Surrender

Do you have a word, or a life verse for the New Year?

I desperately wanted my word to be “abundance”, and I really thought that’s the word that God gave me, so I doodled it into a blotter for my doodle notebook, ready to be laminated…absolutely perfect!

Or not.

Today, the Lord impressed on my heart that this year, He wanted my “yes” to whatever He was asking. He gave me Luke 1:38, along with a wonderful example of how to say “yes” to Him, and in a reckless moment of complete abandon to Him and His will, I said with Mary “be it unto me, according to your word”.

be it unto me 2

Later, I was driving (job hunting) putting on my garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness with Robin Mark’s Revival in Belfast, laying it all out there to the Lord, and the song “All for Jesus” came on.

Jesus, all for Jesus
All I am and have, and ever hope to be
All of my ambitions, hopes, and plans, I surrender these into Your hands.

I was immediately reminded of my early morning resolve, and I received the word that God was singing in my ear, whispering into my spirit:  Surrender.

I believe that may be the most frightening word in the world.  It might mean poverty, it might include letting go of everything I hold dear, it might mean putting lifelong dreams behind me to embrace my reality…surrendering my rights, my love of control, my pride…surrendering what I want in this “now” to the One who promised me a hope and a future; surrendering the old thing, for the promised new thing; surrendering all, in exchange for the One who wants to be my all in all.

I found this beautiful prayer  that says it better than the words I could find, and have made them my own heart cry for the new year.

Take, O Lord, and receive my entire liberty,
my memory, my understanding and my whole will.

All that I am and all that I possess You have given me:
I surrender it all to You to be disposed of according to Your will.

Give me only Your love and Your grace;
with these I will be rich enough, and will desire nothing more.

~St. Ignatius of Loyola

 

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An Update of sorts

After a period of nothing but time on my hands, blogging has been put on the back burner due to an increase in activity using up the once “extra” time on my hands.  Between job hunting, baby chasing, catching up with my oldest daughter and her husband who I had not seen for three + years, my youngest daughter and her new busy work schedule, and fighting off the crud for the second time this season, I haven’t even had time and mental capacity to read through my blogroll, much less write.  I know this is a new season (again), and I am grateful for it.  I am also mindful that it will take some time to find my footing again, and fit in everything that needs to be done.
I am also minus a scanner at this time, since the one I had used stayed in Alabama.  As a result, the pictures I post have a cheap camera phone appearance, for obvious reasons.  I go back and forth whether or not to post them that way, I’m leaning toward the “not” until I have access to a scanner.  Again, I am aware that this is only a season, and when the Good Lord sees fit, I’ll be scanning and posting again.

We had a wonderful Christmas celebration, great food, awesome company, and lots and lots of wide-eyed excitement.  It’s so fun to watch babies experience the wonder of this time.  My children outdid themselves in blessing others, and that is always fun to watch.  The busy-ness does not end for us after the Christmas day celebration.

Prayers are always appreciated for us, specifically, these:

  • Granddaughter will be having a heart catheter surgery tomorrow.  She was born with a heart defect that left her with only one working lung, so surgeries and doctor visits are her “normal” routine.
  • Husband and I are both seeking employment.  We have one car between us, and a huge metroplex of possibility.  We rest in the knowledge that God is bigger than the metroplex, and can handle car schedules.
  • As soon as we are gainfully employed, we will be looking for our own residence.  Our daughter has kindly and so graciously accommodated us thus far, and for this we are so thankful, but really, she needs her house back.

I hope to be posting occasionally.  At least for now, I am not feeling led to quit blogging altogether, so, you’re stuck with me at least to that extent, haha.

Season’s Greetings and Happy Holy Days

I’m seeing a lot of sentiment from folks online for keeping Christ in Christmas, and some who are outright offended at the “holiday” greetings that are sometimes used instead of Merry Christmas.

I am not one of those people.

I’m not offended by someone wishing me “happy holidays” or “season’s greetings”.  I’m not offended because I don’t believe the sentiment steals anything from Christmas, rather, I believe it enhances it, since it is inclusive of several memorial and feast days in the time span from December 1 through January 5 this year.

