Wednesday, March 23, 2011

This IS going somewhere...

It can be difficult to blog when you're learning SO much.
Let's face it I'm just insanely intelligent. (extreme sarcasm noted for those of you who don't know me)
I was inspired to blog about like 6 different things. So how to choose? Let's go for 2.

I am reading Grace Based Parenting for a Bible Study group I go to (and love!), the book is amazing. Ok. The first two chapters are:) It is really challenging and motivating. I very much want my kids to leave home with a love that is secure, a purpose that is significant, and a hope that is strong. Go get it if you haven't read it yet! Then tell me how much you love it. And then we'll compare children in 18yrs. ha ha (I'm "image control" lol, ok so now you have to read it to see what I am talking about!) But really go. go now and get it;)

I'm also doing the Beth Moore study on the fruits of the spirit.  The fruit of the spirit sounds Christianese I know:) But it's straight from the pages of scripture. Maybe you've heard it before, "The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self control..." The fruit of the spirit is "living proof that the spirit of God dwells in His children. God is so good, he deeply desires to create the best in his children and therefore he develops in us the fruits of the spirit. Inturn we grow in our relationship with God (beautiful), we affect lives around us for good, not bad and our lives magnify what an incredible God we serve and others just might be drawn to Him as we have been and discover the freedom found in Christ.

Last week we were talking about goodness at study.  I suck at being good. No really. I do. Let me explain.

This past month I have been so RESTLESS. Maybe it's the long winter, I literally almost shoveled the snow out of my yard, instead I just spread it out so it melted faster!  Maybe it's this small town that I am STILL adjusting to six months later. yes I'm beating myself up for not being content. I had a meltdown last week and decided to leave town. I would pack up the boys and head to the city for a few days. Any big city. Vancouver, Seattle, PORTLAND!! I didn't care I just wanted OUT. I stood on my deck and looked around. Yep I hate it here (clarification: not the people).
I decided to sleep on the decision because I knew my thoughts were well... irrational to say the least. But hey we're all entitled to a bad night right?
The next day I still wanted to leave but I had prior commitments so I was forced to wait it out. And wouldn't you know it, one of those commitments was bible study. I almost didn't go because I just knew God was going to teach me something, and most likely make me rational again and I'd have to stay here. Can't a girl just run away from reality sometimes!?

Here is where this all flows back to goodness.
This sums it up: IT'S NOT ABOUT ME. oh boy.

Isaiah 58:6-11 says it clearly. (u can read the whole thing, I just took the condensed version Beth Moore gave us.)
~If you spend yourself (doing good to others)
Your light will rise in the darkness
The Lord will guide you ALWAYS
Your needs will be SATISFIED
Your frame will be STRENGTHENED
You will be like well-watered gardens
And your healing will QUICKLY appear. ~

Wow. All that from just spending yourself on others? Maybe the answer to my restlessness is just this: STOP the self pity and focus on what I can do to serve those around me. Empty me of me.
I KNOW God brought me here for a reason, multiple reasons. I'm not grieving in survival mode anymore, I am able to really live and I better start doing it well! Maybe I will heal from my anxiety and restlessness by serving others. For the past couple of months I had really wanted to do some baking for my next door neighbors and kept putting it off for at least 40 different reasons (all very convincing of course). Well i finally did it. And I didn't tell you that to say look at me, I'm soo good, but to make the point. I spent an entire afternoon making cookies with the boys and thinking of others and obeying God's leading. After delivering the cookies and having a great talk with the neighbors I honestly didn't want to run away anymore. I was kind of relieved I didn't have to pack;) God had worked in my life and thankfully healed my irrational spirit b/c that was not going to end well!

I know that spending myself on others will not always be pretty. It will not always be something I want to do and maybe I won't even welcome God's leading with open ears, but God's word is never misleading, it never harms us, God's word is always for the purpose of bringing good. It's worth any displeasure we may endure.

God's grace found me just as I am. I was restless. But He is my rescuer and he rescued. He shattered my darkness and hopefully my light will shine again!

I hope you made it to the end of that, let me know if you did, maybe I'll make you cookies ha ha:)


Kate said...

Great post Tara! Next time you get feeling a little sqirrley in A town give me a call and we will go to V town and feed the ducks with the kiddos or something. Lol

Shawn America said...
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Craig and Donna said...

I love your post! And I loooove Grace Based Parenting. I finished it and promptly loaned it to Lisa! We've been discussing parenting styles and digging into research and I totally appreciated Kimmel's book. I'd love to share thoughts and/or notes!



Shawna said...

I know I have said this before, but I am so glad you are here! I love having you in our lives again. If you ever want to make a quick girls shopping trip somewhere give me a call, I bet we could have a blast at outlet malls, haha. Glad you are enjoying the book, this is the third time I have read it and everytime I learn how to implement it better! Hope you have a great day enjoying the sun!

Kellie said...

Thanks Tara...I needed to hear that. (Although secretly I wish you had packed and come back :)

Anonymous said...

Just have to say that those are 2 of my most fav books!!! Love Grace based parenting... b/c of course that is how we are parented by God. Hard to put into practice at times :) I have found especially with little ones (his examples are all with older kids). But definitely A+
And I'm just finishing Fruits of the Spirit by Beth Moore too adn let me tell you it will keep helping/convicting you all the way through. So excellent.
So keep on pressing on!
Love & prayers, Mari