Thursday, May 7, 2015

What Breaks My Heart



This past week I had an awesome opportunity to attend the Orange Conference in Atlanta, GA. This conference is hosted by a man named Reggie Joyner. He is the founder of Orange. He was burdened by the lack of connections between church and family for students and kids. So he created a curriculum for churches to use that helps bridge that gap.

The Church  I attend has been using this curriculum for a few years, so it was awesome to get to go and be equipped, encouraged, and refilled. The breakout sessions, speakers,and music were awesome. Attending things like this always raises my lid of perspective, to dream bigger, and share the knowledge I have learned with others.

One of my favorite pastors and speakers is Andy Stanley. He spoke about “What Breaks your heart?” As he spoke I was challenged to reflect on myself and try and figure out the answer. I feel like God has really been refining this area for me in this past year and it brought me back to the last time I had been burdened for co-workers and friends after hearing conversation after conversation of them giving up on their dreams.

As I sat in the arena trying to hear and understand the places God continued to reveal more of the picture of what breaks my heart and what He wants me to do about it, I was reminded of the conversation I had just overheard in a breakout session of a wife talking to her husband. She was having to give him specific direction about everything that needed to be done while she was gone. The child’s schedule, where the camera was, phone numbers and people to call. The "parental guidance" went on for about 10 minutes.

Of course my single brain was first like, “Can the dude not do anything for himself?” As I recognized my freedom to concentrate on the session,  I couldn't help but wonder how this lady could even begin to glean knowledge from the presentation because of all the things clouding her mind.

In that arena, surrounded by so many busy women trying to juggle their "hats", my heart broke into a million pieces.

It breaks my heart to see Moms who sacrifice their dreams and put them in the back of the closet because they feel responsible to put their husbands and children first.

Please understand, I’m not saying that women shouldn't put their families first!! It’s the part of losing their dreams that breaks my heart. Women can’t be the best wife, mom, friend, or co-worker if what is within her isn't flourishing.

With being single and having no kids yet, it’s hard to have the courage to speak about these topics. But coming from a divorced family….. my desire is that women have a fulfilled marriage.

So here are some of my thoughts that have been roaming around in my brain about this topic.

1.

               Husbands support your wives

I have some great friends who live this out daily. I get to watch their husbands support their dreams. It takes a team. Women need to know they can step out of fear and go after their dreams with their husbands being their biggest cheerleader.


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 2.     Women trust your husbands!

I know that most moms have control issues. They know how to clean the dishes the correct way, what outfits the kids to need to wear, and so forth. Your husband will never step up to the plate to step in when you need to be absent, if you don't trust them and allow them to recognize his own capabilities. Otherwise, he may never rise to the occasion.

3.
      You can’t be the best wife and mom if you’re running on fumes.

Women need retreats, time alone, and to be refilled often. You are a vessel that is always doing and giving. Please take the time to be refilled.

What breaks my heart is something I know God has given me and I am in pursuit to use my life in helping find solutions.

What breaks your heart?

I hope you all have a wonderful Mother's Day this Sunday! Whether you have kids, foster, adopted, or like me one who is an aunt and teacher... We all mother in some way to someone. Let's invest well and live out our dreams!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Fog Will Lift




My bags were in the back, sunglasses on, and music playing. Road Trip!

Even though it was going to be a quick trip, I was looking forward to spending time with my nephews and my twin sister at a resort.

As I traveled, following my sister, we started over the mountain. As we got closer to the top, it became very foggy. It had been raining a lot lately. My speed had dwindled down to where I was just inching along. If it hadn't been for the headlights, I wouldn't have been able to even see my sisters car. The road was narrow and I knew that I would need to drive very slow so as not to drive off the side of the mountain.

Hurry. There is fun to be had. Impatience.

There were several miles I could just see what was right in front of me. Then suddenly around a bend, the fog had lifted and I could see a stretch laid out in front of me. Then another patch of fog.

My life has felt this way recently.

Restless. Impatient. Can’t see too far ahead of where I am.

Sometimes our lives are like that foggy road. God giving us enough light to take one small step and then around a bend we are able to see more of the picture and direction He is leading us.

Then suddenly the fog lifts.

He reveals His plan and we can see for miles and miles His story for us.

Maybe you’re in a season like me where your just moving inch by inch because you can’t see any further. Here are some encouraging things to remember.

1.      His light will shine on your next step.
God will reveal the next part in your story chapter by chapter, page by page. He will make sure you know enough to know your next step. When we aren't certain of the next step, this is when faith steps in. To have faith that God will continue to shine a light in the direction to go. His word is a place where we can go to for this guidance.
2.      Keep moving forward.
We may know our destination but having to wait patiently during the process of getting to it. We can’t just stand still while we wait. We must keep pursuing Him and be active in our time of wait. This has been the equipping stage for myself. God equipping me for what is next.
3.     The fog will lift.
We will not stay in the fog forever. This is the hope we hold on to and know there is joy in the morning.

In this process we learn how to lean into Him and rely on His help to get us to our next destination.