Happy New Year!

Whew!!  We made it!!  I cannot tell you that 2018 will go down as a favorite year of mine.  But I can tell you that I am so happy to have survived it!! I feel accomplished that this past year is behind me and where I am as a person today versus where I was as a person a year ago.  I feel like I can say I accomplished more personally in my soul this year than probably ever before.  I believe I had a lot of obstacles to this year.  There were things that happened to me and to people I love that I felt like could have crippled me and stunted my spiritual growth at any turn.  But I learned so much about the character and the kindness of God this year.  He has held me at every turn and every heartbreak and every disappointment and he has held me together through this year.  I feel like I have wrestled with God this year, much like Jacob wrestled with God in Genesis chapter 32.  I also feel like I have wrestled with the “rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spriitual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” (Eph 6:12). Yes there were times this year, I wasn’t sure if the wrestle was with God or against the evil forces, but wrestle I did.  And I feel like that even though I may be walking with a limp that God has seen me through!  And I give Him all the praise and glory for that!

I learned about promises of God this past year!  God will see me through anything that comes in my path.  His word tells me he will never leave me nor will he forsake me.  He says it over and over in scripture.  The Lord does not tell me that bad stuff will not happen.  He does not tell me that there will not be things that break my heart or disappoint me.  But He does promise to be with me through it all.  There were times I had to look hard for Him.  There were times all I could do was turn on praise music so that I could keep my focus on Him rather than on the circumstances swirling around me.  You see even though He will not leave you nor forsake you, it is up to you to look for Him.  I could have kept my eyes more on my problems than on Him but I knew I needed to see Him in order to survive it, so He taught me to keep looking for Him.  I found Him in praise music, I found Him in sunrises, I found Him in the laughter and sweet smiles of my grandchildren!  I found Him with my friends who held me up in prayer and their friendship.  I can promise you there were times this year that I would have preferred to go home after work and pull the covers over my head and make the world go away.  But many times I made myself go where people were even though I didn’t feel like it.  Just because I knew that those people loved me.  Actually there were times I would have preferred not to even go to work, but I went anyway.  And I found Him!  Over and over again, I found Him because I kept searching for Him.

I also learned about the kindness of God this past year.  There are things I prayed for that God answered.  He did not have to.  I came to realize in my wrestlings that some of the very things I was praying for, might not work out like I wanted.  But I did come to realize that even if they did not work out the way I would have written the story, that the greater good was what He would always have in mind.  It may not feel like greater good at the time, but He could see the future that I could not see and He would hold me through whatever came my way.  I wish I could give you more of the specifics of this but He is still writing the story and I still am not sure exactly how it’s going to work out. But I do trust His heart and I trust His hand on my life to know that He is going to see me through.  The kindness of God’s heart wants what is best for me and for mine and for you and for yours.  And sometimes the kindness of God’s heart takes people home to be with Him, and sometimes He lets us endure hurt and anguish so that we draw closer to His heart!! And sometimes people get sick and sometimes people die and sometimes people do not do what we think they ought to.  But every time if we seek God’s heart we can trust that God is going to walk WITH us.  And He will teach us and He will love us and He will give us Hope!

HOPE!  This word can be a comforting word but it can also be a scary word because what if things don’t turn out like you hope?  Every year I ask God for a word for my coming year.  This past year my word at the beginning of the year was Presence!  I did not know what it would mean, when I felt Him give me that word!  I had thoughts that I was going to learn how to be more present with my people and that it was going to be gloriously beautiful, I had visions of getting up and having my super spiritual quiet time every morning while a revelled in the presence of God while he gave me the wisdom to understand scripture in a way I never had before, but I wanted to learn these things only in my brain.  I didn’t really want Him to teach them to me in my heart.  Well, I spent alot of time in the Presence of God but it was not like I expected.  I read alot of scripture, I listened to alot of sermons, I listened to alot of praise music.  I drew into His presence like never before, not because I was some super spiritual person who was working on my knowledge of God, but because I NEEDED Him like never before!  He had things to teach me alright but He was not just teaching my brain, He taught my heart a thing or two. I can honestly say that the relationship I have with God after this year has turned out beautiful but it was brought about by much pain and heartache and my NEED for His presence!  Well this year I feel like the word He has given me is HOPE!  And quite frankly that scares me to pieces!  I want to have Hope that things will work out like I want.  I want to have Hope that it is going to be a beautiful year but I am scared of what this Hope is going to bring me.  But this is my word so I will look to Him for Hope and ask Him to teach me about Hope.  And yes even if that means He is teaching my heart!  I will cling to the Hope that he has for me.

