Monday, March 31, 2014

"See, I am doing a new thing...I am making a way..."

i just returned from a long weekend in dallas, tx with three good friends for a gathering of women who love the Lord, have a story (which we all do) and want to share it glorify the Lord with all the sweet and broken parts. it is happening again next year and you can get your tickets it.

still processing and let it soak in. because united airlines has something personally against my flights to and from texas were either delayed, cancelled, or delayed some more. how about planning to leave at 11am and not getting home until 2am. not sure what united has against me but i am home and back with my family who i missed terribly. today we rest.

i sat in the dallas airport and reflected a bit on Isaiah 43:19.

See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

In many ways i feel like my life has been broken up into two parts. Before cancer and after cancer. Going along and living your life and then something seems to shift. I believe for many people (because they told me) that the story we were living in cancer was the greatest fear for many people. Ever wonder if the fear and worry in your life is causing more anxiety than when you are actually living in the wasteland? I do. I think we spend more time worrying and controlling our life than actually living the story The Lord is specifically writing for each and everyone of us. We think we know what we would do when life takes the turn we weren't expecting. I think the unplanned and the unexpected road is actually one of our primary purpose in life. The Lord will use whatever means He sees fit to bring us and others to the feet of the cross. What are we about when life feels like a wilderness wasteland? When we are stripped of what we've looked to for life. Thankfully the God we serve, He shows up. As Isaiah said..."See I am doing a new thing." We often assume that new thing will be one bound up in joy. What if it isn't? Than what? For me our story took a turn when I was diagnosed with cancer at 25 and had just become a mother 6 months prior. Our new thing was cancer and because our God can make a new way in the wilderness of pain it became a chance to grow and bind ourselves to Christ. To experience a deep intimacy in my relationship with The Lord for maybe the first time in my entire Christian life. Praise The Lord that we serve a God that uses cancer to be the new thing and brings you to a place when it is only about Him and only a little bit about cancer.  The thing that shifts your life and your heart in a way that you would never pick than becomes what changes your inner most parts like nothing else could. Praise the Lord for making a new way in my life.

The Lord made a unique and intimate way for our family in the midst of pain. It's about living in a daily way that reflects how He used the greatest pain to spring up joy and purpose and people and life in the midst of death. 

Where is The Lord beginning a new work in your life that could possibly be the thing that changes who you are in Christ forever? Do not miss that He will use it all. The ugly, the pride, the embarrassing, the secrets, the pain, the heartache, the humiliating, the...this is too much. too scary. too hard. AND He will use joy, laughter, the beach, friends, relationships, church, His word, prayer, children, your marriage to bring you to Himself. I think for some it is easier to cling to Christ in desperation and for others it is harder in the seemingly mundane nature that life can take to really experience His grace and love and direction. Thankfully it's about all of it. The gospel is evident in everything if we choose to keep our eyes only on Christ. it is only about Him. everything else will fail and this weekend reminded me of how the Lord uses ALL OF IT to bring us to Himself.

I will make an active choice everyday to keep my eyes on Christ and what He says is true about me and my life and my purpose and my story. Even when i have a hard time believing i will turn to what scripture says is true. Because grace is an ocean we can continue to live out of Him in the midst of grief and joy. I believe that at times in our lives the two extremes are what get us through. In the grief and pain of my father in laws sudden passing came a week before the birth of our precious lyla. In the wake of fear and pain in cancer we experienced community, vision, purpose, and love like I have never known. 

I hope we can all move in a direction that draws us closer to Himself...regardless of our season of life.