Sunday, September 16, 2012

All Creatures Of Our God and King...

A rainbow I saw from my backyard
Sunrises, the stars on a clear night, thunderstorms, rainbows, snowflakes, birds, foals, eyes... just a few of the things that put me in awe of the One who created them. As we transition to fall, and will soon have snow in the mountains here in UT, I am continually reminded of God's hand in the world around me. Driving to work this past week we had a glorious rainbow, we haven't had one all summer due to the drought, and just seeing it as I drove brought tears to my eyes as I heard in my heart "I have it all under control". He speaks through everything around me, be it my niece's giggles and curiosity, or the amazing way he created the horses that I treat and work with on a daily basis, or the sky that He paints in majestic colors every morning and every night, He is always there.

Recently I have been seeing reminders of how powerful, and yet how loving, He is to me. His amazing power in a thunderstorm, His knowledge and care in how He created every living thing to be just so, His compassion in a rainbow, His faithfulness in the sunrise every morning. When I'm attentive to things He created I hear His voice like He is speaking directly to me. David got it right when he said "The heavens declare the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night reveals knowledge." (Psalms 19:1-3) If I simply listen in my heart to what I can see with my eyes then my reverence and awe and worship of the God that created them would be more from my heart.

Monday, September 10, 2012

I Love Jesus, Does He Know?

 Yesterday my mom shared a blog with me by the title of Grace For The Road. The particular post was "I don't Wait Anymore", I want to share pieces of that post with you as well as some of my own thoughts.

When I turned 16 my parents presented me with my purity ring, and I wear it to this day, but after reading this blog it really has me questioning the motives behind wearing it.

There are a lot of girls out there who don’t know who God is anymore – the God of their youth group years just isn’t working out. Back then, that God said to wait for sex until they are married, until He brings the right man along for a husband. They signed a card and put it on the altar and pledged to wait. And waited and waited and waited. Some of them have prayed their whole lives for a husband, and he hasn’t shown up. They’ve heard the advice to “be the woman God made you to be, focus on that, and then the husband will come.” They’ve read “Lady in Waiting,” gotten super involved in church and honed their domestic skills. And they still wait.

So many young women these days are hounded with the saying "true love waits", and I'm not slamming their campaign or saying that sex before marriage is ok, but they are waiting for God to fulfill some sort of deal. That if they follow Him then He will automatically give them a man so they can give everything to that man. I myself have been in that place with God, doing what I think He wants me to do so He will bring me the man of my dreams. When things didn't go as I planned I got mad at God, repeatedly. Several times I made major life decisions based on what was happening in that man's life, because I was living in a state of waiting. Waiting, thinking that if I did everything just right then I would have him.

Unlike the author of the post I still wear my ring. I'm not going to live my life like I am waiting for a man to appear so my life can begin anymore, I'm not going to love Jesus on the condition that He brings a man into my life, instead my ring will be a reminder to just simply love Jesus. The purity should be a side effect of my love for Him, not the central focus.

Katlin, or Katie as most people call me, means "pure in heart". The verse quoted most in relation to my name is "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.". It makes more sense now that I think about it in light of the article. In order to be truly pure in heart I must be pursuing God out of a deep love for Him, and that love and relationship with Him will produce the drive and desire for a pure heart. And someday, when God decides that the time is right, a man will join me in my pursuit of Him. But I'm not waiting any longer.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

There's Something About A Woman...

So, this whole being single again thing has had me thinking a lot lately about what it means to be a woman, and especially what it means to be a woman worth wanting, and a woman who can be a support to her man.

The most extensive passage on being a woman of virtue and a woman who is a blessing not only to her man but to her family is Proverbs 31. This woman is described as being trusted by her husband, she works with her hands, feeds her family and maidens, she clothes her family and has the financial smarts to buy a field and plant a vineyard, she is strong and serves the needy, and knowledge and wisdom are on her lips. When I first read this passage it leaves me feeling a little unqualified and overwhelmed, but the passage doesn't just give a lengthy "to-do" list, there are also rewards sprinkled among the verses. She does not fear for her family because they are provided for, she will be known as a woman who fears the Lord, her husband is known in the gates, her husband trusts in her, she may be hard to find but that makes her worth far more than jewels. When first viewed as a whole the idea of even possibly being that woman appears daunting, kind of like first getting the syllabus for school at the beginning of a semester, but after stepping back and looking at the individual pieces it really isn't all that hard. Each "task" or "characteristic" simply takes daily dedication, a little bit of time each day and it isn't so hard. The best daily picture for me is my housecleaning, I tend to let it pile up until the weekends because my days are so long at work right now, but then on Saturday it is like this huge task I have to take on and it looks impossible. If I simply did a little bit here and there every day when Saturday came around there might just be one or two things left to do and then I could enjoy my day.

What place a woman should hold in society has been controversial, and will continue to be, but in whatever "status" God has placed a woman she still wields immense power through how she influences the men in her life. If you listen to country music for any length of time you'll here songs about moms, wives, girlfriends, and how they swayed the men around them. The question is, do I want to be the wife that empowers her man, or the woman who drives her man to want to live on the corner of the rooftop?

"There's somethin about a woman that makes a man a man"