My favorite people on one of the many snow days NTX has been slammed with this year.
Am I thankful for my life and the way I'm living it?
In many ways, yes. I'm noticing how God's Spirit is really filling me from the inside out and allowing me to rest. I'm noticing how it continues to get easier to Rest in His Grace. I'm not insanely critical of myself like I used to be. I find myself more and more able to let things go. I am so thankful for that because it's been a prayer of my heart for years, maybe a decade.
I oscillate between feelings of thankfulness and frustration. I struggle with giving grace still just as I struggle with accepting it. I get very fixated on what the correct way is and it's hard for me to let it go. To be honest, I've considered using some of my Young Living Essential Rewards points for this oil because I keep seeing it come up when I look up emotions I'm having. Anyone tried it?
So in short, the Spirit is alive and well and praise Him because He changes me. But I am still learning about resting in gratitude for all He's done as well as resting in faith for all He has yet to do. Resting is proving itself to be my word day in and day out. I think Rest goes hand in hand with thankfulness. Because by in resting in what God is doing and has already done, I am thankful. Whereas by not resting, I'm really being ungrateful because I'm complaining about how far I want to be/go etc.
What have I tried this month?
Last night I tried my hand at cauliflower crust pizza- which was awesome! I tried Charleston, SC late February- which is officially my favorite city of all time. It combines everything I love about New Orleans- the Spanish moss, colonial architecture, porches, coastal weather with everything I love about Texas- cleanliness and guns and a Don't Tread On Me attitude. If it were at all practical to move there, I totally would. I also tried some award winning restaurants while there. I could go on about things I've tried, but they are all food related :) One thing I've learned though, is that I really love trying new food!
What am I doing to get out of my routine?
I'm trying to run more. And while I've only ran 6 times this year, I really want to change my routine to include this. My goal is to just keep trying to make this a routine through December. I'm not trying to aim for a certain number of days a week or times per month- just continue to plug away at trying to get out there and run. I actually have a special plan for a special run this coming week....
... Because the most exciting way I'm going to be getting out of my routine this month will be to go to Annapolis for my brother's wedding. Prior to discovering South Carolina, Annapolis might have been my favorite American city. (I have a thing for the East Coast...) Again with the colonial architecture, the cleanliness, and of course Don't Tread On Me is originally a Navy thing... My brother is marrying a lovely girl there this weekend. It will be an amazing wedding just because it will be at the Naval Academy chapel, which is where my brother went to school. Full uniforms and the sword arch and everyone staying in the little downtown. So fantastic! In light of us being downtown and walking distance to everything, I'm hoping to include a run through downtown Annapolis into it. I could look at sailboats all day. Also planning to include crab into the diet as a way to break my routine. If you have never been to Annapolis, go! It's just really one of the most beautiful places.
What have I learned about God this month?
I mentioned this on a previous blog post, but learning that He is my provider. He definitely provided this past month despite traveling and big electric bills and just all these little things that come up with being in a busy season. So thankful He is trustworthy. He provided lovely bits of growth with my little YL group and met all of the goals in my heart for that month, which is so encouraging to see.
I am learning about the importance of trusting Him for future provision. But also that trust is gentle and quiet. Not that you can't ask questions, but some questions or maybe over questioning is really a lack of trust. Rest- rest in the trust and allow Him the space to work, to provide. I've really been coming back to the verses in the Bible on do not worry about tomorrow... look at the birds of the air... God knows what we need... Jimmy knows what we need... Both of them love me more than I will ever know and are seeking my good.
What brokenness is holding me back?
I keep coming face to face with the thought that The Lord has set us free from slavery, both in my on reading and just friends speaking into my life. There's much to explore here. But I know that I haven't allowed the Lord to free me from everything. I am enslaved to my perfectionist ideals. And while I do see him setting me free in many ways already. I'm not quite there yet. So while this is nothing new, and this is something I've been working through, The Lord continues to reveal deeper facets of this struggle and the ways it continues to hold me back.
What do I want less of?
Less screen time. This- like my striving for perfection- seems to constantly be a goal. As I learn grace, I am quicker to forgive myself for wasting precious minutes. And as I learn to forgive myself, the hold these things have gets more and more broken and less able to control me. Which is lovely, and I must acknowledge that The Lord is faithfully breaking me free of distractions. However, I still want less of it. Sometimes not just with me, but even with people I'm around. Not that I have control over that. I just want less of modern America...
What do I want more of?
... and more of simple America. More hand made from scratch meals. More making things on our own. More hard work within the home. You know that feeling you get sometimes when you know everything is aligned perfectly and you are right where you should be? I feel like that when my little tribe is home and I am in the kitchen. I feel like serving them is both cathartic and soul nourishing. Like this is why I was created. I find more joy in the mundane like grocery shopping, cleaning, baking, cooking than I can find anywhere else. I want more homemaking time. And that j'ne sais quois feeling I get when I am doing just that makes me excited and confident for the next stage of life. I'm my best self when I take care of my home/family. And amazingly, some of these struggles I've had throughout this year seem to affect me far less in these times of greatest peace. Which also gives me great confidence. Like my soul knows that teaching full time like I have isn't where it's supposed to be and it just started to give out on me. And investing in family is where I am supposed to be- and those struggles just fall away. So simplify. I want more of that.