Amanda's Meanderings


Change of Season
September 6, 2013, 3:00 pm
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Do you ever have the feeling that Life is passing you by and you just can’t keep up? Like, you’re overwhelmed with being overwhelmed and your head is barely above the water? Be encouraged! Our lives are lived in Seasons.

There’s the Season of Waiting. Waiting to be married. Waiting to be pregnant. Waiting to give birth. Waiting to finish school. Waiting to _______. We need the waiting. That seemingly eternal pause between where we are and where we want to be is sometimes the hardest test to overcome. It helps us build our Faith…if we know and Love the Lord…and if we allow Him to allow us to Wait.

There’s the Season of Little. Little Joy, little time, little rain, little breeze, little patience. This season can also be called the Season of Self. When we focus on ourselves, we don’t see the beauty around us. We I miss all the Joy in the Time it takes my babies to mature. I miss all the opportunity to learn how to dig in the dry sandbox on a summer day when I fret about the housecleaning, or the laundry, or all the other “things” I won’t have Time for if I just stop and feel the breeze that really IS there.

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Then, when we stop long enough to breathe and surrender, we find the Season of Much. Much Time. Much Love. Much Joy. Much Patience. So Much Peace. That’s where I find myself lately. This Season of Much seems to be such a long time coming. It took me a long time to find it because I struggled through the other 2 seasons for longer than I needed to. I’ve finally surrendered myself (again) to what the Lord really wants me to do. Sometimes the “what” changes. For now, I’m a stay-home mom who home schools our 5-year-old and entertains our 2 other, younger children. For now, I’m passionate about landscaping, heirloom tomatoes, keeping ducks, being fully present in my children’s lives and a supportive wife to my most excellent husband. This is what I’m supposed to be doing. I had to stop obsessing about my weight, housework, yard work, weight, schedule, my weight… you get the idea. I had to make the choice to STOP! Look around. And remember that Life is not built in a day, or a week, or a month, a year. Life comes in Seasons.

The leaves have begun to change in the woods. A new Season is coming. Autumn will soon be here, but for now, I’ll just enjoy the season I’m in.

Blessings.

What Season do you find yourself in today?

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He Loves Me So!
July 25, 2013, 3:39 pm
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God really does love me. I can prove it. When I talk to Him, He listens and then later — when I least expect it — He reminds me of what I asked for. And, the timing of everything is absolutely perfect…as only HE can do.

So it’s been a pretty rough time around here recently. Some close friends of ours discovered that their 3rd baby was developing in the fallopian tube. For those of you who don’t know what that means — it means that if the baby continues to develop where it is, the mother’s life is in danger. Okay. They were advised to abort simply because the chances of the baby living and NOT killing the mother are very small. They didn’t do it. We don’t worship a God who tells us to murder our children so that we might live. The doctors said they were crazy. But once a woman gets pregnant her life is not her own… Our wonderful friends lost their baby and the sweet mother of 2 other beautiful people almost lost her life.

At the end of April I dreamed that a very close friend of mine was pregnant! (Not a big deal…until you realize that God often tells me when my loved ones are expecting — sometimes even before THEY know it!) So anyway, in my dream P told me she was pregnant and used her hands to show me how big her belly would be at different stages. But I could tell that she didn’t really believe it. I could tell that she wasn’t joyful. Then I woke up. (P has gone through the horrible pain of multiple miscarriages.) I was so sure that she really was pregnant that I even called her husband more than once to ask…but chickened out. You see, I’ve hurt P in the past by demanding that she confirm what I’d heard from the Lord. I’ve been prideful and arrogant before about her joyful news instead of letting it be just that: Joyful. So I didn’t ask her. I prayed for her and the baby. I prayed A LOT! I told her that I was praying for her and left it open for her to tell me that she was pregnant, but she didn’t and I respected that. Then a few weeks later I got a call from her husband: “Hey, we just had our 2nd ultrasound and it doesn’t look good. We’re 8 weeks along and the heartbeat is only 85 and there’s another hemorrhage…just like last time.” I felt like I’d been punched. My heart cried out to the Lord “But, Lord, I’ve been PRAYING for them! This can’t happen again! This is MY baby, too…” That’s when I heard it; you know, that little voice that says “Trust Me.” So I trusted Him. I prayed even harder than before. P and her husband asked that our church pray, too. We all prayed for Life and Joy, but they won’t come through the birth of that little person. The baby died. And God is bigger than that. He’s not surprised. He never promised that we won’t feel pain or loss and disappointment. What He wants us to take away from those experiences is the realization of where our own heart is. Am I angry at God? No. He knows everything. It’s my job to submit to His decisions. Do I think He should do things differently according to the way I want them? No. His ways are higher than my ways. Do I still trust Him? “Though You slay me, I will trust You.”