In His Hope!!

Sonia

Happy Monday from the Porch!

One thing about working for a school district is you occasionally get those rare holidays that not everyone in the corporate world gets.  So I am sitting on my porch this morning and drinking in the gift.  The gift of a rare Monday morning on my porch, the gift of a beautiful sunrise and a little extended quiet time with my Savior.  It’s a beautiful day here at the lake.  There is a bright morning sun and there is a gentle breeze blowing the leaves just a bit, not even enough to play music in the chimes, there are all the typical morning sounds, the birds in the trees near and far.  It’s still not what I would call cool for this Fall morning but it is a bit of a break in the humidity anyway.  Which at least lets us know that Fall air is right around the corner, (hopefully).

As I sit here and drink in these gifts I realize that sometimes it is good to just sit and reflect and pray and Be Still before the Lord.  I have talked on here of Lamentations and the new mercies that he brings me in the mornings.  I have talked of being still and even named this blog Restore after Psalm 23:3 He restoreth my soul! I keep looking to Him the one who created me and sustains me and draws me day after day and year after year to Him.  And over and over he keeps restoring my soul!  You see that is not a one time thing.  I have to, I must come to him daily to feel the true restoration every day.  It’s a relationship.  I truly do not know how I would put one foot in front of the other every day if I did not have this relationship with Him.  And just as my relationship with my husband is going to look different than your relationship with yours, my relationship with My Savior will look different than your relationship with Your Savior.  Just because it happens to be the same Savior, relationships are different.  I can tell you though that the best way to cultivate your relationship is to spend daily time with Him.  Whatever time of day works for you and however you and He want to, need to craft that you need to do it.  Day in, day out!  I was talking with one of my sweet friends this week, she’s really more than a friend, she and her sisters are like my surrogate daughters.  She and her sisters are going through a time loving on their precious Mama with an illness that is robbing them of her.  It is a time that you can only cling to God in order to make it through and these precious ones are doing such a beautiful job it blows me away.  But anyway, I know that through this she has drawn closer and closer to Jesus in order to have the strength and the courage to look this disease in it’s face and to love their Mama well.  As we were visiting the other day, she and I started talking about prayer and how when you spend alot of time in prayer and the Word you find yourself talking to God about even the most mundane things.  I pray for the Lord to help me find my keys or whatever I am looking for just about every day and I got so tickled at her as she said she had even prayed for the Lord not to let her popcorn burn the other day.  I loved it!!  And you know what I think it made God smile that day too.  I believe in the reverence of God.  I know that He is Holy and Almighty and that he created this vast beautiful world and for that I revere Him and I praise Him.  But I also believe that He desires a daily every day relationship with us.  And today I thank Him for that relationship that will help me find my keys and that will even help me not to burn my popcorn!

Yet they seek me daily and delight to know my ways, as if they were a nation that did righteousness and did not forsake the judgment of their God; they ask of me righteous judgments; they delight to draw near to God.  Isaiah 58:2  (emph mine)

I hope you have a Happy Monday!!

Sonia

New Mercies and Great Faithfulness

I know I have been quiet for a while. I’m sorry and I’m back.

I started doing this writing thing to process some of my thoughts and feelings a while back.  2016 was “everything I ever wanted and so much less”.  (I heard that phrase on a podcast and I decided it truly fit)   It was the birth of my first grandchild, which was everything I never knew I wanted anyway, and so much less, the death of my Daddy.  You know you always know that it’s going to happen but there is no preparing your heart for it.  Then I was determined to make 2017 better at the start of that new year and then 11 days in, my sister died.  I still some days walk by this picture I have of me and my 3 sisters in my living room and I think “really?  Is she really not here anymore?”  But it also brought more joy with the birth of my 2d grandchild.

