The Heart’s Response to Life

September 8, 2012 at 10:38 pm (Completion, Contentment, Philosophy) (, , , , , )

I have recently been overwhelmed.

My circumstances have changed in ways small to the outside world, but large in my perception. Some changes are positive, and some are more challenging, yet something strange has been happening to me in the last two weeks. Each stress, challenge, discouragement and change in my life has been met with a reaction unanticipated, unexpected and unnatural.

I find that I am consistently and completely overwhelmed with gratitude to God.

From a human standpoint it just doesn’t make sense to me. The Lord blessed last year with ease of transition and is appearing to bless this year with complexity. Yet, my heart has been FILLED with gratitude for the challenges He has given me this year. Continually, I find myself thanking Him for difficulties and asking Him to cause me to rely fully on Him rather than the gifts He has given me to make my day-to-day decisions.

My circumstances will constantly be in flux, in part because that’s LIFE and in part because I like change and have a tendency to bring it on. Whether life is smooth and easy and all decisions made are like shooting a fish in a barrel, or life feels trying, tiring, tedious and without respite, Christ is still King over all and Lord in my life. His pre-eminent knowledge of all things and his involvement in my life’s history reveal that He is out for my good and whether the process FEELS good or not is completely irrelevant.

So I made a decision. My theme word for this year (I’m a teacher so I go by the school year, not the fiscal year or the calendar year) is: gratitude. We don’t always cause the circumstances in which we find ourselves, but acknowledging God’s hand in our lives guides the way we respond to our situations. I am deeply grateful for the crazy, abundant, never-seeming-to-end blessings He’s poured out in my life as well as the insane, stressful, awkward, difficult, uncomfortable blessings He’s placed in my life. God does nothing arbitrarily and every interaction, relationship and situation has a purpose for us (and I do NOT mean this in a lazy, generic “everything happens for a reason” way). It is intended for our continued maturity, faith and glorification of (and in) Him.

So that’s my word. I’m totally stoked to do some studies on the word gratitude and am (ever so slightly hesitantly) stoked for Him to stretch me this year. I know this is going to be a challenging season and I’m excited to see how my Lord will meet me in the midst of all my little life’s happenings.

What’s your theme for this year?

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