Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Matters of the heart.


 Good morning friends!  Today marks the beginning of Lent.  Before I get into my "regularly scheduled post" (ha! as if I've ever had a regular schedule) I wanted to share something I love.  You know, being that it's Valentine's week and all. 

 My dear friends (who I have never actually met in real life) over at Blood Water Mission have an amazing opportunity for us to participate in, during the season of Lent.  You may remember me talking about Blood Water Mission here, when I roped all my friends and their hoodlums into participating in a Lemon:AID stand.  (Well, same people, but new fun.)
Basically, you commit to drinking nothing but tap water for the 40 days of the Lenten season, and donate what you would have spent on coffee, soda, etc. toward helping people in Uganda obtain clean drinking water.  How cool is that?!  (Oh and apparently they let you have a cheat day, once a week so you can stock pile caffeine in your system.) It's running from Feb 13- March 30th and you can even keep track of all the drinks you give up in an online journal!  (Go here for more information.)
Now... let's have a heart to heart.  You know... in honor of Valentine's week.
 I began journaling back in the fall of 2008.  I could sense that there were big changes going on in the heart of my family, mainly in the heart of my husband.  I didn't want to be left behind, so I began reading every book he put down, and sought to be of like mind with him as I watched him grow and change.  After a year and a half of long of discussions, we felt that we were being called to downsize our mortgage payment and though we didn't really know exactly what would follow that, we felt that we could be better at outreach and missions and helping those in need.  We set out on a mission to walk the talk and on May 4, 2010 I wrote this post and began a chapter in my blog labels titled "Adventure Chronicles."  It quickly became a roller coaster of emotions, faith, vulnerability and consistent failure with subsequent lessons. 

My husband's side of our story can't be fully revealed, but I can tell you simply, that he pursued something he was encouraged to pursue by all the appropriate people, and was told a lot of things that never came to pass.  He ultimately had to let go of something he saw not only as a dream, but a calling.  It was weird... and on my side it was excruciating watching him grapple with what felt like rejection not only from man, but God.  Out of pure honesty, we did at times wonder why these things had ever been put on our hearts in the first place if God had no intention of opening any of those doors.  Add to that, the fact that a year later, Adrain was transferred within his company to a position that left us reeling from many unwanted changes.  I won't say that we haven't wavered in our trust of God's plan, because yes, we have... many times, and are still asking questions that don't have a lot of answers.  Looking backward, we couldn't understand why, if we were willing to go... He didn't send.  Why if we were willing, He didn't make a way.

It wasn't until this past New Year's Eve when I began reading Plan B by Pete Wilson, that I finally felt peace with God's plan again.  (And not knowing what it was.)  I suddenly felt like I wasn't crazy for once having wild faith, ready to leap off the tallest thing, only to watch life unfold in weirdly unexpected ways and crash-land into moments of questioning God's very existence and love for me.  Apparently, others have felt this way as well and lived to tell about it. 






 

Anyway, I began reading through my old journals a couple of weeks ago. Pages and pages where I poured out my heart and questions, stared blankly back at me with no answers jotted down in between the lines, and at first they made me sad.  Then... I began to realize the many ways God has stretched and grown parts of us during this long season.  I ended my post back in May 2010 with a quote from Francis Chan in Crazy Love"Lukewarm people do not live by faith; their lives are structured so they never have to.  They don't have to trust God if something unexpected happens- they have their savings account.  They don't need God to help them- they have their retirement plan in place.  They don't genuinely seek out what life God would have them live- they have life figured and mapped out.  They don't depend on God on a daily basis- their refrigerators are full and, for the most part, they are in good health.  The truth is, their lives wouldn't look much different if they suddenly stopped believing in God."

As I read that quote again, these years later, I realize the gift God has given us.  He has unstructured our life in some of the very ways the above quote mentions, so that we have no one to trust but HIM.  We have been in the place we are currently waiting in, twice before in our married life.  Both times we had no where to go but a rescue from God Himself, with perfect timing and a perfect plan.  Both times we were not disappointed. 

So I wait expectantly.

