The Whole Picture


Hello Friends,

Today I found a valuable lesson that is very hard for me to understand internally. I love to write and it helps me process the hard things in this life.  I know too well the fact that when I pray for something that God will help us with these in the most unexpected ways. If I have never told you about my time at the airport and a lesson of patience, I may in the future but this helped me to be more specific in what I pray about because God will answer your prayers.  Well today caught me off guard because I was not expecting it. It kinda rocked my world and put me back in my place. Let me explain…

Today, as with most days, my day was busy. A million errands to run and all I want to do is observe life. I love to watch all the beauty that God has placed in this world. While I realize that is not what life is about, simply observing, but moreover to be lived. I leave my comfort zone. However, truth be told I would be perfectly happy living by simply observation.  Its funny to think about but that may be part of what God wanted to show me today, looking back on it now that is probably part of it.

Anyway, lately I have been talking with the kiddos about controlling our thoughts and thinking about …

… whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.   Philippians 4:8 (ESV)

I have seen God answering my simple prayers about my kids concerning this scripture. Even working on me. Even though I consider myself to be more optimistic. I realize that that is not always true, so I aim to be more complete in Christ.

Then God does His thing, if you know Him you probably can relate to what I mean by “His thing”. You know where He takes that simple request and builds on it and builds on it to make a more complete truth, kind of like building an onion backwards. ( He’s not building an onion backwards.. its growth. I explain it here.) Well that’s what his did for me.

I am also in a book club reading about from my perspective…

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.  Proverbs 22:6 (ESV) 

 Which lead me to a community of  women trying to do the same thing. In which a lot of different views and experiences abound.

Well, this lead me to working on a part of me that is frustrating and often feels beyond my own control at times ( which is not true ), my temper/anger issues.  Which lead me to these scriptures…

Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.  Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.  James 1:19-21 (ESV)

On top of that, I have came across a wide number of articles that have been talking about how judgmental people can be. How mean those who have no idea about what is going on in another person’s life can take it upon themselves to tell others how they should be handling things.

It seems crazy to think about these scenarios in retrospect and as I read these things I was thankful to not have been through a situation like theirs. Not knowing how my reaction would be or if I would be able to say I handled it appropriately. Well it turns out God was preparing me for what I consider was a test.

Among the hustle and bustle of the day. My attitude about some things was not super chipper but I was managing. We get to the bank to get some checks and there was no spots to park not even in the back. I already being frustrated having to get the check started to get a bit more frustrated.  When going around our small bank a second time seeing someone leaving was relieved. Then another car wanted to park in a space that was not really big enough, due to the snow pile, to park in. I assumed they were just going to circle around like I did. Well in less than 30 seconds the man beeps so I move up realizing he is going to attempt to park in that spot.

Then as he is walking up to the bank and we pull into the parking spot the man begins to get what I would consider crazy, by talking all kinds of things. At that moment a million emotions run through my veins and all I want to do is let this guy have it….. But then I think about all the things I have been trying to teach my children and God has been teaching me. I realize that my children are observing and waiting to see my response with this man.

So I took a breath and I soften my tone and my attitude and I apologized and tried to explain what I was doing. However, the man interrupted me and continues on, and on, and on complaining. So at that point I am boiling feeling that if I open my mouth I would not be able to control the words that would come out of  my mouth. So I sit in the car for a min while the man goes in. Then the kids begin to say what’s wrong with that guy, man he is crabby.

I so wanted to chime in with… that guys a jerk, people of this world are jerks, this …… but I didn’t. I just said, ” I think he may be having a bad day”. Then we went in. While we were in there for what seemed an eternity, I wanted to walk up to him and say “Jesus Loves You” but at the risk of seeming sarcastic or rude or even hearing him complain some more I just let it go. When we go to the car I told the kids lets pray for that man and we did.

That was the best I could do and while I still felt really angry with this man for his actions. I was happy to be able to show my kids how we are to treat others even if they don’t treat us very well. I had the opportunity to model being slow to anger even though I know inside that was not the case and that is important too.

Then as I get home  I start to write this  knowing  God will speak to me as I write. As He always does for me when I write. I am fully preparing for a long speech about my injustice and how the world is a cruel place. Then I read this…

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror.

For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.

If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.  James 1:22-27 (ESV)

 And I  take a few steps back and seeing what God has been building to show me. My onion so to speak..

Sara, you have to apply my truths or you will forget them. 

I love Him. He has the most unusual way of showing us things. He is so very patient and kind. 

Be Blessed Friends!