For the hard days that end in “why?”

I see you.

The wife who sees no hope for change.
The mama at her wits end.
The friend with nothing left to give.

I see you.
I know you.
I’ve worn your skin.

What happened to the fairy tale endings and God-sized dreamer ready to take on the world?

Where did those go?
Where did she go?

Sometimes in living life, we lose ourselves.

We lose site of who we were in becoming who we are.
We lose site of the dreams we once had in view of the here and now and doubt of ever achieving what seems impossible anyway.

But this.

 We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf.”
Hebrews 6:19

He’s already been there and done that so we don’t have to fret over what we think we can’t do.

Whether that’s writing a book, or leading a ministry, or changing the 1, 532,893 diaper or making the 4,234,912 meal. again.

A sure and steadfast anchor of our soul in the storm-tossed waves of life that tempt to drown our dreams and drown our soul.

A God-sized dream takes God-sized faith to see it through.

Our God is big enough and strong enough to see us through.

We aren’t hoping in something that has no hope, we are hoping in Someone that is Hope. 

The sun doesn’t set on God-sized dreams when we seek hard after the God that gives them and can fulfill them.

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When the days get hard and the dreams seem lost and we just want to know “why…,” we can rest assured He hears our pleas.

The answers may come fast or slow and the answer may be “yes” or it may be “no.”

In Gods sovereignty he has the Power and ability to do anything He wishes.

In God’s humanity he will hold and comfort us when he says no or not now.

God’s humanity always comforts us in the sovereignty of His will.

And always, always He is with us in the storm. Holding fast as an anchor in our sea of doubt.

Does He see me?
Does He really know what’s going on in my life?
Does He know what I’m dealing with?
Does He really care?

Yes, He does. He is the I am. He is everywhere, in and through everything.

His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts higher than our thoughts.

The dreams we have for ourselves are nothing as compared to those our God has for us. And in His power He will see them through.

If we let Him. If we get out of the boat in faith and let Him lead us through the storms and the calm. He wants it all. All of us. Every bit of you and every bit of me. Wholly His.

There are no fifty shades of grey with our God. There is “yes, I’m yours” or “no, I’m the worlds.”

In Him is the only place we will ever know peace even when every day is hard that ends in “why.”

Take heart, friend. Today I want you to know that you. matter. You matter to me and you matter to Him. For His Glory. You. Matter.

And in Him, those dreams you once dared to dream that He gave you to dream are worth taking back up. One glorious day at a time, they are worth digging into. For His Glory.

In Him,
Meredith

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I’m linking up today to a haven for all God-sized dreamers.
Come here to find friendship and love to spur you on to your own God-sized dreams!

The truth about trust.

There was a time when I really couldn’t be trusted. I couldn’t be trusted with my own heart, let alone anyone else’s. And today I read this verse and stop to consider how far I’ve come. Or not.

The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain.
Proverbs 31:11

I’m not perfect now and I wasn’t perfect then. But I can be trusted now (more) and I can’t say that about “then.”

Then. When I was struggling to find myself in all the wrong ways, in all the wrong places.

Then. When I thought I knew who I was and would have told you I was trustworthy. And I was, to an extent. But not to the greatest extent.

Until you have trusted your heart to the only One who can be trusted, you can never be trusted.

Harsh? Maybe. True? I think so.

Jesus is the only person who ever displayed trust fully to us, and only in Him do we have the ability to be trustworthy.

And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.
Psalm 9:10

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As a wife and a mother and a sister-in-Christ…I am called to be trustworthy and to allow others to gain from my trust.

We’ve all been bit by someone who didn’t keep something to themselves we were trusting them with. And after we’ve been hurt we find it hard to trust again.

There is freedom in a friend you can trust. And there is freedom for them in being able to trust you.

My marriage is built on trust today, if nothing else. I live in a home and reside in a marriage as the only spouse that trusts God.

But I’m trusting God to change that. In His time. In His will. In His way. I have to or I’d lose hope altogether.

Maybe you are in a similar situation as me and maybe you aren’t. Either way, your husband, your children and your friends need your trust.

In a relationship of trust, we gain freedom to just be. Without fear of judgement or failure or condemnation.

Our ability to be trusted is our banner of love to those who trust us. 

We are human and in that we will never be completely trustworthy. God tells us to put our trust in Him, not man.

