An exciting possibility recently surfaced in my life, quite unexpectedly. Immediately I began to play out what might occur, when, and how all the other aspects of my life would be affected by this possibility. In my mind, I began to manipulate everything to work out nicely. Essentially, I began to try to take the reins and to plan out each detail.
Especially for those of us with leadership abilities and tendencies, it can be difficult to give over control of our lives. In fact, it can be difficult even to see when we are seeking control, since it is part of the very fabric of our nature. However, all this planning is in vain. You see, GOD is ultimately in control. Though it’s important to have a direction…It is all “God willing.” No amount of planning or manipulation on our part can accomplish what God has for us.
The good news is, I don’t need to plot out every aspect of my life! I can let go of stress and anxiety as I learn to simply trust.My Creator knew my path and all the beautiful twists and turns it would take before I was even in my mother’s womb! I could never have imagined the beautiful experiences I would have in my life, the connections I would meet that would shape my life, and how so many details would seamlessly meld together at a perfect time. As I look in awe over the numerous miracles in my life, I look forward to seeing how He will do it again!
Isn’t it amazing the miracles that happen….When we let God, be God!
“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us,to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”~Ephesians 3:20-21
I just finished reading one of the most amazing books I’ve ever read. The book is called Josiah’s Fire, and is written by the mother of Josiah, Tahni Cullen.
Josiah means “the fire of the Lord.” Josiah truly grew to fit this name. Josiah was born in 2005 and developed as a typical child would.
However, around the age of 2, his family members noticed that something was amiss. He lost all the words that he said before, and no longer made eye contact. He seemed unreachable. Eventually, he was diagnosed with autism. Josiah’s mom was heartbroken about this diagnosis, and especially heartbroken that she could no longer communicate with her son. However, Josiah later began to communicate in amazing ways. The family obtained an iPad. Josiah began to type what was going on in his head (though he was still seemingly learning to read)–and his parents were blown away.
Josiah’s writing’s revealed deep spiritual truths. His writings are beautiful and poetic. “Run to the dazzling river of life. You come out like a dry man, only saturated in plans.” This young boy, even less than 9 years old at the time many of the things were written, knew details about heaven, and details about family members he had never met. Little Josiah was even given messages and encouragements to bring to specific people. God even revealed to him the shopping mall where a witch would be, and Josiah asked his mom to take him there. Jesus gave Josiah a message to bring to the witch, a message telling her to turn from her current life and worship Him. Though he cannot speak, Josiah truly demonstrates God’s fire and brings a call for renewal. “God is demonstrating “father” in every movement of His life. Gentle Father, joyful one, bold in every way, but gentle toward people who are faced with sin.”
Autism and other disorders are very misunderstood. The people who live with these disorders are often viewed as if they are not intelligent. Josiah knocks this myth out of the water. It was interesting to read his insights and his frustrations about how his body did not do the things he wanted it to, and how he longed for healing and to communicate verbally again.
If you are struggling with your beliefs about God, or simply looking for an inspirational book. I would recommend this book. It’s a great read, though I did have to put it down a few (or a lot!) of times to ponder because the insights are so colossal!
Have you read Josiah’s Fire? What are your thoughts?
It’s that time again! I am over at Modern Ruth Project for my monthly post. My post (for July) focuses on creating space. I talk about how God called me out of my job and onto focus on other aspects of me. Space is scary, because we don’t know what it will be filled with. And sometimes, God simply gives us space so that there is nothing to distract us from Him!
Go check out my post! I especially recommend it if you are also going through any type of change or unexpected circumstance.
Don’t be afraid of space, because space allows room to grow!
The gifts of singleness?You might be tempted to shut out of this post now. Bear with me. I’m on the single journey too. I know there are very difficult days. There are aspects of singleness that are consistently difficult. However, today we will focus on the gifts. Despite the pain, there are always positive aspects to be found. Finding gratitude helps to keep a positive attitude and live in the blessings.
So, what are some of the gifts of the single life?
The single life can more easily be devoted to service/ministry. As a single person, it is
easier to live a life of service or devoted to ministry. I can think of many occasions where I was able to go help a friend due to my single state. A mother with little ones can’t drop everything to help a friend. A spouse must think about how their service work or ministry will impact their marriage and family life. St. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 7:32-34: “I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife—and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband.” Truly, living single-heartedly for the Kingdom is much easier as a single person! The time and space to build an unshakable relationship with God is a huge blessing of the single life.
The single life provides a degree of freedom that married people don’t have. This can mean travel, more time to invest in writing or other projects, and of course, ministry or easier ability to do mission work. It can also mean greater availability to invest in relationships with members of your faith family, blood family, friends, and even people you may serve as a mentor to. I enjoy the flexibility of singleness. I don’t need to check in with someone else (or multiple people!) about my calendar but can plan as I wish! It is simple. I also find a bit of financial freedom despite the single life meaning only one income. At least in America, many people have debt. Getting married can mean double the student loans, car payment, and credit card debt to manage. (Note: I don’t believe debt is normally a good thing. Unfortunately, it is the reality for many Americans.)
A single life is one with a single person’s problems. One could also argue that marriage is easier because it gives you another person to sustain you in trouble. However, two families bring two different dynamics and two different sets of troubles-plus the troubles within your own home and marriage. Additionally, the stressors of being a parent can be overwhelming for anyone. Add special needs to the plate, helping a child through bullying, or trusting the Lord to provide for the family when the economy is bad–parenting is painful! Learning to love your spouse through the times when they are not at their best can also be difficult–such as if a spouse is diagnosed with a mental illness or facing their troubles from the past. The troubles of a single person pale in comparison to adding a spouse, their family troubles, and children’s struggles as well! (Though I know singles look forward to pouring out love in these circumstances–we have a bit of a break now!)
A longer single life provides more time to attain wisdom, life experience, and clarity about your calling(s) and the direction of your life. Had some of us married younger, we may have missed out on certain aspects of ourselves. These aspects may very well be important to a marriage and perhaps even a shared ministry! For example, during the past decade the Lord has confirmed to me that Africa will continue to play a part in my life. Thus, if I had married someone lacking a love for Africa, I would have missed out on a huge joy and part of my life. I know now that the Lord has someone for me who will be willing to live in countries other than the USA. In His infinite wisdom, the Lord has given me more time to discover these aspects of my calling. I believe it is the same for you, if you have been waiting longer than expected!
Don’t lose heart. There are gifts in the season of singleness, just as there are deep struggles.
Live joyfully in the gifts of today, and you will be able to better receive the gifts of tomorrow.
“I wish that all of you were as I am. But each of you has your own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that.”~1 Corinthians 7:7
Have you discovered any other gifts in singleness that were not mentioned here?
Together journeying toward the Creator and becoming the creations we were meant to be.