Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Endings and Beginnings

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Last night at Bible Study, we got to talking about the inevitable
need in our lives for change.

About how the need for change sometimes shows up,
as a feeling of getting stagnant or stale.
The feeling that we don't have to think hard to do what we do anymore,
because we are no longer truly challenged.

For instance one of the ladies, who already helps run her family business,
is getting her business degree now!

She loves this.
Her son (an Honors student) is helping her with Algebra.

If God made us for anything, it certainly must be for challenge!
He is not a God of the comfortable.
The contented yes, comfortable, not so much!

Of course, there are lots of other indicators, besides the feeling of being stagnant,
but for a room of 40 something year old women,
this is a likely symptom.
We got to talking about being at the stage in life,
where we are almost done raising our children.
Because most of us have our kids about grown.
So there is a sense of a need to change gears.
And we are perhaps already (for some of us)
and anticipating (for others)
starting to reap some of what we have sown.
We have invested in our families, and will continue to.

But we reach a place where we will grow stagnant
if we do not catch the change in the direction the wind is blowing.

The wind of change.

While we desire comfort, most often comfort doesn't lead to a fullfilling, disciplined life.
We have moments of comfort, surrounded by sowing, reaping, threshing...
Speaking of threshing -
after all the work to sow, grow and tend a crop, look at these pictures...

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See all this wonderful bounty we have grown...

Now, see what is required to fully appreciate the benefits of the bounty...


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Harsh, huh? Sorry, this picture just fit what I had in my mind.

Seasons changing can at times be jarring.

But, if we remember the purpose behind the shaking, the threshing,


we will not lose hope (at least that's what I'm telling myself!)


:)

We will not grow weary. We will not faint.

"While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease."

Genesis 8:22

14 comments:

luvmy4sons said...

Great post and pics to emphasize it! That is so good about the violence of the harvest machine! Change. We don't always like it though, do we? Great post! I think I would like this group of women!

chazman said...

Excellent Imagery.
You are a deep thinker.

freetofly said...

Leslie, thanks! I hesitated to use that, but, I felt it best respresented the point. But, YIKES! And with a resounding NO may I answer your question about us not liking it always! But, yet I trust my Lord, how can I not? You really would love these women! It's a small but faithful group and we enjoy catching up with each other and then talking about all the good things of God. It is impossible to leave without feeling exhilerated! (spelling?)...I have often thought, "I wish I could do this with my bloggy friends!"

Chazman, You are MUCH too kind! :) But, I AM glad you liked it!

Happy Thursday, Ya'll!

MelanieJoy said...

Hey, thanks for stopping by my place today! I recently changed churches...well, actually I went back to my home church. When I left it was so stagnanted- it's a long story as to what happened to get it that way. Anyway, I never thought God would ask me to go back but He did. I couldn't understand why- I certainly didn't like the idea. I do though understand now that I'm back. The old church in it's hard core southern Baptist way seems they are ready for CHANGE!! It's been amazing to watch things unfold in His time. There is much change to take place and it will be a slow process...but they have finally caught the vision that the change can bring.
Great post!

MelanieJoy said...

Hey, thanks for stopping by my place today! I recently changed churches...well, actually I went back to my home church. When I left it was so stagnanted- it's a long story as to what happened to get it that way. Anyway, I never thought God would ask me to go back but He did. I couldn't understand why- I certainly didn't like the idea. I do though understand now that I'm back. The old church in it's hard core southern Baptist way seems they are ready for CHANGE!! It's been amazing to watch things unfold in His time. There is much change to take place and it will be a slow process...but they have finally caught the vision that the change can bring.
Great post!

MelanieJoy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
StaceyStace said...

Yes, change is tough for me, too. I have had a whole lot of it. I've kicked against much of it, but I know God moves me in the direction He wants me to go - and that often takes away my "props".

Thanks for your comments on my blog. I can relate so well with you. I have been shut off from many human relationships. It has hurt tremendously, although the MAJORITY of it was my own fault. I have only resently begun to understand (and appreciate) that God has to get us all alone at times, to purify us. PAINFUL.