Even in that, we should strive to be trustworthy. Seeking to be like the image of Trust we have as a mirror to see ourselves in. But only in Him is that even possible.

If you haven’t trusted your heart to Him, would you give up the fight and trust today? Life is too short and life is too long to go another day without knowing the freedom of real Trust in a true Savior.

Freedom our sin-soaked, un-trustworhty, completely unworthy selves.

If you feel God calling you to Him…don’t ignore. If you’d like help praying, here’s a start and I’d love to help along if you need me. The best gift you can ever give yourself is trusting your soul with the One who created you in the first place.

That’s truth you can trust today.

Trusting Him,
Meredith

4hisgloryblog.com

 

See below for more information about Wednesday’s on the blog. For the next six weeks, we will open the floor for posts on any verse or combination of verses from Proverbs 31:12-31. Let’s see what God speaks to you and in turn speaks to us all through these well-known verses in a new light. Thank you so much in advance for linking-up Woman 2 Woman! 

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog. If you would also be so kind as to link back to this page in some form or fashion, I would greatly appreciate it. 😀

You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

For everyone living with the best of intentions.

I don’t know how or when it started, but I’ve certainly mastered the art of un-intentionality. As if I’m intentionally living with the best of intentions that never come to be.

The stack of books I have had every intention of finishing…or at least starting. That would be a start.

The upstairs attic that needs to be purged to make room for our growing toddler who deserves a room void of a washer, dryer and gun safe. A girl needs a real bedroom and there is one waiting. Waiting for me to clean it out and clean up this too full life of mine.

The flower beds that are more weeds than flowers these days, being choked out like the pressure on this conscious of mine suffocating with guilt.

The endless pile of clothes that ebb and flow and diminish and grow like these emotions that march in like a lion and roll out like a lamb.

The old corn crib that was to be storage building that instead sits on a trailer for the second spring because it’s too wet, then too dry, then time to make hay and no time to make way.

A week post-vacation and my son is still living out of his duffel bag that just gets filled back up and depleted again. What’s the use of putting the clothes in a drawer, anyway?

What’s the use, anyway?

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Our best intentions get the best of us.

The best part of our day. The best part of our soul. The best part of me that’s aching to be the best part for them.

The will-dos and should-haves keep us grounded in the past and dreading the future. Forgetting all we have is the here and now.

Living out-of-presence in the present is the norm these days. We long for the promise of tomorrow and live in the regret of the past.

Instead of living in the now, we get stuck in the when or lost in the then.

It’s time for us to get intentional about today.

It’s time to say “no” to what’s not important, to have time to say “yes” to what is. So we will have the time and energy to say “yes” to Who is important.

I know the clothes will keep piling up, the books will still be stacked, the room will be busting at the seams and the day lilies will get lost in the wire grass, BUT they don’t have to. I don’t have to be unintentional. I have a choice. 

There is freedom in the choosing. There is Grace in our freedom.

There is a way out of our un-intentions. His name is Jesus.

He gives grace for the best of intentions that never come to be. And He gives us freedom to choose a different way than where we find ourselves today.

Living in the present isn’t impossible. It’s necessary. And by His grace we can make it back to where we really are in the first place.

Here and now. It’s all we have.

Our kids need us here. now.
Our families need us here. now.
The lost need us here. now.
Jesus needs us here. now.

It’s not impossible to be here. now. It’s necessary. And liberating to find ourselves where we’ve been all along.

Graciously,
Meredith

 “So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.”
Romans 11:5

What’s on your list of “best intentions” that you haven’t gotten done…? I’d love to hear…and know I’m not alone. 🙂

I’m honored to be linking-up with my friend Katie Reid for #inspireandgrow today. Link your own inspirational post following her instructions here: (http://www.echoesofmyheart.com/2/post/2014/04/1.html).

Five Minute Friday. | {friend}

My husband says if you have one good horse, one good friend, one good woman and one good dog in life, you have been blessed.

Even in his crass way of speaking at times, I think he isn’t all together wrong.

Sometimes in my life it has felt like I didn’t have “one good friend.” I’ve had seasons of loss and being lost. And then they came. Friends.

Looking back I can see God’s hand so clearly when and where He put people in my life to help lead me out of the darkness and back to Him. Or to Him in the very. first. place.

