Saturday, July 7, 2012

Many Changes in One Week
(written June 16, 2012)

Yesterday the other 90 year old oak tree next to our house had to be brought down. Due to building by the previous neighbors it could no longer get sustenance on that side as its root system was being covered over with concrete.

This had been a week of changes as far as long-standing “markers” in our life. We discontinued the landline after 30 years. Fred’s moving his office from where it’s been for nineteen years to Carey’s and Rich’s house, and clearing out and shutting down his shop over on Southwest from where he’s had it for 8 years. We’re curtailing our salary for the time being and living on savings as another cost containment measure.

As sad as this all can be it’s also a sign of change and God moving us into a new era!

I cried a fair amount this week and shared and talked with my girls who have shared in the grieving about the tree and the phone number.

This morning, after a sweet time of prayer with Thayne and Maria, Jorf and Korf, and Claude and Debbie here last night, I stood out on the side deck to look up at the big empty space over our house to the west, created by the removal of that tree. It was then that You filled my heart with a sense of openness and limitlessness in those skies. I recognized it as that same opening up of the heart and mind and soul that happens in the mountains or the seashore, or even in open airy architecture (Crystal Bridges Museum). Then I got it!!

The removal of the dead and dying parts of our lives opens up new vistas and horizons, bigger spaces and possibilities. It’s invigorating yet if I don’t keep my eyes on You I can easily feel lost and adrift and fear and anxiety take root. However, if I do keep my gaze on You and Your desire towards me and on the fact that You’ve given me new openness to move about and have my being in and expand our lives into, I am quieted and encouraged. My fears become excitement. My anxiety becomes anticipation.

Thank You for displaying Your vastness to me this week!
Thank You for loving my heart and the heart of my best friend and lover!

You are truly a God Who undoes me…and then settles me!

So in this unreal time in the midwest , really 50% of the country, of severe heat and drought I realized several things.

We are going through a time of testing and trial and financial problems. Our business is being downsized to contain costs and we are taking measures to try to keep it and us "in the black". 
It is not as if we haven't been here before, but this time the overall global and national economic climate is pretty grim and longer term than in the past.

What God has been teaching my heart during this present season is that my nourishment, my life-giving water and sustenance is not to be found here in this world system, nor our generating an income, but in Him alone.

Right! I thought I had been taught this before! Ah! He goes deeper with me this time, burning away more dross, pruning back my life more severely. There is always more dross, there is always more that can be pruned. Yet the closer I get to reflecting the image of Christ in me, the more painful and difficult it becomes letting go of some of these other gods I've clung to in my life.  

So, I stand firm on God and Who He is and His Truth, He IS truth! I drink from the Living Waters when I grow weary and feel faint and fear losing heart...losing faith. 

It's becoming clearer and clearer to me that I have nothing apart from Abba, my Daddy God! I have no skills, no abilities, no resources, no support systems that will never fail, never run out, never turn away from me...but my God!

In July 5th's  Streams in the Dessert the reading was about  being led into the dessert to find or receive back our vineyards. It was based on Hosea 2:14-15

I really hope that in this time in the Valley of Achor, which means "troubled", I see it and recognize it as "a door of hope." And that "There [I] will sing as in the days of [my] youth."  And that "there [He] will give [me] back [my] vineyards." Hosea 2:14-15

I am thirsty and only One can quench my thirst in this dessert-like season of drought!