Wednesday, October 10, 2012

so don't stress

I had an "August" post where I bemoaned the difficulties of the said month, and said I was looking forward to September. Well, September was pretty amazing. It was a month of seeking and finding, a month of enjoying life, a month of encouragement. October has tarted off a little less...easy, but still has promise. 'Cause in the words of our dear Maria, "Oh, Liesl, you can't use school to hide your troubles, you have to face them!" So it follows that if you smooth over things for a time, you will eventually have to bring them back up again. And that's kinda what October's been so far. But it's good. After all, I know:
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. ~ Romans 5:3-5
Which brings me to something very encouraging - a new Bible study at our church. For years, even though I dearly love our wonderful godly church, I have felt that the young people/young adults group of members have been slightly neglected. But as an answer to prayer, the Lord has raised up several of our single young men and women (mid-to-late twenties in age) who have a heart for us! Yesterday was the first day of what has the makings of an encouraging young ladies study led by Sarah and Stephanie. 

Last night we talked about the Spirit, the ministries of the Spirit, and the fact that the same Spirit that was "hovering over the waters" (Genesis 1:1-2) at creation, the same Spirit that caused Christ's conception (Luke 1:35), the same Spirit that empowered Christ's earthly ministry (Acts 10:38), the same Spirit that is everywhere - there is no place He isn't (Psalm 139:7-10) is the same Spirit that dwells in us, if we are believers in Christ. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Isn't that a bit mind-blowing? I mean, MORE than a bit mind-blowing? 

I've found that idea, that the Power of the Spirit rests in me, very comforting as I've been processing my life lately. Comfort in the knowledge that God actually *knows* what I'm thinking, what I'm worried or stressed about (yes, I know, "no stress"), what I cry about at night, what wakes me up at four am every morning, what I'm struggling well as what I'm happy about, what makes my day, what fulfills me, and what I'm searching for - many of these things that I'm not even sure of the answers to myself. HE KNOWS. He knows it all. And the Spirit in me is what is working to drive me back to the Lord. Because as Pastor Keith so aptly pointed out on Sunday, the Spirit's job is to point us to the Father. The more I see myself as the weak, inadequate, sinful girl that I am, the more I can rejoice and rest in the strength, omnipotence, and purity of my Savior. And I can be encouraged at who I am becoming through Him, and how exciting life actually is for me right now, and how much potential there is in my present circumstances.
17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20 giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, 21 submitting to one another in the fear of God. ~ Ephesians 5:17-21 [emphasis mine]
In other words, I'm experiencing growing pains. Not in the physical sense...yes, I'm still five three-and-a-half...but in a spiritual and maturity sense. I've had to think about things in these past two months that I didn't expect to for at least another few years. I've been humbled, honored, encouraged, confused, invigorated, and challenged. All good things, when thought through from the right perspective. And much of it is still going on. Daily. But now in light of the Spirit and the power of God at work in my life and the lives of those I love, I can take it on with strength - unafraid.

Anyway, that's my word for the evening. Hope you all are splendid and having a blessed week - whether it's school or work or parenting or just living that you are currently employed in. Do it all as unto the Lord!


  1. Thank you, Jo. Thank you for being open, taking off the mask of propriety and I'm-fine. Sometimes your life seems so peachy and exciting from the blog, so it is really nice to hear that you are human, after all. : P
    I wouldn't say that my last couple weeks have been splendid, but probably blessed in a hard sort of way. I've got "growing pains," too, and they're extra hard when you can't do anything about them. But what you've said here has helped. I need to stop being glum and start giving thanks in all things, and remember that He is here, and has me all figured out when I don't have a clue.
    Thank you, dear. I am not alone. God bless you! Phil. 1:6

    ~ The Extra-Ordinary Princess

  2. It's encouraging, Jo, to see the Spirit at work in your life. The way you have testified of God's comforting grace and His "mind-blowing" greatness has been the cause of a very refreshing break from my studies. Thanks for writing! :D

    God bless,