Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Surface Tension of Our Heart: Why it can take time to receive God's Word

Why is it that it takes so much time for us to receive God's truth in some areas of our lives? I have asked myself this question numerous times.  God's timing is not like ours, I am always reminding myself of this and that is one part of it, but another part is that we can be pretty stubborn customers and breaking down that stubborn pride takes His resistance to what we are up to and that can take a lot of time.  God is careful about getting whatever it is out of His way so the work will be unhindered.  There are books on the subject, but I'm not writing one today.  Nope, today I want to share a pretty cool insight God gave me about resistance that came from the soil in my garden. It has to do with water surface tension, which translated for the purpose of my question into spiritual surface tension or  surface tension of the heart.  It speaks to how this tension affects our ability to receive the water of His word and helps explain the reason why it takes so long for some things to sink deeply in to our hearts.

There was a moment at a recent women's retreat where I felt that "sinking in" happening in all it's glory.  It was amazing.  It was a head to toe experience that I never wanted to stop. As I was thinking about that experience the Lord drew my attention back to the moment right before it when my soul wasn't really receiving in fullness from a truth I thought I believed.  If we took a look we would all have to agree there are those things in us that we know so well we only think we believe but in actuality we don't and because we don't we are not experiencing the fullness of what would happen if we truly did believe them, the fullness of power and blessing God has for us when we do.  In God's economy it is all or nothing, faith or unbelief...there is no "sort of believing" and just knowing something is not enough. He wants us to be all in, fulling invested and in full faith believing His promises.  He's not into lukewarm or fence sitting, He wants us walking on water with Him, believing Him for anything and everything, because He is God, the God of all things, Creator of the universe, the Great I Am.  And I was right there that morning, on the fence, with something I thought I was doing, thought I believed.  And God was not surprised nor was He angry with me for not getting it.  He was about to show me I had little true depth of understanding in it, the true faith of it had not saturated my being like He desired it to and then take me to a whole new level of understanding. A level of knowing that is beyond the mind, where I would experience seeing in my spirit and then the actual physical sensing of it, that "knowing that I know", and He was going to do pull out all the stops to begin to make that faith deeply mine.

"It Is Well"
"Through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
Through it all, through it all
It is well"

Our speaker, Di Endicott lead us in singing this beautiful song, I had been hungering deeply for God, for change in my life, for an empowering breakthrough. As I began to sing these words I put all I was before the Lord and was quickly, but gently, interrupted by "that voice".  The Lord asked me, "Is it really? Is it really well with your soul?" Nothing is hidden from God I know this, but I also know how good I am at lying to myself.  I was busted, there in the midst of my sisters as we sang my heart was laid bare before God.  At that moment with no shame I had to confess it did not "feel well" within me at all. Actually I didn't even have to say it, I thought it, and God wasn't surprised by my thoughts, He already knew I didn't. "Sing it to yourself, tell your soul it is well!" He told me, urging me into unknown territory in His strong gentle way. My eyes overflowed with tears, I choked out the lyrics singing..."Through it all, through it all it is well." speaking to my soul, not to God, but to my soul.  "It is well, it is well.  It is well, it is well.  It is well, it is well, with my soul."  The moment I had taken that step to obey, I found mind flooded with an image of my body and what I can only describe as it's spiritual circulatory system and sensed the blockages and pain and then, just as quickly, I was given grace to receive what I was singing to my soul...the wellness of my soul by faith. As I sang out of this deeper place of faith, my understanding opened up and the sensation of wellness flooded my entire soul and body!  O, if only you could have seen it, if only you could have felt it!  I was undone.

How God does this just amazes me. How I had never experienced it before, I can only chalk up to this thing, spiritual surface tension, that needed to be broken in me by God the Master of all gardeners, through His nurturing care of my soul.  At that moment I, for the very first time, fully receive this promised wellness within. It was the very first time I had ever experienced it with such bold honesty and I hadn't even asked for it too which really blew my mind. But the Heavenly Father knew how much I needed to experience it, He knew the lack of wellness within me and He did all He could to bring me to the place where I would be able to receive it.  Oh how I wish I could give you what I received in that moment. How I hope if you have yet to, that you will and soon.  It is my prayer that our Lord will make it so.

