Saturday, January 23, 2016

Being Steadfast vs Being Prepared

After a week away in Orlando for Stephen Ministry Leader Training, I was looking forward to returning back to "normal". For me, that meant the routine I had been enjoying since the kids returned to school after break. I'd enjoy a morning cup of coffee, listening to Rend Collective, looking over my new inspirational planner and connecting to God in some creative way; bible journaling, praying in color, my Solo devotion, etc...
Well, needless to say, that has not been my week. It has been one crisis to the next. First there was dealing with a common childhood infestation of sorts, which includes lots of cleaning and washing, and strict hygiene practices. Then came preparing for a blizzard, winter storm Jonas, that was about to dump large amounts of snow in a place where that is not the norm. 
This has been a very hard adjustment for me. Orlando was a lot of work and strain on my system. I needed days to recover, not shop for various supplies and scrubbing down my house. I have been a very cranky person. I am very grateful for my understanding and compassionate family. 
As I prepared for one of those crazy days of running errands and making storm emergency plans, I had a thought. I realized that being steadfast has pulled me through my pains and sufferings but has not necessarily made me prepared to handle a crisis. Clinging to God is good but how you do it can make a huge difference. That comes from a different kind of strength. As I made my supply list, I noticed that it was an intentional planning activity that took practice and disciple. 
The strength needed to pull through stressful events comes from what you do prior to the crisis. This will help you survive through it. It prepares you and builds a foundation to draw on. For me, God is steadfast to us through it all but if I am not prepared I find myself freaking out during the hard times. I can hold tight to God but what gets me through is the fact that I had been reading scripture the weeks before and had been feeling His presence. So, even though I was in a hurry and didn't have the time to sit down and soak in His grace, I could know that He was still there. I could pray and let Him through just enough to be reminded of His promise and His steadfastness. I could tap into the reserves that had been created in the last month. So now, instead of loathing where I am at, I can make it until the crisis is over. I still long to get back to my quiet place but can rest in the reassurance that God and I will reconnect on a deeper level again soon. 

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