Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Kristin is trying to be still and listen...

at least that's what my most recent facebook status update claims. And I am truly trying. Really. I think. It's clear, though, that God knows I'm not too good at it. How amazing is it that the very next day after that facebook post, our bible study video and the upcoming week of homework is about... wait for it... being still.

Now, last week we learned that it takes two steps to serving God coming from two types of power: we must "believe that God has given you the power to serve Him" and the ability of "actually getting up and into action so that this great power can be used." It never occurred to me that this is not just one thing - I have believed God can do what He wills through me, but I've never thought to seek from him the energy to do that to which He has called me. And sometimes He calls us to very difficult things. So with many failings behind me I see - I believed, but didn't have the energy. I never asked for the energy. I've been missing out.

How does that fit in with being still, you may wonder. Well, I believe that God wants me to be still and wait on him. I'm not good at it. But if I ask Him, He will give me the power and discipline to do be able to do it. Priscilla Shirer used the text from John 6 where Jesus feed the 5,000 to reveal what she learned about being still. In verse 10, Jesus tells the disciples to "have the people sit down." From that, she says we can know that we, too, must sit down in the presence of God. First of all, Psalm 46:10 tells us that we can't know He is God until we are still. Until we are still. In John 6:11, Jesus distributed food to those who were seated. She said that He can't fill us up with what we need until we are seated - until we can trust Him.

John 6:10 shows that Jesus had them sit in a grassy place. Priscilla said this was a place of comfort - that this speaks to what we know about Him regardless of our circumstances. That's the green grass. Not greener, mind you. Green. Because things won't always be easy, but He will always be with us. And He sends friends our way to sit with us in the grassy place, or to encourage us to stay seated. The history we have with God and His Word help us to sit and wait on Him in this place.

So, as God is tugging at my heart for me to sit down and be still. As He waits for me to quiet my mind, my emotions, my plans and ambitions and my busyness. As He waits for me to listen. I will pray for the discipline to do so. He has new plans for me. As Priscilla asked in this study a couple weeks ago, "who knows what we miss when we don't change our plans for His?" I don't want to miss out. Do you?

"Show me Your ways, O LORD, teach me Your paths; guide me in Your truth and teach me, for You are God my Savior, and my hope is in You all day long..." Psalm 25:4-5

Thursday, April 16, 2009

It's been a little rough lately with Elijah. Well, actually, this has been going on for two+ years. But it has made for a sometimes unpleasant kindergarten year. He doesn't finish his daily work. Most days. And ever since January we've been getting notes scrawled all over his worksheets from his teacher. My impression, which was based on an email, was that Elijah's teacher just thought he was being defiant. I know that not to be true. He started this not completing work thing back in preschool. And ever since I have wondered about it. So finally, we've been encouraged to have him tested for ADD. As it turns out, she was waiting for us to mention it first due to legal issues. He's certainly not hyper, in fact his teacher says she does not want him more subdued than he is. I'm thankful to find that she's not seeking for him to be medicated, but for him to possibly qualify for modifications if he is diagnosed. I'm not sure why something I've been suspecting has made me sort of sad... but it has. But I know God made Elijah. Just as he is. With attention problems. And a sweet, sweet heart. For a reason.

I recently heard this quote from Max Lucado's book Cure for the Common Life:

Our children are not a blank slate awaiting our pen, but are a written book awaiting our study.

I just had to sit there and let that sink in for a bit. It was so humbling to me. I assume so much responsibility for the lives of my children, and sure, I have a God-given responsibility to care for them. But it's not my place to impose my will on their lives. It's my place to pray for God's will for them. Then I wait for his response. As we are facing this attention issue I can't help but wonder what God will have us do with it. Where will this take us? What challenges will Elijah face if he has ADD? What wisdom will God give me to guide him? What will he teach me through this time? And, if Elijah's not a "blank slate awaiting my pen," then just what role do I take? Encourager? Advocate? Momma bear?

So I am praying. And waiting. And carefully listening. I've gotten several very interesting tugs at my heart. God is changing me. And as I wait, I've discovered a neat little book to read... it's about a little boy named Elijah...