Shining the light of God's word into our confused world.

Tag: perseverence

When You’re Ready to Throw In the Towel

God knows how to God

 

Note: I’m still doling out posts from the archives while I enjoy my summer break. This post originally appeared March 24, 2016. As I write this note and prepare to load this post into the publishing queue, it’s the Monday following my latest book launch and this message is one I really needed today. I’m sure there’s someone else out there who could use this reminder. If that’s you, hang in there, friend.

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“If this is my calling, why is it so hard?”

“If this is really what God wants me to do, why is there so much opposition?”

“Is this dream really from God? Is He trying to tell me I should just give up and stop wanting it?”

I’ve been in a place of asking these questions. Sometimes, I’m still there. But when I do, I’m reminded of the following:

We’re called to trust, to persevere, and to be patient. Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us to trust and submit, and then He’ll make our paths straight–not the other way around.

Trust isn’t really trust if the way is clear and easy.

Perseverance isn’t really perseverance if there’s no opposition.

Patience isn’t patience if the outcomes happen when and how I want them to.

Quick and easy is wonderful in the moment but then it’s over and it does nothing to strengthen our faith, sanctify us or grow us in our daily walk. And when the results come easily, we don’t appreciate them nearly as much as when we work hard and fight for them.

If you’re facing hard, if it seems like everything in the universe is trying to keep you from even trying, let alone achieving that thing you know deep in your bones you were put here to do — consider that you’re doing exactly what you’re supposed to, and the enemy is pulling out all the stops in an attempt to get you to give up, because he’s terrified of what will happen if you don’t.

So don’t.

Don’t give up.

Persevere. Keep going. One day at a time. One little hard-fought step at a time.

Be patient. Be flexible. Surrender the outcomes to God.

Trust with your WHOLE heart. Trust in His goodness and His complete love for you.

And in due time He will clear the way for you to be ALL He means for you to be. He promised.

You’re not fighting this fight alone. He’s with you every step of the way, ordering your steps. You don’t have to do it all, and you don’t have to do any of it by yourself. Your Maker has a plan for you, and HE will bring it about. ALL that’s required of you is obedience. Show up and be willing. He’ll take it from there.

Remember that God knows how to God. He’s got this.

And so do you.

Love,
sig-transparent

 

 

 

PS – Linking up this week with Holley Gerth’s Coffee For Your Heart, Missional Women’s Faith Filled Friday, and the Faith Barista.

What I Learned This Spring

 

Thank goodness Emily P. Freeman is ready to do another link roundup for stuff we learned this spring. This is actually a life saver because I need something easy to ease me back into blogging here regularly and list posts are easy and now I have an excuse to do one. This list is mainly going to be about things I learned pertaining to moving because moving pretty much consumed our entire spring. So with that in mind…

