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Sufficient: One Word 2012


And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. (2 Corinthians 12:9 NASB)

“I am enough,” I hear Him say. “I am sufficient for you. Trust this.”

Unsure what my one word for 2012 would be as November began I sensed this as I read a post from Preston. A post that doesn’t speak to my word. No, just one line God uses. Hoping for a word less challenging I tried to ignore the nudging. Then again a few days later it knocked again. Another post from Preston while not speaking directly to my word. Again just one line.

“Enough. Sufficient.”

“Okay. I’m listening now, but I’m weary. Surely there is an easier word.”

I hear silence. Not the silence of victory. The kind of silence I give my son when I refuse to argue with him any longer. The silence that brings eventual obedience from him.

As December dawns I hesitantly accept this new word. Learning to seek the graces and give thanks brought more battle than I could have imagined for 2011 so I know this new word will challenge just as much, but I also have faith that it will bring as much joy and growth.

The irony as I wrestled with this new word is not lost. Learning this, letting ‘sufficient’ settle into my spirit, I will have more rest, more peace.

Sufficient: enough, adequate, meeting the need of.

He is sufficient. He is enough. He will meet all my needs. He is enough when I do not feel good enough. He is sufficient when I’m hurt. He is sufficient when I’m weary. He gives me enough for each day.

Not only is He enough I am enough for the purpose He gives me no matter what others expect.

His grace is sufficient for me.

As the last week of 2011 began a few secondary words also surfaced to journey along with sufficient this year. At first perplexing me as to how they would go along with sufficient, but as they have sat with me for these days I understand now. Seek. Study. Strive.

In seeking Him more and studying more about Him I will know even more that He is sufficient. I need to push myself more, to strive toward goals and in doing so will also learn once again that He is sufficient.

So as the new year begins He continues what He began in 2011 because knowing He is sufficient is born out of eucharisteo.

What is your word for 2012?

Grace Given in a Simple Hello

I rarely share what I write in my handwritten journal. From time to time I may share bits, but never an entire entry. Not because they are full of deep personal thoughts, but mainly because the entries are usually very boring. What we did the day before or what all I need to remind myself to do that day or our plans. But when I sat down to write last night and the words were flowing I knew I would share it here today.

The clock reads just after 8 p.m. Chris and Sam are home safe from Tuscaloosa and both sound asleep. I enjoy my alone time, but oh how I missed them this weekend.

I’m not as tired as I thought I would be considering the time change.

The house is quiet. The hum of the refrigerator is all I hear.

I’m curled up in my favorite chair as I write. My heart so full of joy. My head full of thoughts on the presence of God, choosing joy, and Covenant.

And grace. Grace is filling my thoughts most of all.

Especially the gift of grace given. Of the power it contains. Grace heals and God uses the grace we give to heal.

So many hurts do not deserve grace. But that’s the crux when it comes to grace is it not? Giving that which is not deserved.

Yet when we do we take away the power of guilt. Grace given releases the one gifted from the guilt they feel. It lifts a burden. It allows them to heal.

God uses the grace we give to heal.

Even the grace in one simple word can heal. Even a simple hello in passing can give the person who has hurt us the permission to forgive themselves.

Isn’t that the most difficult aspect of forgiveness? Forgiving ourselves? Yes when others hurt us we often struggle to forgive. We must work through it often times. Consciously making the decision to forgive and show grace. It may take time and deliberate prayer to forgive someone who has wronged us, but I find it infinitely harder to forgive myself when I’ve hurt someone. We have a tendency to heap guilt on ourselves.

But when we are repentant God can use even the smallest grace to heal so we can forgive ourselves.

We can give grace in even something as small as a simple hello.

When was the last time you gave someone the simplest of graces? Have you ever been given the simplest of graces that made all the difference?

683. For new brake pads. (11/1/11)

684. For excellent customer service. (11/1/11)

685. For Gena and friendship that remains through the years. (11/1/11)

686. For sweet Harper Grace & newborn goodness. (11/1/11)

687. For Erin, Ben, Owen & sweet new Ruth Ellen. (11/1/11)

688. For the grace found in a simple hello. (11/2/11)

689. For first Wednesday at HighlandsAU. (11/2/11)

690. For beauty in brokenness. (11/3/11)

691. For a heart that has found healing and peace. (11/4/11)

692. For cute crochet hats on a cool fall morning. (11/5/11)

693. For authentic friends. (11/6/11)

694. For grace given. (11/6/11)

695. For the worship team at Highlands Auburn. (11/6/11)

696. For covenant. (11/6/11)

697. For Chris and Sam making it home safely. (11/6/11)

698. For hugs and kisses. (11/6/11)

Childhood Remembered

I remember Saturdays going to town with him. Town was a six mile trek and riding along with Pawpaw was a treat. I am sure he brought along other of the grandchildren on occasion. But I think he had this way of making each of us feel special so I only remember it being just him and me. I remember him buying me a chic-o-stick at a store. The store vague in my memory. A hardware store perhaps. The remainder of the Saturday trips unclear in my memory now thirty years later. Odd the things we remember. I rarely see chic-o-sticks in the candy section now, but when I do I always remember these trips to town as a little girl.

I remember sitting beside him at his old upright piano. Listening. Pecking at keys. Discovering. Roots of my love for music found with him. The music was woven into his being. A God given gift. For me it was a talent, but one requiring more work. Not as easy as it was for him.

