After 2 years of LESS, God laid on my heart to LOVE. As I think back, LESS was hard but to LOVE was just as hard. I had healed quite a bit through the season of LESS and now God was going to teach me to LOVE. It started with a young man that needed a place to stay due to domestic violence. It brought new challenges having a teenager in our home and setting boundaries to protect our younger children. It was okay. But then another teenage boy came into our home. This one, although he did not know it, showed me all kinds of areas where I loved conditionally. This young man rocked my world and my heart. I could wring or hug his neck at any given minute and it could change within seconds. I smile as I type this, thankful for what God showed me through this sweet/rooten kid.....you know wring or hug his neck!
Last year, I knew our lives would be turned upside down. So I thought CHANGE, it will be a year of change. Our family sold our beloved home in the woods nestled close to wonderful friends. We left the community we had grown to love. Put our possessions out in the drive way with a for sale sign on it and drove from all that had been important to us for the past 10 years.
Looking back now on our arrival in Haiti, it is a blur. I was sick so often and the physical sickness brought out mental and emotional sorrow. The children and I grieved and to comfort them, I just cried with them. At that time, my precious sister in Christ sent me a token of the word GRATEFUL. I hung it in the bathroom because I was spending sooo much time there!!! I had to choose to be grateful in the change! The reminder of GRATEFUL meant more to me because my friend had suffered a year of unexpected lost and God had given her the word GRATEFUL before her year began. The reminder was not just a word but I watched her live GRATEFUL through a year that should have left her in a heap on the bathroom (or kitchen -CN) floor.
Now, 6 months later, it is time to choose a new word. Looking back on 2014, I know I was just floating along, head above water, simply trying to survive. I believe God showed me this, just this past week. Nana and Pops came to visit so we went for a day to the beach location of the mission. I had never snorkeled. My Dear helped me to get all of the equipment on and to be comfortable. I laid on the top of the water looking down at a whole new world! Rich colors of life were covered by the sea. To see such beauty, all I had to do was swim out into the water and be still to take it in. I found myself swimming from one reef to the next and occasionally looking back to keep sight of the others. There was so much there!! I realized the past year I was too busy trying to survive, just keeping my head above water, to notice the reef!
So this year, I will SWIM! I will no long just try to survive but I will put strokes in. I will pursue more. I will linger over the scriptures like I did the reef with a snorkel and goggles on so not to be limited by the time I can spend there. I will dive into my language learning. I will pursue relationships with others that speak a different language. This year, I will SWIM and allow God to show me the beauty of the reef that I have been floating above.