Thursday, January 5, 2017

~2016~ A Year of Peace

In December 2015 I was praying about the word that I would focus on for 2016 and I felt the Holy Spirit keep leading me to peace.  I knew many changes were coming and I was afraid. I knew in my heart that it was not going to be a peaceful year.  It would be exciting, challenging and terrifying, as many ways we stepped out into the unknown.

God had called us out on the water.  I held onto hope that I was wrong about peace. I hoped that it might just become peaceful and easy... but I felt deep that it would be a year of finding peace in the storm.

As we transitioned out of some things and into others there were moments of peace, because we knew that God had called us,  there was no other option but to be ok with it.  God stilled the storm to a little wind at times and we were able to catch our breath for moments.  There were times of panic attacks not seeing how it would possibly work.  There were many moments of deep realization about what I really believed about God and how He cares for me.  It was deep soul searching and left scars. Praying desperate prayers of miracles, but they were never answered.

For about the second half of the year, I have been in Exodus in my scripture writing.  I stopped for a while, because I felt like Moses at times when God called him to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, but as he obeyed, everything got so much harder.  Then he would run back to God to double check he was hearing God right.  I couldn't handle it so I took a break, but everywhere I turned, God brought that story back out.

Going through the plagues and seeing God do amazing miracles and also seeing God plan to harden Pharaoh's heart, made me search my heart to see where I have hardened my heart to God.  I could see that I wanted my way and I wasn't surrounding to the process of the wait.  Waiting on God to provide, to lead, to open doors, to move mountains.

As the year ended, I have been searching my heart again, to find the things that God has done in my heart in this wait.  Trying to come to terms with Him not doing what I expected Him to do.  We walked into this year expecting God to do miracles and move mountains, because we knew it could only be Him.

But He didn't.

In the dark, one morning as I was confessing and asking God why He took us this way.  He brought to my memory how He lead the Israelites the long way around so that their faith would be strengthened and they would grow into what they were to possess and not run back in fear when they saw all they would face.

 He also reminded me of their shoes.

God didn't part any Red Seas for us... but our shoes never wore out.

Because of the logistics of our family and how we have lived this year, there is no possible way we should have done all that we did, gone everywhere we went, or even still be in our house.

But our shoes never wore out.

We were looking for huge things, but while we were looking those huge things we didn't notice the small things.  He got us through every single month.  He provided.  Our children barely noticed the difference.

Peace.  There was no earthly peace.  But Jesus... He was there the whole time.  Never to leave or forsake.  The depth of Peace was impossible to understand. Learning again how to live in His peace through the circumstances of this life. He became my Peace, more than I have ever experienced before, as a mother to 7. He gently leads those with young.

I picture myself sitting with him in the bottom of the boat, storm raging all around.  But I was with Him and He was with me, and the fellowship was sweet.