So what does this have to do with this "surface tension" I keep referring to?  How does this fit in?  As I sat here writing in my journal about the retreat and being flooded by wellness God gave me a very clear picture in my mind of a bead of water sitting on barren dry ground and how it just rolled off and away without sinking into the soil leaving only a damp spot on the surface.  I knew exactly what it was immediately, soil surface tension.  He was speaking to me about how this image of water being unable soak into dry ground freely was connected to my experience at the retreat. Well that was interesting, I had never thought of there being any correlation between the two.  This is so cool.

Have you ever poured water out onto very dry soil and noticed how the soil resists the water and the water just sits on top of the ground in a fat bead and actually will run off without hardly wetting the soil at all? Have you ever wondered why it does that? Why won't the soil just soak that water like a sponge? What causes there to be such resistance between the two when the soil obviously needs the water? The reason this occurs is because of something known as " surface tension" which affects the soil's ability to draw water down into it and it occurs when soils become overly dry. The soil in this state has become what is known as "hydrophobic".  This means it is resistant to water being absorbed into it.  This happens when the molecules of the water become more dense than the soil. (Nerdy I know)  It's sort of like what happens with magnets when their poles are at odds with one another and instead of pulling together they push apart, sort of. 

The way to avoid having to deal with soils that do this is to take care of the soil properly by being sure it has good levels of organic material in it (humus) and keeping it hydrated.  If the soil does become hydrophobic it is reversible and the tension can be broken, but it takes patience and careful slow watering to get the soil back to where it will do a good job of water absorption. After that the addition of organic matter and basic soil care are in order.  Now for the spiritual aspects of this. 

There is a similar tension with us, a spiritual surface tension of the heart, and when I look at it in relationship to surface tension seen in the illustration God showed me I can see parallels to what happens in our hearts versus what goes on with hydrophobic soil.  There are clearly things that affect our hearts ability to absorb what God desires us to have, things that rob us of that water of life, the water of His word.  Things that cause this tension and resistance to those truths that will set us free, those things that strengthen our faith and lives so we are able to produce good fruit.  This parallel helped so much to explain why it takes time for things to sink into our lives and it gave me more hope, because God is far from finished with His daughter.

Hydrophobic soils are frustrating and can be troublesome to deal with for a couple reasons, the main reason is the obvious lack of water and a secondary reason is when the soil contains the type of organic matter more prone to becoming hydrophobic and usually is more that way than the soil itself is. Why does this matter to the message?  Because what we put into our lives, our thinking and our system of beliefs, will feed our soul and spirit, or not.  When they are the wrong thing, or unholy compost as I like to call it, they produce this same hydrophobic tendencies in the spiritual realm of our heart and cause a desert bareness of the soul.  This spiritual surface tension resists the truth of God when He goes to pour it into us.  This is why God's patience and forbearance with us is so important for us.  If He wasn't He would just hang up the watering can and go find another heart to garden in! 

How can you know if you have taking in this unholy compost?  Get serious, pray, seek God and take time to hear Him!  Ask Him for discernment to see the things hindering His word in your life and fearlessly surrender the deep places of your heart, not just those up front that are less painful and easy to get to places...DIG DEEP!  The root of the lies we have been led to believe run deep.  I pray God will give you the desire to get every last one of them OUT once and for all, to destroy what Satan has tried to destroy you through, because he has tried to.  Okay, where was I?

Unholy compost are those lies rapped up in just enough truth that unless we are careful we can fill our lives up with them because they "sound good".  Beware of them, these things even in good times are suck us dry spiritually and will leave us thirsting, but in a desert place can be devastating to to one's faith.  To be sure, none of us is perfect, we have all made mistakes like this to one degree or another.  Go to God when you are made aware of this unholy compost in your life.  And remember, God is continually pouring out His truth to us, giving us all we need through Christ our Savior.  He desires our best, our blessing, that we produce good fruit and you can bet He'll will do whatever it takes to ensure that fruit comes to harvest in us.  Okay, back to the soil.

There is no fast and easy way to reduce soil surface tension. It can't be broken by applying lots of water all at once, any more than we can have that "know that I know" kind of faith by consuming copious amounts of scripture, it doesn't work that way. The method used to break soil surface tension is by watering slowly and steadily, over time, sometimes for several days.  It's because it can only seep into a very thin layer of soil and so it has to go from one depth to another to another until that tension between the soil and water is mitigated and the water can be taken up fully and deliver it's life giving properties to things living there.  Yes, it seems quite similar to what God does in us over the course of our life to work His truth well into our hearts.  Now do you see why God gave me the picture He did?  

