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. . . you’re doing it wrong . . .

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To the One Who Deserves More / the Best / or just plain Better (i.e. Me, and a few others, maybe):

Let me start by saying, I have been married for going on 11 years this coming April.  That’s not an eternity, but it is longer than most celebrity marriages seem to last these days, so I guess there is some sort of accomplishment in this small fact.  We have definitely experienced some of the best parts of life together and have felt like we are on the mountaintops and so happy to be there with each other. However, that is not to say that this has been an easy road, or that as we go along it somehow becomes less of a chore at certain times; like when the mountaintop takes a turn down into the valley.  No, that would be a fallacy.

In fact, not too long ago my husband and I had a heated argument.  For those that have known us, or I should say, “those who have discipled us” … For a while, our relationship could have been classified in the “volatile” category (for years).  And while, this is not the norm anymore, when we do argue, we still argue pretty LOUDLY.  That might be an understatement.  Am I proud of this, no.  Do I advertise it, no.  But, there is something that I want to share with you, and you have to know that about us to understand it.

So, back to the heated argument.  It got LOUD, and quite frankly I’m getting too tired to be as loud as my husband can comfortably get to these days (and err’body said, Thank God).  Anyway, as he was getting louder and acting a fool, my thoughts immediately went to, that comfortable zone of:

I DON’T DESERVE THIS!

I am a Grown woman, and I Don’t Deserve to be talked to (ahem, yelled at) this way (especially, when I am choosing self-righteously not to do it back)!  This is true.  Nobody deserves to be yelled at, except maybe these people, but that’s a different story for a different day.  But, then I went down that dangerous train of thought . . . of how much easier my life would be, if this person wasn’t in it.  Then the question came, which is always inevitable on this rabbit trail:

https://i2.wp.com/www.conversationsblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Deserve.jpegDoesn’t God want me to be a Happy, Functioning member of society?  He doesn’t want me to settle (umm, too late sista, you said “I do, remember?” that wasn’t a settlement that was a promise).

Then, why am I putting up with this garbage, and limiting my “options” here?  Why on earth do I subject myself to this relationship day in and day out?  I am worth more than this!  And it doesn’t help to hear these LOUD messages all the time:

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Then, the other inevitable thought struck me.  Yes, it was bound to at some point, I did invoke the name of God, after all.  Let me just give you a hint, in case you don’t know this already: Anytime you bring God into your thoughts trying to justify those thoughts or actions you plan to do . . . especially under the pretext that God is going to forgive you anyway, because it is in His nature . . . you just get ready for Him to work on YOU.

He starts to work on all kinds of stuff, especially on your thinking (how annoying when you’re wallowing in self pity, I might add).  What pray-tell did He say to me in that moment, you ask?

Warning:  Oh . . . you just opened up a LARGE A** Can of Worms!

He had done said to me:

… You keep subjecting yourself to this other person AND this relationship continuously, because that other person is NOT JUNK.

… Furthermore, I DON’T MAKE JUNK!  (Let me break that one down:  God, don’t make no junk y’all!)

… And, despite your superiority complex, at times, this other person (as you are so disdainfully referring to him as at this moment), is so Equally, UnashamedlyWholly and Deserving-ly LOVED by Me!

Whoa!  That took me a step back.  You mean, my husband Deserves just as much of my respect and Love, or more – as I expect from him?  And all this because, my God loves him with an everlasting love that has, in turn, been entrusted to me while on this earth?!

Yes, It is as simple as that.

So, what is this , “I Deserve More!” attitude?  And, where does it come from anyway?  Pride.  Yeah, I said it . . . P R I D E.

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It’s like this:

When one of my kids runs up to me to tattle on one of their siblings, and they use words like, “I Hate [insert name],” or “They are sooo …. [insert label]!”  Something just stirs inside of me, and it HURTS!  It truly hurts my heart.  Not just because this child is hurting that child, but because both of them are Mine.  They are a part of my being in such an intrinsically basic way, that it hurts me when they hurt.  And all the Mama’s can attest to this!

