Capable

Last Christmas I was gifted a Cricut Explore Air 2 .  With three kids ages five and under, I was terrified to even open it.  I needed the perfect space, the best ground rules for my kids to follow in reference to it, and time.  Time to create.

So, there it sat for seven months.  Seven months.  I was working up all these dreams, things I’d make and create with it.  Things I would save money and time by making myself.  But they were just thoughts.  Because my Cricut still sat in the box in my closet starring at me each day.  Wooing me to try it.

So I set it up.  It didn’t fit on the shelf I wanted so on my desk it went.  Open for my kiddos to rub their greasy sticky fingers on.  As I’m writing my two year old is open and closing the Cricut.  Its nerve racking.  I keep hollering things at my kiddos.

“This is expensive.”

“Don’t touch it.”  (which brews all sorts of excitement!)

But I went for it anyways, trying all sorts of things.  Putting together a mat and just printing.  Messing it up and trying it again.

It’s not as stressful a week later.  I’ve made a phone case sticker, prints, cut outs.  It’s fun.

I love to create.

So what’s something new you’ve wanted to try, but just can’t find the time?

I know these two things: desire and time are never just available.  You have to be intentional.  Even with the fun stuff, especially with the fun stuff.

Create something new today.  Go for it.

Just a new route

So my goal this year is to read two books a month.  That’s not an outlandish goal by any means.  But with three kids, it felt like a good goal to me.   So far this year this has looked like a chapter or two a night, or I’ll read some in the afternoon.  Pretty casual.  I’ve been hitting my mark each month, but some months I have to be more intentional about that goal.  Like in June.

Sweet June rolled around.  And we went on vacation, (ooooh a flight, I’ll read then, as I’m chasing my two year old down the aisle), I got to spend time with my best friend (totally worth not reading!!!) and so vacation was kind of a bust on reading.    No big deal, I’ll read when we get home I thought.  Needless to say, my books I picked were hard to mull through chapters, which I do not like to do anyways.  A parenting book that is going to take me six months or more to read, because it’s heady.  Therefore, I only finished one book in June.  Everybody Always, by Bob Goff.  (As I look back now, if that is the only book I read this year it was worth it, great read!)

Now this is where my downfall normally happens when I set a goal.

I failed.

Goal: two books a month, read: 1 book in June.  Those numbers aren’t matching sister!  There’s still one left over which equals fail.  (I’m math minded so I see a lot of life this way.)  

For some reason, I channeled this thinking towards another route.  My books were too tough to thumb through quickly.  So in July, I picked up a few young readers novels at the library about the Holocaust.  Tough topic, but I was confident I’d finish them in a week.  Boosting my self-esteem on not finishing my goal for June.  July pasted and I had read four books!  Boom.

And I read four books without feeling like I was just reading to finish, I was able to absorb.

I love this.  It was simple.  I need simple.  Sometimes our course just needs a little boost or readjustment, not a whole overhaul.

Shift your perspective, give yourself a boost, and continue on those goals you set in January.  You are worth it.  And I bet if you wrote them down, the goals you set are worth it too.

Small beginnings

We begin something new.  We start, but it doesn’t end the way we think it will.  We take a different route.  We try a new craft or creative outlet.

I like starting new things.  But sometimes it gets hard.  A new lesson with old feelings attached.  I want to start something new, and settle in.  Like into a big fluffy couch.  But it seems anything worth while in this life will keep us on our toes, growing, learning, responding, teaching.

I’m not sure I’m clear today.  I’m struggling with small beginnings.  I like to pick something up, and be awesome at it immediately.  Anyone else?  Writing is challenging for me.  It’s a place of insecurity.  But the more I do it, the more it flows.  But it was so small at first.

I paid for a blog (for accountability to actually do it), committed to write twice a week, to grow this practice.  It’s not flourishing yet, but it is a move in the right direction.  It is growing this passion in me to write.  I like how it feels.  It feels inspiring, which matches with my personality type.

The verse in my quiet time yesterday was Zechariah 4:10 “ Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin…”  WOW!  He is so good.  The reminder.

Maybe you came from a small town, our Savior did.  Maybe you don’t have a perfect look, people were not drawn to our Savior because He looked pretty.  Maybe you’re not sure you have what it takes, but don’t discount your small beginnings.

David was the smallest boy in his family when God chose him to be Israel’s next king.  Our Savior rode into Jerusalem on a donkey in the triumphal procession.  Ruth lost her husband and was living with her mother in law when she found Boaz and became a part of Jesus’ lineage.

God does not despise small beginnings.  He loves them!

So take whatever next step God is calling you too.  He will meet you there.  Sometimes we have to step in faith to know that He is there.  Then we get to tell others, He is there.

It is never just for us.  I like that.

 

New Heart

I was thinking about our hearts last night.  How God moves in when we accept Him as Lord and Savior, but He doesn’t end there.  He wants all of our heart.

He promises to give us a new heart, but not by force.

We can look at the Old Testament and know God never forced the Israelites.  He asked things of them, He was tough, but what He really wanted was a willing heart.

I accepted Jesus going into junior high.  He pursued me, and asked other believers to speak life over me.  Something has never felt so right as the moment of being baptized and identifying with Christ.  That was the beginning.

I struggled later with salvation, and wrestled with things that I wasn’t sure Christians should be struggling with.  Legalism, guilt, shame, fear of not being forgiven, and just down right scared of failing God.  I had little trust in people, which translated into a fear with God-could I trust Him?  Could I let Him in?  Was I safe?  Was He going to destroy me once He knew my heart and my fears?  Could I let Him have these hurts in my heart?  Would He use them against me?

Would He love me still?

I wasn’t sure if He was kind or good.

But I can assure you, He knows my every secret, failure, and fear.

He loves me still.  He is so kind.  He is so good.  He will not use your pain against you.  But He will use it.  And when you let Him into those places of your heart, the pressure falls off of you and you can rest in the fact that He is the one who has held our life together all along.

And that truth is what is beginning to pull me out of those places I’ve lived.

Give Him more of your heart, ask Him to help you, allow people to speak truth over you in those times, and He will take care of our hearts better than we ever could.

*Counseling was also an essential piece of this awakening.  Hurts I thought would swallow me whole, could not, and I was reminded every time I went to counseling this was the right way.  Opening up, letting it out, and letting HIM move in.