I am still excited to know God has the ultimate plan.  Cause we obviously don't.  We've had a lot of potential plans since 2009 but they have all fallen through.  Every last one of them.  Even the ones that seemed to come out of the air, from Heaven itself.  I am left on this Valentine's Week reflecting on Psalm 18:19 "He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me." (emphasis mine)

 And I know He delights in me, imperfect progress and all.

What a Valentine. 



27 comments:

  1. Beautiful. Your faith is amazing, and an example to me. Thank you. {big hug} ~Sal

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  2. I think that sometimes, He just needs us to be willing, not because He's ready to send us right then and there, but because its the first step in a series of conditioning steps. We can say that we are willing, but, at least for me, I continue to carry things that hold me back from being truly ready. Sometimes the wait is not so much of a wait but a time of preparation <3 Isn't it amazing how God does beautiful things in and through us, even when we don't realize it <3 I'm thankful for your beautiful heart, in trusting the Lord, in loving your family and in sharing who you are with the rest of us <3 Be blessed today Sasha, today and every day!! xoxo

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  3. Thanks for sharing your journey with the struggles and the realizations you have come to. And the pretty photos too!

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  4. I love how your beautiful posts show such a willing heart for the Lord. It is so hard and confusing, when we don't get answers or things don't go as we thought they would, especially when we think we are doing God's will. I will pray for your plan B and that you all will get direction soon. In the mean time, you should start selling your delicious little gluten free treats...like you don't have enough to do, but they look wonderful!

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  5. soooo praying HIS action plan is coming soon. i know you've waited forever. it feels like it's time!

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  6. Girl! This morning you are an answered prayer. Funny how God works like that, isn't it? I just started following you a couple weeks ago - and this is the first morning since that I've read your blog again. We too are in waiting season- the 2nd in our marriage - and like you I have struggled with the whys and wrestle with trying to find His purpose of this season. Logically, I know there is one, but it doesn't make it any easier. Your quote from Francis Chan hit home in a big way. Instead of being the pouty baby I've been recently, I need to be thankful in how the Lord has cultivated my faith and shown me His presence so many times in the last couple of years. Thank you so much from posting from your heart. And I am so thankful that the Lord led me here this morning and used your words to speak to me.

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  7. I love the honesty with which you write. I feel as if I know you, when my husband traveled to Seattle for a vision/mission trip for our church last year, I had to bite my tounge to keep from saying I know someone who lives there, you should say hi to Sasha and Adrian if you see them. lol

    God has blessed my life in ways that are beyond my understanding, but yet I feel he is preparing us for more, not more stuff mind you. For several years He has been impressing on my heart to simplify my life, just when I get comfortable, He asks me to get rid of more. I wonder where it all is leading, but then I realize I only see what is in front of me, He sees around the corners of my life! God bless as you continue to walk by faith not by sight!

    Have you ever taken Experiencing God? Great study!

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  8. I know things will work out for you...I can just feel it...keep being positive...your uplifting spirit is contagious!!!!

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  9. this is beautiful story of how the lord does delight in you. how he takes what we lay down before him, in sacrifice and makes it whole and beautiful offering.
    thank you for sharing your heart. the good , the real, the tender and even when its disappointed.
    your faith has grown over these last few years and i consider it an honor to watch from the sidelines and cheer you on
    xo

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  10. ahhhh yes...waiting in EXPECTATION!
    hard for me because i fall off track(durn humanity!), but how exciting it is!
    not just trusting, but BELIEVING that He will finish the work that HE has started in our hearts and lives.
    with your willing hearts, you may be in for a crazy awesome ride girl! :)

    isn't it just the best to be rescued by Jesus?!
    i mean, yes, He rescued me from my self and sin years ago, but on a daily basis...to fall into His arms and let Him rescue me all over again from doubt, anxiety, fear and hurt.
    it's just the best.
    the BEST Valentine, our Jesus is!
    xoxo

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  11. Your heart, Sasha!!! God has done some amazing things. I can't wait to see what comes of your waiting and trusting!

    I have been there sooooo often over the last 7 years. Like you guys, I was reading books, digging into the Bible, listening to and seeking out wise people. For the first time in my life I felt like I SAW exactly what God was planning....I'm still waiting. A lot of amazing 100% unexpected things have happened in those 7 years. Things I'm so glad I didn't miss out on. Yet, through them, there has always been an eager expectation. We are crazy people. Maybe we've been sent to all the places we've been this whole time we've been thinking God was going to send us any minute?!?!