I saw friendship modeled well in my mother’s life. She had a group of girlfriends that named themselves “The Beach Bunnies.” Funny name, funny group. They had regular GNO’s (that’s “Girls Night Out” for any guys reading this…) and they took an annual trip to the beach. And what happened at the beach…stayed at the beach. (Although the photos did give some of it away…)

I’ve always looked at that group of friends my mom had and envied those relationships in a way. Not so much anymore. 

God has been putting friends in my life from the very beginning and I see that now.

A special friend through high school who helped me get through some tough times and even today if we were together, we would be as comfortable talking as we were 20 years ago.

Friends in college that walked with me through school and guys and losing my mother.

Friends given to me during my years of corporate sales that I still keep up with, because it was the real deal.

A real-life-every-day-in-the-trenches friend that on a good day I get to work out with and everyday we work out life and I wouldn’t trade her for the world.

And a new set of online community friends. Some I may never meet. Some I look forward to meeting this fall at She Speaks and Allume. It’s been a treasure to connect with others traveling the same path of motherhood and answering the call to write and speak for His glory. Several of these new friends will be sharing their stories this weekend as we all come together for meet-ups all over the country. That’s exciting stuff. And it’s free. And going on now. Join the fun here!

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And then there is the One friend we all have in common if we choose to accept the friendship. The only Friend that will always be there in His perfect, loving, understanding way.

These lyrics keep playing over in my head, “What a friend we have in Jesus. All our sins and griefs to bear. What a privilege to carry, everything to God in prayer.”

That’s true isn’t it? He is the only one who will never let us down. Who knows our hurts and can actually do something about them.

Women need women. No doubt there. And thank God He puts women in our lives to speak life into us in a way even our best-friend-husbands can’t always do.

We all need Jesus. And in Him we see the example of the perfect friend. The one who gave His life for us all, when we deserved it the least.

That’s a friend worth clinging to, loving on and sharing with our other friends. After all, a real friend wouldn’t keep Him to themselves, would they…?

Your friend in Him,
Meredith

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and so many other lovelies for today’s Five Minute Friday prompt of {friend.} Head over to her site to read many more wonderful insights from this awesome group of writing friends. 😉

A diamond in the rough.

I like to think of myself as a good wife. A good mother. A good daughter. A good person. But in the grand scheme of things, I’m not nearly as much a jewel as I would like to think I am. Or as I have been called to be.

Psalm 31:10

An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.

Good question, huh? An excellent wife, who can find…? I know some excellent wives. They do and do and do for their husbands and children and grandchildren and families and friends and church. But in the end, all the doing doesn’t amount to much if it’s not done for the right reasons and even more so, for the right Person.

We’ve been called to excellency. And evidently the psalmist realized an excellent woman and wife would be harder to find than a pearl in a sea of oysters.

A diamond in the rough. That’s what we are, right?

On this journey of life and motherhood and wifehood.

A diamond is not born a diamond. A diamond is made a diamond. Only after intense heat and pressure is it’s true value ever realized and it’s worth ever made known.

That’s me and you.

Once put through the fire and pressure of life, we come out refined and stronger than before. Just like a diamond.

Once put through the trials of motherhood and marriage and friendship, we learn less of us and more of Him is the better Way.

Diamond in the Rough

We are in the process of being made new in Christ. And in that process, we can become like that diamond. If we are willing to be shaped and molded and made into the Image we have been created in.

More precious than jewels. That’s what we are in Christ.

We may not be perfect or always shine as bright as we should, but as long as we are plugged into the Source, we have the ability for Him to shine through us.

Then we don’t have to be perfect, after all. And we will still be more precious than jewels. In His eyes, we will always be that precious. And in His grace, we will always be that capable.

An excellent wife, who can find? I may have a long way to go to get there, but it’s in the process of being made new that potential is found. And the end result will yield a diamond in the rough.

Life is rough. We get calloused and hard and hard to please. But the potential is there to shine. Always the potential if we are wiling to yield to His ways and will.

Here’s to the journey of excellency as a daughter of the King. So glad to be in the rough together.

Blessings,
Meredith

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog. You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

For all the in-betweens

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Some days it seems I’m in-between more than anywhere.
In-between here and in-between there.

In-between who I was and who I want to be.
In-between where I’ve been and where I now see.

In-between dreams that have died and those just born.
In-between drop-offs, pick-ups and mess-ups galore.

