The Seasons of Life

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I thought the first time prepared me. When it happened again a few years later I was caught off-guard. It is happening again in a few short months, actually, I kid myself, it has been happening for more than a few months and I find myself completely unprepared.

Empty nesting. A season filled with innumerable changes, grief and hopefulness. It is important to allow ourselves to grieve through this process. I am still a mom but my role as mom has changed. My days are no longer dictated by drop-off and pick-up, three yearly two-week breaks and a seven week summer vacation. My days are filled with what I have been anticipating and looking forward to the past twelve months. Time. I have nothing BUT time. I have thought about, dreamed about and chomped at the bit for this exact moment. To have days filled with learning more about this gift of writing, spending endless hours traipsing through God’s word and actually writing, but this empty nest thing keeps getting in the way.

I have been expressing to others that I have been in a holding pattern for the last year and I was wrong. Today God revealed to me one of my favorite verses and one of God’s promises – James 5:17. I’m not in a holding pattern, I’m in between the rains. My responsibility is to be patient and God promises to bring the autumn and spring rains.

In between the rains is where new seeds of truth are planted in rich, deep and dense soil waiting and preparing for the new growth that is about to spring forth.

Empty nesting, like so many seasons in life, is a process. As we stay tethered to Jesus by reading and studying His word and through prayer and fellowship with those who have gone before us, we will learn to trust the process.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

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Shamless Audacity

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I’m reading the devotional, “Draw the Circle,” by Mark Betterson. Today’s reading is about prevailing in prayer according to Luke 11:8. As I was reading, I kept asking myself, “Does God’s word really say shameless audacity?” Sure enough, right there in the NIV translation….shameless audacity. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read this parable and those words have not stood out to me until today.

The Greek word is ἀναίδεια and literally means shamelessness as it relates to carrying out God’s plan with unembarrassed boldness, in dignity of faith. It is the faith-led believer who isn’t concerned with human fears even when they are being accused of being extreme or excessive. 

I want to live everyday in shameless audacity. So strongly connected to my Lord and Savior Jesus that I am the bold ambassador to His kingdom that he has called me to be. Throwing human fears to the pit because Jesus is my strong shelter and His banner over me and mine is love.

Shameless and dignified because of Jesus. Persistent in prayer and he will surely give you all that you need.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

Inherent Blessing

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From Eugene Peterson’s broad view of family in Psalm 128. “The illustration is, as we would expect, conditioned by Hebrew culture, in which the standard signs of happiness were a wife who had many children and children who gathered and grew around the table: fruitful vine and olive soots. This illustration is just that, an example that we need not reproduce exactly in order to experience blessing. (We, for instance, don’t try to have as many children as possible-or try to get them to stay home for all their lives!) But the meaning is still with us: Blessing has inherent in it the power to increase.”

Blessing being inherent is the character of God, belonging to His nature. And His power is in each blessing, maintaining the ability to increase the blessing and spill into the live of others, whether we have children or not and whether our children are able to live on their own or not.

You are blessed to be a blessing regardless of your earthly family situation.

#beablessing

Shalom!
©2017TereseJMBelme

Reflections

 

Years ago, at the church we were attending, we had an intern Worship leader for the summer. A sweet young gal, whose love for the Lord shines through her and splashed onto the lives of others. (This is true for her entire family!).

One Sunday she introduced us to this song. I wasn’t a huge fan in the beginning, but as time wore on, this song began to take on deeper and deeper meaning for me. Little did I know at the time, the impact this sweet young woman’s family would eventually have on my life and the life of my family.

I haven’t listened to this song in quite awhile. But this morning the Holy Spirit gently led me to listen. And as I let the words fall over my heart, the Holy Spirit, once again, showed my pictures of how He has blessed my life through this song and the people connected to it.

Seasons come and seasons go. Sometimes God moves us from one place and plants us in another and it is all good according to His perfect will. And it is okay to grieve the change while trusting His process.

He is close to the brokenhearted and turns our mourning into dancing.

Shalom!

©2017TereseJMBelme

Standing Still

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This is one of my most favoite verses. It speaks to my warrior heart. I can’t tell you how often I need this reminder, especially when the enemy is ‘barking up the wrong tree’! It helps me to remember that my fight is not with my words or actions, that my power as a warrior AND an ambassador to the kingdom of God is through prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit within me. Isn’t it a relief to know that Jesus consumes and devours our foes?

#standstill #shatteringstrongholds

Shalom!

 

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Hey Momma

 

This year of restoration has been an emotional rollercoaster. Some due to the stress of an ongoing struggle, some due to the discovery of a medical condition, (thank you Jesus, my symptoms are finally being recognized and it isn't all in my head!), and some because of transition.

Today my son and I needed to take care of some college prep and living arrangement items and we spent a fair amount of time in the car. My son loves music and he loves to play his music for me. Just when I thought I couldn't bear one more song, my son says, "This next song, someday everything in this song will come true."

Here is a small portion of some of the lyrics.

"Hey mama, I want to scream so loud for you
'Cause I'm so proud of you, let me tell you what I'm about to do (hey mama)"

"And when I'm older, you ain't got to work no more
And I'm a get you that mansion that we couldn't afford (hey mama)
See your unbreakable, unmistakable, highly capable, lady that's making loot
A living legend too, just look at what heaven do, send us an angel, and I thank you" – Kayne West

Do you know how incredibly hard it is to drive, while choking back tears because your son has touched your heart so deeply?

God promised 2017 would be a year of restoration. It has also been a year of blessings.

Shalom!

#blessedmomma #mothersonbond #restored2017

 

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Transformation

 

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photo credit: thttp://www.imdb.com/title/tt3371366/mediaviewer/rm344207616

 

Recently, my husband and I saw Transformers: The Last Knight.™ I don’t care how many times the classic story of good versus evil is reworked when the end product is a Transformer movie!

My favorite scene in the entire movie, and I apologize if you haven’t seen this movie and intend too, is when Optimus Prime is battling his brother turned nemeses Megatron. Their otherworldly transformer swords slashing through the air, each attempting to make the final blow. All the while Megatron in hurling insults at Optimus Prime to no avail, when he decides to appeal to Optimus Primes emotions by saying, “We were brothers once.” Somehow, I don’t envision the two of them playing nicely on the school yard. Then Optimus Prime utters the best line in the entire movie.

“Did you forget who I am?”

Sometimes, many times, our sojourn of faith can be like Megatron’s memory. We forget who God is. We attempt this life by doing things in our own power. We forget or maybe we simply don’t believe the truth of how much God loves us and how much he wants to be a part of our life. We forget he has an answer and solution for every situation we find ourselves. We forget what it means to wait on the Lord and be patient for his answer. We forget about His perfect timing and that His ways and thoughts are higher than ours.

Choose to stay in His word everyday, because, lets face reality, our hearts aren’t simply prone to wander, they DO wander! Choosing Him daily and consistently builds our memory of Who he Is and His faithfulness, His love, and His grace toward us.

The next time you step on to the battlefield, don’t forget Who he Is and always ask him how you ought to fight!

Shalom!

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