Well, getting back to the heart of the Father, and His feelings for Us, His children . . . all I can think is that, when I cry and complain about my spouse, I may as well be crying and complaining about God- because it IS His fault.  And by fault, I mean . . . His design.  It was His flesh, and breath that gave my husband life, and it was His plan to so strategically place this man in my life.  I may as well tell God in my Big, Puffy, Arrogant voice:

YOU’RE  Doing  it  WRONG!!  You don’t know what You’re Doing!!

When, in fact, He isn’t and He does.

Who am I to declare in a brazen voice that I deserve More than what I have been given?  Who am I to declare that I deserve Better than what I am?  Who am I to say this spouse of mine is NOT Enough?  Who am I to say this person is not God’s Best Work?

I am nothing.

My life is but a breath (Job 7:7), and every mortal man is only a vapor (Psalm 39:5).

https://i1.wp.com/25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m46szsKwZ01qbatwqo1_1280.jpgWhat is this compared to an Eternal God?  It kinda puts things into perspective, doesn’t it?  No, I’m not degrading who I am , or looking for others to affirm what I already know to be true about my life, that I am Fearfully and Wonderfully MADE… that my soul knows full well (Psalm 139:14)!  I even wrote an entire post about just that!

This is more of a: I am humbled to know that there is a God who knows me better than I know me.  Who knows my spouse better than I know him.  AND, who knows what kind of World-Changing, History-Making kinda possibilities there are because of our love for one another . . . that He would orchestrate and design for us to find each other on this Big Planet.

Here’s what I’m not saying:

I Am Absolutely NOT saying to stay in an abusive relationship!  In the very least, you should leave this situation and get help!  Maybe this marriage can be healed at a distance, but maybe it cannot – but you have to be safe from harm to determine that.

What I am saying:

I am NOT God’s gift to the World, and I don’t deserve something/ someone better than this incredibly talented, and complicated being God put so much thought and care into creating and giving me to hold onto.  You may say, “But, this Dude/Chick is HIGH Maintenance . . . HIGH!”  That may be very true, but I would say (provided they are your spouse): You’re  LUCKY!!

God entrusted you with one of His fine tuned /delicate creatures.  Learn how to steward that gift and responsibility to the best of your ability, because God has shown you Favor.  So, STOP acting like you have been Cursed!  You haven’t.  I haven’t.   On the contrary, You have been Blessed.

I have been BLESSED (with complicated). 😉

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How much trust does it take to give a kid a fish?  Not much, it’s not that big of an investment.  How much more, a horse?

Do you catch my drift?  Now, am I saying you are unfavored if you married a fish (someone uncomplicated)?  No.  You have simply been blessed in another way.

The point is, we are all blessed!  Sometimes, we have to turn off the NOISE, and take off the BLINDERS in order to see it.  But you say, “I would have to search pretty hard to see the blessing in my situation!”  Isn’t it that much sweeter to find a hidden treasure than to partake in one that is open to all?

Bottom Line:

We are all in this life together.  We don’t deserve any more than the next guy, as it relates to the relationships in our lives . . . if you think you do, you are making people commodities . . .  don’t do that, please.  No, let’s all just agree to dismount from our High Horses, and LOVE the complicated mess – we have been privileged to know- while they do the same with us.

  **Peace Out Y’all!**

~ Julie ~

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Saving Solomon

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The plight of orphans  is something that has always weighed heavy on my heart, and yet… it is nothing new to this world.  Sometimes, I think that we in the US are numbed to images such as this one.  I have seen them all my life, starting from when I was as young as I can remember, seeing starving children from Ethiopia on late night television.

I have felt sorrow in my heart for the condition of their lives. But what have I done for the orphan?

On a mission trip to Peru, in 2006, my husband and I witnessed many homeless children on the streets of Lima out well past 10:00 pm at night, and had no idea what was going on right in front of our eyes, until right towards the end of our trip.  I naively thought, “Geez, where are those kids’ parents?!”  Inaccurately reasoning that there was just a different level of permissiveness in this culture.

However, when the realization hit me a few days into the trip, I so wanted to bring a child home with us, one in particular named, Catarina- she was a very sweet girl of about 9 years old.  This was quite impossible though, as we had no idea what it would entail, and we were told that Peru was very strict on their adoption policy and that it was close to impossible for a foreigner to adopt a Peruvian child…add that to a few other factors, like our age and financial stability (or lack thereof) at the time, and we quickly talked ourselves out of it and came to the conclusion that this was just not the right timing for us.

