Parts of this post have been in "edit" mode for almost two months.
I decided it was time to finally make them a reality.
The very long post of yesterday with tons of Christmas pictures had to be posted in a somewhat timely manner and I find I don't ever really type what I want to say on here, so this post is just going to be more "rough draft" than even my unpolished normal writing.
Where to begin?
Let me start with saying I have always had a love/hate relationship with social media, specifically blogs and Facebook. So much of what we see is just the beautiful, what-I-want-you-to-see stuff of life. If you struggle with jealousy or envy or feeling sorry for yourself or have hormonal days, then you've probably sat in front of a computer screen, stared at what someone posted, and felt worse about your own life or circumstances.
We all have an image in our mind of what life should be like, what we'd like to be doing or see happening, and it's usually beautiful. We see someone else's beautiful when our life isn't so lovely and envy it. Sometimes it sends us even farther into the valley.
I recently joined Pinterest. Mostly, I was searching for hairstyles and liked the ease of looking through pictures others had pinned with the keywords "short hair".
Pinterest...another social media for me to love and hate.
December is a time when social media can be particularly hard for me. I want to do these cutesy crafts and projects with my kids. I want to have a lovely decorated house. I want to make this season meaningful for my family. I want.... want, want, want. Oh, Pinterest makes the wanting more easy to see!
But, this post isn't about social media. Really, it isn't.
My life isn't a storybook. It's beautiful and fabulous and lovely and full of amazing gifts God has given me. Five people surround me daily to prove God's goodness to me.
But, this December, I found myself not feeling "ready" for Christmas. For the life of me, I could not get myself to a place of emotionally and spiritually being "there". I can't put my finger on it. I've discussed it with a few people and suggested maybe it's hormones (highly likely), the adjustment of having a baby again (highly likely), or spiritual (placing my stock here most).
I'll probably blog a little more about the first two later. But, right now, I just want to share something that has caused me much anguish and questioning this last year.
Last fall (2010), a series of events happened that caused me to step back from my life and start to look at things, seemingly, from a different point of view. I never really wrapped my brain around all of it and then my life turned again as Jett was born. [Not like I hadn't had three kiddos before him, but I forgot how enveloping babyhood is.] So, I ended up spending most of 2011 asking some hard questions of God and never really getting answers. I still don't feel like I've dug in enough to His Word or Him, in general, to get the answers. I feel like I've been busy surviving and trying to scrape together bits of what I felt like I used to have together...namely managing my house and family.
So, as I start 2012, it's really just a continuation of these lingering questions.
Here they are:
--where in Scripture to we see the idea of a "calling", specifically as it relates to vocation?
--does God lead us/"call us" to specific tasks? do those change? is there an overarching "calling" on our life as believers?
--does God speak to us, in a conversational way? where do we see that Biblically?
Some of these questions arose as friends walked through trials, changes came that were out of my control or influence, and I began reading some things.
I read the book Just Do Something: A Liberating Approach to Finding God's Will by Kevin DeYoung. Whew. It challenged me. It got me thinking.
Then, I read an article published by Stand To Reason. Since the article was part one of a three part series, I was sort of left hanging until the second article came out in the summer and then finally the third one was published in November. [Link to STR articles. Solid Ground is their monthly newsletter/article. This is the archives homepage. You can read each of the three articles. They are PDF articles, so there isn't a way to link to a webpage other than this. They are titled "Does God Whisper, Parts 1, 2, 3".]
I'm putting all this out there in blogland hoping someone will take time to read the articles and give me some feedback. I have printed copies that I'm currently re-reading. My plan is to dig into them and really seek the Lord this month.
I'd welcome your thoughts.