’ve compensated for the temporary loss of using my right leg in many ways. Thankfully, I didn’t have to get a cast like the picture show above. Instead, I wear this: Sexy, huh? It is not really that fun being laid up for a good portion of the day…everyday. It’s not really easy for someone like me to receive countless kind acts of service by friends nearby. It is not easy to watch my husband take up MY slack as well as still go to work six days a week. I have had to say “Yes, thank you” more times than I can remember to those who have brought a meal or driven me somewhere. It’s humbling to be hurt. And if I’m not careful, I can start to feel sorry for myself. When I think about that, feeling sorry for myself, I think, “How pathetic am I?” Because y’all, I have a leg. And I will walk again. Second Corinthians 10:5 says, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” I can’t tell you how much I’ve been doing that lately. Heck, I’m taking thoughts captive like a bank robber in a hostage situation. I know that we all have hard times in our lives. I’m walking through an inconvenient time right now. And I’m only about 1/3 of the way through it. But! I’m 1/3 of the way through it! Count your blessings. Walk in gratitude. That’s the best way to make it through whatever difficulty you may be facing.
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I just started the Essential 100 Bible reading plan from YouVersion.com. The plan guides you through 50 Old Testament passages and 50 New Testament passages – The Essential 100 – so you can see the “Big picture” of God’s Word. The first day took me to, you guessed it, Genesis 1 and 2. I’ve read these chapters before countless times. I’m very familiar with the creation story and can probably tell you most of it by heart. But as I got into Genesis 3 the next day where the serpent (Satan) deceived Eve into eating the forbidden fruit and where she eventually coerced Adam into doing the same, something dawned on me. It appears she hadn’t gotten the chance to really know God. She’d just been created from Adam’s rib and was enjoying herself in Eden, which I’m sure was the most delightful place ever created. Then, the serpent snuck up on her and before she knew it, she was doing the unthinkable…the one thing that God said not to do. I don’t believe that there is an error in the unfolding story of God’s redemption of mankind. I don’t think God messed up and didn’t give Adam and Eve more time with them. I am simply stating a thought that helped me apply something to my own life. There’s a chance I’ve lived longer than I will continue living. I’m 40 years old and could make it to 80 or 90 but nobody knows but my Creator. And in my years of living on earth and walking with Christ, I’ve learned a lot. But one of the sweetest truths I’ve learned about God is this: His will is best. Even when I think I might have a better plan than Him (which I never have) or have heard Him clearly (which I believe I often do), when I know that He wants me to take a different route or execute a different plan, I do it. Period. I have gone against His will more times than I’d like to remember and I’ve surrendered my own pathetic will to His lordship as well. I’ve done both. And the latter, albeit uncomfortable and sometimes scary, has always proven to be the better choice. But I, unlike Eve, have had years to practice and learn this truth about God. She didn’t. She was created and then immediately deceived. She heard God’s voice and literally walked with Him in the garden but apparently she was still tricked into messing things up for the rest of us. (Not bitter) (Maybe a little?) I guess what I’m getting to is that to know God is to trust Him. To trust that His will is best and encompasses a bigger picture than your minute section of the universe is essential. If you don’t really trust Him, chances are you don’t really know Him. And I don’t mean you haven’t asked Him to be your Savior, I mean that you haven’t spent ample time in His Word learning about His character, His ways, His plans, His heart. Because it beats for you. Get to know Him. He’s longing to spend time with you. He wants to share His blessings with you and give you the abundant life He promised.
I’ve known for some time that Oklahoma was one of the top obese states in our nation. Number 6, to be exact. And while listening to the news last night I also learned that it is the 4th hungriest state. The irony. Today will conclude a 21-day Daniel Fast that I’ve been on since January 1st. I chose to do this fast for spiritual reasons. When we deny our body of food, we are more likely to spend that time in prayer asking God to be our sustenance. But let’s be real. It’s not like I’ve been starving. There are plenty of things one can eat on this fast. All fruits, all vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole wheat pasta, and smoothies (if made appropriately). Making meals while on this fast causes one to get real creative. However, right now, food isn’t really much of an issue for me. Yes, I miss my coffee and plan to partake of that first thing tomorrow morning. But I don’t miss so many other things. This fast brought about some amazing spiritual progress in my life but it also brought about even more freedom for me in my food addiction struggles. Right now, food isn’t my idol. And that’s a good thing. I never imagined that going without food, or certain types of food, would be the catalyst to even more freedom in my life. I used to think that fasting would just make it worse. Now, I know different. Fasting not only allows me to commune better with my Heavenly Father and take things to Him in prayer, it takes away an unnecessary idol, food, which brings me into a deeper relationship with Christ. Just thinking out loud.
Commitment is difficult, I have found. And it’s not because I don’t love the people I’m committed to or enjoy doing the things I know I’ve been called to do. I do enjoy them when things are great. Who doesn’t? What makes commitment a test for me is the emotional aspect of it. My feelings get involved and my expectations don’t get met and things aren’t what I romanticized them to be and my hope and excitement and enthusiasm diminishes. And my feelings get hurt sometimes, too. Commitment takes effort. And lots of it. Which is why I am so unapologetically passionate about hearing God’s calling on my life. I want to know that I am called to do something and stand on that decision come h*** or high water. Because please trust me when I say this, difficulties will cross your path. You will second guess yourself. You will wonder if it was the voice of God or just your wishful thinking. When we commit to someone or something, we have to make the decision to follow through with that commitment before the challenges arise and before our logic gets hi-jacked. Like say, when your six-year old son decides to challenge everything you say to him at any given time on any given day and let’s you know, in no uncertain terms, that you are just not doing what he needs or likes or desires because he’s “bored”. But of course, I wouldn’t know anything about that. God, please let me reap the reward of hard work and perseverance. Just thinking out loud.