Sunday, April 28, 2013

How a discouraged (in)courager gets encouraged....

I admit, I was pretty ________________ (exhausted, confused, petty, upset, discouraged, lonely, frustrated, tired... you choose to fill in the blank with what you walked away with in my last post!). It was a hard night, realizing that here I am AGAIN... wearing these same shoes and walking this same path as 4 years ago (while my 18 year trek in the wilderness/desert).

I didn't want to go to church this morning. DH got up early to help set up (his love language is Acts Of Service, so this makes total sense to me) and I laid in bed and rested even more. I half expected him to come home from there and say "Let's stay home today..." but he didn't. He bound in the door and exclaimed "Are we going to first or second service?" - not even leaving me an out to stay home. Blech.

I knew that our favorite pastor was teaching (I'm sorry, forgive me if it's wrong to prefer one pastor over another...but although BOTH are solid teachers, I prefer one style over the other - they both teach from the heart and are completely firm in their Bible teaching) but it didn't sway me. I really was having fun in my little pity party (although it WAS a little lonely!!). I know we're still in Colossians (both at church and in our Community Group) and that we'd have good stuff to talk about in our group tonight - but I STILL wanted to stay home. (NOTE: when I don't want to go to church, it's spiritual warfare setting up to do battle.)

So I was the good wife and jumped in the shower, and ran out the door with DH as we made it in time for church. HE even stopped and got a cup of coffee, so I think we were early (although the first song was know, the one that says "get out of the lobby and into seats so we can get this going"!). I still wasn't convinced I needed to be there...but I admit - worship was amazing. Gosh, I love worship. Is it a Love Language?? Well, perhaps it wouldn't be worthwhile anywhere besides our relationship with God, but it sure shuts down a spiritual battle's front line in a hurry.

A few announcements, and a few more amazing songs reminding us of God's love for us (really, we sang David Crowder Band's "He Loves Us" changing it to "He Loves Me" on the ending choruses...driving the point home).

Pastor dives in to the Word - Colossians 3, referring to The Message translation to put it plain and simple. It's a favorite to start off with, but it was presented with a keen voice and I had ears to hear. Good stuff. Convicting. Convincing. Cherished. THAT good. I didn't take notes, but I'm sure if you cross referenced the key points in a concordance, added a little humility, a little "dad-ness" voice and some great enthusiasm, you'd get it. I'll post his notes later in the week. Yes. THAT. GOOD.

So, after he was done drilling us...err...I mean, encouraging us in the Word...he let our worship leader have a few minutes, and he shared something that cut to my core.

Read verse 17: "Let every detail in your lives—words, actions, whatever—be done in the name of the Master..."  and the way he described it, I'd never heard it before - it's as if, when we become Christians, it's like we get married. And if something happened to our spouse (God forbid), we would have "power of attorney" over their lives. God gives US power of attorney - and EVERYTHING we do, is as if HE is doing it. Gosh. 

So, when I complain about being lonely - it's as if HE is complaining (and I don't think He would). I think He would take more time with His Father, and utilize it as a blessing (instead of the curse I treat it as). I have community with God. He is flawless. I need to give Him not only the priority of my day (spending time with Him is essential) but MORE of my day. Even as I pray about "letting go of the good to grab hold of the better" - I need Him in that. I need MORE of Him - HE is the better. 

Sure, I'm still praying for a kindred spirit friend in my age and stage to dance in prayer with - someone who can relate to what God is doing in these empty nest years and is content in marriage and serving in any way God calls - but in the mean time I have to change my attitude, pull up my big girl panties, and move forward. One.Step.At.A.Time.  This is true.

@MarinaWrites: Jesus doesn't love the perfect, the popular, the lovely any more than He loves the broken, the lonely, the #inRL #HeLovesUs

So, I'm sorry if I was too "TMI" yesterday, too gripy or too whiny. I'm sorry that I represented God's attitude in anything less than gracious. I have SO much to be grateful for, and I desire to do His will with all of my life. 

I'm asking forgiveness, and grateful that I heard His Word in a new way to apply to my life today...and I'm incredibly encouraged! His Word has a way of doing that - doesn't it?? 

PS- Thank you to everyone that's contacted me about the (in)RL session on Mentoring that played as a part of the (in)courage Conference this weekend. It was a blessing to get to share the stage (or, er, the camera?) with my dear friend Sarah H, and I promise, we are NOT that serious all the time!! We laugh, giggle and have a GREAT time - especially when our families are together. It was a blessing to get to share our heart on mentoring, and it's a HUGE blessing to get to be a part of the (in)courage (and DaySpring) family.  Your words of encouragement have been a big part of healing today too...and I wish we all lived closer together to be able to do Real Life a little easier...but praise God for technology in the mean time...till we're with Him!!


  1. Hi Marina,
    I went back and read your TMI post from yesterday, but I didn't think it was TMI. I thought it was honest, and I can relate. Too many times we slap a smile on our posts, as if we've pushed past the loneliness. I'm guilty of that. I'm feeling discouraged and would appreciate an open door with my writing, but it's not bringing much joy right now. I keep going back to my first love/call which is teaching. Studying and lesson prep is really the only thing that brings that joy, but that's hard to convey in a blog post. And it's even harder to build a platform with.

    Oh well, now I'VE gone TMI :) Thanks for your transparency.
    BTW Diane enjoyed getting to meet you at JT!
    Hugs from VA,

    1. Thanks Susan!

      I am sure that WE are not the only ones that get discouraged/lonely OR whiny out here in life - and I LOVE that you are owning up to that place in your life too. I think that I felt it was "TMI" because a lot of folks don't want to know that they are not the only one that feels that way...MANY of us feel that way. And if so many of us feel that way - then why don't we all do something about it?? :) Like get to know each other?? LOL That would end all MY pity parties... hehe

      It WAS a joy to meet Diane, and I look forward to getting to know you BOTH better (someday).

      I'm so glad that God's shown you your first love in teaching, and SO glad that it builds the body of Christ. My first love (besides Jesus) is Missionary Care, and He's got something brewing there too. :) It's going to be a fun ride this year - how appropriate that He's prompted me to living BRAVE. (NO, I did NOT do the ropes course at JT!). LOL

      Grace and peace,

    2. I'm going to respond to this on FB so I can tag Diane :)


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