I feel I have done next to nothing to change the World we live in for the orphan.  What can I do to put even a dent in this monstrous problem?!  Just that… put a DENT in it.  I may not overcome the whole thing, but if we all just put a dent in it, we might actually see something change.

found at: http://www.google.com/imgres?start=181&um=1&hl=en&client=firefox-a&sa=N&tbo=d&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&biw=1265&bih=740&tbm=isch&tbnid=f5EJXna1lkWXPM:&imgrefurl=http://www.comoadoption.com/&docid=mqaM5nRXLD1PKM&imgurl=https://i2.wp.com/www.comoadoption.com/images/12.png&w=467&h=300&ei=bBOrUJelK5PC9gS_-oBA&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=688&vpy=429&dur=1251&hovh=180&hovw=280&tx=146&ty=72&sig=109298279332757632556&page=7&tbnh=136&tbnw=226&ndsp=34&ved=1t:429,r:99,s:100,i:301
Now, don’t get me wrong, I do understand that adoption is not for everyone and that there are other ways to help them without actually adopting them…

In fact, that is the purpose of this post!

There are many families I have met interested in adopting, and/ or going through the process of adoption, and to look at A L L of them and try to support A L L of them would be impossible and just thinking about it can be quite overwhelming!

BUT, if we could just stop for a moment, and focus on the specific piece of the puzzle, which God has set before us to fill in the big picture, maybe we could all get that puzzle done… together.

Maybe I can’t bring an orphan home today and I don’t have the means yet to open a home for street children in Peru, but I CAN chip in and add my drop to the bucket of another family that is stepping out in faith to bring their child home to their forever family.

I say:  Let’s make this a team effort!

Taken from: http://savingsolomon.wordpress.com/fundraising-info/

Well, The Gianelloni Family has been fundraising for a while now, in an effort to bring their son Solomon home.  Their story is INCREDIBLE!!  The first time I read it, I was literally SOBBING!

I honestly didn’t know why, it’s not that it is a sad, sad story or anything, I just really think God was touching my heart and pushing me to learn more about this family…  and to be the piece to the puzzle He has asked me to be… regardless of how small that piece is… because even without the smallest piece in it’s place, a puzzle remains unfinished until ALL the pieces are in place.

So, I invite you to watch their journey in the video below to be truly blown away at how God guides them in this whole process, and to consider if you were meant to be one, or possibly more than one, of those puzzle pieces!

If you would like more info on this INCREDIBLE  family and how you can contribute, you can find additional links under the Blessed 2-B a Blessing page!!

And, please leave your comments below for everyone’s mutual benefit!

Hope 4 Joseph

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As we approach the Holiday season, I am reminded of how truly blessed I am…how blessed all of us are!!  So, in an effort to share that with the World, I would like to highlight some really great causes / ministries that I think you will find pretty awesome, as well!

I will attempt to add these pretty regularly, so check back often!  I am so EXCITED about this!!  I have dedicated a “Page” about this also.  And, I would LOVE to hear from you guys on this topic… and how these organizations have impacted you or how they made you feel…ya know, that feeling of  “Giving is better than receiving” kinda feeling?!

I WANT TO HEAR from YOU!!

 

 Hope 4 Joseph:

Here is an organization birthed out of the loss of a beloved child.  Now that their child lives in Heaven, Jon & Joy Scott continue to serve others going through similar circumstances.

Hope4Joseph was founded in 2011 after our son, Joseph, battled for his life, facing grade 4 brain cancer. The life-giving non-profit is moving to meet the practical needs of children while extending spiritual hope to children and their families locally and even around the world.

If you would like to support this incredible ministry, please clink on the link above, or type the following in your browser:

http://www.hope4joseph.org/index.html

In addition, Joy Scott runs a blog of her own, at http://www.joyscott.me/ and http://theunstoppablelife.me/ (WordPress).

Joy has also written a book entitled, UNSTOPPABLE, which can be pre-ordered for $15 (all proceeds go to benefit the HOPE 4 JOSEPH Foundation).
Please consider supporting this incredible family to continue to do great things for other families in need!!

Thanks for checking this out!
Please feel free to pass this information along to anyone you know that may be interested in this organization also!!

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