Since my last post I've completed another round of chemo and am well on my way to recuperating from that one. Yesterday I was blessed enough to receive a blood transfusion to help me along in the recovery process. I am hoping and praying that by tomorrow or Sunday I will be feeling a bit perkier. In the mean time, I've taken the time to rest as much as possible. I've been grateful that in starting our homeschooling journey this week (Monday was our first day of school) it has allowed for me to be home, stick to a schedule and therefore get the rest I need and the glorious peace that comes from just being home and having the ability to take it easy.
The Lord has been working greatly in my heart and life lately. I am so grateful for this illness that has caused me to once again slow down and refocus. Obviously I wouldn't have chosen to be sick, again, and go through chemo, again, but I know that the Lord has a purpose and plan in this and I am resolved to allow him to work in my heart and life to bring forth his will. I want to obey and submit and find out what lessons there are in this valley. I am desiring to grow while I'm here in the valley of sickness and I rejoice in knowing that things could be so much worse. I count myself truly grateful for where the Lord has me and really for just *being* here.
Right now it seems the Lord is really working on me in the areas of showing me His love for me, breaking me of people-pleasing and reminding me that it's only in HIS strength that I can win victories in my life. These are hard lessons, but I am so grateful for them. I want to take the time to share with you how He's working in my life with each of these lessons, but I really need more time to work them out in my life before I can share and hope to bless anyone else. I still have a long ways to go.
I can though give you a glimpse of the last issue. I've felt really discouraged over the last several years for not being farther along in my walk and struggling with the same battles over and over. It is frustrating when I can't seem to win a victory in an area of my life and it's something I have to keep coming back to and struggling with. Just when I think I've hopped forward it seems like I figuratively turn the other way and run back and pick up that very thing in which I was trying to get victory over in the first place. Paul seems to understand what I mean in Romans 7 when he says "For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do." I'm glad that I'm not alone in this struggle, God's word is so comforting. I've realized though the main reason I struggle and fail; I seem to lean on the Lord for a time in breaking/building habits or getting victories in certain areas, but then once I think I've gotten past it so to say I think to myself "I've got this!" Then I end up trying to conquer habits or areas in my own strength and not leaning on the Lord in prayer and scripture to continue to help me in that specific area. It's hard and a lot of work on my own. It's stressful and leaves me feeling discouraged, despondent and like a complete failure. I almost don't even want to try anymore. On the other hand, when I lean on the Lord it may still be hard, but in HIS strength I am able to persevere and it takes the pressure off of me to say "Lord, I just can't do this own my own, I need your help to get through and continue to do the right thing. Please, just help me here." And continue to pray that way until doing the right thing becomes second nature. I also seem to discount the importance of praying about every. single. thing. I was recently reading a book on parenting and the author mentioned praying about something I would have never thought to pray about. It helped me to realize that I am truly not committing everything to the Lord in prayer and that's the big reason I am failing in my own efforts so often. The Lord does care about the little details in my life and He does want to help me work things out and order my days and such. He is my husbandman and he wants to be treated as so, involved in my life and communicated with often. He desires for me to come to Him. I'm sure many of you know all of this already, I'm just a little slow and see things differently at different times I guess. I'm just so glad that He is helping me to learn and grow.
I've purposed to keep a prayer journal of all the little and big things that I need help with, need to work on, figure out, make decisions about, etc. Instead of going to people for their advice or opinions I am first going to God, the One whom I should have been turning to all along. Yep, I'm slow.
I'm glad He doesn't expect perfection from me and that He understands and knows me better than I know myself. I am so grateful for His mercy and grace that renew themselves daily. I can't quite grasp that, but I'm trying to. And I'm also trying not to be so hard on myself.