Babies, no thanks…(at least not now)

The post is most definitely inspired by the last 2 hours of my life. I giggled and cried through “What to expect when you’re expecting” and as I walked home in the glorious sunshine cast across our city I was inspired.

When I was dating my ex he asked me how many kids I would want. Surprising myself I said, 3-5 depending on where I ended up and finances etc. I had zero problem thinking about a future with babies running around, I was in love, secure and I was promised diamonds per child (jokes). Fast forward to just two weeks ago and I was babysitting my dear friend’s little girl. Though I would throw myself off a bridge to save that little girl, I love her so much, being single again, the thought of children makes me want to throw myself over that same bridge voluntarily. It really does come down to this, I reckon, our bodies, our minds, and our emotions prepare us for different seasons in our lives. Not being in love, imaging my life with children is rightly formidable…I want a dog and even that’s a commitment.

As I enter a new season of my life I find that there are particularly changes in my personality (the fact that every time I buy something I think “would I really want to pack this?”) as well as my emotional state when dealing with a variety of different situations, that are preparing me for next steps. Even now as I think about what the next season in my life may be I look back and see how decisions and circumstances have guided me there. The desires of my heart haven’t changed, I always wanted to pursue this path, but I wasn’t yet prepared to carry out the next season for all it could be. Equally, I’m not going to go out and pursue motherhood in my current season of life, it’s not the right time, i’m not prepared.

I’m so thankful to God that He created us the way He did. Each part of us, our physical, spiritual and emotional selves are so interconnected. Further, He cares enough to weave each part together creating a beautiful pattern that is our lives. We simply need to trust in His perfect timing and His perfect ways.

Frankly, even in the hardest times I’m comforted by the fact that His ways are greater than mine…I challenge you to do the same.

Your value does not lie in your decisions

Hi All! I blog at http://www.soworthloving.tumblr.com as well…and wanted to share today’s post with y’all here. love from sunny London!

 

What happens when your plans don’t come to fruition? What does it feel like when the plans you made with someone fall tragically to the wayside? How do you respond when a decision you made and acted on for your life turns out to be the “wrong” one?

Do you feel downcast? Does your heart feel heavy inside your chest? Is your worth called into question (mainly by you and no one else).

You are not alone. These feelings of sadness, rejection, confusion and lack of self-worth happen to many or perhaps, dare I say, ALL of us.

But know this…one day the sadness will lift. Old plans will be replaced by new ones. Dreams will fill the pages of your journal, dreams that outshine what currently feels like the be all and end all of dreams.

Remember that no one else’s decisions can change your destiny. True, they may change the path to getting there but if something good is meant for you, it will come to fruition.

Your value does not lie on your decision making ability. It does not lie in whether someone chose to spend their life with you. And it definitely does not lie in what you do.

You, yes you, are so worth loving. Don’t let any bump in your road tell you otherwise.

Uncovering the wounds

Two weeks ago I sprained the joint between my hip and my spine; the sacroiliac to be exact…I could barely walk, let alone lay down. Even sleep hurt…rest was almost out of the question. Today, the chiropractor was treating me (I am much better if you wanted to know) when she noticed the a muscle was so tight that my arms were actually different lengths. After treatment I was all back to normal but something the chiro said struck me: Often when you injure yourself it reveals other issues that you hadn’t taken the time or slowed down enough to notice. She went onto say that often we’re much harder on ourselves then we realise.

As I walked home those words lingered in my mind. How often does it happen that it takes a seemingly bigger problem or circumstance that suddenly opens up a whole world of hurt, pain and other issues. It’s as if losing your job, getting a bad grade, breaking up, or even injuring yourself can reveal the issues that are deeper down inside. Personally, I was making myself go crazy trying to understand why one situation was making me so miserable…then I realised that it simply stopped me from moving so fast in life and not resting enough to take time and let God (and me) deal with all that which I’d covered up in the past.

It’s so important that we take time to stop, rest and understand what is going on in our hearts. It’s too easy to keep yourself busy and cover up what is going on inside your heart. It’s kind of like sweeping the dust under the carpet. Eventually that pile of dust is going to get so big you’re going to trip over the carpet and all the dust flies out.

A few years ago a dear friend gave me a good illustration of this…she said…picture a long, narrow, gravel path; this is life. You’re walking along and you pass a huge boulder. You can either clammer over it and keep going, ensuring that it’s still in your life, or you can stop, work through it and polish it until it becomes a beautiful jewel.

I am so guilty of rushing through each day, trying to get to the other, clambering past my boulders and ignoring them that I leave the dusty, mess behind me…my challenge this week (and continually) is to stop, take a moment and make sure that instead of big rocks hidden away, I’ll have beautiful jewels.

it’s okay to be sad

A Time for Everything

There is a time for everything,

 and a season for every activity under the heavens:

a time to be born and a time to die,

    a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,

    a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,

    a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,

a time to search and a time to give up,

    a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,

    a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,

    a time for war and a time for peace.