After those events, as part of my healing process. I had done some things to tap into my creative side, painting and writing and I was thinking here goes.  Who knows where this is going to take me.  I was poised and ready to take on this blogging thing and see where the painting would take me.  I am not that great but I do enjoy it and you can usually tell what the picture is when I’m done so I guess that’s something.

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But then came 2018 and it started out kicking me in the gut too.  My husband got very sick at the beginning of this year and then just some other things that kept happening to me and to people I love that almost crippled me.  Well I guess in some ways it did cripple me.  It was trying to take me out of the game, and by “It” I think what I mean is “Satan”.  I think he was doing his thing and looking to paralyze me, but no I don’t intend to let it take me out.  It may have made me limp along for much of this year.  It did make me HAVE to pull back and find rest for my soul and spend some very serious time in prayer and alone time with my God.  I felt very guilty about that at first.  I kept thinking that I should be doing better about doing the things I felt God was leading me to.  Then in the midst of all of this, I heard a podcast that brought out a scripture to me.  I have always heard the verse:

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23

I have sung Great is Thy Faithfulness many many times and meant every word of it, but I had never looked at the context around that verse until this podcast that I heard.  If you read the whole chapter it starts with “I am the man who has seen affliction by the rod of the Lord’s wrath.”  The writer of this lament is not just using flowery words about the faithfulness of God.  This writer has suffered.  He has grown old and he has known hardship.  He feels like his heart is pierced and that he is the laughingstock of his friends.

He has broken my teeth with gravel; he has trampled me in the dust.  I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is.  So I say “My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.” I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.  I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.  YET THIS I CALL TO MIND AND THEREFORE I HAVE HOPE.  (emphasis mine) Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”  Lamentations 3:16-24

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My friends have you ever been there?  Have you ever felt so distraught and so so hurt over life events and JUNK going on in your life that you felt like your face was in the dust and you may as well have been eating gravel!  There have been a lot of events this year that have made me feel that way!  And when I read this lament and I realized that the writer was saying that he felt all of those things yet he was going to proclaim the faithfulness of God and cling to his hope because of the Lord.  I was still feeling very guilty about starting the blog and then stopping the blog, starting a bible study then stopping a bible study, but then I kept reading.

The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; IT IS GOOD TO WAIT QUIETLY FOR THE SALVATION OF THE LORD.  (emphasis mine) It is good for a man to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.  It is good for a man to bear the yoke while e is young.  Let him sit alone in silence for the Lord has laid it on him.  Let him bury his face in the dust – there may yet be hope.  Lamentations 3:25-29

I took from that verse that sometimes it is good to draw close to Him who created me and has blessed me and is healing me! The one with whom I have walked for years and just be with Him.  I needed my God to work on my soul and to bring healing to me so in many many ways that is what I have done for most of 2018.  I have spent a lot of time reading, listening to podcasts and playing worship music so that I could let God heal my soul.  I will call all of the things that He has taught me to my mind because they are the things that will bring me hope.  I have one more passage to share out of this chapter:

For no one is cast off by the Lord forever.  Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love.  For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to anyone.  Lamentations 3:31-33

You see the grief and the hurt and the anguish and the pain, they are from the enemy.  We live in a broken fallen world and Satan is prowling seeking someone to devour.  If we aren’t careful we can get devoured so easily in the pain and the hurt of the things that happen to us.  It is a fight to stay focused on the hope.  But that is what I am learning.  I will not let the hurt and the anguish paralyze me.  I may walk with a limp.  I may be quieter than I used to be but with the help of my God and the hope he brings to me, I will cling to his hope and his unfailing love and I will emerge stronger.  Sometimes I may need to or you may need to “sit alone in silence and wait quietly for the Lord.”  But the sitting in the silence is what helps us to see the hope that is already there.  The Hope of the Lord that is new every morning.

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In His Hope,

Sonia

What does Christmas mean to me?

