Currently I’m in a lose loose situation. Yes you read that right, let me explain. I either need to lose the inch or two that’s making my jeans feel extra “supportive” (ok tight..) or shop for pants that are a little more loose…. Neither is an appealing option right now though shopping is slightly less so because it would require dressing room mirrors and 22 hangers of pants to wade through in order to find one pair that fit in all the right places… Ladies, why is this clothing thing so hard?
On the positive side I may have found the best free cardio and strength workout there is given our current situation to aid me in this tight spot that I’m in…
Snow shoveling. After 13″ of snow last weekend there was much cardio to be had.
I sort of wish I could blame someone else for the necessity of stretchier pants but it’s more likely the peanut butter cookies I graciously baked last week… which I then inhaled 2 of… Also contributing factors: homemade chicken and gnocchi soup, banana bread and all the bacon in the house. Have I mentioned that blizzards make me that much more inclined to cook? …And also eat?
Some days I get tired of being the good girl. The one who eats the salads and the smoothies and follows all the rules. The one who smiles and soldiers through choosing words that taste like honey rather than coarse gravel.
I find myself constantly up and down. There is always a battle in my mind between what I need to do, what I should do and what I want to do. This is ever more apparent in winter for me…but in the history of all time it’s nothing new…
So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. ~ Romans 7:14-15
I’m in good company. So it’s no wonder that after a long day of shoveling through the different roles we play every now and then we become buried by the negative.
Here’s just a sampling of how the cookie crumbles on a pretty regular basis and how I’m trying to retrain my brain to hunger for God’s word when confronted by my own weaknesses and worries…
Home- Perhaps my biggest battle… when I’m away I can’t help but think of all the things that need to be cleaned and maintained. When I’m there, I can only seem to manage to stay on top of the minor chores like laundry, sweeping, dishes and eradicating the miscellaneous piles of things that somehow form on the kitchen table. Sometimes. My humble abode won’t be featured in any magazine spreads and the couch is becoming increasingly lumpier…
But praise God to have a home with a roof and heat and running water no matter how much fur and dirt and junk mail it attracts. I’m forever reminded that my heart and my home may sometimes feel messy but you’re still invited…after all it seems Jesus does his best work in less than ideal circumstances.
Church- I love serving there though I never can seem to find time to do all the things in the quality way with which I want to do them. Missions and websites. Music and Sunday School. I suffer from too many ideas and not enough time or brain power to accomplish them…
But praise the Lord for a growing fellowship grounded in His word. He takes what little we have to offer – even when we feel it’s just leftovers – and multiplies our efforts ten-fold when we remember to seek Him first.
Work- It’s a battleground on the bad days and a teaching field on the good days. It grows and stretches me- though sometimes in not so good ways. If I didn’t go there 8 hours a day, just think of how much more productive I’d be at home and church. Also how poor I would be, so there’s that…
But what a privilege to have maintained a job through this twisty economy the last 8 years. I know it’s by God’s grace alone that we’ve been able to meet every budgetary need and He is rolling up his sleeves working out something so beautiful for my future even when I can’t see his hand clearly at my 9 to 5.
Health and Exercise- I really want to eat healthy and spend my 30 minute minimum getting my heart rate up daily. Sometimes I’m overruled by time constraints, my growling stomach or just plain laziness… Reference pants story and 4 cookies mentioned above… ’nuff said…
But glory to God for the ability to live and move- little or much- and exist in this world, and especially in Him. He sees no size labels on our clothes- only what’s written on our hearts.
Relationships- Most days I feel like a second rate wife/mother/daughter/friend/sister… So many relationships that I want to care for and tend… I have really good intentions of reviving those dating days with my husband (you know, managing some coherent conversation or maybe a movie while we’re both awake on the couch at the same time after dinner…) but so often we don’t make it past the opening credits before one or both of us is quietly snoring. I cherish spending time with friends or hanging out with family outside of plowing through the aisles of a crowded grocery store on Sunday afternoons but goodness it’s sometimes an exercise in advanced planning… And I’m not so great at that…
But O how sweet God’s blessing of family- husbands, children, parents and friends. And He promises that to everything there is a season. While He untangles my schedule to fit in more of not only what but who matters He also reminds me that the next best thing to sitting with them in person is to stand with them in prayer.
Spirituality- Sometimes when snow intervenes or morning routines go awry my quiet time is the first thing to be sacrificed. Sometimes I’m not that great of a pray-er. Sometimes I’m easily distracted from feasting on the the only sustainable thing in my life- God’s word.
But hallelujah that just like the prodigal, Jesus welcomes me however and whenever I come and even meets me halfway when I repent from busy and run headlong into His rest no matter how many times I veer off track.
As ever, I’m a work in progress and so are you but we’re in this together. What I’m learning is that it comes down to just one important requirement:
We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties. ~ Oswald Chambers
Or perhaps even more simply than that is this:
No matter the highs and lows winter brings us with it’s weather and woes, we can look to Jesus for the win.
P.S. – Just wanted to be sure you know that there is still time to join up with Valerie and I for the Seamless Bible study Facebook group! Just click on the Seamless picture in the upper right corner under the blog header for more info or click here. The best part is that you don’t even have to battle the snow to get there! See you on Facebook!