In-between bedtimes that take too long and mornings that come too soon,
In-between the starry sky and bright side of the moon.

In-between great losses and bountiful gains.
In-between parched dryness and soul-quenching rain.

In-between should-have, could-have and would-haves if known.
In-between all the ways that show me I’ve grown.

In-between the girl of my youth and the woman she thought she’d be.
In-between the dreams of her past and ever present reality.

In the in-between is where I find myself these days.
And I’m starting to realize that is ok.

It’s ok to be where God’s put me to grow.
If that’s stuck in-between, then I’ll wait for the “go.”

Truth be known: life’s all one big in-between,
In-between the beginning, the end and eternity.

If the in-between’s are all we have, there really is no doubt,
We must make the most of all of them before our time runs out.

“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”- Solomon, (Ecclesiastes 1:9)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday | {paint}

It’s that time again. Five minutes to just write. Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and her fab following of Five Minute Friday writers to hash out five minutes of words on a given prompt without hesitation or much editing. Just real. raw. words. Tonight’s prompt is {paint}.

START

There seems to be a theme in my mind and world and dreams lately…a theme woven around these thoughts of dreamers and artists.

To consider the word {paint} fits right in, in an odd little way.

I’ve never painted anything worth talking about. My kitchen wall five times in one week because I never liked the color…still don’t, but how many coats can an old wall of pine paneling truly stand? It’s peeling from children’s nerf gun attacks now, anyway.

I’ve always considered painting a skill set I just didn’t get and really didn’t want. Sure, it would be nice to be able to paint pretty pictures, but I’ve never picked up that kind of brush and I’m too old to start.

Then I consider this: I do paint. I paint daily. With words penned and thought and voiced. I paint daily.

I paint the story of my life. In all it’s mundane and monotonous tones on days that end in “y.”

I paint the story of my children’s lives. In it’s rainbow of  wet kisses and tight hugs and never-ending “I love you’s.”

I paint the story of my Savior. In it’s black and white and not so many shades of gray. There is no gray with God. He is the I am.

And as my brush paints fast and hard and deep and wide the canvas of my life, I see that today I paint. I’ve been painting all these years.

 

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And in the end if the finished work is worthy of anything at all, it will leave a trace of the One who painted my existence.

What is today a perfectly imperfect masterpiece will be perfected in His time. When the Master Painter bids me home and finishes the work He started.

What a beautiful thought. This muddled, befuddled, gloriously ordinary work of art will be made perfect by the brush of God.

The painter of crystal blue skies and fiery red sunsets will put the final strokes on my life’s canvas.

With that thought, I’ll strive to paint with more purpose and definition and love than before. Now that I know I’m a painter after all.

In His Hands,
Meredith

STOP

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Woman to Woman: When bearing with one another is just barely.

Some things are easy to do together as women. Eating. Chatting. Shopping. Put all three together and we have the perfect day. Well, most women, anyway. We can all agree on at least two of those, though, can’t we?

Some things aren’t so easy to do together as women. Agreeing on where to eat. Cutting each other off trying to chat. And telling her she really shouldn’t buy that dress in that color…or that size. Unless you are for REAL friends, then maybe you can pull that off without angst. Maybe.

In thinking about the next part of Colossians 3:12-14 we have been unpacking for several weeks now (details here)…we come to the thought of “bearing with one another.”

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness,humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another…” (Colossians 3:12-13)

Sounds really good. But how do we do that? What does that look like? What does that mean…?

To be exact, the word bear as defined by Merriam-Webster’s means “something that is difficult to do or deal with.”

My nose is a little wrinkled at that. And then I laugh a little, too. Yep. That can be me. Most days. If not every. day.

So how do we as women learn to “bear” with one another?

The way I see it, there is only one way. In love. Through Jesus.

Sounds simple enough. So why is it so hard?

Why is it hard to bear with our sisters through the good times and the bad? We are fairly good at being there for one another when the rudder falls off and the ship starts sailing out to sea.

But what about bearing with one another on the good days? 

Why is it hard to be happy for our sister when her life is going good and ours is not. so. much?

I’m speaking to me. Why can’t I just be plain happy about this woman’s writing accomplishments and not envy her in the least? Why can’t I look at this other photographer’s site and not wish my photos were as good as hers and I could explain myself on my “Me” page so eloquently?

