I love the story telling of Amber and Elora. They spin words in to beautiful webs. Every one of their posts are filled with multiple layers. Filled with fancy descriptions of ordinary things. I love reading their words because they wrap around and through me.
I wish I wrote more like they do.
When I was in college I planned to major in journalism. I have always had a love to write. Back then I wanted to be an editorial columnist. I wanted to state the facts and share my heart in an honest way. My mind doesn’t naturally come up creative words to describe the ordinary. I have to work for it, and even then I am occasionally left wondering if the imagery works for the reader or just myself.
My writing here is more like what I wanted to do when I was in college: the facts, my heart, in an honest way.
Earlier this year Jenny decided to take her blog in a different direction. Focusing on photography. Sharing her life through the lens of her Nikon. The words she captures are beautiful. Capturing a brief moment in life. They are different than the words I type to create a new post. The imagery is different than the ones given us by Amber and Elora. Each of us is utilizing gifts and talents that God wrote into our DNA.
God has given us each gifts and talents that are different from those we are close to. He made us unique. For this I’m glad. How boring would it be to read the same style of writing from everyone.
Yesterday was a heavy heart day.
I learned that someone I greatly admire is getting a divorce and my heart absolutely breaks for her and her (ex)husband.
I learned that someone whose name I’ve only seen in passing on Twitter and been to their site now twice, that while they are currently in Uganda bringing home their new baby girl, they were robbed. Including her passport and half of their adoption funds. My heart breaks because I see attempts of the enemy to bring discouragement, doubt, and eyes unfocused off Christ.
My soul aches as across Twitter feeds I see broken hearts, broken families, lives ripped apart by the death of a family member, hearts that long to see the sun shine on them.
These are the days that I need to cling to His promises. To bury myself in them.
He is our strength
He heals and does not turn away from the downcast
He is for us
The enemy will not prevail against us
He is our fortress & our deliverer
What other promises do you cover yourself in when the turmoil of the world wears heavy upon your shoulders?
Over the last year God has given me a heart and passion for the orphan. He’s shown me in countless ways how I too was an orphan and how He adopted me into His family and am heir to all the riches He has.
In the last year He’s brought a number of people into my life that are in the process of adopting. I can’t explain the joy I have when I learn some one is adopting, is going to, or has. My heart swells to reaches far outside my chest.
Adoption fees are expensive. They can range anywhere from $9,000 to $20,000+ for international adoption, but within those numbers there is hope, joy, rescue, and love.
James 1:27 says that true religion is caring for the orphans and the widows. You may not feel called to adopt, but you are called to care for the orphans.
This week [Feb. 06 - 12, 2011] you can not only care for the orphans but help Elora & Russ bring their child home. They are hosting a trunk show through Noonday Collection. A site whose sole purpose is to bring income to impoverished countries by selling jewelry, scarves, and gift items made by artisans in those countries and help fund adoptions.
This week when you purchase any item(s) from Noonday 10% will go to Russ & Elora’s adoption fund. All you have to do is enter Elora Ramirez in the “instructions to merchant” section of the online shopping cart.
There are a number of great items for sale. And don’t forget Mother’s Day is just around the corner or even buy your wife a Valentine’s gift. I’m sure in this case she won’t be upset if it’s late.
ps.: If you love coffee, you can also purchase coffee through Just Love Coffee and help fund Baby Ramirez adoption. I just ordered my first bag last week.
Early yesterday morning I had the most beautiful dream. I awoke from it with a heart filled with joy and aching. I laid there in the quiet dark of early morning and cried out to God to move. It haunted me throughout the day and my cries echoed.
I’ve shared before our lack of local community, and lately the ache has grown more fierce. My heart aches, booming low like a kick drum within my chest.
I love the online community that I have. And I wouldn’t give them up for anything. A couple of them have become my closest friends and confidants over the last year. But I long for hands to hold as I walk this road called life. For shoulders able to catch tears of joy, frustration, and sorrow.
You see…my dream…was that Shawn and I were part of a community of like minded people that we did life with. It was truly a beautiful scene. The laughter still rings in my mind’s ears.
And my heart aches that we don’t have that. My spirit is starving for it. I can’t help but think that God gave me this dream because it’s His dream for us as well. We were created to be in community, and I can only imagine that if my heart aches as much as it does His hurts even more.
I know that He will answer. I know that He will provide. Like I said, He created us for community. In a sense I would say this dream could even be prophetic, even if the faces and the place are different, because I know He wants this for us.
Time for some honesty….do you struggle to read the Bible?
I’m a reader by nature. I can (and have) spend hours reading on the couch. But when it comes to reading onion skin thin pages that offer the benefit of life and growth I can’t seem to sit for more than just a few minutes and never on a consistent basis.
The Bible is full of mystery, murder, suspense, triumph, love…everything I love in a great book, but my devotion to it is lacking. What is it that keeps me from stepping into these pages the way I do any other book.
