Writer, business woman, lay minister...mother, daughter, wife, friend...with a past and a future. This is my story. This is our story. This blog is the compilation of my experiences and the women I meet in the ministry. It is our gift to you.
*Names may be changed to preserve the confidentiality of the work we do. The facts of their experiences will not be altered. I hope to be honest, unbiased and clear; however, this blog is not a politically correct place. This blog will be used to glorify God, spread the Good News of the saving grace of Jesus Christ and to encourage other believers in their own walk.
So it's been a month. Or two. At last report we had quite a lot to report and yet despite all outward appearances, we had a few things on our mind that most might think would take our eyes off God and onto worldy matters. But I can't help but smile and know that I am blessed and highly favored.
Somehow we continue to make it, make the dollar meet the month end; find our health hurdles and bumps better than we anticipated and our service to God the dearest part of our life.
I've had to take a little hiatus from my duties as dorm coordinator at Woodman State Jail because of my own health issues but I will, Chaplain and God willing, resume those duties August 1. I miss the ladies and miss the connection and groundedness they provide in my life and in my walk with Christ. I have found more than once that the more I study to teach and share, the more I grow and learn myself. It almost seems a selfish endeavor! God gives me the task to teach and in turn I learn and grow closer to Him. What a plan indeed.
Most of all though this last month has been a real struggle in accepting personal physical conditions with some dignity and patience and I've exhibited neither. To pretend I had would be disingenuous to say the least. I have at times been a downright baby about things, often forgetting that God has His hand on things, that others have and are facing much worse and that frankly, if asked to walk through this challenge, the manner in which I do it does in fact demonstrate some of my personal faith and trust in Jesus.
I am forever grateful that He is such a loving and forgiving God and Savior that I can come to him in my whimpering state and know that His love abounds over me. Oh how I praise Him that I can rest on this truth above all else. As I wallow in my bed, cry, sleep, seek the solace of nothingness during my physical trials, I know God waits patiently for me to seek Him out and ask for His help!
Why oh why didn't I think of that last week! Don't get me wrong. As they took my pre-surgical blood draw I prayed my way through that moment. As they inserted the IV on surgery day I prayed my way through that dreaded moment (I really hate IV's!) As they put that mask on my face to administer the anesthesia, I prayed for God's hand and His healing on the situation. However, when I awoke and found out things did not go as I wanted, I found myself in quite a tizzy and frankly forgot all about those pre-anesthesia prayers for His will and care to be administered. And yet, despite all, my faith in Him never wavered. My will might have interfered greatly with the peace He gladly offered, but my faith in knowing He was in control still lay way back in my mind!
Now you may ask yourself, if she has such a tizzy, where does her faith come into play at all?
I can tell you that. Only five short years ago had I gone through this ordeal, I would have blamed a God I didn't know or acknowledge for everything, I would have used this whole situation to validate my absence of any faith in Jesus at all. In fact, the mere fact I was facing any challenge of any size meant there was no God! But today, tizzy or not, my way or not; I do not question His loving hand on my life. I do not question His existence, His concern, His care, His love and His involvement in every aspect of this situation and many others in my life.
Five years ago as I sat in a cold jail cell in late January I would have told you that God had nothing to do with reality and that you were a downright fool, sitting here with me in jail to think He did. And I was as wrong then and grateful today that I learned all I learned; cold jail cell or not.
Now I have the utter privilege to share with so many women our journey's that grow us closer and closer to Christ; right now through my absence and soon through my return. I will have something new to share as I walk through this valley and into the sunshine of His love. I will have a praise report to add to my testimony of God's working in my life and I will add yet another time, another miracle, another distinct moment in my life where I can point to Him, the one who created the Heavens and Earth and say "He carried me yet again."