December 1 kick-started the “holidays” with the first Sunday of Advent, reminding us, that Jesus wants to be born in us anew, again, and we wait anxiously for His arrival, both in our hearts and for the day when He returns to the earth to take His children home.  While we wait, we are reminded of the prophecies foretelling the details of his birth, and prepare our hearts for Him to be born in us again.  We are mindful of our sinfulness, our need for a Savior, the blessed example of the one woman whose “yes” to God continues to inspire us, and the example of Jesus Himself, who being God, stepped down in humility and became man, for mankind.

In fact, truth be told, every Sunday is a holy day in which Jesus comes to us, is born in us, gives His body for us, and is raised and raises us to new life again.  With that in mind, wishing me “Happy Holidays” is a perpetual blessing as I see it, that lasts through the winter holidays all year long.

Blessed Advent!

Merry Christmas!

Happy New Year!

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Smile and shake it off, or embrace it and offer it up

wpid-IMG_20131206_133926.jpgWas visiting with my daughter #2 today, and she quoted my favorite mantra:  Use it up, wear it out; make it do, or do without.  “It” being what I already have, what has been provided, or what’s on hand at the time.  I’ve heard that necessity is the mother of invention…I say that necessity is a mother, for sure…but I major in flexibility, and I think I do a great job at making do.

There are times, however, that I haven’t been able to make it do…and have had to do without.  It’s a little harder to be flexible when doing without.  No one is immune to suffering…whether it is illness, loss, or financial  difficulties.

My granddaughters have a sweet little ritual when they suffer a fall, or a hangnail, or any other myriad of “owies”.  They take it to Momma (or Grammie if I’m lucky 😉 ) for acknowledgment, kisses and encouragement.  When they’ve been affirmed, Momma (or I) will urge them “now, shake it off”, at which point, they will do a sweet little shimmy, smile and run off and play.  I have seriously taken this advice to heart.  I wish I could say it was my own wonderful idea, or even one that has been passed down for generations, but…that would be untrue.  Even though I can’t claim it as my own family secret to happiness, I have adopted it as my own, and pass it on to others now, with an added piece of advice that almost rhymes, my new favorite mantra is:  “If you can’t smile and shake it off, then embrace it and offer it up.”

A strange thing happens when I welcome and embrace opportunities to suffer.  I feel empowered somehow, I feel strengthened, even in the knowledge of my weakness;  Acceptance comes with a deep sense of purpose when I see myself as part of that mystical body of Christ, and envision myself carrying that cross, willing myself to share in His sufferings for his sake…for the purpose of participating with Him in His passion.  I can relate to Paul when he said this:

“Yet whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things, and I regard them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but one that comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God based on faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” (Philippians 3:7-11)

…and this:

Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church, of which I am a minister in accordance with God’s stewardship given to me to bring to completion for you the word of God, the mystery hidden from ages and from generations past. But now it has been manifested to his holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory.  (Colossians 1:24-27)

Pocket Momma

“Hang on, Mom, I’m gonna put you in my pocket so I can order my coffee”.

Daughter #2 lives 2500 miles away, and we stay connected through technology…today it was cell service.  I know what she meant…to hold on because she needed both hands, and would be putting her cell in her pocket for a minute. I laughed at the mental image my daughter’s words created in my mind’s eye, then was overwhelmed with the brainstorm that erupted afterward. How I would love to be able to be carried around in her pocket, and pulled out when needed.

“Pocket Momma”.

I told her that would be a great name for a blog, and momentarily considered starting a second blog, just so I could use the name.

Momentarily.

I think it might have been temporary insanity.  Like I don’t have enough to do already, keeping up with one blog…and it’s facebook page…preparing for yet another move…followed by job hunting…yup…definitely (thankfully) very temporary insanity.

After coming to my senses, I’ve decided instead to just add a new category to New Things come the New Year.  In this category, I’ll blog about my own mother’s words of wisdom, things I quipped to my children when they were growing, things I wish I’d have told them, and all the things that come to me now when my adult children call for advice, or comfort, or just to hear me talk…this way, they can put me in their pocket, so to speak, and carry me with them.   I’ll also keep favorite family recipes and traditions, homemaking and parenting tips and fun memories here.  You’ll get a little bit of a peek into my fun, quirky family, and hopefully meet some of them in the comments section. (*HINT*HINT*)