So it’s been a long time since I have written anything. I apologize to all of you who have been so faithful to stick with me, even through the dry periods. Life has definitely been crazy with the new baby and just trying to figure out my life in this season. Sometimes one can get so caught up in the world and the concerns of life that you can truly lose focus. But one thing I know at this time: I am tired of being entertained and I want to live more purposefully.
I am tired of trying to get fulfillment by the things that really don’t satisfy. The things that are “twaddle” to my soul (has no purpose, function, or ability to bring me closer to Christ and His greatness). A month or so ago I was binge watching TV shows that were just taking up my time. I was letting myself and my kids get consumed by being instantly satisfied instead of feeling good about work well done, mutual encouragement, etc. God started to knock on the door of my heart. As he started to work, I was able to start to live and breathe again.
It’s funny how those things that are “entertainment” are sometimes the things chaining us down. Things that can take up our lives that really are not God’s best for us. Things that will hinder or distract us from our wonderful Lord.
15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever. 1 John 2:15-17
I realized, as I was reading this passage recently, that I was living in a state of darkness. I am living like the world. I had become worldly without even thinking about it. I had started to love the things of this world (the cravings of sinful man, lust of the eyes, boastful of what I have and do) more than God.
We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. 4 Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, love for God[c] is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did. 1 John 2:3-6
Was I obeying God and His word? Was I walking like Jesus did?
9 Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister[d] is still in the darkness. 10 Anyone who loves their brother and sister[e] lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them. 1 John 2: 9-11
Was I loving my kids and husband or acting selfish and hateful? My own selfishness, had it taken over?
And so God has been taking me on this journey to get back to Him, and has used people in my life to convict me, without them even knowing He had. I want my life to glorify God and I want to intentionally walk in constant communication with Him. I want His presence. I WANT TO GROW! (Can I just say thank you to God right now because I am so thankful He pulls me back to Him because He loves me??)
So, what are some steps that I have taken with God as He has done this revival in my heart?
Step 1- I needed to get rid of Netflix and make a decision to try to watch movies from the library or at home that grow character/bring myself and my family closer to Christ. (Bring life, not death)
Step 2- I needed to intentionally look for books that will encourage my kids and I toward Christ (which I will share as I post more). Ultimately making myself a “woman of one book…the BOOK.” I realized as I went to a Mom’s Luncheon that sometimes, though books are a great encouragement or give us direction at times, the Bible should be our most truest source. We should be quoting from it more than anything else. Books are great, but they just don’t have the same power as actual scripture does. And, in all honestly, the books that impact me the most have less of the person’s words and more of God’s word permeating throughout. There is just power in the word!
Step 3- I needed to get closer to God. My relationship with God is so important. He needs to be my number 1. As a refresher, I went back to Elizabeth George’s book A Woman After God’s Own Heart because she constantly points to scripture and I just wanted my priorities to get straight. (Sometimes I just need to refocus on what is best, then on the craziness of life).
Step 4- I needed to work on discipline in everyday life.
11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:11
I have been purposefully trying to exercise everyday, with the help of my husband as my accountability partner, and working on eating healthier. I will try to talk more about that in a future post but, really , there are so many areas I could work on, but this is one that is most needed.
Step 4- I realized I needed to ask God for forgiveness for what I have not surrendered. I really hated discipline, training and working at times. I wanted my own way. So I asked God to do His work in me, even if some of those things were painful. (Maybe this was actually Step #1).
Step 5- I needed an accountability partner who also wanted to grow in their relationship with God. Most people are so busy or don’t want to go as deep, so I was really in prayer about this. Actually, to be honest, God pressed one particular person on my heart who I knew would not be afraid to speak the truth if or when I needed it and would keep encouraging me back to Christ. (I hope I am mutually beneficial to her!) One of the things the word says is that women should be encouraging and growing with other women, and I really have a heart for that. So I guess I am on that journey to encourage and be encouraged as much as possible.
Step 6- Going back to certain curriculum and thoughts. Many of you know I homeschool and so I want curriculum that encourages my kids to think and grow. What was one thing that really encouraged my kids to think and grow? The books that Sonlight chooses. I don’t have much time to visit this right now because I am planning next year for my kids, but I will make another post on what I am doing.
How is God nudging your heart right now? What steps have you taken to either get rid of or put on Christ? I would love to hear!