Or afternoon by now probably. Wow, it has been quite a while since I have posted anything other than verses. I even thought once that if I keep going the way that I am going my blog will be a scattered version of the whole Bible haha! I have been wanting to reflect on this year in a post for a while now but a few things have been keeping me from doing so. One, I didn’t have the words at the time. Two, not everything had yet come together so I didn’t really know what I was talking about. And three, I have been busy on a different project that is taking all of my leftover headspace not occupied by my priorities. But today, I have the headspace and the words so let’s get on with it.
What a year it’s been. If you have been following along, you know this year of blogging was not only much different than my blogging from the previous years but I also had a very strange and difficult year in my real life. Long story as short as possible, right after I had Anna in September 2016, I became a fitness coach thinking it was God’s plan for me. Proverbs 31 were some of my favorite Bible verses that I had prayed to the Lord numerous times and I knew this was His answer because of my longtime passion for health and fitness. I was going to manage my household and run my fitness business all to the glory of God. Everything was going fantastically until May 2017 when I was hit with the most intense, relentless, and absolutely debilitating case of postpartum depression. I not only gave up on the business but was definitely not winning any awards in the wife and mother department either.
I did not understand at all. I knew my heart was right. I wasn’t out for myself. I wanted to glorify the Lord. What in the world was going on? When I set out to meet those goals back then, I gave it all to the Lord. I made a vision board with a bunch of verses that would keep my focus on glorifying God and set it at my work space where I could see it everyday. I actually prayed these verses to God every morning. These are the verses and why I chose them:
So that I made sure to read the Bible daily–
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12
To remember to give it my best shot everyday-
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31
To remember my purpose in it all-
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13
To remember what can happen if I lose my way-
The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down. Proverbs 14:1
And then a few from Proverbs 31 that I thought fitting for my vision board-
She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. Proverbs 31:16
She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. Proverbs 31:20
She opens her mouth in wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness. Proverbs 31: 26-27
So after beginning the year with a bang, the grueling months full of despair, anxiety, questions, and seemingly failure that followed were not exactly what I had expected. But let me tell you this, hind site is always 20/20.
Remember your prayers and don’t be surprised if they just end up answered.
In my paralysis, I have never been closer to the Lord. Day after day I prayed and read the Bible seeking answers as to what I should do differently or to at least try to understand what was going on. Here’s what happened in that, I actually read the Bible like never before (answer to my prayer of Hebrews 4:12). When I did, I felt so much worse. Yes, worse. As I read, my heart was convicted of my sin in a way I had never experienced because my heart had never been truly convicted of sin before then. No one had found out about some crime I had committed, there was no scandal that I was afraid would be exposed. It was God revealing to me sin in the way He sees sin. When God is one convicting you of sins like not loving your neighbor as yourself and murdering someone with your words, this is the only time you will be cut to the quick and distraught over what you have done. It is when God is the one convicting you that it all makes sense. Jesus, the cross, Christmas, Easter. It is only when God convicts you that you realize how desperately you need Christ. It is only when God convicts you that you realize His great love for all of us to have sent His only Son to die in our place.
I pray this realization for all of you reading.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
Be still. Almost everyone knows and loves these words from the Bible but do you know they mean to cease striving? They do. Cease striving. I boast in none of this because I didn’t have a damn thing to do with any of it. It was 100% all God’s grace and 0% my striving. It was my striving that was taking me down the wrong road. When God brought me to a place where I had to cease striving, all was healed. And when all was healed, so much was revealed! God knew what I needed and even wanted when I did not know.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. Isaiah 55:8
I just wanted to share this as encouragement for anyone who is experiencing hardship and questioning what God is doing. Also, I hope that it encourages you to read the word of God which is alive and active and sharer than a two edged sword. Let it divide your soul and spirit, joints and marrow. Let it judge the thoughts and attitudes of your heart.
And may you be changed forever.