For me, this is a season of no. It’s painful.
Because of Joe’s post-op decline and second hospitalization, my life is full of many professional and personal no’s. I haven’t posted a new blog in eons. I am chomping on the bit to “do what I love to do” – propel the message of “Run Hard. Rest Well.” forward, gaining entry into new hearts and cheering on those who are choosing a pace that is sacred and sane. But the “no’s” extend further, deeper – Anna’s tennis, Noah’s track, spring-time hikes, time with Tim, feeding my birds and a cart load of other priorities vying for my attention.
There has been a complete re-ordering of my life. It is narrowly defined and out of my control.
But, in many ways, this is easy. When Paul was blinded by his encounter with Jesus, the “no” in his life was all encompassing. The man was shut down (Acts 9:8-9). The choice was not his. God sometimes directly asks us to say no or nudges us to say no in the face of mounting exhaustion or insanity. Paul heard a no from God (Act 16:7-8). Here he had a choice to make. His own desire. God’s direction. How do we comply to a God-directed “no” or a “slow down” or “not now,” especially when it’s not forced, but is a choice we must make and live with? As hearty, determined souls do we buckle before the notion of no, questioning God’s voice or our God-given limits?
There are seasons of no, both forced and faith-driven. They will take us to new depths. Yes. Depths—crushing depths. Guaranteed. When our season of no is forced, we hate the free-fall that ensues and attempts to ensnare. When our “no’s” are faith-driven, they often have significant ramifications. We hate to disappoint. We hate the stress it might inflict on others. In these seasons, the issue of allegiance rises up before us. Will it be to God? Or to others, or ourselves?
Either way, let’s pause and pray. Let’s pray for our own no’s and yeses, whether forced or faith-based, and for the no’s and yeses of those we love.
Maturity is forged in these fires.
To maturity, may we always say yes.
- Josh (20) remains on the front porch of heaven. He is medically stable, but these weeks of separation have taken a toll. He’s not alone. We are all keenly aware of the ache and upheaval. The Body of Christ is surrounding us with compassion and care. How do we ever say thank you…
- Sam (19) shipped out with the Army to Ft. Jackson, South Carolina on April 28th has not been sufficient time to process the joy and the ache. He has tough, exciting days before him. We covet your prayers for his launch into adulthood.
- Joe (17) is not well. After a 30 day hospital stay, we were home for awhile, but he’s back in the hospital with shunt issues, new seizure activity and declines. I don’t like the mountain we’re facing. “Too big,” I’m screaming. It is a daily fight to trust well, eyes focused on the unseen (II Cor. 4:16-18).
- At times, the weight is crushing. Other times, we’re singing out loud. The Presence of God is so very evident. Always, we are passing out red diamonds. Today, through a friend, God directed Joe and I to Deut. 1:28-33. These are words of life.
First time here?
Welcome! We’re a group who gathers around the theme, “There has to be a better way.” We’re finding it in the 4-word mission statement, “Run hard. Rest well.”
- It’s a journey into the heart of God. It comes our way through an on-going exploration of four biblical rhythms that revive, replenish and restore: Sabbath Keeping, Sleep (and other simple stress-reducers), Stillness—personal retreat, and Solitude—personal retreat.
- It’s an expedition that challenges us at every turn. It convicts us in deep, tender places. It alters the our priorities and plans. It’s not for the faint of heart.
- It’s adventure at its best – as we learn to run our race in a power not our own.