Friday, February 20, 2015

For the Days You Feel You Can't Survive, Much Less Thrive....

At this point in my life, I write often about messes.
Why? because I'm surrounded by them.
Two little expert mess-makers live where I live, not including the other four that live in this house who do a pretty decent job at it themselves.
Case in point:

what happens when you take your eye off the toddler for five seconds.

I write, too, about hunting for beauty.
Why? because I have to choose daily to see past the sin, the ugly, the discontent that my unthankful heart can crave.

But the deeper reason I write about these things?
Because these are the things God is using to shape me, mold me, transform me into who He wants me to be.

These aren't the only things He is using, though.
He's using our electricity situation ~ it has moved from bad to getting-really-close-to-unsustainable.
We are now dealing with 24 hours off at a go.
This is not something I write about often, but it is part of my story, and it is doing a work in me.
God has been faithful through the months and months we've faced this, but it is hard.
With the lights off so much, there is a bit of a domino effect on our surroundings.
No electricity means no washing machine.......thus the need to hand wash. {I'm no stranger to hand-washing our clothes as I've had to do it for long periods on and off since we've lived here, but it does take up a good portion of time!}
No electricity means no lights on for a quick pick-up time before bed.....thus more clutter than usual when we get up in the morning.
No electricity means long, hot nights.......thus a cranky, weary family trying to live together through the days.
And lately, the water has been really low, too.
Meaning that even though the lights may be on, the washing machine still can't wash anything.
It just sits there enjoying a vacation.

God is teaching me right now that I have a choice.
I can choose to just survive this time of my life, or I can choose to thrive at this time in my life.

It's so much simpler to just drag out of bed and do the bare minimum required to get through the day.
It's easier to whip my hair into a topknot again, skip the bath, throw on the frumpy house clothes, skim my Bible reading, slap any old thing on the table to eat, fuss, yell, conveniently run out of time to do the chores, leave the dishes unwashed, nag, yell some more, not bother with teaching my kids the skills they should be learning, and ignore my relationship with my husband. It's too hard to do anything else.
I can decide to live.
Right here.
Right now.
I can decide that I only get these hours, these days, these months one time.
Do I really want to look back on this part of my life and see nothing but the gray dreariness of a life survived?

Yes, I have to put effort into living these difficult days.
I have to decide if I'm going to take a few minutes to get ready in the mornings so all my kids' memories aren't of me in my pajamas with frizzy Medusa-hair hanging everywhere.
I have to decide to think about the food we put into our bodies, and try my best to choose wisely, even if that takes more work than I want to do!
I have to decide if I'm going to bother with cleaning up the messes, controlling the chaos, and editing my life, since I know the little people will just mess it up again.....soon.

I have to decide if I'm going to decorate for holidays or not be bothered.
I have to decide if I'm going to read out loud when my voice is tired, or play beautiful music when the lights are on, or let the kids work on the big, messy school project, especially when that's the last thing I want them to do!

I have to decide if I'm going to read my Bible and good books that make me think or fritter away my time online.
I have to decide if I'm going to not only search for beauty, but also choose to add beauty to our home.

It comes down to a choice, and I'm the only one who can make it.
So today I choose to live.
I may tired.
I may be sitting in the dark.
I may be surrounded by a mess.
I may be wondering if I'm really going to survive.
But in choosing to live,
to thrive, not just survive,
I am growing,
being formed into the woman God wants me to be.


  1. I absolutely loved this as I so needed this today, this week, this month.

  2. I love the honesty of your blog! It's so easy to get caught up in all the negatives of our lives that we overlook the work the Lord is trying to do first and foremost on us! I can't imagine living with the hardships that you face, but I will be praying for you to find God's comfort for the daily stuff! You are loved!

  3. It definitely is not easy some days to do what is needful vs. that which is wanted. The want to be lazy is so strong some days, but it is never worth it. Our excessively cold winter is making it very hard for me to move at times, and the pain can be a lot, BUT the days I DO do what is best and needful are the BEST days, even when I'm so sore I could cry by the end of them. :) A content, happy spirit filled with reliance on God is amazing. :) Love you, and praying for your power situation!