Monday, March 21, 2016

Renewal


RENEWAL: The replacing or repair of something that is worn out, run down or broken.

The wonderful thing about this time of year is renewal.  One would think that that time would be the New Year, but I beg to differ.  Spring is renewal for me, the replacing of the worn out.  I have seasonal depression so I find myself in what feels like a hopeless rut for about 3-4 months of the year (my poor husband).  I just feel blah. I get chubby, grumpy, sad, and difficult. I try to find joy in so many places but joy does not come.  Through prayer I survive this every year.  This year was better than the last few.  I took vitamin D and combated it in every way I could.  Now I get to stare fully into Spring knowing the next part of the year will likely be easier to manage.

I am a woman all about renewal.  I roll well with change.  I like to try new things.  I embrace new ways of doing things, new schedules to try, fun workout classes to attend and basically just love to dive right in!  For some of you the thought of all of this is making it hard to breathe, I understand we are not all creatures of change.  During this season of renewal what I want to remind us all of is the renewal that comes with our life in Christ. If you are a believer you get to be reminded of something so precious this week.  The life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is the ultimate representation of renewal.  In Revelations 21 we get a picture of this:

"Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. he will dwell with them and they will be his people and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away."


Can you just imagine, all the new things!!!??  He makes all things new!!!  You, me, your family, your church...newness.  If you surrender your life to him you are made new in him.  There's nothing he can't fix in your life there's nothing lacking in him, he brings beauty even in despair, he brings life even in death. Renewal at it's very best.

 Just like Spring is bringing in new blooms, green grass and lush gardens full of life; God is bringing newness to his believers each and every day.  Allow him to work in your and through you. How can you do this? Surrender your life to him and run hard after his promises and words (read the Bible, be in fellowship, tell others of his love). Sprint to him sweet girl, he will make you new.

Be renewed this week friends.  Allow God to show you his new things for you.  Allow him to take you by the hand and show you all his goodness and believe me HE IS GOOD!

Much Love,
Chrystan

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

In Sickness and In Health

I have been out of order for the last 10 days.  Sick as a dog.  What started as a sore throat, morphed into some of the worst pain I have experienced.   I couldn't eat, sleep, read, work, listen to music, drive or even play.  I was down. The infection that was initially in my throat made it's way into my ear and on a flight home from Austin wrecked havoc on my inner ear canal.  Ear pain, THE WORST! Finally, I have been granted some relief today after being loaded up on steroids yesterday.

Being down is for the birds.  Not my favorite thing, I don't do forced relaxation well. I have too much to do to not be doing something. I run a home, a business,I'm part of a growing women's ministry, I have my blog, I have my Church body, I have many roles in the Church, I have bible studies to do and bills to pay.  I have all the things.  I cannot be down for 10 days.  I mean who can?  So, I aggressively prayed and frantically pleaded for God to take all this sickness away. To make me feel better. To relieve the painful pressure in my ear, I was seriously in mind numbing, mind loosing pain ya'll.  He, however, did not choose that path for me.  Instead he sent me love.

Love the poured out all over me these past 10 days.  No, Jesus did not show up at my door step and give me a big holy hug (but can you imagine, I would be geeking out!) But instead he gave me a husband who poured himself out for me for 10 days.

He did all the things. He transported kids, cooked dinner, grocery shopped, held me while I sobbed in pain, he drove me to the ER where he had to endure me screaming and crying and snotting and puking and shaking and more.  He sat with me in the hospital and kept me calm. He was my calm in the storm.  He was unconditionally loving me in all the ways I have prayed my husband would. He was romantic. He was caring and also stoic.  He was on my side and by my side.  He waited on me hand and foot, even laying out my pills for me when it was time. He came home early from work just so I didn't have to be alone.

Let me tell you, this is God's great work in my husband. My dear sweet man is not known for being caring and nurturing, he's a true man's man. A rub some dirt on it and get back out there kind of man.  So if you are reading this and feeling envious and jealous I want you to read the following and apply.  I have prayed that Adam and I would learn to love each other the way each other needs to be loved. That God would teach us how to serve each other well.  After 5 years of marriage, we are still working on this.  If you long for this in your life, you must be willing to pray about it and to change the way you are serving to reflect the needs of your spouse (or spouse in waiting).

God saw favor on me by equipping my husband to step up to the plate and knock it out of the park. To be the hands and feet of Jesus, to serve and love me well. Though I'm not sure I would EVER repeat this week again, the silver lining and blessing in it all is to have been cared for and loved well by the man God gave me for so many reasons that I could not begin to list them all.  Sometimes we wonder why God pairs us with these men, we could not be more different right?  But when the rubber meets the road, when the tough things happen, they balance us out and we get to move forward together.

If you are in a season a tough times in your marriage, can I encourage you to pray about your role in your spouses life. How can you love them well? How can you serve them best?  It's probably not the way you want to to be served, but do it anyways.  I promise it will reap great rewards, if even just within your own soul.  Bring those things to the Lord, he will guide you if you let him. After all, he made you in his own image FEARFULLY and WONDERFULLY and so BEAUTIFULLY designed to love and serve others.

Much Love,
Chrystan

PS- I am not the perfect spouse, I am self preaching here as well!  Thank the Lord for grace and new days to try harder to live out my vows well!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Anticipation

Anticipation, it's a whole thing.
It's expectation.
It's waiting.

The actual definition of Anticipation is a feeling of excitement about something that is going to happen.  One may anticipate their wedding day or the day they graduate. I would definitely say that we anticipate the arrival of a new baby and would even go as far to say we anticipate the day that baby says Momma for the very first time.  We anticipate love.  It is almost a sense of looking forward to. To wait in great expectation.
Great expectation.


Right now I am sitting here a day away from the realization of a dream. I am packing my bags and heading to Austin, TX (You know my love for Texas!) To take part in the women's event that changed the dynamic of my relationship with God forever.  Two years ago this event set me on a path that is moving full steam ahead in the direction of Heaven.  I am off to Austin with 2 of my dearest friends, on an adventure that I dare say will be full of joy, laughter, tears and forever memories.  Great expectation! The anticipation is almost killing me over here.

One thing I want to blow your mind with today, is that there is one who waits with bated breath and great anticipation for your arrival in his courts.  This past year I worked through the Children of the Day study by Beth Moore (life changing Bible study I HIGHLY recommend)  In her live teaching portion she set my mind to explode when she pointed out "Time is not running out to God, time is running up. It is running up to the time when he is reunited with his children"  I mean can you even imagine?  This takes my breath away.  The God of the universe. The God that created the air you breathe, the sun that rises and sets, the world...all the things...he waits in anticipation for you.  He counts up till the time you return to him.

The clock is ticking.  I am anticipating my event in Austin, but most of all I am anticipating God's work in my life through this experience.  I cannot wait. I also cannot help but think God is more excited and waits more expectantly, staring at the gates of Heaven waiting to be reunited with his sons and daughters.  I eagerly anticipate that also, for so many reasons.

Psalm 84: My Soul Longs for the Courts of the LORD
How lovely is your dwelling place or LORD of hosts
My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the LORD
My heart and flesh sing joy for the living GOD!

What are you waiting in anticipation for? Do you feel like your life is in forward motion or is it stagnate today?  One final thought, the other definition for Anticipation is the act of preparing for something.  Are you only preparing for things of this world?  If so you may be missing out greatly on the love of a Father who eagerly awaits your return to him.  Seek him sweet girl, he awaits your arrival with open arms, abundant grace and love overflowing.  After-all, you are his BEAUTIFULLY FEARFULLY WONDERFULLY made creation.

Much Love,
Chrystan