God can use us at any point in our lives. Sometimes I get in the habit of thinking God can’t use me until my life is “together.” But is our life ever really fully together? In our mess God can use us. The other day a friend was down and texting me. I told her to write her blessings down and she would quickly see how they outnumbered the bad things in her life. I had just been instructed by the Holy Spirit to do the same activity a week prior. As much as I feel like I’m in a bare, stripped season, God is still allowing me to pour into other people. I’m grateful for this season of peace, growth, and insight. I know if my life would have taken a different path post MBA aka diving right into a job I would not have gotten a chance to reconnect with my family who in the previous two years I saw once or twice each year. I wouldn’t have the chance to do a bible study with my parents and put the finishing touches on my memoir (which I’m tentatively planning to have on shelves fall 2020!) Not to mention the food is great and free at home! I say all that to say—in an uncomfortable stage God is still working and I’m discovering in every stage I can help someone else. Despite my circumstances I can see God’s goodness. I’m grateful to have a home to come to and recollect. Every day I saw homelessness right outside my door in LA. People who slept on the sidewalk and were thankful for even half a sandwich. My perspective is forever changed.
I also noticed in this stripped down season that I learn from God the most. In this season I was reminded that my value and identity doesn’t come from a job, a title, or a relationship. And I know that this season will pass. I have hope in the Lord.
“But those that hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31
“But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.” Romans 8:24-25.
In this season I am waiting patiently and I know that this period will be a testament to me later and even an inspiration for others right now.
I'm not one for spring cleaning but in making my move to California I've decided to forgo shipping my furniture and start fresh aka sell/donate/giveaway everything but basically my everyday clothes.
As taxing as the process was, it was also surprisingly cathartic. The process became very simple when I realized a lot of items I hadn't touched in the two years I lived in Louisville; be it a dress that hung untouched in my closet or a box that collected dust in my storage unit.
It was harder to let go of some things that held memories but I realized in giving them away someone else could have new memories. Some of those "memories" while good at the time have grown sour...why hold on to a dress I last wore to a formal event with an ex? Should I hold on to a dresser drawer I walked by for 2 years and didn't use?
Covetousness and or not letting go of things is something I have to work to counter each day.
“‘Watch out! Be on guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12: 15
As scary as it is to start fresh I know it has purpose
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; so you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43: 18-19
I can't wait to see the new memories I make in California!
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.” Psalm 40:3
“Speak only if it improves upon the silence.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
“An evil man is trapped by his sinful talk, but a righteous man escapes trouble.” Proverbs 12:13 I think both these quotes illustrate that we don’t have to say much but when we do it should be the truth and fruitful.
As much as I wouldn’t seem like a person to “pop off” or “snap” on anyone, recently I’ve been confronted with the lesson of holding my tongue. In work settings this may mean an “ok” instead of a long rebuttal.
I think there is victory in not always having to have the last word; strength in humility. Where’s the victory in winning battles that won’t matter in a month or even a week? Another area I’ve been holding my tongue involves patience. Prime example: a few weeks ago I had a hair appointment at 10 am and my stylist didn’t come until 10:40am. As the clock ticked I was getting my speech together about how my time is valuable and I had things to do. I should get a discount because she was late. But I decided not to say anything when she arrived and I’m glad I didn’t. My hair stylist has diabetes and she was running late because her husband insisted she take the time to eat breakfast; an actual breakfast that he cooked. It was selfishness that made we want to snap. But I’m glad I didn’t. There is joy in that peace when you don’t snap. You save yourself the embarrassment of looking crazy. When we don’t speak or pause to think before we speak God could be saving and protecting us from so much. You can’t take words back but you can celebrate in the joy of never saying them.
Hi! I'm Marilyn!