Surface tension is also why we see flash floods happening in drought ridden or desert areas when a they receive a normal to large amount of rainfall quickly. Flash flooding waters flow along the top of the ground because that surface tension in the soil has not been broken yet.  I've experienced a very similar type of spiritual flash flooding in my own life those times where I get filled with emotion as I am washed over with a flood of truth, but my heart is properly prepared to receive it and within hours I am back to where I was, parched dry and unchanged. This flash flooding of our spiritual life is that quick dose of emotion and inspiration we get from  hearing an exciting message or what we experience in a really cool worship concert.  We feel revived, alive and ready for battle, ready for anything and praise God.  Certainly God is changing people there and pouring into them deeply, but so often it's all adrenaline and emotion. Unless the Holy Spirit has done the necessary work to break the spiritual tension within our hearts, those flash floods of truth will flow away into memory and we'll be again standing on the dry ground of our lives wondering why things didn't stick.  (Lord have mercy.)

I should also mention this tension in the soil is not just at the surface which is why it is so problematic and takes so long to break.  It goes as far down as where ever the soil has become parched. If we believe it is only at the surface we lack proper understanding of this whole of it's impact and will continue to water as if the water will move as it should when it won't.  This lack of understanding will cause our gardens to fail to thrive, while we stand there wondering why.  And it's all because we don't understand the full impact of that tension in the dry soil, and so it remains parched and dry, physically unable to take up the moisture. Isn't that true of our spiritual lives too?

The continual dryness in the soil of a garden causes all kinds of issues, from stunted plant growth to proneness to disease, damaging desiccation of the leaves and stems, blasting (sudden death) of flowers, lack of fruitfulness and even eventually death of the plants. Does any of this sound familiar to you in your spiritual life? I know it does in mine. There are things I have wondered about that I know God has planted in me that I have always desired to grow in and felt hindered to do so.  Same with my personal life too but as I believe the two are intrinsically bound in my service and faith in Christ they go together for me.  That morning as I was stepping out in faith, speaking to my soul "it is well with in me", God broke through where I could not in my own strength and did things in me I didn't even know I needed done.  And I think I finally know why in my garden here at home we have suffered with this kind of soil problems for so long. God really knows how to set up an effective object lesson. Anyhow, as I thought about that image God gave me I realized it is so like what He did with me over time to bring my heart to be able to receive the fullness of that statement "It is well within me", a verse in a new song we learned that weekend.

I really don't like that my heart can be like those hydrophobic soils and resist what God is wanting me to take in. Understanding how breaking surface tension works sure helps to take the fuel out of my frustration though and helps me to be more forgiving of myself.  It gives me a window into understanding how God is at work in my own life.  For my heart so needs that soft repeated application of the water of His truth, like watering parched earth, to get it to the point where it will finally sink to depth it needs to go and I will become alive with it and thrive in spirit and truth in that area of my life. 

As I look back on my thirty plus years following Christ, I can see how this has happened over and over again in my life and the truth is that it will probably will be for the rest of it too as God breaks into those hidden places of my heart, those neglected spaces and gets to work performing His will in me. Yes, I believe this is exactly how God works in us to bring the living water of His truth into our parched souls, from the time He begins to woo us until He calls us home to heaven.  He offers water to the thirsty soul, love to the hungry heart...a little at a time over a long period of time, soaking in a little deeper with every drip, drip drip, until our hearts are ready to fully receive it and it brings forth life in us! 

I hope this has given you some food for thought and some encouragement.  God works all things out for His glory, for the good of those who He has called. 


P.S. The song lyrics quoted in this post are from the song "It Is Well" Written by Kristene DiMarco and produced by Bethel Music Publishing.  You can hear the entire song at the link provided above.

Copyright © 2014 by Patty Hicks

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Clearing A Path; God's Will and Moving Boulders

Life is a funny thing, God's timing is a mysterious thing, both are difficult to understand sometimes and for me that sometimes has been years long. The circumstances have been ones that seemed to happen over and over again, every time I would get a good idea or see a path that had promise and get a good strong running. I'd be on my way, seeing the goal in front of me and some successes and WHAM...I was knocked down, stopped dead by something in my way. I was cut off, even knocked completely off the path I was on and unable to find a way back. 

Some of my friends have tried to explain my situation by saying God was bringing death to a vision and that He would certainly provide a way and restore it in His timing and His way. I don't know if that is correct or not. Certainly there was death, but I'm not presuming the goals I had at the time were born of His vision or calling for my life, I know many of them have not been. However what my struggling did do was send me to a very deep and desperate place, where God set up a couple of encounters I am going to share with you, about the time He spoke to me through two strangers. I was powerfully reminded about them yesterday as I read  “What We Wish For” on Kimberly Brooks website.

