Showing posts from December, 2013

A Simple Christmas

I have longed for a Simple Christmas, centered in the love of God. What I am learning, through the unexpected, through circumstances beyond my control, is that God is found in the places where my plans come to an end. Where my wants are frustrated, God desires to meet my needs. His ways are truly not my ways, and so the choice comes: let go of what I would wish for, and embrace the plans and purposes he has for me.  Often, this requires a change in what I tell myself. Tuning into truth, speaking words of choice and decision rather than settling into helplessness. I cannot choose my circumstances, but I can choose how I respond. I can replace grumbling with gratitude. I can nestle into him and let him fill the void within me, and I can seek his direction in bringing wellness into my interactions with others. "Only the humble believe him and rejoice that God is so free and so marvelous that he does wonders where where people despair," wrote Dietrich Bonhoeffer, from the d

More Love

I don't like drama. I was raised to avoid it, and so often, I grit my teeth and shake my head and stay silent for far too long. Frustration festers, and I preach a bit on social media, angry at the way words trample human frailty and religious right becomes a cause to be championed, rather than a safe place for the poor and needy. My greatest fear is not relativism. It's not the corruption of the world, or persecution of the church, or attempts to silence that which offends a vocal society. What I most fear is that God's people will unknowingly turn away souls in need of rescue. I fear that those who preach their truth in anger, rather than love, will exacerbate the cycle of opposing voices vying to silence each other. All feeling attacked, each offended, and every one of us in need of healing. I believe there are many in the church, and outside it's walls, who have met a loving God, but not come to the place of living Grace day by day . I believe there are many w

A Sound Mind

"You are making me crazy!" The words fling out in moments of intense frustration. There is a striving, a seeking to exert control over another life that leaves me exasperated and all bunched up inside. In these moments my imperfections, especially my sense of powerlessness, seem to spread like gangrene. Again I learn the lesson that I can control only myself. I read a letter that begins with wise counsel encouraging the recipient to own grace, mercy, and peace. One  word above all leaps off the page... Peace . Indicating cessation of struggling; leaving conflict behind and embracing harmony. Peace is the very essence of freedom.  When my world roars chaos, and I feel cramped, powerless, how do I get to that wide open place? The letter continues, prayer- yes, day and night - in the moment of chaos, in the moment when my heart would faint, to nestle into a strength beyond what I alone can muster. Prayer is the surrender of my own weak strength in favor of the power of

Hope in the Hard places

Those who know my story of loss wonder how we got from there to here . How I moved from weeping brokenness spilling across the floor to this place, where I can look life in the face again- even on the hard days. It has been a journey, and I am still learning. What has been key has been connecting to the One who has become my everything. The question that slices deepest is how to live Hope in the hard places. I think back to the days of darkest oppression and I remember telling myself over and over that there was Such Hope to be found; training my mind to grip tight to that hope helped me put one foot in front of the other. But what changed me was not the power of positive thinking. The moment that changed everything was when God met me with unconditional acceptance and gave me freedom to grieve. I don't know what your heartache looks like- though I know there is much to grieve in this life. All I know is how my story was changed when I fell into the arms of the One who stil

Relentless Gratitude

Hello, my name is Rebekah, and I'm in Anxiety Recovery. You see, I've been addicted to perfectionism and control, and I need to be set free. Weekly. Daily. Hourly. I know the truth that control is an illusion. I've lived the anxiety of trying to control circumstances, people, even cats (I so get the herding cats metaphor). I like to make plans, and while my special needs family offers many opportunities to learn flexibility, sometimes I still freak out when my plans are ransacked by the ups and down in life- or sidetracked by something I missed. Like yesterday when I learned that, despite my attempt to be thorough, I had missed a detail that could possibly alter my holiday travel plans - depending on the weather... Texas weather (where it can be 82* one day and 32* the next.) Despite having ruminated often on the point of Christmas, on God's plans and purposes to draw mankind into an intimate peace with Him here on this earth, the news shattered my sense of calm.  I