Thursday, January 5, 2017

Day 5 - Better Late Than Never

This post is a few days late.  I'd like to give you a pile of grand reasons, like traveling to a fantastic place, reading a book I just couldn't put down, training for another marathon, you know, all of those things that take a lot of time and would naturally keep me from doing some of the little things I should be doing... Yet the truth of it is - life.  Yep, life happened.  Work-work...housework...sick getting, basically, life.  During this time I have caught up on a few of the daily devotionals I started, one of which was almost 6 months ago!  I love the Bible App on my phone, it gives me the opportunity to find a plethora of wonderful devotionals, which I am better at finding than completing most days.  I've successfully finished a couple of them in the last two days...being sick has its benefits.  I am also on the last chapter of "Crash the Chatterbox" by Steven Furtick. FINALLY!  I started this book months ago, like maybe 6 or something like that!  Hey, don't judge, it's my - have to read a lot of different things all at once characteristic I blame for this.  A few things about these devotionals and this book that have really hit home for me these past few days.

1) God isn't through with me yet.  Nope, I'm still a work in progress, and despite my desire to the contrary, there will never be a moment on this side of eternity where I will reach perfection, but that is ok too.  Why? Because it means I get to go to my Jesus every day and ask Him to help me be more like he is.  Sometimes it is an easy learning day, others it is difficult and the struggle is frustratingly real.  Regardless of how the lesson presents itself, I trust the change even if it is ever so subtle.

2) The dreams that I have for my life (teaching in case I've not shared that with you at least a hundred times before) are attainable, but they will take work (aka an education, applying, interviewing, etc) and faith in myself and trust in God's timing.  I also know my dreams will not make sense to others and they will not all support me in my decisions (continuing my education) or even congratulate me on steps completed to get there.  This too is just fine.  There will be nay-sayers in life.  This comes from their own jealousy or deep-rooted disdain for me...I just need to give these people over to God and continue on.  He's so much better at sorting out all of the details anyhow.  Plus, I don't have the time or the energy for it.

3) The things people say about me, have said about me, and will say about me are none of my business.  Nope.  If it makes them feel better, so be it.  I can tell you, this is so much harder for me than anything else.  ANYTHING!  I have a penchant for internalizing these things and in turn act or react accordingly!  A huge lesson I earnestly try to teach my children not to do.  I once had a relative tell me I would never amount to much (I think the exact words uttered were "Mandy will end up barefoot and pregnant and living on assistance." - No, I don't hold it against that relative, we all say things we wish we could take back.), another adult once told me I wasn't smart enough to be in the medical field (I wanted to be a Pathologist when I was a Junior/Senior in HS.),  yet another family member tell me I was fat, ugly, and no boy would ever want to date me (um...we all have issues during our teen years, I was NOT easy on the eyes, sure, but to this day they are still words I struggle to forget.), a boss once told me that I wasn't good enough with people and didn't have the right personality for a specific job (I applied for, several times, to be a server at the restaurant I worked at in HS and after...I never got the gig.), I could go on and on with this statements made by others concerning me, but I know these, like those I haven't actually heard, are not a reflection of me...they are a reflection of them.  Yes, there are things I will never do and never be, but oh the things I can and am!

4) Sometimes the expectations we have for life have to fall apart for the plans of the Lord to shine through.  He never once promised us a life without struggles, but He did promise to always be there during them.  I have a hard time remembering this. (Sometimes daily!) There are times I get so mad at Him for some of the things that have happened to me, but then, in the same breath, I am praising Him for some of the things that have happened to me.  You see, each and every...EACH AND EVERY...moment in life is an opportunity to learn.  Oh, how I've fought some of these lessons and hated learning them, but by understanding my current struggles are being given in order to teach me and grow me, it certainly makes them bearable; if only on the premise of what they are - lessons - and nothing else.

And that, my dears, is what the last few days of not keeping up with the 30-day challenge have wrought.  So, I guess, if I had to be honest about it - it was a good thing.  After all, I didn't have to go to Pinterest for this topic which is another (or just my) way of saying it's better late than never!

- M

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