Starting Over

Starting Over.

Self-sufficiency is a coveted commodity in our society. We all know people that have made their way all on their own and are proud that they need no one but themselves to get by.

But then one day, God brings even the most self-sufficient to a place where they have no strength, no answers, no money, no job and no choices except to turn to God and say, help me.

It can be exceedingly painful and extremely humbling.

Starting over is like learning to walk ………. start-overs and setbacks are a part of life. How many times does the little one tumble before he learns to walk with steady grace?

Another thing I can tell you with an amount of certainty is that most likely, you are not where you are because of some fluke of nature but you are in the starting gate of life because God needs to show you something.

Do not and I repeat DO NOT misunderstand what I am saying, I am not negating your pain or situation in any way. You have lost a spouse, you have lost every material possession you had in this world, your best friend died, you have gotten a terrible diagnosis, your child died, your job is gone and all prospects have dried up. You have been abused, or drugs or alcohol have their steely grip on you, maybe the friends you thought you could count on have betrayed and deserted you. The circumstances you are facing are deadly serious and they hurt like hell.

You hurt, you cry, you threaten, you shout, and finally you admit that you have absolutely nothing left on this earth.

At this point there is nothing left to lose.

That’s the good news.

While you are pleading with God and asking “Why me Lord, what did I do to deserve this? God is softly telling you that He has heard His son speak the same words.

 Trust Him through this.

Whatever your circumstances of your life at this moment you can come out a winner. If you have sinned, repent. If you are facing a battle, seek God’s will and let Him handle the battle for you. If you are in unfamiliar and unknown territory, know with absolutely certainty that God has a blessing waiting for you there and rejoice in that fact. To those who have cheated, mistreated, lied about you, offer up prayers for them. If you have traveled a road that you never should have traveled, work with God to find your way back to the road He wants you to follow. If every treasure you have on this earth is suddenly gone, know with certainty that the real treasure awaits you.

 God offers you the way to start over and find the significance that has thus far eluded you. Know that you can be the inspiration to others that they are so desperately seeking. However you first have to grab that courage, strength and wisdom and trust what is being offered. Don’t let the simple act of unconditional love offered by God be covered up in the mess, loss and hurt of the moment.

Do not give up.

Mother Teresa said that “When you have nothing left but God, you have more than enough to start over again”

There is such truth in that statement, it is not romantic drivel, it is solid, wonderful, honest truth.

I know there is fear in uncertainy. You are afraid of more pain, you are afraid your life will be very different, you are afraid God has drawn the map but misplaced the compass. I can tell you that the tighter you hold onto the reins of control in this torturous moment the more intense the pain will become and the more extreme the battle will be.

When God gives you the opportunity to start over, know that He is giving you the chance to start over with Him. Don’t look at this as a roadblock, but recognize the road could very well be GONE and God is offering you a bridge to a better way, the ONLY WAY that is going to get you where He desires you to be.

Will it take a leap of faith, of course it will, just as it will take a trust that only comes from seeking God every single second of every single day. You will find growth, significance, greater closeness with God and the unexplainable peace that presides over every circumstance every day when God is involved.

There is so much wrong in the world but with God there is so much more right.

So go ahead, find the courage to let go and start over. You will be glad you did.

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (NIV).

Dottie

…………and so I ride

 

4c7d12ce91489cca7cea7b792aae8c00 b26d06cc621174211839be41fed7cad9 f882a4ba260084817929c189728bb210

Advertisements

Waylaid by Grief

August 14, 2014 I lost my Dad and August 24, 2015 I lost my daughter in law. The one thing I have learned over this incredibly hard year is that grief is not “one size fits all”. People expect you to grieve a certain way and on a certain time frame and without exception I have found that doesn’t happen. People may tell you they know how you feel but they don’t.
Your pain, your grief and your hurting heart are exclusively yours. The process may be similar but your process belongs to you only. The pain is inescapable and oftentimes it feels like much more than we can handle.
The emotions are incredible, deep and quite honestly confusing. I am a woman, I am used to emotion, but this many and all at once are overwhelming and painful. At times it feels like an emotional ambush and there is nowhere to hide.
I still find it hard to believe that I have had my last visit with my loved ones, that there will be no more heart to heart talks, no more shared meals and the hardest part is our favorite holidays will never be the same.
I am not ready to say goodbye. I want to say I love you one more time and I want to hear it back.
I have found great solace in Psalm 10:14a. The scripture assures me that God sees our trouble and grief and takes it into hand.
Although grief and sadness are hard to walk through I do believe that they are necessary and we should not suppress this natural process but rather seek God’s help to walk with us.
Loss is going to be a part of our lives and grief is the natural response to loss. Matthew 11:28 is so relevant. Although grief is a normal process it is a heavy burden at times. Jesus says “come to Him all who are weary and burdened, and He will give us rest.”
So how do we handle this mind numbing pain called grief in a way that still glorifies God?
DON”T GO AWAY MAD
I love God with my whole heart and soul, but it is very hard to come up with a reason that our family has had such tremendous loss in a relatively short time. That makes it hard not to be just a little bit angry at God. I have to take great care to make sure that does not happen because in my opinion that would be aiming my anger at my biggest ally and not the enemy.
DON’T DWELL ON THE QUESTION…………..WHY DID THIS HAVE TO HAPPEN?
Whether expected or not death hurts. The death of our loved one may have surprised us but it did not surprise God. God has absolute sovereignty over all life and death. He has ordered every single last detail over everything, even death.
DON”T HIDE
Run to Him who knows you like no one else and loves you as no other. Run to where comfort can be found. You will only find real and lasting comfort in our Lord.
AVOID SATANS TRAPS
When your heart is breaking and you are blinded by mind numbing grief, don’t let sorrow blind you to temptation. Satan will use this time to cast doubt on God’s goodness and love. Deny the feelings of doubt, self-pity, bitterness, anger and run to God for strength.
Live thankful that even in the darkness we will find God’s presence and His love. Look beyond this moment and take comfort in the fact that, as Christians, someday the grief will end and your eternity is with God.
So I will grieve, I will grieve in my own personal way but I will grieve with hope.

Dottie
……………………and so I ride

images

Knowing God is better than knowing the answers

To everything there is a season
Part Two
Think about the season you are experiencing. Have you dug deeper than the surface, have you tried to discover what God is revealing about Himself to you? Although we rarely get to choose the seasons of our lives, we can chose how to navigate those seasons.
Think about Job. His possessions, loved ones and health was taken from him. There is something to be learned in this for us.
Foundations. Can we say that if our lives were stripped bare as Job’s was, that God would be enough? Do we trust God, truly trust God only because we are living the life we want? When our faith is tested we will have (just as Job did) friends and family coming out of the woodwork saying “where is your God now?” “Why do you trust a God who would do this to you?”
I must admit that I can’t speak for God, when those kinds of questions arise I have to fall back on my belief that God is in control, that God lead me into the storm and He will lead me out. I cannot answer why things happen as they do, only God can do that.
I simply have to trust God no matter what happens. I have to accept that there will be bad right along with the good. It helps me to see more clearly who God really is, and to understand for once and for all that God is enough for me, whether it is within blessings or suffering.
Please know that if you are in a season of testing, that eventually all storms run out of rain and even more important is the fact that a tough season can result in a bumper crop. The promise of a deeper relationship with God and a clearer understanding of the character of God is a bountiful harvest. It is a harvest we can put in the bank!

Dottie
…………………………and so I ride
JOB