How do I learn to abide (my word for this year)? What does abide look like? These questions have been swirling for many weeks. I don't have all the answers yet but am trusting that they will emerge as I continue to pursue this word with God. One element of abide that has been pricking at my conscious recently is abiding in my daily life. I find it so easy to skim through my days with my mind in the past and the future and the what ifs. Am I really living in my days? Am I dwelling in these fleeting moments with my daughter, my friends, my family? My little girl starts school in a week! I am caught in the desire to treasure these moments while quickly getting bored of playing and seeking distractions and other priorities. That is not abiding.
How can I abide in days that include meltdowns, or physical injuries causing frustrating limitations? How do I dwell in the painful moments, the mundane or mind-numbing moments? I was reminded anew in our church service this morning that it is how we process the painful parts of life that determine the condition of our hearts. This is turn determines the spiritual condition of our lives. (Watch or listen to the January 24th podcast of this message HERE). I was struck by the challenge to embrace the pain and hard times. Does it mean you enjoy every moment? Of course not. You grab on to those times, knowing that you have a choice in how you allow those times to grow and strengthen you, to shoot deep roots of strength, empathy and faith or the choice to allow them to harden you, to put up barriers to the world.
I may not be facing anything earth-shattering right now but I realised that making the wise choice when faced with tough times is hugely dependent on what we are doing in the in between times. Am I embracing my daily life? Am I grateful for the million little and big gifts each day?
I can embrace my daily life and my tough times only when I am secure and abiding in the embrace of my heavenly Father. Am I an occasional visitor or do I make my daily home in His presence? Do I recognise His embrace around me or am I too focused on the ways I mess up in the day? My heart longs to abide in His presence. When I am more fully myself through Him, I can be fully present in my life, in the lives of those I am called to journey with.
Embrace these days secure in His embrace.
Linking up with:
Tuesday at Ten using the prompt word "embrace".