finding God's best in several areas:
my list could continue but i shall stop there so i can touch more specifically on things:
-sometimes, i don't feel comfortable being myself around even family. especially when i am under the weather with my fibromyalgia. when that happens, i am very fatigued, in pain, and in a fog. sometimes, i have to go off quietly to just sit, or rest. trying to realize that family is okay with this and understands, but it's difficult to not stress about it!
-i wanted our homsechool year to be "mission minded" and although we haven't accomplished that to the FULL extent i had desired, we've done some, even if we were mission minded FOR EACH OTHER because i think being nice to your SIBLING is hard to do! as a family we were able to help others with clothing and share gifts of toys. we went caroling. visited shut ins. prayed for missionaries. purchased something from a World Vision gift catalog for another person somewhere in the world. i think we were able to broaden our scope of helping, and being servants to others. it's a blessing- to us!
-homeschooling has been quite fulfilling, lots of rough spots, but fulfilling knowing it is the RIGHT thing to do for our children right now. the toughest thing is keeping Philip on track, and teaching him he needs to have a better work ethic when it comes to lessons! we have good days, bad days, and more than good days!
-photography desires are to take photos for my family and whatever God plops in my lap. that really released a lot of stress. and here, after relinquishing the photography, which was after relinquishing the scrapbooking, which was after relinquishing Etsy, i find myself on another journey- writing. i don't understand all the ups and down with my creativity, but i am trusting God has a plan for me through it ALL!
-my friendships have been renewed, challenged, pruned, watered, and grown majestically. i am blessed.
-embracing the fact that i truly enjoy solitude once in awhile. as a writer (and i can clearly call myself that now!) it's something i have to accept, after all!
-my faith has been tested and strengthened. i've seen God work through me to help others, and vice versa. I've held His hand many, many times.
-a dream of mine has been met. i've completed writing my first novel! i've felt God's leading and have entrusted to him the entire journey. i have had many thoughts throughout the process. remaining in His hope is the key to contentment about the stage of the book, ANY STAGE it is in, and as i figure out where to go next from HERE, from actually finishing my piece of fiction, to THERE, publishing it, i need to hold on to HIM to manage with JOY!
-rich and i have had ups and downs with our music ministry, i imagine just like everyone else who would call themselves a musician. we are now at a place where we can minister together joyfully each week, and i will humbly say what a blessing it is. to be used where we feel our gifts lie, and to do this together has been wonderful for our marriage. our kids see our partnership in a tangible way as we prepare our family for church each Sunday morning, and give of our time. more and more i see how our family has been placed together like those pieces in that puzzle you have set on a table and forget about a few times. you glance at it, think it's in the way, then the light goes on and you figure out a piece. only, it's the Master's hands that put the piece within the grasp of your fingers, and it is Him who guides it to the proper place.
As the year is almost done, I need to remind myself to remain faithful to the Lord in all things. To give thanks to Him in all things. We may face more challenges this coming year compared to last. We may experience even more joys. We do not know and it is not up to us TO KNOW. It is God's way of telling us to TRUST in him. We cannot live any other way but completely faithful in our hearts to Him as our Savior.