Today I want to step into the story. Have words given by the God who created me flood into my heart. I want to prepare heart as He leads me into this next season.
And because I know God’s timing is perfect, and I believe He has a sense of humor this arrived in the mail today from a dear friend. It is a Bible reading plan journal.
Where are you currently reading/studying in the Bible? Did you know that there is a group of women who are reading through the Bible chronologically in six months, and furthermore that some of them just finished reading it through Genesis to Revelation in 90 days?
If you recall part of my digging deeper into my One Word this year is scripture memorization. In January I dedicated myself to memorizing Colossians 3:12 & 13. It went surprisingly easier than I’d thought it would. A couple weeks ago I had two nightmares in less than a few days. My joy was to lie in bed reciting this verse over and over. To allow the goodness of God envelope my mind rather than the images that shook me awake.
For February I’m memorizing Proverbs 22:11 (NIV)
One who loves a pure heart and who speaks with grace will have the king for a friend.
For the last week or so I’ve been seeking God on what I should seek to lose. I’ve considered Twitter for a second year, but really want to make a decision based on His desire for me.
One verse I forever remember from my two years in Christian private school is Romans 12:1. Paul instructs us to offer ourselves as living sacrifices. Giving up ourselves for Christ. Losing that which keeps us bound to other altars.
I want to lose those things. I want to get up off the altar that wants to burn me up in its passions and offer myself to God and God alone.
So I’m seeking Him on what He wants me to lose.
Have you practiced Lent previous whether as part of a community of believers or on your own? Are you planning/considering practicing it this year?
Some questions just seem like they’d have an obvious answer. I think it’s those questions in particular that can have deeper, hidden answers.
One of the phrases that we were consistently instructed in during Dream Year was to ask big questions. Dare to ask the big questions that take you steps into your dream.
As I said on Monday I’m still wrestling out with God my dream. Tonight I had to ask a question. I’d been putting it off because I assume the answer is obvious, but it may not be.
Hopefully, I’ll have more answers.
At the airport on Friday I wanted to ungraciously tell a guy he was in the wrong numbering position to get on the plane. I was #53, he was #54, he was in front of Shawn who was #52. I became so angry, “Why couldn’t this guy just pay attention”. My angry thoughts echoed in my head, my heart became hard. The Holy Spirit was quick to whisper, “Grace”. Conviction and my anger began to battle it out.
God is teaching me grace in the little things. Things like responding to the guy in the airport. Anger should not have been my first reaction to something so stupid (and when I say stupid I mean who cares if the guy was not in the correct spot?).
I was thinking yesterday that I wish it was the end of the year and this lesson could be over. That I could be 12 months deep into it and be the person God has for me to be then. But that’s not the way life works. We don’t get to jump from point A to point Z. There are a lot of blood, sweat, and tears to go through; and in the end we still may not be at point Z.
Over the last 25 days I’ve felt like throwing in the towel. I’ve told God I don’t get it. That it’s hard. That I’m not sure what it is I’m supposed to be learning.
I know I’m not the only one. Resolutions are hard, but I think this……is a lot harder. Choosing having God give you a One Word is allowing Him to take you and completely rearrange your life, your mind, your soul, your heart etc.
I’m not giving up, and neither should you!
So…how is your One Word going?
I’m sitting in a hotel room in Nashville. Overlooking a frostbit Vanderbilt University. My mind feels as if it imploded.
Attending Dream Year Weekend was amazing, and I’m not even sure how to begin digesting what I heard. I can’t even form sentences in my mind.
One thing that was repeated the whole weekend is that our Dream (our passion) is born out of a frustration. Your comments show me just how true that is. What your heart wants to do is all because of a frustration; whether it’s your frustrated your walk with Christ isn’t what you want it to be, or because of the experiences in your own past that lead you to wanting to counsel people. Dreams that God has planted, that He has given you a hunger to see accomplished.
As for my dream – I’m still wrestling it out. I have a very general idea, but I’m unsure how it would play out in the real world. For the time being I feel the need to keep it close to the vest. To seek God concerning it. When the time is right I will share here.
For now….please pray for me. Attending Dream Year Weekend brought up a lot of questions I need to answer, and that need answers. Pray that I would have clarity in what God wants me to do. Pray that I would not walk in fear. In the last 24 hours the enemy has already begun his lies, and fear is creeping up.
And I’ll be praying for you. That God would refine your dreams and show you steps to begin walking them out.
If you could be anything, without exception what would you be?
If you could do anything, without fear of failure what would you do?
What dream is wiggling around in your heart. mind. soul?
The winner (by random number) of the copy of Gracenomics is: #10 – Matt. Congratulations Matt!
Prudence is a 30-something writer who lives in Arizona with her husband Shawn and their chihuahuas Lengua and Zeus. She writes her life, her experiences and her crawl back to hope. Eventually, she hopes to visit India – a place that’s captured her heart without ever stepping foot on the soil.