Friday, May 01, 2009

Stretch Griffin

Did you ever have the Stretch Armstrong doll? The one you could pull the legs and arms and they would slowly go back to the right proportion? It was really kinda gross, but fascinating all the same.

I feel like I'm being stretched yet again. Hopefully never to return to my previous mold. This past 6 weeks alone have been life changing. What I thought I knew has been turned upside down.

I thought I knew about church until I started to study more on the New Testament church and what did Christ say and what He intended it to be.

Then I experienced it 1st hand.

I saw the Body of Christ cross every denomination to come together and reach out and help our family in ways I never deserved.

I saw friends move from being friends to being the tangible love of Christ. As they helped hold me up when I didn't have the strength to do it alone. "Better a neighbor close by than a brother far away."

While our own mistakes bring punishment, they can never be big enough to ruin God's plans for us. What satan meant for evil, God brought about good.

For the years I've been missing being away from family, however, I realized that I am not alone here.

I realized that our kids are stronger and have a better "tent mindset" than I do.

I realized that I had found too much security and identity in our home.

I thought I knew it best to give up writing because it took time, and just about anyone can write well. However, I realized I had lost the reason for why I started to journal. To have a written account of our lives to pass on to my kids. And most times I didn't even know all that I was thinking til I started pulling it out of me with words. And God pulled His words out of me when I've written devotionals. They are not of me. Yet at times I would be so prideful to forget that. I was excited to have people become "followers" of me, rather than to point others to become followers of HIM.

I thought I knew my limits and what I could carry, I found out that He loves me more than I realized and my flesh is so weak.

I realized that a pastor and mentor can be anyone gifted with that blessing. I realized that it's not always who we think it will be.

I realized that being humbled and finally asking for help allowed others to use their gifts. And that God sends the right people at the right time. In the past, my pride of being able to do it myself, or thinking that God would take care of me, caused me to deny the very gifts God was trying to send me. Of course it's easier to be on the giving end, but it is an ebb and flow. God doesn't always just drop something on our doorstep. It's not always that simple. Sometimes he prompts someone to be the giver and asks us if we trust HIM enough to accept and be humbled.

I realized that coming to that place of complete freedom and reliance on Him opens up a whole new level of where and what He can use us for.

I realized that black and white issues in the Bible are black and white for a reason. Not for us to find our spin on them to justify our disobedience.

I realized that once again we do not have control over much of anything.

I realized that God is stretching me in all kinds of ways that do not feel comfortable. I love my schedule, but it's become just a goal rather than our way of life.

I realized that there is no way to say thank you that will ever feel like enough for the gratitude of those who brought us meals, helped us get ready for the yard sale, packed up our house, loaded the trailers, helped us unpack, gifted us with bunkbeds, cleaned the old house top to bottom, brought me breakfast to make sure I remembered to eat, made me stop and sit down to rest, prayed with me and talked me through when I was so confused that I was being pounded with the devils lies, loaned us a vehicle, stayed with me so I wasn't alone, brought Makensie a birthday cake so her special day wasn't lost, made decisions for me so that I didn't have to, watched the kids, hugged on me, offered to help, those who stopped just to say they were thinking of us, those who called to give us a word of prophesy, those complete strangers that took time to give us a word of prophesy, prayed for us.

As small as it feels, thank you so much for everything you did. And it went far deeper than just the act itself.

1 comment:

Sun-Kissed Savages said...

I already emailed you...but now I have to add that I need one of those dolls! Wouldn't that be great stress-relief to stretch a stretchy doll to its limits? ;-)


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