It all goes back to comparison, doesn’t it? Ugly. Old. Comparison.

We’ve all got warts. Yours may be bigger than mine or yours may be smaller. But a wart is still a wart. (I don’t have any pictures of warts and if I did, I wouldn’t submit you to them.)

When we can learn to bear with another, warts and all, then ladies, we will be getting somewhere.

When we can give each other flowers daily through grace we will arrive. We may not get flowers from our man every day, but why can’t we shower each other with some grace flowers of our own?

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I know it can be done. I’ve seen some amazing acts of grace and Jesus pouring out of women in several communities lately. Like this new-to-me community at (in)courage where they just chose nine over-the-top talented women to join their writing crew.

And oh-my-soul I was brave (or dumb) enough to submit an application…just because. Because I’m a dreamer like that these days. And they were gracious enough to not only send me an email but a beautiful note (like the kind you get in the mail…yeah they still have those and here are some beautiful ones I may just buy myself) full of grace saying they prayed over 475 entries and could only choose nine and that didn’t include me…yet. Well, I included the “yet,”…because I’m a dreamer. 😉

And Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday crew and twitter parties are full of other blogging women giving grace and loving on others. There’s cake and chocolate and coffee every Thursday night. It’s the only place to be. Unless you fall asleep rocking your three-year old, which also happens to me a lot of Thursday nights.

And then there’s the Compel community where so many writers are coming together and encouraging one another…bearing with one another…even when it’s kind of hard because in our gut we wish we had what she had. Her words. Her website. Her number of followers. Oh, yeah, that’s a big one for me lately. How on earth do you get over 1000 followers?! Le’ sigh…

All of this to say…it’s not always easy to bear with our sisters. But it’s always right. And always the better way.

It’s the way of Christ. Bearing one another’s burdens. And bearing one another’s joy, too, I believe.

To bear with your sister is to be like Christ. And that’s worth the bearing, even if somedays it’s just barely. There’s grace for that.

And the more we learn to bear our sisters burdens and joys, the closer we get and more apt we are to be able to tell her she really needs to try on a different dress. Amen?

Thankful you are bearing with me,
Meredith

LINK UP HERE:

 

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog below. You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

NEXT WEEK we will hash out forgiveness and putting on LOVE…which binds everything together. Come back and join us, won’t you?

 

Five Minute Friday | {writer}

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and the gang for another Five Minute Friday to just write. Unedited, unscripted. Real. Raw. Words.

Today’s prompt is {writer}. Ok, I’ll take that. 😉

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START

As a girl, I always wanted to be a singer. One halloween I was Tina Turner. The hair and all. No. Joke. I cannot lie, I’m a soul sister through and through.

For those of you that don’t know me, this was a far fetched dream. This girl does love to sing. Loud and proud. But it’s better suited for showers and trucks with windows rolled down and in the midst of other loud voices along with our church praise team.

This recent dream of being a writer has seemed just as far fetched. My soul has felt this stirring of words needing a place to land for quite some time. Taking the next step is always the hardest part for me. I’m a professional dreamer. Not a professional doer.

So when I finally took the plunge and started this blog after church almost three months ago I didn’t even know what it meant. Other than I was going to explode or implode or otherwise be a big mess if I didn’t get out what was welling up in me.

So I wrote. And I’ve kept writing. And as long as God gives me the words and a desire and a way, I will continue to write.

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butbythegraceofgod

I may never be considered by anyone else to be a “writer,” and I’m ok with that. Well, actually, I’m not ok. I would love to write a book one day and then maybe officially be considered a “writer.” Until then, I’ll blog. And maybe finally take the leap of faith to submit an article or devotional or something somewhere. The next big unknown hurdle to jump over. Breathe.

And I thank you for keeping this dream alive. Thank you for reading and relating to these words that spill up and out and fall from my fingertips to this keyboard that has become my long lost friend. My Mac and I have a love-hate relationship. Like my bangs.

Thanks for listening again to a fairly short post about my new love and new dream to be a {writer}. Can’t wait to see where God leads…

Graciously,
Meredith

STOP

(Yep, that was probably a few minutes more than five again today. I had to help a little girl go potty and cook her a yellow egg.)

