Thursday, April 16, 2009

another perspective...

So our sweet boy (youngest) is resting on the couch (in between throwing up into the small trash can next to him)---good times. Needless to say, I'm sitting here for a few minutes.

Last night I attended a waterbirth class. My precious hubby stayed home with our boys (plus they had a martial arts class at the same time as my class) so I figured I'd share with him about the class when I got home. Can I just give a good chuckle...here I am sitting with 8 other COUPLES, all having their first, and then there's me, by myself being looked at quite strangely. Being an only child, I've never much minded going places alone (movies, to eat...) in fact it is part of my time of unwinding-just being alone. BUT, last night it took lots of prayer for me not to jump up and run out of that room. I ran through scenarios of how I could get hubby there (even though he was 30 minutes away), get childcare, show my hand with the wedding ring, mention "husband" a few times...panic, panic! Our gracious Lord, calmed me down, showed me how silly I was being and got me through a great class.

I must say, I'm glad it happened that way though. It is good to get perspective from another person's situation. I am above and beyond grateful that yes, I am married, my husband loves the Lord, we have healthy children, we are both healthy, we have a home, vehicles, food to eat, jobs, blankets and clothes to keep us warm, a bit of extra cash here and there for "extras". These are all things I take for granted. I don't thank the Lord nearly enough for His above and beyond blessings to me/us.

A group from our church travels to Uganda, and the children sleep under rugs...rugs that were compared to something we wouldn't give our dogs here. I might think this is the least of their worries as AIDS is rampant there, leaving many young children orphans, mothers or fathers widowed, older siblings (possibly as young as 7 or 8, probably younger) to take on the responsibility of caring for younger siblings. Food is eaten out of necessity, if even available, not out of luxury; water is gathered from a well, not in your kitchen, but from a place you have to travel to and pray there is enough for you to carry back home. You have to walk for miles, possibly days to receive meager medical treatment, if even possible because you may not have the option as you have no income, and no hopes of it. The list goes on...

I've never been on a missions trip to see these things up close and personal. But the people who come back from these trips are changed. They are humbled and broken by the Lord. Their hearts are squeezed out of the old and molded into the new...

But as I sat there in that class, the Lord gently reminded me of those close to us here. The single parent, the couple struggling to save a marriage, the spouse broken by the infidelity of their spouse, the wife or husband praying for the salvation of their spouse or a child, the parent/spouse widowed, the neighbor in foreclosure, the person living with a terminal disease or the parent of a dying child, the man/woman/child on the street asking (or not asking) for help to have just a meal, the thought of a warm bed or home not even conceivable. Or that "bad" child down the road, that you hope your kids avoid, that goes home to verbal/physical abuse or maybe no one at all..so far away from the love God created that they don't know the way back to peace or hope....

We are the body of Christ. We are not here for us but for HIM. How hard it is to live beyond ourselves, our own struggles, outside of our "box". This is not meant as a guilt wrencher, for God is mighty and gracious and He does bless us immensely! We each have our own walks, our own struggles, our own fires, for He loves us and is refining us, bringing us closer to Him even though we are in a fallen world. All of these things are part of our testimonies. My past, He is using and will use to glorify Him (praying I allow Him to). Situations I chose, He didn't put me in, but He will use to His glory and is bringing me peace and healing in the process...because He loves me, not because I deserve it. Grace and mercy truly are gifts from the LORD. Job was a man who loved and adored our most precious GOD, and he lost everything. But the Lord never left him, and when all was said and done, Job knew his most precious Father loved him, not hated him or desired to punish him. And today, Job's testimony still speaks to us, and will continue to.

For the Lord's ways are not our own, we have to trust with our faith (even that mustard seed worth) for He truly is a loving Father who has heart for us, this is why we accept Jesus as our Lord and saviour, confessing our sins and believing He rose and beat death and as has beat it forever, that we might have everlasting life when we ask Jesus into our hearts and commit to live a life FOR Him, not a perfect life, but a life we try our hardest to live by His example and He'll provide the strength and endurance to do His work and show His love to others-both the lost and the saved...and to have hope or each new day, BUT the promise of a life with HIM. How precious...

...so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. Romans 12:5 (New International Version)

So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God. Romans 7:4

The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. 1 Corinthians 12:12

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. 2 Corinthians 5:10 (Read all of chapter 5 here)

Dear heavenly Father, I pray you would forgive me for living this life you've granted me solely for my self and giving you just an ounce of it. Father please help me to live for you and show me how I can serve you that I might be part of the body of Christ as you've called us. Thank you for your grace and mercy and your abundant blessings. Thank you for my family and I pray for your blessings and covering over them. I pray for Your spirit of wisdom and discernment that I may know you better and serve you faithfully. Thank you for you love and sending Jesus Christ to be my savior and calling me to you, never leaving me. In Jesus name I ask this, Amen.

4 comments:

Terri said...

Well said my friend.

Lori :) said...

Amen! :)
so . . . you're gonna have a waterbirth?! AWESOME!! Did you have one here before? I can't remember! I wouldn't deliver any other way! :)

Tina said...

Bree, I am always so inspired by the depth of your writings. You are blessed with the amazing gifts of compassion and encouragement!

Bree said...

thank you Tina-I'm humbled by your comment. It is such a gift to share what the Lord has and is doing in my life-all the glory to Him for even taking the time with me and still loving me with the pure love He has for ALL of us-pretty amazing!
-Lori-yes, water birth is possible as of tomorrow-37 weeks! I'm hoping this will make delivery a bit more pleasant:) God is good always, no matter what! love to all!

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