I have had a lot of time to reflect and think this Christmas season.  Perhaps too much. This morning as I sit in a quiet house with a beautiful tree in front of me and a beautiful view of the lake I keep going over and over this question in my head.

When I was a girl growing up in a house with three older sisters, Christmas was about ANTICIPATION!  The anticipation of it all was the wonder!  I remember waking up REALLY early and we could hardly wait to go in the living room to see what Santa had brought.  We had a rule that we couldn’t go in without Momma and Daddy and I think the time may have been 3:00 am that we had to wait until to go get them.  We could hardly wait to go see what Santa brought. I can remember waking up and watching the clock until 3:00.  I am the youngest so I know that my sisters probably reached a point that their excitement for the season had waned but they always were good sports to me and played along.  Then most years we would load up in the car and travel to Arkansas to see our grandparents.  I loved being with cousins and Aunts and Uncles and Mammaw and Pappaw in that cold cold house in Arkansas.  I remember my Pappaw getting up really early when we were there so he could warm the house up before everyone else got up.  The house was heated by gas space heaters so it would take a bit to get it warm enough for everyone to start moving around a bit.

 

When I was a young woman, raising my own children, the anticipation was there but Christmas was more about the PREPARATION!  Oh the hustle and bustle of the holiday season when you are a young mama. The shopping, the baking, the fun, the calendars, the present wrapping, the long car rides, all of it was a blur at times.  I can remember being so exhausted when the season was over that I wondered if I had done it all right or not. I remember loading my babies into the car to go over the river and through the woods and trying to keep them entertained while we made these treks and wondering if I had focused too much on presents and not enough on the presence of Jesus.  I would wonder if and when we would all slow down enough to remember the reason we were celebrating.

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Nowadays, I still have the anticipation and the preparation.  (I cannot wait to have all of my people under my roof!) But Christmas is becoming more and more about the MEMORIES.  I have reflected a lot this week on days when I was younger and busier.  I can remember longing for a quiet Christmas and now that I am here I realize that Christmas shouldn’t always be quiet. I truly don’t want to say all of this to be sad. I cherish my times growing up so much in my heart. I cherish the days I was a young mama and I was so tired.  I cherish the times with my sisters and I cherish the days I had my Mama and Daddy to go see.  I miss my grandparents and aunts and uncles. It’s really weird to realize that you are all of a sudden the older generation. Maybe it’s just a part of getting older.  You can’t help but reflect on the days gone by.  And you long for those days.

BUT MOST OF ALL Christmas is about JESUS!  Through the ANTICIPATION, the PREPARATION and the MEMORIES!  I pray that more than anything else that we will always remember the baby who was wrapped in swaddling clothes and was placed into a manger!  I pray that Jesus warms our hearts even when we are excited about the times to come with family or exhausted from the preparations or reflecting on the memories of the past. I pray that Jesus will always be the central focus of whatever we do during the holidays.  I love all things Christmas!  I love Rudolph and Santa and red and green.  I love old Christmas decorations as well as new bright shiny glittery ones.  I love old Christmas movies, as well as the cheesy Hallmark Christmas movies. I pray that as we have decorated and as we celebrate and even as we start to take it all down and pack it away that we will always remember that He came to give us Hope, Peace, Joy and Love!  I want to always remember the baby most of all. I want to always remember “Jesus is the Reason for the Season”. I want to sing Christmas carols old and new and I want to hold those I love close and I want to make room for new traditions and I want to hold onto the things of the past close and dear to my heart.  I pray that if you are reading this that you will do the same.

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MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!

 

Thanksgiving Wishes

Well it’s been a while since I’ve posted.  I really hate it when it seems that every post I start is like that.  When I started this thing out I really intended to post weekly and then well, things like “writer’s block”, life and just not wanting to sound so depressing on every post kicked in.   Then it seemed for a while that I might be abandoning it altogether.  But then this morning, I woke up with all these thoughts going in my head and heart and I know that I process things better when I write.

