Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 in review~Brave

For several years I have been focusing on a word for the coming year instead of a New Years resolution. Because you begin but always have it in the back of your head that you will eventually quit. The past few years my words have been grace and intentional/purpose. Grace was for myself, for others, not expecting perfection in anything. Purpose was as I learned how to manage this massive family. I felt like I had been just surviving. There is a Jim Gaffigan quote, he says, "you wonder what it is like to have 4 kids? Imagine you are drowning and someone hands you a baby." Perfect. The first time we heard that we could not stop laughing. (He is a great comedian for large family parents.) That is exactly what I felt like. I didn't feel that I was bringing glory to God for the work He had done in our lives because I felt like our lives were a mess. So I took that year learning and planning. Getting rid of clutter and junk that filled my house and my mind. It was amazing and I still operate in everything I learned. It is still crazy at times but I can whip it all into shape in just an hour or so. I learned so much about myself both of those years.

Coming out of 2014 I was dealing with Gideon just having come through RSV that was life threatening. As we were entering 2015 I felt the Lord impressing in me the word brave. I think that everything I went through I realized that there is much for me to learn about being brave. I'm not sure I have ever really seen myself as brave. Usually shy, quiet, easily intimidated. Not brave. In public people see me with my children and comment that I am brave. It is usually a snide remark, nothing I have ever taken seriously. 

Brave. I assumed that God as going to just reveal to me what we had walked through with Gideon. Or that He would keep teaching me what it means to be brave as a mother of so many boys. As the months have gone on I have felt small nudges to new things that I had not considered before. 

Some of the things I have walked through this year where I sensed the Lord calling me to be brave were starting a facebook group for Bible studies, just as a facilitator, leading worship more freely at a retreat for the women of my church and being more brave in my prayers. Also, I started this blog and facebook page on prayer called Breathing Prayers. It all has been terrifying. Blogging has come from going through the Bible study Breaking Free by Beth Moore. As I sit to write, things I have never realized about myself flow through my fingers. Just knowing the freedom I am receiving from that makes the level of vulnerability worth it. 

As the end of the year came, God began calling Mike in new ways. Realizations of the calling that God has placed on my life have shocked me. God remembered that longing. And so many years later He is bringing this to pass. We are having to be brave in ways I never expected this year. It is hard. In employment, ministry, friendships, our children and their friendships. Stepping out in faith and trusting that the Lord has to catch us, otherwise we will fail.  It is terrifying. 

2016. Over the past 14 months, since Gideon's birth, the Lord has been reminding me constantly that He is my peace. Also, during the Names of God Bible study peace resounded within me. Peace, He is my Peace. My hope is that as I focus on this through the year, that my mind will be stilled and silenced of the chaos. And that it will overflow into my family around me. I can't wait to see what He will do with me during this year as I focus on Him as my peace. 

Luke 1:45
"Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill His promise to her."

Oh Father, my hearts desire is found in You.