One of the best things I’ve done in seasons of healing is to follow the path. If healing is my goal, which it is, I don’t want to leave any stone unturned. If it’s going to be painful, which it will be, I want to do everything in my power to learn what I need to learn in an effort to keep history from repeating itself.
“May you be given more and more of God’s kindness, peace, and love.” Jude 1:2 (TLB)
One year ago, today, March 1, 2018, for the unnecessary sake of redundant clarification, a dear friend of mine, Alyssa De Los Santos, began one of the most influential campaigns I’ve ever whole-heartedly believed in and half-heartedly participated in.
Allow me to explain.
Alyssa had been sharing about the big reveal of something amazing for weeks in advance. With eagerness and because I love her and trust her heart to be in the right place, I planned to offer my support and jump all in with all the gusto.
When March 1st came along and the curtain pulled back, I practiced writing #sowkind just as an engaged girl practices writing her soon-to-be married name. Okay, I really didn’t do that. But I did have every intention of going full speed ahead with all things #sowkind.
I have a picture that says, “Until further notice, celebrate everything.” With so much negative in our world and in our personal lives, I’m finding it more crucial than ever to focus on celebrating the positive. It’s always a good idea to celebrate love.
Valentine’s Day comes around each year. In recent years, with social media and our self-imposed freedom to talk a little louder, this holiday has become quite the hot topic. As pink and red everything and all the chocolate, candy word hearts, and flowers are made available, money is spent, opinions are shared, comparisons are made, hopes are dashed, tears are shed, joy is found, expectations are met or exceeded, and often, expectations are profoundly unsatisfied. And then, on February 15th, we find ourselves either basking in the glow or wallowing in the sorrow.
Sometimes, life has a way of dictating when we need to simplify things. Curveballs come that “help” us examine and redefine our priorities. In the spirit of “out with the old, in with the new”, or the newly trending Konmari method, clearing the clutter is important.
As I read my friend’s, Courtney Ellis, advance reader copy of UNCLUTTERED: Free Your Space. Free Your Schedule. Free Your Soul, I was surprised to find that although much in my life had already been reassessed (due to the dictation of an aforementioned curveball), one area was left unexamined. I’ll tell you more about that in a bit.
There are so many stories in the scripture that fit into the gospel of grace. It’s almost like God is trying to tell us something. (*sarcasm) We have stories of grace through the life of Noah, Joseph, Jonah, Job, Herod, Pharaoh, David, and Rahab. Then in the new testament, we have Paul, Timothy, Peter, Judas, and Pilate – just to name a few. Grace often looks completely different than what we might expect and even what we might want.
In learning about grace, what grace really is, what it actually looks like and that I needed to receive it just as much as anyone else does, the story of Jonah kept coming to mind. As I consider the story of Jonah, I realize that sometimes grace is messy. Sometimes God’s grace stinks. But it’s always good.
This is more of a stream of consciousness post. Obviously, my consciousness lacks brevity. I have been keeping this list of things I’ve been learning over these last nine months while in recovery from well, my life. While I know the list will continue to grow as I grow, I felt like I should share what I’ve learned so far. With an unapologetic 3000+ words, clearly, I’ve been learning a lot. Don’t be intimidated. Just read and digest what you can. If this is not for you, feel free to pass it by. I’m a believer in writing what I need to read so I’m guessing someone else out there needs to read this too. If not, that’s fine. It’s been good for me to log my recovery progress in this way.
A prayer for my unfaithful husband? I’m sure you’re wondering why I am praying for my husband who chose to betray our marriage covenant. Honestly, sometimes I wonder the same thing.
Infidelity in marriage is such a complex form of pain and trauma. Everyone’s story is different and deep no matter what the circumstances of the betrayal are. All stories of marital infidelity, at least the ones I’ve come across, come with a thick layer of anger that relentlessly bubbles to the top. While anger is a prominent feeling when we’re wounded, it is not the root feeling. Anger ignored, no matter the root, will turn to bitterness and bitterness steals our peace.
Some of you avid readers who look at this list might think, “only 40??”, but those who know me know that reading 40 books (36 completed and 4 to finish before the clock rings in 2019) is probably more than I’ve read in my entire former life. And in ONE year? Inconceivable!
I gave up sending Christmas cards years ago. I tried for a long time but it came to feel too much like an obligation. Sending Christmas cards takes so much time and is hard on the budget. And for something that would probably get tossed when the Christmas décor came down? Nah, not worth it. Cards and stamps are not cheap!
I love getting Christmas cards, though, so if anyone sends me one, know that they don’t get tossed. I keep them and on years when I can keep track of them in the middle of moving from place to place, I keep them out, rotate them off and on and pray for each person or family who sends me one. This is not the point of this post but I did want to acknowledge all you do-gooders out there. Your efforts are not wasted on me. I know there was sacrifice involved. I wouldn’t be offended in the future, though, and I would actually applaud you if you chose chocolate for yourself instead of a stamp for me.
By Georgette Beck
What is transition? Merriam-Webster defines transition as a “passage from one state, stage, subject, or place to another” and as it relates to music; “a musical passage leading from one section of a piece to another.”
No one is exempt from experiencing transition. Growth occurs from a transition in all realms of our life. We progress through mental and physical development as we pass through the various stages of our lives. We transition from losses suffered and from blessings gained. Transition in and of itself is not meant to be a bad experience. The transition is a necessary component of what comes next.