  1. Moving is hard. I mean, duh, right? We knew this, but it had been nearly nine years since the last time we actually had to do it, and it’s easy to forget just how hard something is when you haven’t had to do it in a while. But it is HAAAAARD.
  2. Good friends are a blessing. Good friends with a large truck and a flexible schedule and a heart for helping and serving others are an extra-special blessing.
  3. Downsizing your stuff is not something that should be put off until AFTER the move, especially if you’re considerably downsizing your space. We’d planned to do away with a lot more of our stuff before the move happened, but a window of opportunity opened up for us to move sooner than we’d planned, and so we ended up packing and bringing with us more stuff than we have space for. This is making unpacking extra super fun.
  4. There’s always more to do than you think. The actual moving part didn’t take too long, but then we still had a lot of stuff left to deal with at the old place–furniture and stuff we’d decided to donate instead of bringing with us, etc. Not to mention an entire garage filled with my deceased in-laws’ belongings. Getting all of that sorted and dealt with was a much, much bigger job that we’d anticipated. SO much bigger.
  5. Transitions are hard, even when they’re desirable and good. We really, really wanted this move to happen, and when the door opened for it we dove in faster than Michael Phelps at the sound of the starting pistol. Other than the actual time and work involved in moving, I didn’t think it would be that big a disruption to our day-to-day lives. After all, we don’t have kids and we both work from home and simply changing our location shouldn’t have much of an impact on how we do things, right? I could not have been more wrong. One of our biggest struggles has been re-establishing rhythms and routines and adjusting to the fact that we no longer live a convenient distance from anything.
  6. Transitions are hard, even when they’re desirable and good. No, I didn’t accidentally copy and paste that from above. I deliberately added it again to make the point that it’s okay not to be joyful and bursting with gratitude every second of every hour whenever you finally get something you’ve been praying a long time for. It’s okay if sometimes you’re too worn out and exhausted and a little depressed because everything is so much harder than you expected and you’re beyond frustrated at how difficult it is to get back into a flow. Give yourself grace, acknowledge that it’s hard, and then step back and try to remember why you wanted this thing in the first place and why you actually are, in fact, so grateful that it finally came to pass.
  7. Don’t unpack in a hurry. Apart from unboxing the things we absolutely needed in order to set up house and be comfortable, we’ve been taking our time about unpacking, finding a home for things and decorating. We want to see how we actually live and utilize this space in order to determine what makes the most sense in terms of where to put stuff. While it feels a little chaotic still being surrounded by boxes, when we finally do pull something out and put it away we can be reasonably certain it will stay in that spot and we won’t have to endlessly rearrange things.
  8. My soul is so much happier surrounded by nature. We moved back to the place where I grew up, a little housing edition out in the country overlooking a lake. There are woods within walking distance and we only need to cross the street for views like this one:

    The people are much friendlier here, too. Every time I go for a walk in this neighborhood my heart soars with joy to be here.
  9. God is so, so faithful. Last week I reblogged this post that I wrote a little over a year ago. In that post I talked about how trapped and hemmed in I felt where we were living, and how our prospects of getting to move anytime in the foreseeable future were slim to none. But I kept praying even though hope seemed small. And at last, after a long season of waiting and having our patience tested and stretched, He’s answered our prayers and delivered us into a safe place and a season of rest.
  10. Resting is the hardest part of all. For all of the difficulties involved in moving and transitioning, I think what I struggle with the most is simply receiving this blessing and enjoying it instead of immediately looking to the next thing. I’m not going to lie — the last eight and a half years or so in Tulsa were some of the most challenging years of my life. God used those challenges to grow us in ways we’d never imagined. And now I believe He’s brought us here–beside the still waters, overlooking green pastures–to rest and heal before we move on to whatever He has planned next for us. But I’m so future-oriented and I’m having a really hard time relaxing into this new phase of our lives and enjoying this step along the journey instead of worrying about where we go from here. I’m having to be really intentional about letting go of that worry and trusting that God’s got this and everything’s going to continue to work out as it should, in His time.

What have you learned this spring, dear reader? Do you also have a hard time enjoying the present instead of constantly thinking about the future, or does God’s rest come more naturally to you? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

I’ll resume my regular blogging schedule next week (Lord willing) with the series on faithfulness that I’d originally planned for March. See you then!

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PS: Find more encouragement for your soul at these linkups:

Holley Gerth’s Coffee For Your Heart

Missional Women’s Faith Filled Fridays

#DreamTogether at God-Sized Dreams

PPS: Looking for some a-MAZ-ing tools and resources to help you be more productive, write better and/or generally do life while keeping your sanity? I’ve got the goods — sign up to receive Daydreamer Dispatches, a once- or twice-a-month newsletter from yours truly, and you’ll automatically receive a super-sekrit link to My Absolute Must-Have, Can’t Live Without Tools and Resources list! Click here to get your link!

JeanA Jesus girl through and through, Jean Marie Bauhaus is on a journey of healing and rediscovering who God purposefully created her to be and figuring out how to do life within that context. She’s the wife of Matt and mom to a crew of four-legged dependents, all of whom make their home in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Jean counts coffee, dark chocolate and a yarn addiction among her vices. She’s the author of Restless Spirits, a family-friendly paranormal romance/mystery now available from Vinspire Publishing. You can learn more about her novels and short fiction at jeanmariebauhaus.com.