In This Life/ After Defeat

In this life we go through trials and in this life God sees us through.

We all know from experience what it means to wait. We wait for fulfilment of promises. Waiting isn’t easy. We feel we’re not being heard or that our urgency isn’t understood. God is in control and He is worth waiting for.

Hope in and wait for the Lord- refreshment, renewal, and teaching come from waiting. Make good use of this waiting time.

“I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!”- Psalm 27:13-14

I can relate to the feeling of being trapped by overwhelming odds. But there’s a way out with God because He is the Creator. No problem or circumstance is too difficult. HE IS ON YOUR SIDE; trust him and look for His way out. Think, a bird escaping the hunter’s trap.

“If it had not been the Lord who was on our side— let Israel now say— if it had not been the Lord who was on our side when people rose up against us, then they would have swallowed us up alive, when their anger was kindled against us; then the flood would have swept us away, the torrent would have gone over us; then over us would have gone the raging waters. Blessed be the Lord, who has not given us as prey to their teeth! We have escaped like a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped! Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”- Psalm 124

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

and do not rely on your own understanding;

think about Him in all your ways,

and He will guide you on the right paths.

This was the first passage of Scripture I learnt. There is a call for us to trust God’s sovereign care over every aspect of our lives, but almost 14 years after learning these words how many aspects of my life am I actually allowing God to have sovereign care over? Or is it just a case of not trusting?

I have the word ‘trust’ in Greek tattooed on the back of my right knee. Having had an unsettled return to 2nd year of uni having spent the summer in the States I had to trust that God had his reasons for placing me where I was, both geographically and circumstantially.

Today I can say honestly that amidst a difficult situations in my life, I trust God. I hardly ever trust Him… I trust Him to lead me down paths which take me places. I trust that He is at work where I can see no work being done. I trust. But I don’t want it. I don’t want this…life. I want what I want. I want last year back- filled with its belly laughter, and warm toes, and cups of coffee with cookies, and making fun of the one who I know will throw it right back. Again I want to be looked after just as well (if not better!) than I was looking after.

Diligence

‘careful and persistent work or effort’

Proverbs 4:23 Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life/ for it is the source of life.

What does it mean to make caring for my heart a priority? 

In what ways do I currently look after my heart?

Our hearts-our feelings of love and desire- dictates to a great extent how we live because we always find time to do what we enjoy. Solomon tells us to guard our hearts above all else, making sure we concentrate on those desires that will keep us on the right path. Make sure your affections lead you in the right direction. Put boundaries on your desires: don’t go after everything you see. Look straight ahead, keep your eyes fixed on your goal, and don’t get sidetracked on detours that lead to sin.

Your heart is the most important leadership tool you have. It is not your experience, knowledge or skills. It is your heart that matters most of all. Your heart is extremely valuable; it is the source of everything you do- not just the source of emotions and will but also of wisdom and perspective too; it is under constant attack. You should always be protecting your heart/ character: it’s a perpetual process.

Philippians 4:6-7 …do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Sorry For The Hold- Up

It’s been a couple of days since I posted anything; it’s been a tough old couple of days: Sunday happened, as you know (more on that shortly); one of my greatest friends, an old housemate of mine also, moved to Australia on Tuesday. She’ll be there for a year but lets be honest: if she gets sponsored at some point during that time she’ll stay as long as she can! Lastly, such a close friend of mine- one of the best- was rushed to a&e and admitted to hospital with suspected kidney disease. They’ll do a biopsy on Monday.
Other than my housemate, and a good friend, no one knows about Sunday nor do they know how much this friend’s health condition is impacting me. In a way it’s kind of funny: it was hardly three days ago that I was thinking about that saying that speaks of nothing or everything at the same time happening in an individual’s life. I thought I was doing quite well, only having the slight boy issue to be concerned with. Normally I’m an external processor but with these matters what is there to say?
You have a friend who goes away for a year: you wish her well. You have a friend in hospital with something potentially life- threatening: you pray for her and do what you can to support her. You have an individual who was once your almost everything and he (and his PTSD) turn around and tell you they don’t want you in their life: you do the reading so you can better understand why they’ve said what they’ve said. You trust that God makes all things new and maybe this is one of those things he heals and transforms in this life. But I can’t talk to people about it. I can’t tell mutual friends his business- what he’s facing in life right now; why he behaves the way he does; why it really honestly bothers me so much. That one I need to keep to myself and the two other people I trust with this information.
What about my mental health? I feel like I have days when I myself am barely holding on. How much can I handle? I’ve started running again though: three times this week I’ve been out. And perhaps if this warm weather continues I can get out and spend time with other friends. Maybe I’ll plan a trip somewhere. But wherever I go and whatever I do I carry with me the knowledge that people are struggling. There’s so much hurt and so little I can do. But I’m called to let go and leave the finer details up to The One who can change stuff. I’ve to be wise and look only forward, to the new day The Lord brings.