 

I have been on a mission this month to try to find something to be Grateful for every day. I have missed a couple of days but have for the most part been able to find something to post. (I post on Instagram). I love Christmas and all things holidays but I agree with a lot of people that sometimes Thanksgiving gets pushed aside for Christmas.  I have to be intentional to remember Thanksgiving and look for things to Give my Thanks for so that I don’t gloss over it with preparations for Christmas. This morning as I am thinking of things I am grateful for, I am also thinking of things I wish I had known to be grateful for.

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Today is Sheri’s birthday.  Her first one in heaven would have been her 57th here on earth if she had stayed.  I’m sorry but it still seems so surreal that she is actually not on earth anymore.  Some days I have to remind myself that she is not at her house sitting in her chair watching some old western on television or some crime drama. Sheri loved to watch television probably better than anyone I know.  If you called and one of her shows was on, some of the conversation would turn to uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.  I always knew something had caught her attention on one of her shows and that she wasn’t listening to a word I said.  It was sometimes better to just catch her at another time.  There have been many times over the last 10 months I have started to pick up the phone to call her.  I wish I had done that more when she was there sitting in her chair.  I also can’t walk into a Wal Mart anywhere that I don’t find myself looking for her, which is really dumb because the one she worked at was in Crossett, Arkansas.  But it will forever be etched in my brain that she belongs there in Wal Mart working in the back room.  I somehow think I see her rounding a corner at every Wal Mart.  Sheri had a great laugh when she remembered to use it.  I loved her smile and I loved the twinkle in her eye when she had a bit of mischief going on in that head of hers. And her giggle.  I wish I had remembered to love it more when she was here with us.  The last few years I think Sheri forgot to laugh though.  She became more worried about stuff and she didn’t feel good and went through a period where she was just sad and negative a lot.  But hey she got the last laugh.  I guess the one thing about Sheri celebrating this birthday in heaven that brings me some comfort is that I know that she is loving that she got to go be with Momma and Daddy first.  She always loved to tell the story first or get to experience things first, get the first piece of cake, etc. When I was younger these were things that bugged me about Sheri but now I wish I had known to love it more.  I guess it’s ok that she got to go first.  Ok for her, it really stinks for us.

For many years we would spend this Thanksgiving week in Arkansas, staying with my Daddy and my guys hunting with him and we would cook and have lunches at the deer camp.  With lots and lots of family and friends.  I cooked more the week of Thanksgiving than I did the rest of the year back in those days.  I do remember looking out at the fire and see my guys sitting around with my Daddy, my brother in law and the other men telling stories of deer they had seen or dogs they had lost and working a plan to go hunt for their dogs that had gotten loose on the deer lease and not come back. I can still see them sitting around the fire in camo and orange and muddy boots.  I wish I had lingered a little longer.  I wish I had taken more pictures of it.  I wish I had known to love it a little more when it was happening.

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My childhood Thanksgivings were also spent in that house in Arkansas.  The one my sister lives in now.  I am so grateful that life is still going on in that house.  But oh how I remember being there as a child and then taking my own children there when I became an adult. When we were kids there was no central air and heat in that house and it was probably one of the hottest places on earth in the summertime and one of the coldest places in the wintertime. I love that now I have things in my house that remind me of that house.  I have the coffee cups I can remember my Pappaw drinking his coffee out of every morning and yes, I drink my coffee from them and I love it. I have a quilt that Burr and I have decided is the warmest blanket in this house that was made by my grandmother.  I have some furniture pieces that I brought back with me after my Daddy passed that will always remind me of that time and place.  I am grateful for those things now, but I do wish I had known to be more grateful for them then.

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This year we will be travelling to Ben’s for Thanksgiving if our little princess does not arrive first then we will be travelling before.  We will actually have our family time on Friday, I can’t wait to have all of us in one house. Life is so different as your children grow up and move on.  So I really want to be intentional to enjoy those times that we can all be together.  I pray that as we all gather together around a Thanksgiving table this week.  Whether it be on THE Thanksgiving day or another day that all of your family can gather, that we will drink it in and that we will remember to Love it now, while it is happening!.