"I realized this: creativity – the source that has always been the soul-restoring energy available to me in that nest-closet of mine – is like any other thing on this earth that FLOWS. It needs a clear path” 

Kimberly's words on the flow of creativity needing a clear path thrust me into a strong refreshed memory of when God spoke to me about something quite similar through two strangers. It literally took my breath away as I was instantaneously and powerfully reminded about it. Her words also explain pretty clearly what is going on in my life since those encounters as well. Maybe it's the same thing that's going on in yours too, I know I am not alone and I want you to know neither are you.

For me this has been years of deep longing to be set free to create with my hands and heart as I have been gifted to do. To use my abilities in a meaningful way to both add financial support to our household and to serve others too. For these many years something has always happened or been there to stop me or at least to slow down my creative work to a drip, drip, drip. There are days it feels like my heart wants to burst from it. But I am tempered by the understanding that God is at work even when I can't see what He is doing. After reading Kimberly's post I felt the strong nudge of the Holy Spirit to share my personal account of what happened when I was met by two women of faith at that women's retreat.  This account is not just what God said to me back then, but how He spoke, the method He used to reach me.
The Encounter:
Three years ago I attended a women's retreat for Free Methodist churches in our region. I went feeling deeply empty, spiritually exhausted and with everything in me crying out for God to do something, anything. I needed so very much to hear from Him that my whole being ached with desire for Him. It was during that weekend that I had encounters with two women who were strangers to me and who God used to speak to me, each sharing specific images He had shown them about my life, each sharing a very specific word of exhortation for me. When I first met these women I had no idea I was about to receive something from God through them. There were no signs, no goose flesh, no bells, no halos, no angel wings, no heavenly chorus, just common friendly conversation between spiritual sisters. What began as friendly interaction was transformed into life giving words when God moved in on our conversation. Through these women, God, beautifully and clearly delivered His message to me with such intimate detail there was no doubt it was directly from God.

The first morning of the retreat, during our free time, I sat down at the piano to worship in song for a while.  The first woman approached, listening, and then introducing herself.  She said she admired my playing and the lyrics of the songs, telling me they blessed her and ministered to her heart. She offered encouragement to me to keep writing as she felt God was blessing it. I graciously thanked her for the kind words and told her I was thankful she was blessed. We kept talking for a while and decided to go out for a walk down to a stream not far from the main lodge. Along the way she told me she had something she felt the Lord urging her to share with me, something about my life that He had shown her. This had never happened to me before but I figured what could it hurt and I agreed to hear her, though somewhat cautiously. We kept walking just talking casually until we reached the stream.

As we walked along the bank my new friend stopped and told me to look as she pointed over to a boulder out in the middle of the stream with water streaming around it. She proceeded to tell me how God had shown her that the stream of my life had been diverted and hindered by a boulder just like the waters of the stream we were looking at were diverted and that my life had even been stopped up by the boulder. She firmly but lovingly told me I would not be able to move the boulder out of the way. She went on to say only God could and would remove it. He would remove it and allow for my life to flow restored and without my lifting a finger. Relief began to sink into my soul and at the same time I was undone by her words, it was a near perfect picture of how life had been for me. Only God could have shown her that.

On the last day as I was getting ready to leave I was approached by the second woman who smiled and stopped me to ask if she could give me a hug. I needed a hug and I'm sure I looked like I need a hug, I was still a mess of emotions inside. But in all honesty, I had wanted to hug her too since I first spotted her in the crowd the first night of our retreat, but I kept missing her all weekend. I didn’t even know who she was, I only knew I wanted to give her a hug. I was so drawn to her I was actually glad to finally give her that hug, but even more thankful to be receiving one from her. As we parted from hugging she took my hands, looked me straight in the eye, and asked how she might pray for me. Oh boy, that did it. I broke into a blubbering mess right there in the hallway, crying so hard I could hardly talk. She took my arm and calmly said “We need to find somewhere quite to talk.” took my hand and let me to a quiet room where we wouldn’t be disturbed. 

