Thursday, April 19, 2012


Raw and Worn
this is a tale full of vulnerability, raw emotion and honesty. 
(oh the sentiment ;))

This blog is a personal blog... it is in some sense my story, our story as a family. So today this post is one that I need to write, I need to pound out on the keys of my keyboard to not only journal and record this past year but to process it.  

It may be lengthy, it may apply or not apply to you, but tonight I will try to unravel and bring clarity to this past year, and begin to close one page and open another. 

Oh where to begin...
We have lived here in Turkey now for over 7 years and in our little west corner for 3 1/2 of those years. David and I would both say this has been the hardest year of the 7. There is a series of reasons and not just one thing that has led to the hardships of this past year.  

Our life here seemed to take turns that lead us toward one continual challenge after another.  What do you do when the pressures and stresses do not stop? How in the world do you respond properly and walk in inner peace in the midst of constant uncertainty?  

I wrote a post almost a year ago called I Still Dare to Hope where I shared that as a family we were realizing that we were not handling stress in a healthy manner and it was overflowing into our family in a negative way. I would say since that time we have prayed a lot and rearranged our life here and there to adjust better to the pressures we have faced and continue to face. We have learned a lot about ourselves and the healthy and unhealthy ways we each deal with stress.

However for me the pressures and stresses that continued to come (excuse my vagueness I think it is in our best interest to stay vague;)) one on top of another without much time to process the past stress had taken a toll on me. 

In order to cope or deal with the constant strain I stopped being so intentional and possibly withdrew some of the gifts God has given me to reserve energy maybe. I am not sure.  I don't believe I neglected my family this past year per se but since I was one of the ones needed to help bring stability and harmony to our home and yet I was one of  the ones without the energy, I just didn't do anything. 

We have prayed consistently over these past months for help and wisdom.  Some of the things we would try just didn't seem to last.  I had felt so broken and my mommy heart was weighed down. Stress and hardship have a way of clouding perspective. 

I was somewhat aware of my constant lack of energy to make the needed changes. I not only lacked umph but desire and know-how to bring back the harmony and purpose into our home. I have been 'home' but my heart has been distracted with all the concerns and uncertainties that our life seemed to be full of.  It seemed that this time I didn't have the will power or follow through to accomplish anything.

I see now that God has been setting the stage, not for me to fail of course but for me (us) to fail in our own strength and receive His. God has been moving behind the scenes putting things in order, allowing certain hardships to expose areas that needed to be seen and also setting things in order for the next season.

I have changed this past year, the change has been gradual and it has not come out of will power but out of Gods divine help and strength. I (David and I both) have matured and His word has been my constant help this past year.

""I will cling to you; your strong right hand holds me securely." Ps.63:8

"I cried out, "I am slipping," but your unfailing love supported me." Ps: 94:18

He has answered our prayers (my cry) and though my life still has several of the stresses and uncertainties they are not pressing on my heart and squeezing out life like they used too. Really "his unfailing love has supported me." Truly this is a miracle of God.  

Little has changed and yet everything has changed. Also our constant prayers for wisdom especially regarding our family and kids have started to take shape and we are becoming more and more confident of where our family needs to be and seeing some very specific steps to get there. I will say however that I am concerned about my kids attitudes and their hearts right now.  It will take time, consistency and Gods wisdom to bring each of them back home, in a way, they are not far off.

We have begun implementing some practical steps for more harmony and rhythm in our home that we have been discussing the last few months.  I would like to share those with you along the way. 

Also for me personally I have found a new understanding of who I am during this time and feel Gods sweet delight in me. One of the things I have begun is keeping a daily planner again.  I decided to try my hand at making my own so that it fit me. This planner is one of the ways I feel I can be more intentional in my home and life right now. This is one of those practical steps I was talking about. 
"She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness." Prov. 31:27

                                                 Here is a sneak peak: 

What I am seeing in our home:
Refreshing me as a person as a mom and wife. Bringing us home (home as in Him and His purposes for us) Refining our values as a family, learning to enjoy a quieter, simpler life. Embracing a creative lifestyle. Finding mutual interests, (me) Learning what it is to be at home with body and heart. Trusting, simply trusting. Togetherness. A plan and intentional living. 

I am now ending this extremely lengthy and time consuming post (at 1 am). I have so many other fun posts I wanted to write however I am taking my moments instead to reflect  and remember before the time passes and I never pen the important things like hardship that mold me along on this path we all call life. 

In my little west corner.
The starting of a new page,


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Thanks for your vulnerability in this post. I pray for you and your family to see the height and depth and breadth of God's love so that you can then overflow with that love for each other and those who don't know His love. :) I recently was reminded by a dear friend that i needed to reach out in love to someone instead of expect them to come to my home (i have older kids) - and i realized that i was clinging to the idea of my home being the place i have to minister - while really it is in relationships that we minister, no matter what place that happens to be... I am sure that you are a light and a blessing there. :) Love, Alexandra

Anonymous said...

God bless you all. I have 3 adult older children, but I enjoy the spirit of all your posts. There are seasons that are incredibly challenging for all. You are certainly in one of the hardest in raising children. Babies are not the hardest time for parenting and beig a couple. You have a lot of responsibility now and that is exhausting alone. Add in other factors and you have every reason to feel the struggle. I do not know you, but from your circumstances I know you have done incredibly well whith what you have been given both the bad and the good. Humanity involves many common experiences but cultual differences, finances, and security added to other burdans can be too much. My own life contains some of these elements. I will continue in prayer for you all. Thank you. Susan

joyce said...

I am so blessed by your openness and your sharing from your heart. God's love is so big for us and when we are stressed or busy sometimes it is hard to see. My prayer for you is that the Lord will bless you with His daily joy. Thank you for encouraging me for it is helpful to know that there are other moms around who long to serve the Lord and sometimes feel hardships. I am sure that God is using you in a special way even when you don't know it. Truly as you said His unfailing love sustains us.
God bless, Joyce

Unknown said...

I am a year later reading this, and yet it sounds so similar to my past 6 months. Would love to sit and drink tea and discuss how, a year later for you, things have gone and what continued change has been done in you and the fam :)

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