All of you that still check in on my little bloggy have noticed that I haven't exactly been a blue ribbon poster over the last year. Anyone??? *listening to the crickets chirping*
For a while now God has been grabbing my heart and changing it to look more like His. I grew up going to church, got baptized when I was a kid and always lived my life as I thought I should, according to my understanding of God's word...my limited understanding. I was missing the biggest part...a TRUE relationship with God. I prayed, sure, and did all the stuff I was supposed to do but something was missing.
When Doc and I got married and moved away to another state for three years of residency, we never found a church that felt like home...that is when I started taking responsibility for my own relationship with Christ and not depending on religion to fill the gap between me and Jesus. I realized that there IS NO GAP. I could be obedient and real with God without attending a church. I thought I had it all together until the day I miscarried. God used that experience to tear down my view of who I thought He was. It was the beginning of building a real relationship with Him. If I had my life's timeline out, the next major thing I'd point to would be Bub getting sick in Colorado and ending up being life flighted to Denver. On paper, those two experiences seem like they should be the worst days of my life. They were, in terms of walking through fear and pain, but as I look back, God took those experiences and used them to reveal Himself to me. He used those experiences (and many others, both good and bad) to redefine my view of who He is. He is constantly changing my perceptions to match up with the truth of who He is.
He has been remodeling my heart this whole time and calling me into a deeper relationship with Him. There are no more "have to's" in order to be good enough to be accepted by Him. GOD ALREADY ACCEPTS ME THROUGH CHRIST'S SACRIFICE. The "have to's" have been replaced by an intense desire to draw near to Him because He is refreshment to my heart. My relationship with Him is like walking into an air conditioned room after being out in the late summer heat... relief, enjoyment, ahhhh. I more fully understand what Psalms 42:1 means ( As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God.) I long for Him. I want to turn the radio on and listen to music that glorifies Him, I want to curl up and read His word. I want to be outside and enjoy His creation. I want to teach my children to really know and love Him. In other words, I want my whole existence to be a conscience experience of unity with my Father...at least to the extent that is possible in my imperfect human form in this imperfect world.
Doc has been on his own version of this journey, as well. We have both been dissatisfied with our comfortable life for a while. We felt as though we were failing to teach our children what was really important...using our lives and means to meet people's needs and love them with Christ's love. Sure, we talked the talk but in reality, they didn't see much of this care for others in action. We used this past Christmas as a starting point of turning our focus from our own comforts and desires to the needs of others. (We were very blessed that our extended families were all for the change of focus, too!) We want to be God's hands and feet in this world. There is so much need. Doc has always had a desire to do medical missions but we have just never made it a priority. Through the process of this heart remodel, God has lit a fire in both of us to really do something about the suffering of our fellow human beings. We have been stepping outside of our comfort zone on our own and together in different ways. It is a process to change the status quo. We are taking this time to get ourselves prepared because He has work for us to do.
Ephesians 2:10 We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, WHICH GOD HAS PREPARED IN ADVANCE FOR US TO DO.
We have some big changes on our horizon.