This post is linked up to Holley Gerth’s Coffee for Your Heart:
At the end of last year, I asked God to give me a word to focus on in my year to come. The word that came was “choose”. Little did I know just how powerfully God would transform me through all the choices He equipped, strengthened and guided me for and into.
In 2015, I would:
- choose to rejoice when my heart was heavy with deep grief, sticking this Scripture to my fridge and repeatedly listening to and singing a song based on it:
Habakkuk 3: 17 – 19
Though the cherry trees don’t blossom
and the strawberries don’t ripen,
Though the apples are worm-eaten
and the wheat fields stunted,
Though the sheep pens are sheepless
and the cattle barns empty,
I’m singing joyful praise to God.
I’m turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God.
Counting on God’s Rule to prevail,
I take heart and gain strength.
I run like a deer.
I feel like I’m king of the mountain!
- choose to give voice to the emotions raging within me through writing a Lament, inclining my heart to the wisdom of God, as He would use a pen and His Spirit to help me start to name and take ownership of what was raging within me,
- choose to cry out to God as suicidal thoughts plagued me, the Lament I wrote having opened crippling flashbacks of my mother’s last hours. And in turning toward Him in anger and grief, rather than away in my deep fear, God spoke His powerful truths over me, ushering in:
- choose to face my fears in trust, by seeking and undergoing therapy and counseling for PTSD and grief, as I would watch God open my heart more and more to be filled, stunning my unbelieving counselor with the incredible healing she witnessed within me,
- choose to share my journey into God’s Great Love by opening this public blog to do the Write 31 Days challenge, despite my fears and insecurities holding me back, watching Him channel His blessings to and through me,
- choose to share my blog more publicly by posting about it on my Facebook page and sharing photos of myself on my blog, and experiencing this as a freeing, rather than crippling step, in faith,
- choose to speak the truth, even when my insides screamed to hide in shame, and in so doing experiencing the love and acceptance of my Saviour cover me and draw me into deeper relationship,
- choose to start seeing fearful and painful experiences as invitations into Love, rather than punishment, as God is opening my eyes to the gift of His Abiding Presence.
And in each and every choice I have made this year, I’ve been led into a deeper and deeper trust. I have and continue to witness the Love, Power, Hope, Life, Peace, Joy and utter Majesty of a God, who (Isaiah 30 : 18, Amplified Version):
[earnestly] waits [expecting, looking, and longing] to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show loving-kindness to you
And in this leaning into my Lord and Saviour, He is opening my eyes more and more to behold Him in wonder and belief. So, as this New Year dawns, my heart yearns to look at the world around me in expectant wonder, to see God’s goodness right before me in any and every circumstance of life, to follow His call into blessing, also recorded in Isaiah 30 : 18 ( Amplified Version):
… Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are all those who [earnestly] wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him…
So, tomorrow, I will share more of this call to expectant wonder, in reflecting on my One Word for 2016: BEHOLD. But before I do so, I hope you will join me in praising God for all that He is, has been and will forever be.