To Thrive and To Retreat


Recently at the alter, I recieved a Word from a sweet older couple who were eager to pray and share with me. The man told me that I was thriving, not surviving. This was a relevatory moment, and I had to pause and expound on this truth, that hit me like a new idea. When did this happen? How did I move from survival mode and into a slower rhythm and balance? It came with one relevelation after another. 

Jumping headfirst into missions was like throwing myself prostrate at the alter. Just open, expectant, willing. A more laidback work schedule, less financial strain and even less responsibility allowed me to be more meditative and just listen for the voice of God. In seven months, I’ve heard from God more than I have in the past 35 years cumultively. My strengths and gifts were honed, although I didn’t realize I was in that process until the spiritual season was turning into the next.
 

As the beginning of my discipleship training neared, I had the opportunity to live at a peaceful retreat set in a beautifully wooded tract. As soon as we settled in, I walked outside and just breathed in this concept of “retreat”. I decided to revel in it. HalleluYah and I spent more time at home; snuggling in bed reading, cooking, playing violin, and just resting. HalleluYah could play outside for hours without worry of traffic or intruders. If I needed to run an errand, the staff asked to watch HalleluYah while I was gone. 

During this time I heard from God even more about my calling and saw how I’ve been preparing all along. I came to grips with dangers and hardships ahead. I dealt with doubt that God could even use a divorced woman..a broken family..a single mother. That God would call me into the darkest, most dangerous places, especially for women and children, and provide a way to thrive. The only way to deal with that doubt is to put one foot in front of the other, every day. Sometimes taking ten steps back..but always stepping out again.

It is with a confidence now that I can step into a discipleship dynamic, knowing that God will go such much higher and deeper with us than we could ever imagine. And then higher and deeper still. That sounds so romantic, but in reality it can be brutal and painful. It is a narrow road.

Just getting to this point I’ve been humbled and broken countless times. I’ve hurt and been hurt, forgave and been forgiven. I was given even more vision and more specific dreams. I watched my daughter filled with the Spirit, overwhelmed by love, just crying, shaking, and receiving the overflow. I know this kind of recieving is coming for me next. God’s love is on my horizon for the first time. I have big expectations for the next five months during my discipleship school. I’m expecting that torrential flood of love, strength to dispel doubts and seal up cracks in my foundation of faith from childhood, and to simply have a more intimate, passionate relationship with God. 

Join me in prayer; for our strength and stamina, for our leaders and teachers, for those in our undetermined areas in outreach phase, and my loved ones here in varying degrees of struggle and thriving, as we seek our callings.

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