Saturday, April 09, 2011

All thy desires....

So, it was a bright sunny day sometime around 6 weeks ago, and I was working on one of the first major wedding details. Finding a church large enough for our wedding. I quickly discovered this was not a small project. Finding a building with both a sanctuary and reception site that was large enough in the same building did not even seem possible, and renting them separately was out of the question too expensive. Feeling rather discouraged and overwhelmed with this important detail, I heard the ding of my inbox.

It was from a family friend. As I quickly scanned what she had to say, my mind raced back to six weeks previous.

A dear friend and I were going shopping together. As we happily discussed exciting details of the future, she asked me if I had thought much about a wedding registry, and if I was planning on putting china on my list. To be honest, I hadn't thought much about it - especially the china thing. China was never a big thing in our house, and it was something that was rather low on my priority list. The more I thought about it though, the more I became a bit intrigued with the idea, and thought I would starting keeping my eyes open for a particular set if I decided to put it on my registry.

So, we happily skipped around town to this store and that, and ended up landing in a very large, well-known thrift store. This thrift store is connected with a homeless shelter in that city, therefore, much is donated of quality, especially in the line of furniture and household items. As we browsed the store, I spotted a china set on a prominent display, and examined it with quite a bit of interest. Delicate, blue, not gaudy, and totally "me," I thought, "Wow, if I do decide on asking for china, I want something like this. It crossed my mind to buy it, but the price was still rather steep, and I finally decided it would be the wisest to leave it there.

As I scanned this e-mail, I couldn't help thinking about my experience in town. This friend was explaining how that she had just inherited some china, and as they thought about a possible use, I came to mind. They were wondering if the pattern would interest me, and if so, would Joel and I accept it as an early wedding gift?

I didn't know what to think until I saw it, so at my request, she sent me pictures. Tears filled my eyes, and my jaw dropped open when I realized it was the same antique set I had just looked at a few weeks previously. With place settings for 10-13 people, this gift was beyond what my mind could comprehend, and in the midst of trying to take this in, I heard this soft, still voice whisper to my heart.

"See how much I care for you? This was a small detail - something unnecessary, yet I saw the desire of your heart, and cared. I cared enough to bless you with something special, a little luxury, something to carry with you as proof of My love and interest in your life."

I realized that my frustration with finding a church was plain and simply put, a lack of trust, and I took this as a reproof and encouragement from the Lord. Since then, He has blessed again and again and again with proof of His care and concern with these "little" details in life.

A church has been provided with more than adequate space and half the cost of anywhere else. I had given up hope on being able to hire my dream wedding photographer, and the Lord has abundantly answered. Bridesmaids fabric has been bought with an equally amazing story behind it. The list could go on. I know it's going to continue to go on as well. Seeing the Lord's leading hand has not only been a huge blessing, but tremendously faith-building as well.

Oh yes He care, I know He cares!! (Even about china. :-)

Saturday, April 02, 2011

The one thing to seek after...

Yes, it's been a long time since I've written. I'd like to say that my writing inspiration is always consistent, and that it's only busyness that keeps me from it, but that's not always the case! I think I'm going to have to resign myself to updating when that inspiration hits, and also when that inspiration correlates with the needed time on my hands! I can't guarantee what the next several months and beyond are going hold in relation to this blog, but it is one of the lowest things on my priority list at this point, and I'm sure it's going to reflect that. 

Since Joel and my engagement, life has been one continuous whirl of activity. Between my normally hectic Spring work schedule, there has now been wedding planning filling in all my unscheduled time. Sometimes I get overwhelmed when I see my to-do list growing faster than what I've accomplished, but everyone keeps telling me to relax, enjoy the process, and not get too stressed out. I'm trying, and most of the time succeeding. :-)

Lately I've been thinking about priorities. What are my goals in life? I sat up late last night, and forced myself to take a good stock of where my time and attention is going. Granted, with busy seasons comes many responsibilities, but does my number one goal in life change? It shouldn't. 

My number one goal is not having a perfectly planned wedding.  It's not any one of the number of things that clamor for my attention day in and day out. It's not even in fulfilling the long desired for season of marriage. Seasons change, responsibilities shift, and time moves on, but my inner life will not move on if I don't keep that #1 priority in focus. 

Knowing God. Loving Him with my whole heart. Living day in and day out, moment by moment for eternity. For the things in life that will really matter in the long run. In this push-button, fast-food, microwave world, I oftentimes find it a struggle to do what it takes to makes this a reality in my life.  There is no "connect with God" button I push during my times with Him that guarantee instant results. Waiting before God takes time. It takes a surrender and an acknowledgment that He is my number one need, and that He is my fulfillment. Having that as a reality in my life is what makes it possible to fulfill my daily life and responsibilities glorifying Him. 

I was blessed this last week by the lyrics of a song a friend shared. Can I pray this? It is my desire that this be my heart's cry now and always. 

Whatever it takes

To keep me tender toward You
Whatever it takes, Lord
I beg You to do
Whatever You must lead me through
Whatever it takes, Lord ... do