As we sat there, I tried to again answer her question through the tears, but all I could get out of my mouth was how badly I needed God’s touch or a word, anything from Him. She suddenly sat up very straight and with authority said in her sweet but firm voice, "Honey, you need to quite trying so hard!  You let go right now, you need to relax! God's go this! Why are you trying so hard?"  Boy did that get my attention. What she shared with me next cemented that this was indeed God's message to me and that it not just her speaking, it was the Holy Spirit speaking through her. She explained how I was like a little plant who wanted so badly to grow and who was trying to, but there was this big rock on top of me that was making it very hard to grow. Then she shared with me how every time I tried began to grow so I could bloom, a foot would come and press down on top of that rock, pushing it down on me so I couldn’t. Then she told me I was not going to be able to remove the rock either.  She told I needed to just stop trying right to move that rock out of my way right now because I couldn't do it, that was God's job. As if that wasn't enough she said it again, telling me to RELAX and stop trying so hard, that God would move it and that I must trust God because He would do it. God was drilling His word into me through this lady who was barely five feet tall, what a powerhouse!  I think my jaw must have hit the floor as I listened to her words. How could she know this about my experience, my personality and my struggle? Certainly God had given her my number, there was no denying it.

After she finished sharing I confirmed humbly she was correct in what she had stated about me and repented of my self reliance and stubborn will. We spent some time in prayer over what had just been shared and my new found perspective and from that day on I knew that I knew, God had met me there, that He had heard my cries and He had spoken to me. That day I left that place renewed, trusting God fully, still not sure what He would do or when, but with my hunger fully satisfied and my spiritual legs were back under me and ready for whatever was next.

This was such a peculiar thing to experience, to have two strangers say nearly the same thing to me about things they could not have known outside of God showing them. I had read about this kind of thing in the Bible and understood what receiving a word of knowledge meant, but to actually be on the receiving end...and twice in two days, that was somethin'.  Through these beautiful and obediently loving sisters in Christ, I had been given a message quite specific to my life by my Heavenly Father.  (Oh there go the goose bumps again!)  The whole experience was so mind blowing, they didn't know me from Adam yet spoke so directly into my situation, even about my weakness, each making it crystal clear that the necessary work was NOT mine to do with the last lady going so far as to exhort me to stop trying so hard and telling me I needed to relax and let God do the work for me three times!  Seems sometimes God knows that we, that I, need to hear something more than once and sometimes from more than one person, even strangers.

This truly is the most amazing thing to me, I was in such a dire place and here comes God's spokeswomen who lovingly, obediently, tenderly and firmly, delivered God’s loving response to my crying out for Him.  They took part in something that changed my life that day which is why, when I read the words Kimberly wrote, the air left my lungs as I felt those written words strike my heart with the same force and tone of the twin messages those women had shared with me.  They were like deep penetrating chords so familiar they went through my body, I leaned into them to fully feel them and hear them as fully as possible. Her words confirming to me again that the path of my life still needs to be cleared, the hindrance has not been removed and I agree, I still feel its presence.  But this time it is different for me.  I know the problem and the problem isn't mine and that God sees it and my desire to grow and bloom, to thrive instead of just survive the way I have been doing for so many years.  And I know that yes, He will perform what He said He would on my behalf.

So with all that said, now I'm sitting here wondering what is God up to?  Why this reminder?  These thoughts came to me after I felt the harmony of Kimberly’s words to the word of knowledge and exhortation the two women had shared with me.   I share this because I am trying to process all of it still, and because I still feel the boulder that has been hindering my path has not been removed, I am still waiting.  I share because I need to confess that I know I still can’t move the darn thing.  Yes, I confess, I’ve tried a time or two but gave up quickly because I immediately recognized I was trying to do God's work myself again. I share this because I still shake my head in amazement at the love God demonstrated through those two strangers that weekend and I want others to have that same type of experience with Him.  And I share to say that the waiting time has allowed me to learn a lot about myself and my gifts since letting go of my struggle.  And maybe most importantly, I share this to say that God has done a refining work in me, to teach me to be quiet in my soul...well I'm still working on that one but am much better than I used to be, and I am much more at peace with God's timing and plan than I used to be...at least most of the time.

A passage in the Old Testament that has been very meaningful to me regarding the work God is doing in me and my situation is Isaiah 54:10-18
“For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake,
But My lovingkindness will not be removed from you,
And My covenant of peace will not be shaken,”
Says the Lord who has compassion on you.

