Tuesday, July 02, 2013

bulldog tenacity for perfect peace

today is exactly the mid-point of the year. there are 182 days of 2013 behind us, and 182 days of 2013 ahead of us. that is mind-boggling. where did the time go?  

half-way through the year and i've come to really love my one word for 2013. the word weaves itself in and out of my thought-life all the livelong day. steadfast: resolutely unwavering, immovable, reliable, faithful, true to the end.

i am so thankful for this one word that God whispered to me 182 days ago. steadfast has been this gentle reminder in every situation and every area of my life. steadfast has helped me make decisions, has helped me choose my words, and has helped me hear, see, and recognize God's presence in the every day. this one word has been good for me. God gets the glory!  

there are still 182 days left with this one word. it's summer and it's hot and i am tempted to sit by the pool and read my twitter stream all day. it would be really easy for me to throw our daily schedule, routines, and structure out the window. especially since i am the one that makes the routines and enforces them on weekdays. believe me, there have been days when i've wanted to just take the summer off and completely relax - even in the areas of my life where i have been steadfast

but then, that would be contradictory to the very word itself. throwing in the towel "just for the summer" would not be very faithful, reliable, or stable of me. oh...can't i just sleep in and complain a little bit and slack off for a few days and step out of bounds for a minute and throw caution to the wind? 

this one word reins me in: steadfast.

and yet, steadfast isn't binding, restrictive, or holding me down. no, being steadfast has been freeing! keeping steadfast in the Lord has freed me from fears, anxiety, insecurities, and doubt. i am so thankful. 

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. 

so... yeah, for 182 more days and beyond, i pray that i can remain steadfast. dutifully firm and unwavering... 

in my prayer life - seeking God daily, breathing in His grace, breathing out His praise
in my faith - honoring the Sabbath, studying scripture, giving myself wholly in worship, obeying  God's Word, standing firm in my beliefs, where He goes, i go.
in my home - keeping up with housework, creating a welcoming environment of love and peace, inviting friends over, building my house and building up the ones inside.
in my marriage - speaking Jeff's love language, making him a priority, "watering my grass," and being his rockstar wife.
in my parenting - filling my kids' love tanks, balancing fun with chores and schoolwork, nurturing their friendships, living in moments with them, listening to them, watching them, letting them, loving them. 
in my serving - looking out for opportunities to serve, checking the Volunteer Interest box, and being willing to step up to the plate.
in my friendships - making an effort to make new friends in our new community, working to establish solid, true, lasting relationships, and maintaining my "gold" friendships despite the miles between us.
in my hope - standing on God's promises and hanging on tight to His truth. storms may come and waves may crash, but i won't be shaken! God is still on the throne!

have you heard this song? the lyrics remind me of keeping steadfast:

So I'll be bold
As well as strong
And use my head alongside my heart
So tame my flesh
And fix my eyes
That tethered mind free from the lies

remaining steadfast a commitment that takes bulldog tenacity. it's a constant taming of the flesh and fixing of the eyes. but it is not in vain. after 182 days of remaining steadfast, i have tasted and seen that the Lord is good. at the end of the day, i can rest in God's peace, thanking Him for helping me stand without wavering, steadfast.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.