nine thirty at night. a quiet evening in arizona, our home away from home. my cold feet suddenly command my attention to the little flame in our wood-burning fireplace, only to watch it fade to black. winters in the desert. mmm. tonight has been one of good eating & fellowship with dear friend melissa — finished off with tea & popcorn on our cozy couch.
i spent two weeks in arizona this spring with my family. i remember preparing for my first major speaking event at a photography conference. i remember praying about challenges i was facing. i remember what i was anxious about. the roster of what i’m facing, praying & being challenged by looks completely different today, as i sit in arizona, than it did nine months ago. as we reflected on our lives since the spring & looked forward to what next year will hold, one word wrapped up my thoughts: growth.
i am learning how to love the journey; how to call hard things “good things.” it is encouraging to be able to write that with assurance. my heart fully believes it. i do not wish for easy things. how can i when i look back on what God has done in my heart these past six months? i am encouraged. i am encouraged that today, this day, six months from now, will be my starting point. it will be the ground zero in my faith-life. today is tomorrow’s foundation.
consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. you know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colours. so don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. [james 1, the message]
growing is never comfortable. growth in athletic ability, photographic talent, communication skills, sharing the gospel, ability to forgive, becoming more like Jesus: not easy tasks. to grow is to be stretched. to be stretched is to be uncomfortable. to be uncomfortable is to be frustrated. to be frustrated is to want to throw your hands up in the air & yell, is this process over with yet?
no, sorry, jamie. it’s not.
& it won’t be until i stand before my King in Heaven one day, finally made perfect in His love.
consider it a sheer gift, friends.