Karen said...

This is so true, I'm in this phase myself - only this 40 something Mum still has young 'uns - just turned 7 and almost 5. Can so identify with this post, from the beginning of this year there has been this feeling, this sense of change coming - cool changes, pruning changes (not so cool - initially) and more. This post dove tailed with a few thoughts and things I have been reading in recent days too.

LN- Nickers and Ink said...

Great post! I hope this will encourage many to persist and persevere in faithfulness!

By the way, your tee shirt came today. Thanks! (The mailman was a little confused, because it was addressed to YOU!) ;-)

Thanks again,

Linda
Nickers and Ink
Practically at Home
The Mane Point

freetofly said...

Melanie, Thank you! That's wonderful news on ALL counts! That God is moving in that church, & that He has hold of your heart to move YOU! I love to hear such a great report! It's encouraging!

Stacey, I am really glad to have met you! I look forward to keeping in touch in our respective journey of faith and life! And yes, PAINFUL is right! It DID prompt me to go walking today though! I even scared a mean dog away!

Karen, you're fortunate! Kids keep you young! :) Change is in the air I reckon!

Linda, Ha! My Bad! Ooops! I couldn't resist! I really did forget to put your name on it! Too rushed & maybe a touch scatter-brained! :) Glad you got it!

Thanks, Ya'll! Happy almost Friday!

xoxo,
Maria

P.S. be sure and check out my NEW CONTEST!

Denise said...

We should always be open, and very willing for change. Bless you my friend.

Sharon Brumfield said...

Thank you for this post.
I am not posting but I am reading.
Changes can be really hard. And the further along you get--the harder some changes can be.
Like that butterfly struggling to get out of what has bound it--tears and joy. I do not know what I will look like but in His hands it is promised to be for my good.

freetofly said...

Denise, you're right!

Sharon, it's wonderful to hear from you! You & Keith & your family are in my prayers. You have been through so much, from Katrina, to Paw Paw and now moving. You need some time just to enjoy the presence of God and be restored, refreshed.

I know God is at work to design you a Masterpiece of a life!

To All:

Have a great weekend!

xoxox,
Maria

shoes man said...

Beautiful blog you got there, I love it, nice and cool colors.

Greetings from Kansas!

What Does it Mean Anyway? "Free to Fly"...

Well, it's like this: Here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Free: a : having the legal and political rights of a citizen b : enjoying civil and political liberty c : enjoying political independence or freedom from outside domination d : enjoying personal freedom : not subject to the control or domination of another2 a : not determined by anything beyond its own nature or being : choosing or capable of choosing for itself...having a scope not restricted by qualification 7 a : not obstructed, restricted, or impeded ...Now, here are some of the Webster's Dictionary definitions of Fly:1 a : to move in or pass through the air with wings b : to move through the air or before the wind or through outer space c : to float, wave, or soar in the air ... a : to take flight ...6 : to work successfully ...Examples which apply from Websters: fly high : to be elated - fly in the face of or fly in the teeth of : to stand or act forthrightly or brazenly in defiance or contradiction of

What does this mean in my life? This means that in life we are meant to be free. While historically mankind has not always enjoyed the opportunity to fully appreciate what that means, we are so indescribably fortunate as to live in a time of the greatest spiritual, physical, financial and political freedom ever known. Freedom doesn't come cheap, nor does it come easy. But the best things in life don't come that way do they? As I write this I am struck by how this sounds like a political statement, and for me this is much more of a spiritual thing, but, same goes for that (political that is). Freedom doesn't come easy. And it's worth whatever fight you have to make to overcome in your life in order to live a life that succeeds. Now the questions is - what is success for you? What is your standard? In my mind what is needed is a definite target - because you can't hit and maintain a moving target. A stable, rock-solid, anchor with no variable, yet multi-faceted. Something pure, just and worthy. If you look at any web page of news you can see that our society is certainly lacking in this area. What a great time to live as a rebel! Nowadays to be a rebel, all you have to do is be willing to engage in the battle of life, while anchored to Christ!