#100thingsimthankfulfor mark4

31. Classes which end early 

32. Three ice creams for £2

33. Quiet parks on sunny days

34. Friends who understand

35. My bicycle 

36. Joy and Hope which is always mine

37. Animals which keep the world going 

38. Antibiotics 

39. The opportunity to give 

40. Hands to hold 

The first day of the rest of my life…

…have I used that title before?

What I’m about to say you’ve probably heard already because in sorts it has already happened once before.

I was at church this morning. He was there. Having spent the week thinking about PTSD and how I could better understand the condition and therefore support him in it- if indeed he at some point wanted that- I felt this morning was an appropriate time to apologise for perhaps not making it easy for him to communicate his point of view. I said that I really wanted him to be ok and that I didn’t think he was. I said I wanted to be the one again that he came to to talk things out, although I did see how that was maybe not appropriate.

He shared with me. For the first time in such a long time he shared his heart with me. But then I suggested we did dinner soon and he said he didn’t want to. I said that for the past few weeks I haven’t been making an effort and should I continue not making an effort and he said “yes”. Having let me in ever so briefly he just as quickly pushed me back out again.

And so it is finished. Finally I can walk away knowing I did all I could. I was kind and I got the answers [that mattered] I needed.

Wild Horses

I’m a dreamer
But it’s hard to sleep when your head’s not in it
I’ve been restless
Cause you disappeared and that’s all that’s missing
The Earth is loose under my shoes
There’s an angel
And he’s shaped like you, and I thought I knew him
There’s a window
And it’s dark inside, but the light was in it
This can’t be love if it hurts so much
I need to let go

I will survive and be the one who’s stronger
I will not beg you to stay
I will move on and you should know I mean it
Wild horses run in me

I remember
How we danced so close, I would stand on your feet
And the phone calls
That would last all night, they were lifeboats to me
Our fading scars just shooting stars
They’re here, then go

I will survive and be the one who’s stronger
I will not beg you to stay
I will move on and you should know I mean it
Wild horses run in me

Our human hearts forget how strong they are
And they get lost along the way, hey
It’s not giving up, it’s letting go
And moving to a better place

I will survive and be the one who’s stronger
I will not beg you to stay
I will move on and you should know I mean it
Wild horses run in me
I will survive and be the one who’s stronger
I will not beg you to stay
I will move on and you should know I mean it
Wild horses run in me

– Birdy

I bought a card yesterday

I bought a card yesterday. It could so easily have been a birthday card, but I resisted. ‘Why a birthday card?’ you ask. Well yesterday was his birthday and in true ‘me’ style I normally go all out on the effort making- past efforts have included a birthday party when his girlfriend wasn’t around, fancy coffee even though months previously we’d said we wouldn’t have any sort of relationship anymore, and a well meaning card and bar of fudge even though he’d made it perfectly clear we were over. You see, I have trouble letting go.

But not this time. This time I saw the situation for what it was: two people going their separate ways having been each other’s person for a while. No card, or present, or best wishes required. Obviously I struggled yesterday; back and forth in my mind, ‘do I just text him?’. I was actually close to getting my pen and paper out and writing a list of ‘for and against’ wishing him a blessed day, but my brain is a good enough notepad.

  • I knew first off that I didn’t have to literally wish him a happy birthday for him to know that I was wishing him a happy birthday
  • Doing the wishing would have meant more to me than it would for him receiving it, fact. And so then comes all the crap of what you say, what he’ll say back, will he even say anything back?! Crazy circle starts
  • By not saying anything I wasn’t being nasty, I was just doing what is not going to hinder my healing, and that’s not selfish
  • You don’t wish you ex- a happy birthday so soon into proceedings. Next year, sure, if we still see each other around. But not now.
  • I’m making a bigger deal out of this than is required!!

I bought a card yesterday. It was for a friend congratulating her on her new doctors reg. position.