    Live out that Crazy Love! I'm still trying...However confusing it may be.

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  12. This post… wow. So so helpful to me. My husband and I are right at the point you were a few years ago. Over the top excited, waiting expectantly, feeling called…. And a few doors already seem to be shutting. Questions… Wondering what He is doing… BUT above all, I know that God is doing HUGE things in our hearts. Thanks for this.

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  13. Love the quote from Crazy Love! I know the journey feels long but God is working in you and through you! Absolutely DARLING cake too btw!

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  14. That cake looks yummy!!!! I've been praying for you and your wonderful family. You are such an inspiration to me. There's a lot going on for me too right now...specifically with my son. Would you pray for us?

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  15. The Lord already has you guys on a mission, bigger than you will probably ever realize. I went through the same thing...I have a heart for mission. I too was crushed when it all fell through but I decided to ask The Lord to bring "the mission" to me, right here in my home and he did... So until he says go and I know he will, I'm staying put. You know the movie Gladiator where the guy is always saying "Not yet" ...story of my life. :)

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  16. I can relate to much of this. I think the hardest part is thinking you are hearing very clearly from God about the direction but then it shifts and you're left feeling confused and discouraged. Anyway...thanks for sharing! :)

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  17. Timing is everything, it will come, That is the cutest cake ever!

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  18. oh sasha! i can so relate to your post and feelings.
    i've often wondered why God had put certain passions and ideas in
    my heart if He wasn't going to use them. i will admit that i would
    get angry (in my lowest of lows) as to why he wouldn't open doors or even completely shut doors.

    oh, but His plans are so much better than our own!

    looking back now, i'm so glad He didn't fulfill the desires of my crying heart at the time .. because then we wouldn't have had the blessing of welcoming our 4th child (who was born 12/26).

    not only does He know what you NEED.. He knows what you WANT.
    He will not fail you.
    xoxo

    p.s. boy, this was the longest comment ever. sorry :I

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  20. I loved the quote from Crazy Love. One of my favorite quotes is "Just because it is not what you were expecting, doesnt mean it was not what you've been waiting for" In hindsight I can say a lot of times in my life when the total path changed, I was in desperate despair. What I did not see at the time is if those things wouldn't of happened I wouldn't be where I am now. God always has a plan for us even if it is not the path we originally planned.

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  21. girl... having to let go what you thought was a calling is major hard... totally tough stuff. we are waiting, too... asking for miracles and waiting expectantly. let's wait together. : ) also, i read psalm 13 this morning and verse 6 talks about the Lord dealing bountifully with us. that was so sweet for me to meditate on!

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  22. Not getting the answer IS the answer. I find that once I let go of something, things fall into place. And acceptance of what IS, is all I need because I trust that God will work it all out. Continued blessings to you and yours. A special Valentine's hug to you...

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  23. girl...i feel as if i know so much of your journey. i know the stories are different but that is how our abba works isn't it? i can almost hear the heavy breathing and the sweat trickling and the heart palpitations...the raising the hand over the eye to keep the sun out just to get a glimpse of the terrain ahead...those times when i just wanted to quit it all and lay down and die...ok not really but REALLY! you know?
    some of those places are so etched in my heart memory and i know HE has the plan for us...for YOU. there is a big story to bless so many people sash. you trust the process no matter how hard it gets...He has your back and His love never quits or manipulates or holds back...ask him to bless you indeed...read the prayer of Jabez...i am rereading it again right now..hugs and more hugs...xoxo

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  24. Be still and wait on God . . . When God's in the house it's all good :O) Blessings, Sandy

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  25. We have been in the same spot. And currently seeing The Lord map out the things he put on my heart 3 years ago. I'm so thankful he doesn't give up on his will and burdens on our hearts. Waiting can be so hard, and even the way he gets us to a place to be ready can be painful too...but to see him do the work in us that is so beautiful is so worth it and beautiful. I'm always amazed when we walk in faith in Him. Praying for you guys!

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I am so thankful for you, for taking the time to comment. I read every single word with deep appreciation, and YOU bless my heart and make me smile, just by leaving a piece of your self here on my blog. Thank you.