Monday, March 12, 2012

My Weekend Away

Long ago I had planned to go away for a Scrapbook Retreat with my friend Nicole. As the time approached it became apparent that it fell smack dab in the middle of a crazy month.  From mid-Feb to end of March, we have been and will be in craziness.  Craziness that is all good, including two vacations and many service opportunities, but it is crazy busy.  The problem?  I hate crazy.  I don't do well internally when it is crazy.  Crazy schedule can make for a crazy mama.  Looking at the calendar, I felt my stress level rise.  I desperately looked for ways to improve the madness before it hit and rashly decided to cancel my weekend away.  Thankfully, my friend Nicole would have none of it and kindly told me so.

I returned from this weekend away last night.

I had no idea leading up to the weekend if I'd have time to get anything together scrapbooking wise, so I just decided not to stress about it.  God continues to remind me not to worry about tomorrow, so I decided to keep my focus first on Jesus and take things one day at a time.  Instead of the looming pressure of "being fully organized and ready", I decided I'd prepare what I could and otherwise use the time to rest.  I have no idea how, but I was able to go through Chloe's first year and print and organize all of my desired photos.  Still, I knew rest was paramount so I told myself to bring them along but make sure I prioritized time with Jesus over getting stuff done.

Due to needing to support a friend in an emergency, I was unable to pack Thursday evening, as planned and rushed to pull my things together Friday morning.  I drove down to Madison a good 4 hours ahead of my meeting time with Nicole.  I sat in Panera with my favorite soup and spent time reading, journaling, and praying.  It was such a wonderful time of refreshing.  I met up with Nicole and shortly into our ride from Madison, I started to wonder where I put my nicely organized photos.  Try as I might, I could not recall putting them into my car.  I called home and sure enough, my nicely organized and labeled photos were still sitting on the table.  What a kink in the plans to get a bit of scrapbooking done!  I had loads of supplies, but no pictures;)

As frustrating or hilarious as this could have been, I knew that it was a God thing.  I don't claim my forgetfulness is always God's plan- certainly, it is more often evidence of my failure, but on Friday I knew he was using my forgetfulness to give me rest.  Try as I might, I know it probably would have been difficult to spend unhindered time with Jesus when a LARGE stack of photos was staring at me.  The stack is honestly a bit overwhelming.  I never would have finished it, but it's presence would have been a constant reminder of "to do"s.  I needed to get away from that.  I felt like the Lover of my soul stole me away!

I did get a couple layouts done, minus pictures, but mostly, I rested.  I chatted.  I went on a trail ride.  I read.  I slept and best of all I spent more time with Jesus.

On Saturday, I went for a walk and sat along side the creek on a big rock.  I read some scripture, mostly meditating on Isaiah 6:1-8.  I cannot imagine how amazing it was for Isaiah to get a vision of GOD on his throne.  I couldn't escape from noticing when he saw who God was, he said, "woe is me, for I am UNDONE."  The word UNDONE bothers me.  Why?  Because I am a control freak in many ways,  I hate to be undone, and yet that is what Isaiah claimed in God's presence.  I sat there and asked God to show me more of his glory and I confessed I fear being "undone".  I listed to worship music and in God of Wonders I was looking at the beautiful blue sky as I heard the words, "the heavens are your tabernacle", I felt small.  I felt sooo small;  I got an inkling of just how big God is.  I looked up at the sky and in thinking "tabernacle" started to imagine that the rolling hills before me were the folds of the train of his robe that Isiah says FILLED the temple of praise.  There were rolling hills as far as I could see.  Imagine a robe being so HUGE, and yet I knew the earth must be so small compared to heaven.  His robe is actually SO MUCH bigger than that.  I am so small on earth and God is big beyond comprehension.  I will never see the fullness of God's glory here on earth, but I did feel like God allowed me to understand how small I am in comparison to His glory.

I sat in the beauty of his creation and I sang songs to my Creator, my Savior, my King.  I looked and saw small patches of brilliant green grass along side the creek, the only green grass to be seen, as the fields are still brown from winter and I knew if I want to be vibrant even in the wintery seasons of life, I need to stay right next to my Savior, drinking deeply from his living water.

I sat and reflected on our busyness.  I expected God to chastise me.  After all, I had been looking at our schedule and chastising myself.  "How could I let us get this busy when I said were were going to be purposeful about keeping life in control?"  God didn't chastise me.  Instead, he opened my eyes to the fact that I can't always control life.  I can't.  I can't control when friends or myself have crisis or pain.  I can't control when people have needs.  The vacations were GIFTS and time with good friends.  It just all happened to fall in a short period of time for reasons beyond our control.  As I reflected, I knew everything behind us these past "crazy" weeks had been a success, but not because of anything I'd done. God's strength IS perfect. He DOES provide for our needs- physical, emotional, and spiritual.  I stand in awe once again that the God of the UNIVERSE,( THE UNIVERSE, PEOPLE!) cares so deeply about each one of us!!!

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