Herein marks my first attempt to try something in the new year that regrettably I will forget about in four months. But at least I’m owning up to it, right?
Right. I had this idea while not sleeping because I had a chai latte too close to bedtime and now I am WIDE awake and my inner monologue is running a mile a minute. Or faster. I’m not sure because I can’t quite keep up with it all. At any rate, I had this idea that I would make a list of five things that I wanted to share with you every Friday. Hence the name: Friday Five. Gosh but I’m so clever in the wee hours of the night.
1. I’m in love with this song right now:
I recommend listening to this as loud as you dare. And dancing. And while you’re dancing, just give a good shake to get the devil off your back. Or if you’re driving? Don’t hesitate to give a good shoulder shake. It adds to the song.
2. It’s funny the way God works, isn’t it? Lately I’ve just seen the way he plants things in my heart and in my mind in such a way that I can’t ignore them, but I just have to chew on them and consider the implications. These things are good for me to think on anyway, but more than that he’s preparing me and planting those things in me in advance of having a conversation with someone who needs to hear it too. I realize this is a direct answer to prayer – that he would be the overflow and use me as his channel/vessel. It’s really neat to see it happen and just humbling that he would use someone such as myself to be his hands and feet. I’ve realized in the last few months that going through difficult seasons is necessary to the progression of our faith. In order for growth, we must be pruned. Cassidy had a great sermon on that. But more than a sermon I’ve seen it played out in my own life and in the lives of those around me. The Lord’s brother wasn’t kidding when he said:
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” James 1:2-4
And Paul confirms this also: “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Romans 5:1-5
But what I think is important in this, in addition to acknowledging that suffering and hardships are inevitable, is that we can and should experience peace and joy during those times. Those things are not exclusive of the good times. I wish I had learned this a little earlier in life. I still struggle finding joy and peace during those times, but I do continue to hope that the growing pains will one day cease and I will emerge into that perfect state in eternity. Sanctification is a lifelong process – sometimes I forget I’m not already perfect <sheepish grin>. But I think those difficult seasons that are so necessary for me come about because I forget that it’s by faith in Christ that I am justified. I go through periods of life where I forget to praise God, but instead praise myself for such a job well done. As Beth Moore pointed out in a bible study I did recently, praise is recognition of what Christ has done in me, and pride is taking credit and applauding myself for what God has done. Knock me down a couple notches. Back to the list…
3. One day – hopefully soon – our office will be clean. Today I emptied one box of books. There are many more to go. But a box a day makes the clutter go away! And once the office is decent I’m going to re-organize the laundry room and the pantry/storage room off the laundry room and then all our closets… Har dee har har. One day…
4. Sunday is our Israel reunion and share time. I’m SO excited to see everyone again. I really miss the community living and just sharing life with them. I volunteered to bring hummus. I have never made hummus. I thought it sounded like a good idea because I have 3 cans of garbanzo beans in the cabinet… Did I mention that I’ve never made hummus? Hmm. Yeah. So tomorrow morning I’m making a batch of hummus to make sure that I can put something decent tasting together to take to the party. Wish me luck!
5. One of my best friend’s from high school finally publicly announced that they’re expecting their first baby and I could not be more excited for them!!! I’ve been trying to not tell people since Thanksgiving. Can’t wait to meet Baby T in July! I hear the 18th is a great day to have a baby…just saying! 😉