Sunday, September 26, 2010

I refuse to be reduced by it

'I can be changed by what happens to me, I refuse to be reduced by it'
- Maya Angelou

Sara posted her weekly YOU:create canvas on Thursday with this quote, and as He often does, God uses His people to speak to me in His perfect timing. Me + self pity have been having a bit of a shindig lately, much as I've tried to deny it, much as I consciously continue to choose joy, I've been allowing my life circumstances to limit me. I have chronic pain from a back injury and an auto-immune disease that means living with varying degrees of pain and fatigue, depending on what the day brings, and I'm the first to admit that I do use that as an excuse for not doing things - things that I really want to do. Which is very, very, very lame.

I've been witness to some events in the lives of people around me lately that have brought sadness and grief to them and the lives of those around them, and it's been one of those times that's made me take a good look at myself and my life, and realise just how blessed I am. Regardless of what any day throws at me, ultimately I have a very charmed, very blessed life, and it is up to me to make the most of the gift of each day I'm given. As the quote says, I can - and will - be changed by whatever happens to me, but I can also choose how I react to it. I can live a life shrouded in self-pity, or I can defy the chaos and with God's strength rise above it, to look for the Light and bathe in it when I find it.

I love my garden. At the moment, it's an absolute shambles because it's a work in progress, but I love it. I love that I have it, and I love it's potential, but I haven't been out in it because of how I've been feeling, because I've let self-pity make excuses and keep me inside. Today I chose joy, and told the pain where to go and got back out there :-) I'll probably pay for it tomorrow, but for today, it was just what I needed. And God knew I needed it :-) Psalm 37:4 tells us 'Delight yourself in the Lord and He will grant you the desires of your heart'. I know that verse to mean that if we delight ourselves in our Father, He will place His desires for us in our heart (which can often come as a surprise, lol!!). Today, I discovered that if we delight ourselves in Him, if we turn our eyes and our hearts to Him, He will give us even the tangible things our hearts desire :-) I have always wanted to find an intact bird's nest that has been abandoned, and today when my boys pulled the dead grapevine off the water tank, guess what we found :-) An intact, abandoned bird's nest. We actually found 3 nests, 2 of which were broken in the pulling down of the vine. Not only did He grant me my heart's desire, He did it in abundance :-)

Oh, but it didn't stop there :-) Youngest DS and I then found a 'skeleton leaf', that was just so beautiful in it's fragility. And then I saw the bluebells were in bloom, and just bringing colour and happiness against the backdrop of the messiness of the garden. Then to top it all off, youngest DS comes with a gumnut and a gum blossom, marvelling to me how it goes from something so small to something so big, and how cool is that? He felt compelled to take photos - as did I, of the other treasures God gave us. So that's my YOU:create this week - we created memories of the awesomeness that is our God, and how much He delights in giving us what our heart's desire, just when we least expect it :-)

(click on pic for better view)

'For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also'
(Matthew 6:21)

1 comment:

  1. I love your post and love that you have chosen JOY. I love the photos that you have shared with us today of the beauty of God's creation all around us. Thanks for sharing Ali.