Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Learning to Let Go Explained

Many of you read the title "Learning to Let Go" and immediately get a certain song from a very popular children's movie in your head (and if you hadn't already you probably have it in there by now). I want to clarify that my blog is in no way affiliated with the classic film "Frozen," although I have watched it a number of times and have to listen to the soundtrack almost every time I'm in the car with me kids. 

I chose this title because I have spent many of my adult years trying to be in control of everything. I used to hang on so tightly to things in hopes that if everything was just right I could avoid feeling the anxiety that plagued me everyday. I did not realize at the time that in trying to control things, that I really had no control over, I was actually creating more anxiety and living a life that was no fun at all. Anxiety has been a big part of my life and not even realizing it, I had created a vicious circle that only God could put a stop to. 

Over the last 4 years God has been doing a work in me. He has been teaching me to let go and trust Him. This has not been an easy process and I have in no way mastered the art of letting go, but I'm learning and life is becoming so much more fun and filled with the freedom that only God can give. 

There are so many things in my life that I needed to let go of and I hope to write more about each of them as time goes on. I'm working on letting go of people pleasing and instead hanging on to God's opinion of me. I'm learning to let go of pursuing perfection and instead pursuing God's best for me. I'm hoping I can let go of my expectations and dreams and learn to give them to God and trust what he is doing. I'm learning to let go of my kids and put them back in his capable hands each day. I'm learning to let go of productivity and judging how successful my day was by how many things I was able to accomplish and instead put more hope in the things that have eternal significance. This list could really go on forever because there are so many things that I had no idea I was holding on to and so many things that I need to be set free from. 

How about you? Can anyone relate to this struggle? Are there things in your life that put you in this vicious circle of anxiety? Are there things that need to be let go of? Join me on my journey of learning to let go and experiencing the joy of living in God's freedom!  

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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Does the World Really Need Another Blog?

Probably not. Especially not another mom blog. There are so many out there and the authors are probably much more knowledgable and more accomplished writers than me. Thinking these exact thoughts has stopped me from pursuing this for a long time. 
So why would I start another blog? Here are a few reasons for you:

1) I am a stay at home mom. 

For those of you who need more of an explanation than that, here goes. In my capacity as a stay at home mom I spend many hours at home. Most of these are spent trying to keep up with the never ending needs of my children, but there is an hour here or there when my kids are sleeping or (by some miracle) playing nicely by themselves. 

It is in these times that I usually finish the dishes and do a much needed clean of the floors beneath the kitchen table.

But when I finish that I often think to myself, "Self, I wish there was something I could do that would be both fun and hopefully a means of encouragement to world around me." Although I love making a difference in the lives of my kids, I sometimes long to make a difference in the lives of people that I'm not changing diapers for or giving time outs to. This seems to me like a refreshing change. So I thought I'd start a blog.

2) I really like writing. I have a BA in English and used the skills I learned often when I taught grade 3 and 5 in the years before my children were born. Now these writing skills  mostly lay by the wayside waiting for another chance to shine. I let my love of writing out a couple times a year to edit papers for students I tutor but this never really quenches the desire for the creative side of writing that I so enjoy. So I thought I'd start a blog.

3) I think typing is pretty fun. So I thought I'd start a blog.

4) Maybe, just maybe, I have a new or needed perspective on things. Even though there are billions of people in the world, the crazy thing is that we are all different. Maybe my unique personality will have something to say to someone that will make even a small difference in their life. I think that would be so neat! So I thought I'd start a blog!

5) God has put a passion in my heart to be genuine and not to cover up what real life is like. The truth is that we all struggle and, as hard as it is to believe, none of us have it all together. I just read a really great book called For the Love by Jen Hatmaker. One of my favourite quotes from the book is based on James 5:13-16 and goes like this: "Confession saves the truth-teller and the truth-receiver, because God is liberated to move." This rings so incredibly true for me. In my life, I struggle with anxiety and depression (amongst many other things) and this struggle has brought me to the realization that being honest with others about what is really going on in my life is the first step towards healing and being whole. I've also been privileged enough to witness that being open with these struggles can have a freeing effect on those listening. It is so true that through being genuine "God is liberated to move." So I thought I'd start a blog.

I'm still not completely convinced that the world really needs another blog but I think I'm going to do it anyway and just hope that God will make something beautiful of it.