January 1st, 2 years ago was an amazing turning point in my life. Winter is never an easy time for our family, both my husband and I have seasonal businesses (smoothie shop, and a painter) so every winter it can be depressing, it’s cold + we’re broke = Miserable. This particular year we were more then broke but in severe debt due to three large builders claiming bankruptcy and leaving my husband and our family out of A LOT of money. I woke up this morning as I have started ever Jan 1st, with the thought that I’m going to get healthy. I jumped out of bed, blew all the dust off our vintage Gazelle (if you haven’t seen the Tony little infomercial it’s a very cheap elliptical kind of thing) that has sat in our bedroom forever. My husband was still in bed looking at me like I was crazy and a little annoyed because he was still trying to sleep. Fifteen minutes into my vigorous workout the one piston completely blows and my workout is over. “Are you kidding me!!!?” I yelled in my misery and frustration and without thinking I threw on layers of clothes, hat, gloves, jacket, and grabbed my ipod to go for a run around the block. My husband says “it is 10 degrees outside, are you crazy?” Probably, but with the stress I had bottled up it was better for everyone that I went around the block.
As I got two thirds of the way around the block I came to a part on my run with no homes, just farms all around and suddenly both my knees froze in pain and I was stopped dead in my tracks. I heard a voice, as clear as day say, “take off your ipod”, it was the strangest thing, but I did. Out of nowhere it sounded like a freight train was coming from behind me and with a gentleness and a comfort that I have never known I hear “Lean Back, “and as I type this tears are in my eyes as I remember the power of the wind coming behind me and carrying me, and I heard “How much greater are you then the birds of the air and I feed them everyday, do not worry about tomorrow but put all your trust in me.” As I stood on the side of the road sobbing and in awe His last words were, “Go run! “ I ran all the way home without a single pain in my knees.
I ran in the house sobbing and freaking out and shared what had happened with my husband and we hugged and knew that everything was going to be ok. This began a journey that I could never have imagined. I believed in God my whole life but I NEVER knew the love that He had for me and for each one of us. I heard it growing up, that He knows every hair on your head, He knit you together in your mother’s womb but could that really be true? Could the God of the universe who made everything know and care for each one of us that intimately?
Over the past two years this is what I have learned about life and God
#1 Life is short. Eternity is forever!
#2 God’s plan for our life is 100 times more amazing then we could ever imagine but we will only learn how amazing when we give Him 100% of ourselves.
#3 I’d rather live this life for Him then for this world because He is all that matters!
#4 Someday we will all stand before God and account for our lives, I don’t want to be lukewarm and spit out , I want Him to welcome me home and to hear Him say, well done good and faithful servant.
#5 The most amazing thing that I’ve learned over the past two years is when you believe with all your heart that God sent His one and only son Jesus to die on the cross for your sins so that you may have a personal intimate relationship with God through the Holy spirit you are changed. The Holy Spirit lives in you, guides you, and strengthens you. You have the power of God living inside you and all it takes is faith.
#6 You can sit in church all your life and do all the good works you possibly can but if you don’t have a personal relationship with God where He speaks to you and you get excited to read His word and He is the most important part of your life then it means nothing.
#7 It can be hard, keeping your heart and your mind in the right place but God knows everything and His grace is sufficient to make us new every morning and He knows your thoughts before you speak them so just be real, ask for forgiveness and try again.
Francis Chan the author of Crazy Love has this great prayer that I have hung on my desk and this is my prayer…..
“Jesus I need to give myself up. I am not strong enough to love You and walk with You on my own. I can’t do it and I need You. I need you deeply and desperately. I believe you are worth it, that You are better than anything else I could have in this life or the next. I want you. And when I don’t, I want to want You. Be all in me. Take all of me. Have Your way with me.”
and bring on 2011!!