I was having a conversation with a beautiful friend of mine today. We were discussing the discipline of changing your thought pattern or transforming your mind. In our case the challenge of focusing our hearts and our minds back on Christ and our hope, rather than our current circumstances. Then conversation evolved into whether it was okay to be sad.

Often I don’t give myself permission to grieve or to be sad. I think that I should be stronger than my tears, stronger than my pain, stronger than the hole in my heart. It’s easy to put pressure on yourself to get over the moment, when in actual fact, we need to live in the moment, deal with it so we can move on healthily; becoming the person that God wants us to be. There is a time for each season of our lives.

James 4 states “So submit to God…draw near to God and he will draw near to you…Grieve, mourn and weep. Turn your laughter into mourning and your joy into despair.” (v. 7-9 paraphrased). I reckon it’s okay to be sad but in that we need to give that sadness to God and allow him to be our comfort.

I have learned over the last year that sadness isn’t wrong. Nor is grieving. It is okay to be sad, knowing our hope is not in the temporal but in the eternal. Our peace is not of this world but of the one who has overcome the world.  (John 16:33)

Broken

I’m possibly one of the most tactile people I have ever met. I’m not opposed to holding hands in public, or someone (I know) sitting close to me. One of my best friends frequently sits with her legs on my lap.

I think when you are experiencing pain or brokenness (and this is only my opinion) the effects come out in your most basic responses to love. When I’m in love I want to be near the person I love. Distance makes my heart break and ache. When I love someone, romantic or otherwise, they can be nearer than skin to be an it doesn’t matter.

Two weeks ago my mom came to visit. I barely wanted her near me, I was so broken. Then in the last two weeks I attended an amazing conference (Colour), had my mom and friends near me and stepped into another part of the healing process. I didn’t realise how bad it was, how broken I had been, until 2 days ago when I hurt my back and I could barely move. I was getting a massage and I said something to the lady which opened my eyes to how far I have come in the last two weeks…

“two weeks ago not even my mom could touch me”

Of all people in the world my mom should be the safest and yet even her nearness brought pain. Now that it’s changed I have realised that we often hide our brokenness. Whether it’s hiding away in our homes, by eating too much, by eating too little, by backing away from friends, we often only half heal. It’s not until we completely let our defences down that we can complete or move the healing process along.

I have written about this before, but I was again reminded by Sheila Walsh, that we may not always have the answers, we may want to ask why, but God is sovereign, therefore He is always in control. If the God that sent His son to us so that we can be free loves us that much, He can heal us, whatever the brokenness is.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

So let go, surrender and lean on the one who loves so completely He gave it all so we could be free.

so worth loving

A few months ago I stumbled upon a clothing company and brand called So Worth Loving. For many years I have had it on my heart that men and women should know the value that they hold. I think it started out at a young age when I was in gymnastics. I was 5. I met a girl there who had never been out of Canada. You can ask my parents, at 5 years old I’m pretty sure I’d been on a plane more than I could count. This beautiful girl had not only never been out of Canada, but never out of our province or on any kind of plane, train or long haul bus. Her parents said to my dad “when we go on holiday we don’t want to take the kids; we need a break.” I remember looking at my friends eyes and thinking that she looked a bit hurt.

I can’t judge those people and their motivations, but I do recall thinking that they didn’t really love their kids. They probably did but to a 5 year old who was adored and taken all over the place, that wasn’t love.

Growing up I was not only told I was loved but understood in the actions portrayed by those around me, that I was valued, loved and precious. My heart sinks when I see people around me who, through no fault of their own, have not had value placed upon them. So, when I came across soworthloving I was ecstatic and really wanted to get involved.

About Eryn (from soworthloving.com)

Before I founded So Worth Loving, before I had ever thought of customizing t-shirts or realized I could empower people with a simple message, I was just a little girl in a small town where everyone had an opinion of who you should be. As the youngest of three girls, I saw the struggle to meet the impossible standards for success set by the media and reinforced through peer pressure; but I also saw the strength that can be drawn from the support of your family and people who love you. Years later, it was that same support system that encouraged me to spurn conventional wisdom and pursue my passion for music, which ultimately provided me with a platform to spread this positive message. Struggling with the unfair expectations put on you is something you don’t have to do alone. And So Worth Loving is a community of people dedicated to spreading that message and helping empower people to pursue their dreams.

Eryn Erickson | Founder
So Worth Loving, est. 2011

So, now I’ll not only be blogging from Beyond Rubies but also contributing to this AMAZING movement too. Hope you will join me.

xx michelle

Click here and here for links to my first few posts.