Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Choice


I love this picture! It reminds me that God won’t break down our walls. He just simply knocks and waits patiently, with love and mercy, for us to open our hearts and allow Him to come inside or turn Him, and all that is wonderful, away. He doesn’t make us love or accept Him. He only asks that we will; however, where we spend eternity and the condition of our heart is our choice.

Someone once told me, we can either be a stumbling block to our loved ones or a light to them. When you really think about it that is a tough statement. It doesn’t leave any room for negotiation or compromise. It means that you will either help those you love to the Lord or you will stand in their way. I don’t know about you, but I would rather my Lord take me home, than to willingly stand in the way of someone and God.

There is someone watching our lives. There is someone who watches to see how you handle situations. There is someone who counts your smiles and frowns. There is someone listening to see how many times a day you complain or if you’re praising God, during your struggles. There is someone who watches to see if you find the positives in life or dwell on the negatives. There is someone counting on YOU to lead them to the Lord.

Last night, my baby snuggled up close to me and said, “I’m so thankful you’re my Mommy.” I smiled so thankful that God had blessed me with such precious little boys to take care of. He trusted me to look after them. And I want to do my absolute best. I believe if we fail to take our kids to church and tell them about God, then we are standing in their way of the most precious gift ever offered or received. I believe we should take them, regardless of the situation. We need to not only tell them how much we love God, but every day we need to show them.

This week has been a tough week for my kids. School has been demanding and they’re not adjusting well. I’ve held them as they cried and wished I could make it all better. However, I realized as the crisis was happening, I had two choices. I could either A) Go into the school making demands and being hateful, therefore, further upsetting my children and their teachers or I could, B) Tell them it would get better and show them the positive side of it all. I could offer possible solutions to the problems and remind them their teachers are struggling with the new system, too. So instead of rebelling, they needed to be kinder and more understanding. A smile in the midst of horrible day can be as powerful as a drink of water in the desert.

In every aspect of our lives we have a choice! While I don’t always know the right one, I’m so thankful the answer is always a faith call away. God will always lead and direct me, if I only ask him. He will always show us how to rise above the rubble, victorious over it all. He will show us how to walk through the valleys of life with a smile on our face, while the tears fall down. He will show us how to trust Him, during the storms of life that threaten to destroy us.

Every time I think about my life and how God opened my eyes and showed me my scars are a blessing instead of a tragedy, I’m so very, very thankful. I’m so thankful that instead of keeping my hands shoved deep into my pockets, my arm and foot covered that God blessed me to reveal them to the whole world. They will all be on the cover of my book. If someone had told me this a few years ago, I would have laughed and argued it would never happen. I’m so thankful God showed me that instead of being ashamed of my scars I needed to be thankful. I’m so thankful that He has blessed me with the gift of words to show the hope and thankfulness that is in my heart. I’m so thankful that He has blessed me with the hope that my story might help another life. But when it all comes down to it, I had a choice. I could either see myself as a victim or a survivor. There’s a HUGE difference in those perspectives.

I have learned it is not what you overcome that inspires others, but it’s how you overcome it. I could never put into words what it felt like when I realized I could no longer work a regular job. I felt defeated and useless. It was so hard on me to watch my husband go to work every day and work so hard, and, yet, we struggled to pay the bills and just buy groceries. Things that were once taken for granted became luxury items. There was a big part of me that wanted to give up. That wanted to stop fighting and just accept the inevitable. However, there was a part of me that still had a little glimmer of hope.

And that hope made me look toward Heaven and remember the promises God had made me. I believed that if I trusted Him with my life, He would make a way for me. I believed that He wanted me to continue fighting, believing there would be a better day. Oh the devil laughed at me and tried to get me to worry and turn away from God, but I’m so thankful I choose to believe that all things work together to the good for those that love the Lord and are the called according to His purpose.

Imagine how I felt the day the publisher offered me a contract on my books. All because I chose to follow the way God had made for me. I will continue to have days filled with pain and limitations, but when I’m sitting in a classroom, surrounded by kids, reading them my story, I really don’t think it will matter. Their smiles will make me forget my troubles.

Today is filled with choices, so choose wisely! And when in doubt, sometimes we have to choose the road less traveled. That’s usually the road that leads to happiness, peace and, most of all, our wonderful God.  

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