I remember my fingers gliding over the keys. A child’s version of Beethoven’s Fur Elise I was learning. Him listening and encouraging.

I remember other things too that I would rather forget. Like the cancer.

But I’ll choose to remember the other things. The pleasant things more. The chick-o-sticks, the piano and a pawpaw that might not have hung the moon, but in a granddaughter’s eyes helped God set it in its place.

What are some things you remember from your childhood? Do you have special memories of your grandparents?

I’m linking up with Peter Pollock for the One Word at a Time blog carnival and also 3 From Here & There.

My Hallel

Morning routines are finished. As my boys leave for school and work the quiet returns if my plans allow. Calm moments of devotion and journaling then begins the day. I find the playlist I go to most often to give soundtrack to my day.

I sing along catching myself stopping to offer my worship. The quietness allowing worship unhindered. Bringing a peace to my soul as I prepare for the day.

You’re the Lord of all creation
And still You know my heart
The Author of Salvation
You’ve loved us from the start
Waiting here for You
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it’s You we adore
Singing Alleluia

Just as I worship with my voice the counting of each grace becomes worship. The remembering itself a form of worship. My praise given. My hallel to God.
As often as I list each incredible gift, from sunsets to a husband that cleans up after dinner, I easily forget how simply stopping to list them brings joy. But as I list I am also learning that it is in part my worship. And in this worship, in remembering each grace, my gratitude brings my Creator joy as well.

526. For having a happy & productive day. (8/16/11)
527. For Preston’s kind words on my guest post for his blog. (8/17/11)
528. For experiencing the main campus of Highlands for the first time. (8/17/11)
529. For getting through the day. (8/18/11)
530. For Sarah Beth inviting kiddo to see the Davinci robot at the hospital. (8/19/11)
531. For a sunset behind the clouds that took my breath away. (8/19/11)
532. For dolphins and a visit to the Georgia Aquarium. (8/20/11)
533. For free putt-putt outside the aquarium to pass the time. (8/20/11)
534. For a nice time at the Braves game with Daddy, Whitney & Ben. (8/20/11)
535. For clouds over the stadium that took my breath away as the sunset. (8/20/11)

Shadows & Sunrises


Sunrise_081611_0010

Photo: Sunrise progression, Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Full moon splays shadows across the yard. I listen to the night sounds as I search for stars remaining almost unseen as the moon reflects its light.

Some see shadows as disturbing, haunting. I once did. Pasts ever present, casting shadows as we try to overcome what was. Grief robbing life of joy, of the happiness that will never be known or known again. Pain tearing away at spirit’s peace. Unknown worries lurking in the gray

But the shadows I now see have a beauty of their own. Yes, beauty in their own way if I will simply look. Beauty in pain that teaches to lean into my Creator more each day. Beauty in letting go of preconceived plans.

God reminds me that plans often need to remain in the shadows. I glimpse an outline of things to come. Without form and definition I can only wonder what they will become.

I know “He works all things for the good of those who are called according to his purpose” is true. Listing reminders of His faithfulness, of His grace. I trust. I want to trust.

Days appear when the wanting to is all I have. Anxieties move in almost unseen stealing peace. How easily focus is lost.

Again I look to what He has done.

“Let this be a sign among you, so that when yoru children ask later, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ then you shall say to them ‘Because the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord…………So these stones shall become a memorial to the sons of Israel forever.” Joshua 4:6-7 

Just as the Israelites built altars to remember I list. Giving gratitude for even the smallest of gifts. A gift most would skim over. These gifts reminding me of His faithfulness. Of His grace.

498. For a cleaned camera. (8/2/11)

499. For motivation to do a fee chores. (8/3/11)

500. For being assigned the most wanted teachers in 6th grade. (8/4/11)

501. For an afternoon of thunderstorms. (8/4/11)

502. For Walmart not being crazy as I bought school supplies. (8/5/11)

503. For lunch with my best friend from high school. (8/5/11)

504. For time to paint on the porch. (8/5/11)

505. For an afternoon of knitting. (8/5/11)

506. For a twitter conversation with Preston about a book we are reading and how his strong opinions on it made me laugh, but also really think. (8/6/11)

507. For time to talk with Ann while serving at church. (8/7/11)

508. For someone recognizing one of my strengths. (8/7/11)

509. For cloud streaked sky as the sun was setting. (8/7/11)

510. For time at the pool with a friend and the kids. (8/8/11)

511. For a simple thank you. Grace. (8/9/11)

512. For the owl that mixes its days and nights up and hoots in the afternoon. (8/10/11)

513. For over six hours straight of sleep. (8/11/11)

514. For kiddo liking his teachers and saying the first day of school was better than good. (8/11/11)

515. For kiddo having a good second day of school. (8/12/11)

516. For thunderstorm and rain. (8/12/11)

517. For cloud streaked night sky. (8/13/11)

518. For energy to run after nine days off. (8/13/11)

519. For daddy’s home grown corn. (8/13/11)

520. For a new blog home and design. (8/13/11)

521. For energy to run 1.5 miles at a time instead of just one. (8/15/11)

522. For another cloud streaked night sky. (8/15/11)

523. For cooler evening temperature. (8/15/11)

524. For DH cleaning up the kitchen after supper each night. (8/15/11)

525. For waking up early enough to see the sunrise. (8/16/11)

 

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