“O afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted,
Behold, I will set your stones in antimony,
And your foundations I will lay in sapphires.
“Moreover, I will make your battlements of rubies,
And your gates of crystal,
And your entire wall of precious stones.
“All your sons will be taught of the Lord;
And the well-being of your sons will be great.
“In righteousness you will be established;
You will be far from oppression, for you will not fear;
And from terror, for it will not come near you.
“If anyone fiercely assails you it will not be from Me.
Whoever assails you will fall because of you.
“Behold, I Myself have created the smith who blows the fire of coals
And brings out a weapon for its work;
And I have created the destroyer to ruin.
“No weapon that is formed against you will prosper;
And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn.
This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord,
And their vindication is from Me,” declares the Lord.

People may look in from the outside and not understand what is going on with my life, but God is in the middle of it, in full control and working to bring about His will and blessing for me. He is good always.

For more on spiritual gifts God gives us read 1 Corinthians 12. 

P.S.  It is not lost on me how God uses so many references from nature...the boulders, the plant...you should see all the boulders I have dug out of my garden here at Tinkerer's Paradise.  And my delight with His fingerprints revealed in His glory in the garden...I just love how He does this. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What's New at Tinkerer's Paradise

It's been a while since I've posted but I wont' bore you with apologies or rationalizing why I was away.  But I do want to catch you up on a couple things.

Freezing cold and snow, is this Portland?
First the weather, and boy aren't we all having weather this year.  From snow in southern states to snow that just keeps coming with more cold and snow in the eastern US and one of the longest snow events I can remember in recent history here in Portland and cold...BRRRR!  It was also really dry here from the from October until this month, October being the beginning of our rain calendar. 

Then yesterday we had a rare six hour windstorm that hit over night with 45 mile gusts that started off with a bang taking the roofing right off our house and kept on roaring all night long!  Thankfully the damage wasn't too bad and easily repaired.  One woman here crawled out from under the tree that toppled onto her bedroom where she had been asleep.  The stories could just go on and on.  Today we are making ready for another blast this afternoon.  Guess I better get done here and get my errands run this morning before it hits.

Ben making roof repairs after yesterday's storm.
God has been so faithful and brought answers to prayer after years of wanting help and direction.  He wastes nothing and timing is everything in His economy so I am glad glad glad! They began with my being accepted as a patient to School of Physical Therapy at Pacific University.  I've not had insurance to pay for such help and am so totally blessed by the help I've been given there, its a great school too if you are interested in this field.  My therapist, Jeremy Hilliard, has been such a gift of help and encouragement to me.  As a part of my therapy he wanted me to start using equipment that I didn't have forced me to join a gym.  Yeah I know, me a gym rat?  I'm still chuckling about this one but I love it and it challenges me to keep going.

Crunch Gym, which is in my neighborhood is where I'm going.  When I signed up I decided to try out their physical training and had three sessions.  Scott M. worked with me as my trainer and so full of information and help I really want to continue working with him and hope to figure out how to finance those sessions soon.  Everyone there is really friendly and sincerely encouraging which makes it even nicer going.  If I'm not having the best day I can count on someone lifting my mood and feel better just knowing I made it there to do what I need to for my own health.  This may not seem like a big deal to some of you but I've been so bound by the pain and weakness for so many years now this is like a dream come true.

A little winter sowing as the snow began to fly, just a little.
I'm so encouraged and getting stronger and more hopeful every day.  Finally I am beginning to seeing a future that is more than sitting in this chair on my laptop.  Finally I am beginning to able to keep my house myself and have more hope.  It's been a long time coming. 

So right now my challenge is to discern which thoughts are true and which are not regarding my injury and to learn just how I am to do things.  My guess is I'll learn to do things the way I should have been doing them all along.  I need to learn to do things a better way because things are different for me know than when I was 35 too. The biggest thing is learning to keep myself in check and not go running off doing more than I should or being careless in how I do something.  This will be fun especially when I feel a bit like a race horse behind the starting gate wanting to shoot out onto the track.  But I'm determined to take it one day at a time, one step at a time and do some real solid work on thinking about why and how I am doing things.

As far as the garden goes this year, I'm working on a garden work party to begin renovation.  I'm praying the heavy rain we are having will stop long enough to dry the now sopping wet soil out so we can get some work accomplished.  So yes, I'm busy laying plans for how to renovate the front yard which is so overgrown with weeds and sadly in need of it too.  Here's a link to the video I posted about what I am feeling about the garden right and the need here.  Garden Tour Video

Just so you know I am very excited, a little sad yes but filled with anticipation about the coming changes.  I'm finally and honestly saying goodbye to past things, letting go of some things I really loved doing and moving on to what God has for me next.  Gardening may or may not be a part of that picture, but whatever it is I'm sure I'll be blessed and so will others.

Here's to bright tomorrows!

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