6/08/2011

Are You Getting in Your Own Way?

That curious contradiction of "dying to oneself"...

The person inside of you dying so that you can be reborn...

Getting in your own way, stopping yourself from overcoming, achieving, listening, bending, being humbled...

My selfish wants and needs are very often a loud, ugly voice, crowding my thoughts and blocking my ears to the truth

Over the past months, I've been slowly, very slowly dying inside. Rejoice with me over the things I've learned and the new person God is allowing me to become!


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My desire to have an easy to feed household has been snuffed in favor of having a healthy household. No longer do I take shortcuts in the kitchen, ignoring possible allergens or sensitivity triggers. We have now been largely grain-free for close to two months, following loosely to the GAPS diet parameters.

The Lord lead me to this place of sacrifice in the kitchen, and my reward is more peaceful children, not clamoring for food every five minutes, more calm, less apt to tantrum over tiny things. I feel amazing, I actually get a hungry feeling (haven't had proper digestion in YEARS) and nearly all my fibromyalgia-type symptoms have vanished. (I will share more on these health issues in our family later.)

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My desire to have a just for me work area has changed in favor of having a just for school work area. After struggling with the kids over disrespect and disregard for the seriousness of school, the Lord impressed on my heart the need to completely designate ONE room in the house as a classroom.

Taking apart my dedicated art/sewing table/workspace was like ripping my arm off. Tears flowed, but redemption came. Obedience that requires sacrifice bears delicious fruit!!! We now have a beautiful turquoise table and orange and white chairs in our new classroom and the children sit peacefully around it and do their work, largely without complaint.

{quick note on this: while having a dedicated classroom may improve your personal home educating experience, I'm by no means saying that this is a cure all or surefire way to get your kids to settle down and work! This is just the way obedience in that area looked for our particular family. I'll share more on this later, also}

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My desire to "look pretty" upon leaving the house has been replaced by a desire to "look practical" and be on time! I still don't leave the house in pj's or sweats with mismatched shoes but I've left with no or minimal makeup or with just a simple braid or ponytail in my hair in order to place more priority on getting my children out the door peacefully.

This is an area that is difficult for me, due to my extremely low self-esteem and self consciousness over my body size. Over the years I've grown in this area, but my voice inside still kept shouting loud enough that I couldn't really hear what the Lord was trying to gently whisper to my soul...

"You are precious in my sight, you are beautiful in my eyes, you are unique, no one has or will be created like you, so there is NO COMPARISON! Just be, and listen to me...my voice is truth!

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My desire to have obedient children so that I could feel gratified and in control has been replaced with a desire to see them turn their hearts toward Jesus at all costs. The cry of my heart to the Lord during discipline issues has changed from "Lord, help ME know what to do here!" to "Lord, help this child to listen to you! Open this child's ears to what you have to say through me!" I can now hear this truth, softly spoken in my heart...

"Discipling and disciplining your children has nothing whatsoever to do with you, you are merely a tool placed in their lives to enable them to learn of Me and hear my voice speaking to their hearts. It doesn't matter if you are being physically or emotionally assaulted by your child, your feelings are not the issue. Their hearts are infinitely more important!"

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These all big areas! Big enough to write at least a whole post on each...which I may do at some point.

For now, I'm humbly thankful to my patient Heavenly Father for lovingly and gently leading me on these paths.
This is only the beginning of my adventure in dying but it's a good start...

When I'm tempted to argue with myself, or trip over my own feet, my turquoise table is my ever-present reminder that...

Obedience that requires sacrifice bears good fruit!

5 readers took time to leave a thought:

12arrows June 8, 2011 at 1:34 PM  

Oh Shelly! God has been doing similar things in my heart and life! We have called it spritual boot camp, in a good way! My children were feeling the effects of my laziness and "self" mode! The change is incredible when we allow God to move in our lives instead of us moving on our own! You might want to read my last post! It has the same idea!

Praying for you and thanking God for your friendship! :)

P.S. love the sling! She is a cuddler so it has been a life saver!

Anonymous June 11, 2011 at 2:45 AM  

Yeah! You are back. I was worried about you and you were missed.
A faithful Canadian "fan".
Canadian Cathy

Anonymous June 11, 2011 at 2:46 AM  

I would LOVE to see photos of the classroom.

Kate June 15, 2011 at 10:34 PM  

Oh Shelly...I'm excited to hear that the Lord is doing a deep work in you, and showing you new things for you and your family. You are SUCH an encouragement, and seriously one of the most wise and "put-together" people I know! Even amongst chaos you have a peace and confidence I have always admired. I'm praying God continues to reveal to you how AMAZING, unique, wonderful, valuable, admirable, and ALL THINGS GOOD that you are! AND...you are STUNNING, so it surprises me to hear you say you have low self-esteem. I know I've told you this several times before, but you really are gorgeous and I sometimes have a hard time not staring at you when I'm around you! You truly light up a room just being in it.

Carin June 18, 2011 at 8:14 AM  

Oh my word, this post had me in tears! This was just what I needed to read today! I need to take your words to heart.

This transformation in you sounds absolutely wonderful.

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