So, I was reeling from the pain of loss and I didn’t realize that I had genuinely begun to question whether or not God really listens to me. I mean, after all, things were not turning out the way I had planned. That’s sin. I’m not God (shocker, I know) and to question His love for me simply because I was in pain is completely self-centered. Where was I when He created the heavens and the earth? I went to the chiropractor on the day it was confirmed that P’s baby died. As I was driving out of the parking lot I saw a woman driving in. She smiled at me very sweetly. Long story short, I’d never met her before, but have been praying for her little family for months! Our husbands are acquainted and their picture has been on our fridge for a long time now. I had recognized her smile from the picture on our fridge and I turned around and practically chased her down in the parking lot. So I stood in front of her and quickly introduced myself and blubbered that God was doing something amazing for me at that moment. I had been praying for the opportunity to meet her and share with her that I had been praying for them (and their new baby which is due any day now)! On just the day I needed reassurance the most, God gave it to me. I can’t really put into words just why it was so important for me to meet her on just that day. There’s so much their story that I really can’t do it any justice here. It’s the Divine Timing of everything that has me floored. And I had been such a brat to the Lord just a few hours earlier… . I’m very excited that we’re having them over for supper tonight — unless they’re having a baby. 😉

I’ve repented (again) for doubting Him. He’s always so good at gently reminding me to Trust Him when I really need it most. Do you have an amazing God story? I love hearing others tell me about how wonderful He is, too. Blessings.



Let me tell you…
June 26, 2013, 2:49 pm
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…about my God. He’s the best thing that has EVER happened to me — and I have a husband! Just today He has blessed me more than I could have asked for. I went to pick strawberries at the local patch today. And it rained. I was happily alone (my children were with a neighbor) and picking berries even though I got soaking wet. Then a young woman asked me if I would like some help to pick. Sure! So I got to have a wonderful conversation with a 15 year-old Amish girl who was happy to spend some time with me in the rain while we chatted about the Faithfulness of our God. I decided that I would go right to her house to tell her mother what a wonderful blessing she is raising…but her mother was not home. So instead, I decided to find the house of an old school friend of mine. I knew that this friend (V) had moved in the past year, so I wasn’t sure where to find her. I drove around the neighborhood hoping that her name would be on a mailbox. It wasn’t. So I prayed, “Lord, you’re going to have to show me which house I need to visit to find V.” I pulled into a driveway and admired the flowers on the way to the door. A little face peeked through a window and motioned me to another door. The woman at the other door was very pleasant. When I told her who I was looking for, her response was this: “Oh, she’s my husband’s sister.” Wow. Thanks, Lord. So went on my way — still amazed that God answered my prayer so completely by showing me the perfect house to find my friend. My plan was to stop long enough to say “Hi, V! I can’t stay long, but I wanted to find where you are. Could I come visit you next week?” However, the Lord had other plans. 45 minutes after I showed up, I grudgingly left after having the most incredible conversation with this Amish woman about Holiness, Godliness, signs of the times, education, Covenant, and Accountability. Wow. God timed our meeting again so perfectly. I loved V back when we were in school, but now I know that she’s “my people” more than I thought. Not only that! When I showed up at the neighbor’s house to pick up my children I had to apologize for taking advantage of her kindness for watching my children. I hadn’t given her an end time, but I really had visited with my friend longer than I should have… Anyway, I showed up to get my kids and she was making lunch for them. She told me to go home and eat with my husband and come back for the kids later! That’s only the beginning! This is just the blessings He’s given me TODAY!

Even as I sit here and write all of this out, I’m still completely amazed at how the Lord touches my heart with my neighbors. This little place that I call home is surrounded by Amish families who KNOW the Lord, and can recognize Him in my eyes. As different as we are from one another, we’re the same in the Lord. I love how every conversation that I have with my neighbors turns to the Lord. Everything that we talk about has Him in it…and it’s fitting. He’s the most important decision any of us can ever make. He gives me everything my heart desires…even though loving Him is all I can give in return. Maybe next time I’ll share how He’s opened doors for me through flowers, or babies, or cooking, or baking, or…whatever. Blessings.