DON’T MISS THESE WORDS…Lisa-Jo has a new book. And it’s for anyone who has a mom or is a mom or may be a mom one day…”Surprised by Motherhood” is taking the world by storm. Amazon wasn’t prepared. They sold out on Day 1. Yep, I don’t lie when I say something is good. Here’s my full review and information on where to order is here. And the link to the movie trailer for the book is here. Enjoy! Oh, and get tissues. For the book and the trailer. And a pen and a hi-liter. And you’re welcome. 😉

Lisa-Jo Baker

Woman to Woman: Patiently impatient.

Sometimes even when we have been on the receiving end of  a gift, we don’t realize it. We don’t see it for what it was and is and for how it should change us.

That’s how I feel about this weeks topic of patience in our  continuing woman to woman discussion. The next word in Paul’s instructions to the Colossians…

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience… (Colossians 3:12)

This one is a lot easier said than done for this soul. It may be a virtue, but it’s not one I know well enough of to speak of personally.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t seen it in action. I’ve seen the best displays of a woman’s patience throughout my life.

A grandmother whose husband drowned when her three children were all under 5 and never remarried or even thought about it. Patient to endure the cross of raising her children fatherless and working to see them fed, clothed and sent through school. Patient with grandchildren (at least this one…) who didn’t behave in public for her parents, but (nearly) always minded her Granny Grace.

Perhaps there is a correlation in seeing patience displayed and returning it?

I seem to have forgotten what that patience looked like as a child. I seem to need a reminder lately. And my children give me plenty of opportunity to practice this virtue I can’t. quite. grasp.

I’ve heard several people say recently to be careful what you ask of God, He may just give you plenty of opportunities to work on it.

I thought about that sitting through my Granny Austin’s funeral yesterday. I was getting ready to speak and my children were starting to “try” me. Trying this mamas patience in a sweaty-wrestless-small-country-funeral kind of way.

One was asleep on my left side, head hanging, drooling, out-of-this-world asleep. To get up would mean laying him down in the pew and risking him waking in a daze and wanting mama. The other child was on the right side wanting to leave the pew to get gum from her Gran (again) and then not wanting me to leave or for her brother to touch her as I laid him down so I could get up.

I could fill it rising in me hot and heavy. Impatience. That’s the word I know most about. The opposite of patience. We are very good friends these days.

Brother ended up staying asleep and sister ended up sitting somewhat quietly with Pop and then her aunt while this mama got to reflect on another patient woman who lived ninety years and never showed the least bit of dishonor or impatience to a soul.

Why has it skipped me? This ability to deal with adversity and children and husbands with patience instead of it’s ugly opposite.

I was thinking nobody will be able to say at my funeral, “She never said an unkind word about another. Her life exuded patience and kindness and humility.” Nope. Not me. And that makes me sad. But it also makes me real. Because I know I’m not alone. Even if I feel like it at times.

And just today my aunt brought me this cross-stitched photo she rescued from my Granny’s dilapidated farmhouse at the end of that potato field that we have gone through a million times and somehow missed this one piece of framed love.  These words that my mother made for her mother and the first word stitched was “patient,” I feel like I’m being told something today. After I’d started to write this post and wasn’t feeling quite sure it was meaning anything. It is meaning something now.

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I’ve been given a gift I’m starting to see for the first time. And now I’m holding a piece of these women in my hands, a bit moldy like me, but also stitched together with love, like me.

I’m glad to have examples of women that exuded these qualities I yearn to be. To learn. To live.

I’m reminded that the want to is as important as the journey and that’s as important as the getting there. 

So, I want to be a more patient wife. mother. daughter. friend. And I’m on a journey to get there. Not perfected until He’s finished with me. And He’s not finished with me yet. Maybe that is the best reminder of all.

He’s not finished with any of us until He’s finished. And until that day, we are in the process of getting there.

A heart desire to change, to be more like Him and to gain these qualities we are instructed to “put on” sometimes takes more guts than glory. I’m ok with that. You should be too.

We are in this together, sister. Perfectly imperfect. Patiently impatient. That is hopeful, yes?

One patient step at at time. And not forgetting this,

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. (Romans 8:25)

We have a lot to look forward to one day. Could be one day very soon. No matter how long the wait is, the glorious reward will be worth the wait.

Patience is not without Hope.

And as I said over Granny’s closed casket, our Hope has a name. His name is Jesus. And He’s completely worth the wait. 

Graciously,
Meredith

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog below. You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

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