Friday, March 11, 2011

Spring Contemplation

The Merriam-Webster says this about "contemplation":
1 a : concentration on spiritual things as a form of private devotion
   b : a state of mystical awareness of God's being
2    : an act of considering with attention : STUDY
3    : the act of regarding steadily

I would say that what's been happening in my brain is a combination of most all of these.  I've been thinking about my life in general, but also as a Christian.  I've been mulling over in my brain why I believe, what I believe and how it has changed me through the years as a person.

Many years ago... I'm 56 now so I can say that... when I was a high school student in the midst of the "Jesus Movement"  it was "cool" to be a follower of Jesus, or any other religious leader of the time.  I toyed with Eastern Mysticism and looked into many different religions.  My family had a strong faith and it didn't take me too long to realize that they were right after all.  I had joined a Penticostal church and made many new Christian friends in Colorado.  Then my marriage came unglued.  By this time we had two small children and I really had no where to go.  It became increasingly evident that for the safety of my daughters I had to go away.  We ended up packing a few boxes and moving back East.  My folks put us up for a while.  I was totally wiped out and humiliated.  My faith had been shaken to the core.  I wasn't sure what was true or even if I had faith in anything.  God picked up the shattered pieces of my life and gave me hope.  I started school again, but this time with purpose since I now had a family to care for.  It was really tough sometimes and we pinched pennies.  My family helped out some, but the strength to face each day came from God.  After a couple years of praying, my husband came East too and settled in the same area.  I had great hopes that finally we might be able to work out our marriage.  It was a really stressful time, but he really had no intention of getting back together with me.  He had his own agenda and it became evident that he was not a changed person.  We finally divorced.  Even after being separated for 2 years it still felt as though someone was tearing my heart out when the judge granted the divorce.  It was a very dark day that I don't think I've ever fully recuperated from.
He went on to marry another two times.  He had another little girl.  My children still had contact with their father and he meant a great deal to them, and to me as we continued to talk and be friendly with one another even though he at times could be very verbally abusive.  My greatest fear was that he would try to take the children away from me.  I worked even harder.  I went to school and finished by degree in education.  He had the means to buy nice things for the children and I was not able to do that.   I taught school and had the children in the classes I taught.  We were very close, but there is a special bond between a daughter and her father. 

Then he died very suddenly.  Oh what a sad day it was.  We cried and cried.  I couldn't pick myself up and I couldn't encourage my girls.  Once again, God reached down and did a miracle in my heart.  So many times I had no one else to turn to He was there.  He never left me alone.  He never let me wallow in despair for very long. 

I often think of others who do not have a Heavenly Father to walk through life with.  What a sad thought.  It is hard to put into words.  The death of my first baby, the death of my husband's grandparents and my grandparents, the death of my dad and then the long sickness and death of my mom, the death of my husband... the many times I wandered away, the falling away of friends and family and ridicule of many... He has been there through it all. 

The verse that has encouraged my heart like no other...

Isaiah 43
...Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.   When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.  For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour:...

I am redeemed and lead of God.  All the hard times were to bring me to this place where my confidence is not in my own strength, but in my strong and mighty God.

If you are facing hard times in your life, please remember this truth.  God will never leave you.  He will never forsake you.  When the glue wears out on any other relationship... He will never fail.

Sorry this is so long and tedious to read.  I am not saying my trials have been any harder that anyone elses trials.  I know we all face them.  I pray that you are facing them with God by your side and in your heart.  I'm sure there will be many more trials for me to face.  I know God will be there every step of the way and NOTHING happens unless He allows it and has a purpose for it.

I am praying that today you will be bless beyond what you expect.


  1. This post wasn't long or tedious to read. In fact, I think as Christians it is very importmant to share out struggles & lessons learned. That way we can build each other up & our faith is strengthened. Thanks so much for sharing & have a great weekend!

  2. Amen to what Mary Ann said ... this was such a BLESSING to read. Thank you for sharing your story - well, a little bit of it. It is always so encouraging to me to hear how God is faithful to all His children - over and over and over. What a wonderful God He is!!!! I am so thankful that you have a happy life now w/ Mr. D - and that you let God use the hard things in life to make you the wonderful encourager and sweet Christian you are now. I just know you from the kind comments you leave me on my blog - but I can sense your heart. God bless!

  3. Thank you ladies for your sweet comments. I have been really blessed to read all your posts as well. It has been a treat to be part of this community. We have such a wonderful God who makes it possible to fellowship with one another even though we have never even met in person. We share a common bond.

    God bless you all.

  4. Amen to Conny's and Mary Ann's comments. You are one of the most consistent, encouraging, patient believers I know, and as Conny said, it's because you let God use those hard things to help make you that way. Thank you so much for sharing your heart. Only God knows how He will use this precious testimony.

  5. Thank you for sharing the painful times of your past. We need to encourage each other as Christians, because there are indeed times when we feel we have no one to turn to but Him, and sometimes He feels very far away. James 1:2-4 is a favorite verse of mine. I've been a believer since about age 13, but in my 30's, we faced many trials and temptations that we seemed ill-equipped to handle, and couldn't understand why God had 'failed' us. We had been led to believe we could do anything as Christians and God would bless it. And if we just had enough faith, nothing bad would happen or we would just 'leap over it' from mountain top to mountain top. Well, that didn't happen. It took a long time, but now I am of the persuasion that it 'rains on the just and the unjust' and we all experience trials in life; the big thing is how we walk through them and with Whom, as a Christian, saved by grace, with hope. To believe in God no matter what comes our way, to keep walking this walk, finishing the race. For victory is surely ours if we persevere, even if our reward remains to be seen only in Heaven. My expectations have changed, my outlook, my understanding of others in pain has deepened, and I judge a lot less. I once asked God to teach me compassion, and boy, was I in for a big lesson! So thank you for sharing your heart. I think more of us need to do so. Be encouraged!

  6. Thank you for sharing ct. I can tell you have learned many things too. It really is a blessing to see how Christ will take a person and mold them if they are pliable. I have also seen some who refuse to allow the Lord to shape and bend them, some even who are close to me. I pray the Lord will help them to see the benefits of living life God's way, even if the road is not always smooth.

    Thank you for sharing your heart also and for your encouraging words.