And suddenly this morning, God took the things I've been reading, praying, studying and writing and brought them into focus. He quite literally shifted the lens of my life so I could see what was right in front of me.
In focus, it is ugly.
We're talking U-G-L-Y....ugly.
We had the amazing opportunity to study "Growing Kids God's Way" over the past few months. With witty and wise leaders and a committed and supportive small group we went through this book that literally changed how we are parenting. We are walking through the application phase of many of the challenging things we learned. Including first time obedience.
Our kids are getting it. We are seeing changes in them...and in us. The atmosphere of our home is shifting and we are enjoying the process (I know, who knew!?!?).
Then, this morning...the focusing...the ugly truth...the challenge.
Remember the grumbling? If you've seen me in person at all over the last few weeks you will...you've heard it...some more than once. Just think of the earful my poor hubby has had to live with. (some of you are breathing a sigh of relief...perhaps long distance friendships aren't so bad, huh?)
A few weeks back the teaching team for our upcoming women's retreat met. I knew exactly how it would go down. Until it didn't. Somehow, when the dust settled I was left with the Sunday morning session. I was the anchor.
And so the grumbling began.
I'm not worthy. Not talented. Not ready. Didn't know this was what I was signing up for. And so many more, long, pathetic, whining excuses have come out of my mouth. Over and over again.
Is it coming into focus for you yet?
As the lens rotated this morning, there I saw it.
A child of God with a God-sized task laid out in front of her. What was I doing? Throwing a spiritual temper-tantrum -- whining, stamping my feet, complaining, and throwing a little pity party. Where was my obedience?
Joshua 22 says to love the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.
This morning, as I focus on God. I realize what He's called me to is not about me...never was. Oh yes, I might learn something along the way (and if I don't then I've missed yet another blessing), but God's work is about God. And I've been called to such a time that I might be able to see God work in the lives of the women He calls to this retreat.
My job is to be obedient...the first time He calls. Not wander in my own desert until there is enough sand in my shoes that anything else seems like a step up.
My job is to read, learn, research, pray, listen, write. Rinse and repeat. Over and over again until it is time to open my mouth for Him. Then, as I step in to what He has called me to...He'll show up. Even if I stumble over the words, shuffle my papers and forget the punchline to my opening joke, God will still be there. He'll take my unpolished, overthought words and hand them to His sweet daughters with a heavenly bow.
My job is to answer Him. "Here I am!" "Yes Lord."
The first time He calls.
Then hold fast to Him and serve with all my heart.
No more grumbling...
May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees. Psalm 119:171