A bit all over the place but here's what I'm pondering this week:
- Our thorns in our sides sometimes just need to be set aside. That thing that's bothering you? That you worry about every day, that you want sorted and that you want to talk about constantly? (Mine's often finances or physical healing.) If you entrust it to God and really leave it in his in-basket, you can carry on and enjoy life regardless. The spectacular mystery is that the more we enter into that place, the more God works miracles. Just my theory and my experience at the moment.
- A conversation with a friend this week made me realize anew how we have to live inside out. It's our human nature to compare our inside struggles with other people's outside calm exterior. It's good to be honest and transparent with people about our battles and insecurities because it allows them to see that nobody's perfect. Chances are if you've battled something internally then most other people have too.
- Amazing grace. We had just enough savings to pay for the car rego this week and I'm blown away by God's planning. It speaks to me of his loving kindness and I'm reminded how he does this regularly for us. He is so faithful and provides in so many little ways that it's easy to let them go unnoticed and unremarked.
- A couple of weeks ago in our connect group we prayed for some girls to be healed. We were bowled over to hear that two had been healed straight away (one we hadn't even prayed for!!) and then yesterday I heard that the third girl was healed the day after that. I was so blown away and excited to see God at work but just had that little voice that reminded me of Jesus telling his disciples that the miracles were great, but what really counted was having your name in his Book of Life. It was a sobering thought: we get so distracted by the miraculous that we forget that what is most important is our heart relationship with the Creator.
- Yesterday my friend sent me a link to this article about people complaining how busy they are. I'm definitely guilty of that but I don't think I do it out of one-up-man-ship as the article many people do. I think I do it out of a feeling of constant exhaustion. Reading this piece though made me conscious of how much I do talk about being busy, whether people might perceive it as I don't want to make time for them and whether I really am as busy as I make out or whether I'm just not taking things in my stride and appreciating the downtime I do have. Talking about how busy I am also doesn't make me less busy. Interesting thoughts. After laying down my self-applied busy label, I feel a whole lot more relaxed.
- God is the gamechanger. Without him we can expect things to be pretty impossible to resolve but once we invite him in, he really is the gamechanger, everything shifts and anything is possible. Sometimes as I think we see prayer as a pretty weak move but in reality, when we see God as the gamechanger, our whole expectation for the future and hope changes and our physical situation changes too. I'm struck by this thought this week, it's pretty darn awesome.
- I've come back to rest again and the thought that the more we want to be used by God to change the world, the more we need to rest in him. Lisa commented on the blog last week that it was a 'top up the cup' thing so that we could then let love overflow into other people's lives. I love that because it is so true. I've had several times this week when I have needed to do something and both before and after have spent time with God. When we do, we can speak out of that close relationship with him and we don't need to fear not having the right words to say because they flow out of what we know to be true.
What have you been pondering this week? Have any of these rung bells with you?