I want to apologize that I have still been slacking with posting regularly. Honestly, I can’t even give you a good reason why; I just keep putting it off. However, the Lord convicted me today for not posting because people have told me they find my blog encouraging. Why would I rob people of that? It’s selfish of me, really.
So I will start posting once or twice a week. I desire to live my life in a way that glorifies God and this blog gives me a great opportunity to do that.
I asked God to take me to the next level spiritually, which of course grabbed Satan’s attention. He wants to keep us from reaching our potential! So, like always, I’ve been battling him these last couple weeks. Thankfully the Lord is on my side. Romans 8:28-31 explains,
28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
God proves the truth of this to me by continually demonstrating His faithfulness despite my circumstances.
For instance, because of my work schedule I started seeking different childcare. I found a few options, but I only found one lady I liked. Unfortunately, it required a 30 minute drive there, then a 30 minute drive to work. I want the best option for Isaac rather than the most convenient, but my car can’t handle that mileage right now!
As a last resort, I visited the daycare located about 2 minutes from my parents house that has extended hours (8 pm). Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a great daycare. The lady who runs it understood my concerns with putting Isaac in a daycare facility because she never put her children in daycare either.
I didn’t feel comfortable with that option though for a couple of reasons. One, Isaac loves to explore! He also gets upset when he has to be in one place for too long. How could you blame him though; I wouldn’t want to be stuck in one room either! Two, it worries me to have him in daycare as they are notorious for exposing kids to sickness! Three, my parents can’t commit to picking him up even by 8 every night because their schedules vary.
I prayed about where God wanted Isaac all week. Friday night I searched Craigslist and found a lady who runs an in home eco-friendly childcare only 15 minutes away. She charges reasonable rates which include home-made organic baby food. She watches babies until they turn 21 months old, and only 3 at a time.
I couldn’t believe it when I found her! I immediately contacted her through her form on her website. She called me within 30 minutes!
After a 30 minute chat, we agreed to meet at her house on Sunday after Branon’s visitation was over. She worked around my schedule to meet me since she normally meets parents during the evening on weekdays.
I basically knew that I wanted her to watch Isaac. After meeting her and seeing her set up, I knew for sure. I believe it will provide a wonderful environment that Isaac will flourish in as he grows into a toddler. She also is willing to work with my schedule. God is so good!
Also, True Purpose Ministries allows the families to come to their church service on Wednesday nights. It goes from 6-7, and they also have visitation for 30 minutes before & after. I normally work during those hours. As I believe it’s important for Isaac to be around his dad as much as possible, I approached my supervisor to ask if they could let me work day shift on Wednesday nights. They approved it! The Lord continually gives me favor at work, and I’m so thankful for that!
Words can’t explain how difficult for us this time away from Branon is, especially for me.
If my hope was not in Jesus, I would be a royal mess.
That’s not to say I don’t have my moments. I’m human, and I make mistakes. I love how God uses our mistakes as teachable moments, just as any father should. In fact, let me share with you how my Abba worked on my character last Thursday.
It started with a phone call from Branon. He faced a moment of discouragement from being away from me and Isaac, and wanted to leave. I told him he had to stay. This caused disagreement between us and the phone call didn’t exactly end on a good note.
The bigger problem came from my reaction. For some reason, this call unleashed a plethora of emotions. Normally, I exhibit fairly good control over my emotions. This time, however, I sort of lost it.
I felt worried, angry, and betrayed then on top of that I felt guilty for feeling the way I did. I cried, a lot. I had a hard time getting myself in control. By the end of the day, I only wanted to go home and sleep. I realize now that God tested me in an area He had been teaching me.
I think we sometimes forget that God has a sense of humor! It’s funny to me because I listened to this message by Pastor Chris Hodge, and I thought wow, this summarizes what God’s been teaching me! I get it! God always tests us when he teaches us before we can move on, and I failed the test. God lovingly reminded me how I should have reacted.
Basically, in that message, he gives us 5 sources to give us hope in the storms:
- God’s Presence- Experience his presence daily! Worship God; I talk about this in my post about peace. Praise him and thank him. I went to a listen up conference in August 2012 that talked about your meeting place with God. Here’s the idea: picture a place you really love and where you feel comfortable. God meets us there! Pastor Chris Hodge calls it the Secret Place. This quietness refuels us.
- God’s Promise- If we read God’s Word daily, we can find a promise to stand on.
- God’s Process- We all face difficulties in life, but these serve to develop our character! If we focus on what God is doing in us, we can redefine our bad days because we know we become a better person through them. We may not enjoy this process, but we can appreciate it.
- God’s Purpose- If you have not found the reason why God created you, you are just surviving. When we know God’s purpose for us, we can say life may not be easy, but God created me for something worth it all. Making a difference for eternity brings true fulfillment.
- God’s Place- Our true home awaits us in Heaven. Earth is not our stopping point, we simply pass through.
Had I stopped for a few moments, worshipped God, that in itself would have adjusted my attitude. I know many promises I could have stood on, yet I chose to sulk and indulge in self-pity. I should have thanked God for this opportunity to trust him as he improves my character. I know God has huge plans for me and Branon regardless what trials we face currently. Plus, our ultimate hope is in the sacrifice Jesus made so we can spend eternity in Heaven.
If you keep up with my blog, hopefully you see how all of this ties in with my other posts.
Aren’t we so blessed to have a Father who loves us enough to lovingly correct us when we make mistakes?