 

 

Be Still (even if you are in the Wilderness)

It’s been a few weeks since I have done a blog post. Life for us has been somewhat on a roll lately. Between helping my son and daughter in law move TWICE in 3 weeks time (long story), having friends and family in for Labor Day weekend, finishing up a few weekend projects, launching our bible study, my body was really beginning to feel things building up last week and I knew that my weary bones as well as my weary soul was in need of some serious REST.  I have tried to do some of just that this weekend and for about the last 24 hours I have stared at this computer screen off and on thinking: What do I write about?  What do I want to say?  Does anybody care? Does it matter if they don’t care? Why did I start this in the first place?  So what if I never write another single thing would it matter at all?

 

Well I know the answer to that last question is a big old emphatic NO!  It would not matter a hill of beans if I never sat down to this computer to write another word out to anyone except ~ to me. And I’m not even sure why it would matter to me except that writing it out somehow helps me to process it. Whatever “it” is that is going around in my head and my heart. I know that when I write, I somehow feel more grounded in my thinking.

 

When I feel God speaking to me, whether it be about leading me to do something or comforting me in things that are troubling me, it always seems to come in themes.  The Bible Study that my group is working on right now, pointed out that God’s voice when He is wanting us to “get” something will always be persistent and consistent.  I have found that to be very true.  When we were praying about the Bible Study and if it was to be, God was consistently and persistently wooing us to do it. He gave me a theme verse and it seemed that everywhere I turned that verse would be there.

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we can ever ask or think by the power of his name. Ephesians 3:20 

Everywhere I turned that verse would be there.  Whether it was in a devotional or a sermon that was preached or bible study or just someone quoting it to me it was always there.  Don’t get me wrong, I know that that is a pretty popular verse and I am sure it is there all the time.  But for the first time, every time I heard it, it would burn in my heart.  It was like even though I was hearing it over and over and I knew that I had heard it many times before, it was like I had never heard it before.

 

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There are two themes that God seems to be teaching me about right now, that keep coming up everywhere I turn. The first is BE STILL AND ENJOY HIS PRESENCE! I am really working this one out right now. I really have no problem with having a daily quiet time.  I just know that if I am not careful it becomes just a request list, and a thank you Lord and I checked that off my “to do” list today, now all I gotta do is wait for the blessing.  Oh I don’t want to be that way.  I so want to spend my quiet time practicing His presence.  I am not even sure what that looks like yet.  But I know that I am falling way short of it.  I am working on it. I want to be more intentional.  Not to make it legalistic, but you see my “ADD” personality can be distracted by so many things. I want to be more disciplined than to look at Facebook or Instagram during my quiet time. “But Lord, I may see a prayer request or someone who needs me to pray for them!” Yeah that’s true but how much time am I wasting watching little videos or liking posts that mean nothing.  I want to focus my time on His presence and not just chasing all of my scattered thoughts. IMG_2779

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The other theme in my life right now is that sometime The Wilderness is not all bad.  Just a few weeks ago in this study that I was doing, I learned something that I had never noticed before. Exodus 13:17 says

When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter.  For God said “if they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”

You see I never realized that God led them out of Egypt through the wilderness intentionally.  Now the Israelites did not have to remain in the wilderness for 40 years. However, God was intentional in leading them there to begin with.  Because if he hadn’t, if they had not seen His miracles in the wilderness and learned to depend on Him for their manna and their water and the day to day leading. Then they would have turned right around and headed right back to Egypt and into slavery. Something else just occurred to me and of course this is speculation but given how Pharaoh was turning up the heat on them daily just because they were asking to leave, if they had gone back, don’t you for a minute think that the conditions wouldn’t have been even more treacherous than before.  They would have thought oh my what have we done, within the first few hours.  When God leads you out of Egypt, going back should never be an option.  Are you stuck in a Wilderness or are you still stuck in Egypt?  Or are you praying for someone else who is?  Depending on that Egypt, the Wilderness may still be hard to go through but if you walk through it and you look for God in it, He will lead you to your Canaan.  Oh Lord my prayer is that I will not return to the many “Egypts” he has led me out of.  I pray that I will learn whatever it is that He wants me to learn in the wilderness so that I can live in Canaan.  I want to LIVE in His presence.

 

Thank you for reading.

Until next time.

