Tis So Sweet…

Dear Readers,

In my last post I mentioned some recent work the Lord has been doing on my heart…
Friends, this has not been pretty.
I would love to see the things that need changing in my heart and then orchestrate a much easier path for that to be accomplished.
Isn’t it a grace that the Lord’s ways are not my ways? I would be far too easy on myself, expect too little, and ultimately fail in the work that needed to be done.

This past month has been an unusually difficult time with E.
There have been, of course, sweet moments of watching her learn and grow– but also far too many moments of seeing sin (both in her and myself!)

I love the hymn “Tis So Sweet” and a few lyrics I am praying over this season are:

Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood;
And in simple faith to plunge me
’Neath the healing, cleansing flood!

Praying that the Lord will help me walk faithfully in this time with Emma– trusting Him to cleanse me of my own sin in the process, and that He would one day bring her to salvation!

I have been reading/studying through a book with a few friends:
“Glimpses of Grace: Treasuring the Gospel in Your Home” by Gloria Furman.

glimpses of grace

The Lord has been incredibly kind to provide timely words for this season of discipline/parenting and the different challenges that come with it.
I love that Furman points us to Christ in nearly every page of this book. It is saturated with the Word of God, and I am thankful that is the basis by which she approaches her readers.
This season has been a tempting time to complain… When Adam gets home from work, I fear the first things out of my mouth typically have to do with Emma’s behavior.
Thankful for this reminder:
“Living in the reality of the gospel means the difference between complaining to others about something that annoys us and rejoicing in the Lord’s faithfulness to his name.”
Because the Lord IS faithful— faithful to work in the mundane of housework, faithful to give wisdom/patience/grace at all the moments our hearts are needing it, and so VERY faithful to complete the good work He has begun in us (Philippians 1:6).

In addition to challenging moments in discipline (usually accompanied by painful reminders of my OWN need of Christ’s ongoing work in my life)– I have also seen my strong tendency to anxiety. Our Pastor here has recently been preaching through Philippians and dealt with this particular sin one morning.
It was amazing to me how little I often view this as a sin against the Lord. I tend to use vocabulary that remove its heinousness: “concern”, “care”, etc… Avoiding the root issues in play.
It is a clear command, “Do not be anxious about anything…” in Philippians 4:6- and this is something I am fervently asking the Lord to help me grow in!

I mentioned the study I did through Nehemiah– Did I tell you that it was wonderful? 🙂
One of my favorite sections was over chapter 9. This was a time of Israel confessing both their sin and the Lord’s faithfulness in a prayer. It is the longest recorded prayer in the O.T and I really encourage you to read it. It expresses (beautifully, I might add) the marked contrast between man’s wickedness and the Lord’s goodness.
Two of my favorite verses are 31 and 33, “Nevertheless, in your great mercies you did not make an end of them or forsake them, for you are a gracious and merciful God…. Yet you have been righteous in all that has come upon us, for you have dealt faithfully and we have acted wickedly.”

In each struggle against my own sinfulness, I am so thankful for these passages– I pray they bring encouragement to you as well. The Lord is merciful, ready to forgive! I pray that we would be a people that would run to Him in repentance- and then also PRAISE Him for His love, compassion, and mercy! For we deserve to be forsaken…

Till next time.

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