Tuesday, April 1, 2014

a week away + real life struggles

We had a wonderful little getaway last week to the Beaver's Bend area {in southeastern Oklahoma}. It was so good to leave work behind for a few days. I don't know if it's because I'm getting old or have more kids, but vacations and breaks feel better than they ever have before. :)

I know it's life with a new baby, but I've been so tired lately and it's affected me in every way. I think getting to a quiet place was good for my soul. I needed to recover. :) 

For 2.5 days straight, I did nothing but make {and eat} food and sit around while the kids played outside. :)

We picked a sweet little cabin and even with a special deal, we paid a little more than we normally would for a few special kid features. 

Specifically this treehouse, mountain trails, a horse tire swing, and a hot tub:

And the kitchen was fully stocked with dishes and supplies {though I still brought my Keurig, hahahah!}. We made spaghetti, popcorn chicken, and had lots of fun kid things like Lucky Charms. :)

I spent most of the time in here by the fire listening to worship music and reading. It was perfect. :)

Zane liked it too:

And we ended the week at my mom's house. This was the one time we did anything remotely active {and it was hard!}:

Biking 6 miles of hills surprisingly wasn't the pleasure cruise I thought it would be, but we had fun sweating it out too. The plus side of going up steep hills is that you get to coast downhill really fast!

Zane has been extremely restless at night for the past couple of months, and he was back to his restless ways by the time we went to my mom's house on Thursday, so by the time we were home Sunday I was totally exhausted after not sleeping again. I just felt so discouraged to come back to another week feeling the same way I had when I left.

And then {my hero} Rob came to the rescue, and even though he has to go to work, he has been taking the first shift with the baby so I can sleep for a few hours. On Monday, I woke up after 4 hours of straight sleep for the first time since he was born, and I can't tell you how thrilled I was to sleep that long!! :) Thank you, Lord God, for my sweet husband who was willing to stay up for his exhausted wife. 

I am so thankful for the rest and honestly, even more for the time I got to spend with Jesus this last week. It's back to regular life again, and I'm fighting to make it to summer. I know I have it easy compared to so many people, but it feels like this everyday life stuff is hard right now.

It's kind of at that bootcamp point where you want to quit but you really don't get a choice. You keep going, even when you feel like throwing up and falling on the ground. :) It won't last forever and you know it so you keep moving, doing the next thing. You set your eyes ahead of you and make each foot move one step at a time. :)

This is a season, and my goal is to focus on spending more time praising God even when I am overwhelmed and don't feel like it. I want my eyes to set their focus on Jesus, the author and perfecter of my faith, you know? He is teaching me, sanctifying me, and convicting me of my sin in these hard things, and it's good.

I'm so thankful for the Word of God, and even more so when things aren't easy. The Psalms are such a comfort to me because they remind me of how God relates to His people in both joy and in trials. I shared this on Facebook the other day, and I need to remind myself of it again today. :)

If you're walking through afflictions or hard things and you are a believer in Christ Jesus, know today that God is there with you! He is faithful!

I believe from Psalm 119 that He gives us afflictions in this life for lots of different reasons- so that we can learn to walk in His way, so that we will trust in His Word, so that we rely on His promises and learn of His love and faithfulness:

Psalm 119:50:
This is my comfort in my affliction,
that your promise gives me life.

verse 67: Before I was afflicted I went astray,
but now I keep your word.

verse 71: It is good for me that I was afflicted,
that I might learn your statutes.

verse 75: I know, O Lord, that your rules are righteous,
and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.

verse 92: If your law had not been my delight,
I would have perished in my affliction.

verses 105-108: 
Your word is a lamp to my feet
and a light to my path.
I have sworn an oath and confirmed it,
to keep your righteous rules.
I am severely afflicted;
give me life, O Lord, according to your word!
Accept my freewill offerings of praise, O Lord,
and teach me your rules.

The Lord is always good- ALWAYS faithful, and He can always be trusted. Even when we're hurting and grieving He is there, and His purposes will prevail. We don't have to understand "why" to trust His Word and offer Him praise in the meantime. If you are afflicted today, study His Word and meditate on His righteous rules and faithfulness and sing His praise with worship, and His Spirit will bring you comfort.

And if you need to confess your sin or lack of trust, do it- don't delay! There is nothing that won't be revealed in the end, sweet friend. Don't let it hinder your heart from knowing and seeking after the Lord. He is worth far more than all else this world offers you. Seek Him with all your heart and He will not turn you aside.

And if you want to know Him but don't know what holds you back, ask Him to reveal your sin to you and when He does, REPENT from your sin. Holding on to our sin keeps us from approaching the throne of grace. It's never worth it, I promise you that. Seek Jesus with all your heart. Love Him with all your soul. Turn from your sin and humble yourself before God, and ask Him to teach you His righteous rules so that you may obey His Word. Because of the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus, our God will do it in us- He is faithful, and He will give life according to His word!"

I'm so thankful our God gives life to our soul, and even when we are weary and feel like giving up, He will give us the strength to keep going. :) 

It is so very good to know He has a plan for us. Even when life feels like bootcamp, He is there and we can find find hope in His Word at all times. That's what I'm clinging to right now. :)

How was your week? I feel like it's been forever! :)

Are you in a "bootcamp" season right now too? :) What motivates you? 

What's your favorite Psalm?
I love Psalm 34, 119, 27, and 145...okay, okay- all of them, hehehe. :)

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