~Sonia~

 

PS Just as I was about to post I had a friend come looking for a afternoon snack.  I am still in awe that God has given us a place to do life where a deer will walk right up on my patio and say hello.  I didn’t have anything at the time, but I now have her some carrots for when she returns.

There’s a touch of Fall in the air!!

This Labor Day weekend, I am so so grateful for this little touch of Fall as I sit here on my sun porch, and watch a beautiful sunrise and enjoy just a few moments of solitude.  My thoughts keep wandering a bit over the last two weeks and I realize how very blessed I am.  We here in Mississippi have been going on about our business while Hurricane Harvey wreaked a bit of havoc on Houston and the surrounding areas.  Oh don’t get me wrong.  We survived Katrina so our hearts and our prayers are certainly with the people of Texas.  I actually have some Texas people who I have been very concerned about.  I am grateful to say that all of my Texas people are safe. I hope that if you have Texas people yours are too.

But, it has been a busy two weeks.  Actually the whole month of August has been somewhat of  a whirlwind.  Working at a school, it’s crazy time.  But add to that launching a bible study, helping one kid move, Fall cleaning at the lake, getting ready for company and it has been a hectic two weeks.  Plus celebrating one of my BFFs 50th birthday!!. My old body aches just a bit, but my heart sure is full.

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My kids are coming today and I am so ready for some family time to just sit and laugh and eat and fish and ride fourwheelers and the boat and do some bonding.  Last year we had my sweet daughter in law’s whole family here but today we will just have our family plus her brother and his girlfriend.  But right now I get to sit here alone and think and reflect.  I love sitting here and listening to the woodpecker in the tree and the geese as they go flying by.  There is another bird out in the trees right off my porch who is being quite noisy this morning.  I wish I could get a good picture of that woodpecker.  He is beautiful.

One of the many swirling thoughts I am having is:  Why is it that we Christians are always so in awe and amazed that God would bless us?  His word says that he wants to.  Yet, we will every time be in awe when He does.  Approximately nine months ago, after the death of my sister I began to feel that God was leading me to do something. I shared with a couple of people that I felt God birthing something in me.  I then forgot that specific statement but kept searching for the answer as to what it was.  See I had prayed this prayer to God that if I had to hurt this bad please let it count for something.  I never knew how bad it would hurt to lose a sibling until I actually lost one.  You see it’s always been the four of us.  There were 4 Seamans girls, and now there are threeFullSizeRender-10.

Then, this past week the day after the bible study launch, where 47 women came together to study God’s word together, I was sharing how it went with a few friends at work. One had been there and the others had obligations and couldn’t and one of the ladies made a statement.  “Your baby was born, this is what you have been working on.”  I went back into my office and I remembered that statement that God was “birthing” something in me.  And I realized that we are just a couple of weeks shy of 9 months since we lost our sister.  I am so in awe as to what God has done here and brought together.  I am so looking forward to what He is going to do with all of us.  I am praying for testimonies after this study from women that show God’s faithfulness and what He wants to do with us, with ALL OF US.

I am also thinking about these adult children who are coming to visit today with the sweetest little grandson anyone could ask for.  When he smiles his whole face smiles, just like his Mama and the brown eyes that he got from his Daddy just have that little bit of mischeviousness in them that his Daddy always had.  Every time I look at him I see a picture of his Daddy in my minds eye that brings back a memory and makes me glad all over again that God granted me the privilege to be his Mom.

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Just having this lakehouse itself is a blessing that I never thought we would have.  It happened in a quick instant it felt like.  Actually the process took about 2 and ½ months when the first thought crossed our minds and the papers were signed.  I can still scarcely believe it.  Especially if you know my man who puts more thought into everything he does than the average bear. Yet now we have 2 years worth of memories here and we fall in love with the place even more every time we come.  I still love my life back in Madison, but my weekends tend to be here at the Lake where I get to pretend that I am a country girl.

As I get ready for my day, I am so grateful to God for what He has done in me, in my marriage and in my children. Y’all have a safe and happy Labor Day Weekend and Be Grateful!

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever, Aman.

Ephesians 3:20-21