…a pearl.

I’m a little late on my post this week. Sunday was grocery day and we didn’t make it back until dinner time. Then it was bed time for the littles and me. I was so tired. Life of a mama, I suppose.

The past month, I’ve had the privilege of attending a women’s Bible study at a church about forty five minutes away. I have made some precious friends and two of the leaders are members of our co-op. It was an overwhelming experience to hear the testimonies of other Navajo ladies, as well as other Anglo women, who have moved here with their families and love the Rez as much as I do. The study was on the gift of breath that God has given us. It was about walking in the power and strength we are given when we call on Jesus.

Strength…that’s quite a word. One that I often feel I’m lacking. Mostly because I find myself trying to work things out on my own and not fully relying on the strength of my Heavenly Father. And so, here is a little glimpse into the way God is using His strength to overcome my weakness(es)…

I wrote before, we were learning some tough lessons. The lessons we’re learning are for growth and pruning and refining our family to help us further pursue the adventure that’s been lain before us. There has been a lot of discomfort for our family the past month and a half or so. My initial reaction is to get frustrated and feel anxious and begin to worry. However, the more I process and write and study, the more I realize no amount of frustration or irritation is worth my joy. The truth is-a pearl doesn’t become a pearl without first being a tiny grain of sand that irritates the lining of an oyster.

When I wrote that in my journal, I started studying the process of an oyster creating a pearl, naturally…the length of time that process takes is intense. I also began to think about the outside of an oyster. Having lived on the Southeastern coast of America, I know what it’s like to step on an oyster shell. They are jagged, rough and not very pretty on the outside. They will slice your foot open in two seconds flat and leave quite an ugly scar. There isn’t much good about that…but what’s on the inside, is a miracle.

Miracle-a word we often use flippantly…a highly improbable or extraordinary event, development, or accomplishment that brings very welcome consequences.

I began thinking about the real life miracles I’ve seen in my own life. I made a list…at the top, my three babies. Others were Little Man being alive, the story of my relationship with Justin and all the redemption that our marriage has seen, and believe it or not, our move here.

I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it a million times more before I’m old(er) and gray(er). Ha. This move, this God-sized adventure, was never even anywhere in my deck of cards as far as I was concerned. And yet, my heart has become so wrapped up in this beautiful land, these beautiful people, this community. The way we’ve been accepted and pushed away in the same breath, the way my family yearns to help our beautiful friends, the warmth of the sun and cold sting of the winter winds…all of it, wrapped in this big bundle of beautiful. This adventure-it’s a miracle.

Our miracle. Our family’s miracle.

Before we set out on this adventure, sweet mentors of ours gave us the following verse…in preparation for all God was doing and continues to do…

“This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!” -Romans 8:15-17 (MSG)

One year ago, on April 27th, J was interviewing for his position as guidance counselor at MVHS. The girls and I were getting sunburned at Field Day and J was driving through a snow storm. The parallels of that day are not lost on me. We were getting ready to walk into a season of drastic parallels. Our comfortable, island life was about to collide with everything Jesus had ever planned for us…and despite the discomfort, it IS a beautiful life.

A miracle…a highly improbable event that has lead to amazingly welcome outcomes.

We wait with adventurous expectancy for Him to reveal His plans for us here. We are excited for all He has planned and for the way He is shaping and molding us…may our family become pearls. My prayer is that we wouldn’t be timid in loving and living our lives here. May we wait in grace and may we grow in wisdom…may we remember that He created the oyster which in turn produces a pearl…

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