Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014-2015

Going into 2014 my word was "Intention"; something I hadn't had for years. Like a wandering two year old left alone in a field of nothingness, I'd wandered for four years without aim and definitely without......intention. I knew that if I was going to break out of the 5 foot 6 inch wall I'd built around myself I would have to become a person of intention. Summed up, it simply meant letting my yes be yes and my no be no. There would be no more grey areas. There were certain times I throughout the years that I would be intentional, but then I would lose steam. 

The first place I got to put my intention into practice was a women's Bible study at our church. It was weekly for several weeks. I had to be intentional about going, showing up, and being present (participating) no matter how I felt. It meant saying no to my no. Little did I know that would be the birthing place for my next level of intention, allowing myself to FINALLY be planted, rooted, and grounded in a church. FOR ME, because of having to walk in intention about EVERYTHING, it meant no more "me-time" Wednesday nights at home. It meant being at church, fellowshipping, breaking bread, studying the word, and prayer with my brothers and sisters in Christ. If you know me then you would know what a miracle this truly is. The wall I'd built began to crumble to pieces as I became more and more intentional. Slowly I began to learn that another word for intentional was discipline. I became more disciplined than I had in years and the harvest it would yield was beyond 100 fold. My chains were breaking and I was being set free every single time I wanted to cancel plans but followed through anyway; every time I did want to stay in bed but got up for church anyway. I'm the one who got to walk away blessed and sharpened by another. Let me say, however, that it wasn't always easy.  I spent years bailing on plans, in isolation, safe in my own world. Especially between 2010-2014. I wasn't living at all. I was merely existing. There it is. The truth about my life as it had been until the beginning of 2014. 

I digress.  Our church began a building project and one of the hashtags that was created was ‪#‎heartforthehouse‬. For the first time in years, I could literally feel my stony heart becoming a heart of flesh and it melted away as I found joy, love, and compassion for the church once again. I TRULY had a heart for the house. We joined our beloved Brandon Assembly and it was family. We had ups, downs, and in-betweens, but always did life together, one for another. My heart was set ablaze once again with passion and purpose. 

Then came August 2014. For nearly four years all I did was kick and scream to leave Florida and return to Georgia and in the blink of an eye He gave me that desire of my heart. It wasn't even on our radar in August. By September 3rd we were officially Georgians again. I asked God to do one thing for me. I was so afraid of moving that I asked Him that if it was REALLY Him that He would allow me to take my hands off of the situation and show me an "ONLY GOD" moment in my life and He did. Every time I turned around during the transition from Florida to Georgia I could stand back and say, "ONLY GOD". If you take a look at my statuses from September 1-4th you will see exactly what I am talking about.
I learned so many things about myself, others, and God during my time in Florida. It was a dark time for me but I wouldn't recognize the brightest moments of my life as I do now were it not for our season there. One thing I learned was surrender. If I was going to continue to even survive, much less continue thriving in my intention, I had to surrender my dreams of moving back to Georgia to Him. It seems as if the moment I surrendered with pure hands and a clean heart, no hidden agenda or strings attached, Daddy said, "I'll take her back to Georgia now." Ry says that since moving back I've come back to life and quickly follows it up with, "I'm not joking." I suppose he's right. In my first month here I literally got out more than I did my entire four years in Florida, church included. That goes to show what a pitiful existence I was living. ONLY GOD in His infinite mercy brought me back. ONLY GOD. So 2014 was a year of intention and being true to the process of becoming a person of intention. 

2015?  My word is "BRAVE". 
I started to feel it around July 2014 and just sorta "tucked" it away, but as 2015 began to draw closer and closer what started out as a whisper has turned into a booming echo. I would be lying if I said I'm not dealing with a little bit of fear here. At first I was SUPER EXCITED. I envisioned myself as superwoman with a cape. I thought about being fierce and courageous and more bold for the causes and kingdom purposes that burn within me. But just as quickly as the excitement came, fear set in. Wait! Brave? What am I going to have to be brave about? Is something going to happen? I don't want to be brave. I don't want my word to be brave anymore. Then the Lord reminded me of Joshua 1:9, [Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”] You have to understand that generally speaking I'm not a person who is worrisome of fearful of much of anything. It's a two edged-sword at times. So this feeling of what is to come in 2015 is new to me but as I turn to His word to be comforted by His promises, I am reminded that He is with me wherever I go. And that whole strong and courageous thing isn't a suggestion. It's a command. Some people think having a "word for the year" is silly, and that's okay. But for me, it's always served as an anchor of sorts. When my soul is storm-tossed and confusion sets in and there's lack of direction I knew to be intentional and the year before that I knew to study the word "Grace". This year it's BRAVE. 

I pray, for you, that 2015 brings to you all that He has to give you and that you would make room to receive it and that when the challenging times come that you remember our blessed Savior also suffered everything we did and ever will. May you remember that you are never alone, believing that He will never leave you nor forsake you. I pray that you find him to be a Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father of Eternity, Prince of Peace; the Lover Of Your Soul & Lifter Of Your Head, a Mighty Fortess and Strong Tower, Your Healer and Provider, Your Source Of Strength, and your very Foundation. 

I pray Ephesians 3:14-19 over you. [For this reason I kneel before the Father from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named. I pray that He may grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power in the inner man through His Spirit, and that the Messiah may dwell in your hearts through faith. I pray that you, being rooted and firmly established in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the length and width, height and depth of God’s love, and to know the Messiah’s love that surpasses knowledge, so you may be filled with all the fullness of God.] 

YOU are so incredibly unique and valuable and loved endlessly. 

Now, May The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. [Numbers 6:24-26]