Tidbits from a mommy about red barns, porches, family, and more.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Just call me Jonah

The funny thing about calling me Jonah is, people actually used to call me that. I don't think there is enough space on the computer to tell you all the many interesting enunciations of my first name Ladye I heard growing up by substitutes calling roll, receptionists needing info, etc. However, it was only my closest friends that called me Jonah and to me, it was an affectionate and endearing nickname.

As I write this entry, the sad thing is at this moment...it isn't an affectionate nickname. It should be instead, my actual name. Because, sadly, I am learning some Jonah type lessons. As God told Jonah to go to Nineveh, Andy and I are feeling a bit like Starkville may be our Nineveh. There are loads of wonderful things to do here, precious people that we have met and people we will meet, and many, many other amazing things. So this is not a bashing of Starkville at all. We LOVE it here and that is why this analogy is only partially valid. Still, Andy and I have grown up in the Bible Belt. We have been surrounded by many different people who love the Lord and also love Him in their own ways. What I mean to say is, we have met and befriended so many different kinds of Christians. I have had the privilege to spend hours with many wonderful women and men who have guided me, comforted me, encouraged me, and listened to me. In addition to our parents, we have always had very influential and approachable Godly examples around us.

I say all this with a true knowledge that there are new people for us to learn from and grow with here in Starkville. I am so thankful that God will never leave us on our own. I am so thankful that He is always with us. I certainly need his own Son as my dearest example to follow. Because at this moment, I feel a bit like Jonah. Here in this new land, there are new lessons for me to learn, new friendships to make, and a new sort of life to live. Granted many things look the same. My home appears to be "Joanna-styled." My self looks the same in the mirror. The people that live with me are the same. But around me, conversations with people are new, peripheral, and guarded. Relationships are different because they are in early stages.

Despite the excitement of the things to come, I must be honest. There are many moments as I have been unpacking my boat(if you will), that I have thought about jumping overboard. I am a little scared of the days ahead. A little nervous that friends may be harder to make. But I must cling to the truth that Jesus loves me with a "Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love."(Sally-Lloyd Jones) God has called us to a new life......to a new land(in a dry and weary land where there's no water).......to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Simple Things

I went for a much needed run yesterday and had many wonderful thoughts along the way. I tried to think about as many things as I could(mainly to push away the thoughts of pain and breathlessness that the run was causing). You know how just when you start to doubt God's goodness, God does something amazing. Well most people would let that blessing be like a gong for all the days to come. Not me...no, I am the doubting Thomas. I have admitted to it on numerous occasions and don't pride myself in it. I am more baffled that I still seem to be Thomas over and over again especially when, there have been so many things in the past three months since my father passed away that have SHOUTED God's goodness. C.S. Lewis wrote, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: It is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world."

God has most certainly been using one of those huge megaphones that the boy cheerleaders march around with on me! Which by the way, those guys look ridiculous with in my opinion. Anyway...it seems that God has been trying so very hard to shout in my pain of losing dad. He has shouted that the impossible is possible, the amazing-accomplished, and to borrow the words from Will Walker aka Fantastika Galacticka...God has made the nominal-phenomenal.
Over the course of three months we have watched God move in extrodinary ways with our move to Starkville. Each moment doubt crept into my thoughts, God found a way to blot it out. The blessings have come in huge bundles yet even the little things have amazed me. When I have doubted His listening ear, He has gone and put me in my place. Sometimes even before I knew the need, he provided! How this rings true with our salvation. He provided the lamb long before we were ever created.

You want to know some of things simple things, right? How about leaving behind a washer and dryer at our old house for the new buyers only to have a 3 year old set left behind for us at the new house in Starkville. Or how about me pleading with Andy to rid us of the 1000 lb desk I have used in the office for many years, have him agree, and then to be surprised by a precious little mommy desk built-in at the new house. More you ask- how about always wanting to sit down to dry my massive head of hair for most of my life only to have a built in vanity just waiting for my next half hour feat of wrestling with the blower. Okay...okay....not just with the house you say. How about thinking about how neat it would be to see a rainbow on this run I was on...mind you it was raining...and just when I stop thinking about it- turning the corner to see a rainbow peering through the clouds of gray. God is in the simple things and the huge.

This list could go on and on but I know you have your own blessings to add to this. Just when you start to doubt or believe He isn't listening- turn the corner, look in the sky and you will see His rainbow!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Stepping Stones

I guess I started this blog a while ago thinking I was going to write in it. And though I have not really written on it until now, I am thankful for that. My perspective on life is much different these days than even a year ago. But isn't that the case for so many of us. We live life and then something life-changing happens, and our world is rocked. In the course of a year, new paths are being walked and life is different. As I write this, Andy and I are preparing to take one of the biggest leaps of faith we have taken. We are preparing a move from a city that we have known as home for most of our lives. We have longed to go off on an adventure of being in a new town for a very long time. We have schemed and brainstormed and researched but we have been shown in more ways than one, that for whatever reason, it was not yet time. And now, I sit reflectively thinking about why the time wasn't right, I see God's hand. Upon reflection-comes clarity right?
So is it time? Time for the adventure of a new home, new town, new stores, new grocery store navigating, new friends, new school, new job, new EVERYTHING. Yes, it is time. In His timing, God has shown us each tiny step of the way. Our new adventure of Andy returning to school for his doctorate is well on its way. It has not been in my timing, that is for sure. The lessons of having patience and holding plans with an open hand are not yet mastered...and maybe one day this side of heaven I will get closer. It is a good thing my salvation isn't because of what I've done.

Before I get too sidetracked, which I am very good at doing, I better get back to my point. So, because of God directing each step, our move has taught us so much about God's blessings, goodness, and mercy. Mercy to see my dad and be with him even as he exhaled here on earth and inhaled in heaven(borrowing from Ronnie Stevens here). Blessings of friends that have helped me start to work through grief by meeting me for coffee, praying over my sweet daddy, running with me, and listening to me ramble. Mercy as we sold our house in a market where we had to just trust Him. (Sadly, I was such a doubting Thomas the whole time!) We were blown away by His plan for how our house would sell. And Goodness in knowing that we are provided for finacially next year. It isn't like God wasn't providing for us before, it is just that God has amazingly surprised us with how He will provide for us the next year.

We are off in the morning on this grand adventure...of house hunting and church visiting.

Let the blogging begin.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

So, I was thinking, a lot of folks have a blog. A guess it is like a public diary of sorts. These blogs seem to take on many shapes- observations, questions, dreams, etc. So here I sit to write about things that I hope I will never forget.