This month has been full to the brim. Maybe for you, too? It’s hard to believe we’re on the last day of September and just about to step into October.
I’ve missed the What I Learned Posts and a chance to reflect back over the month. But September has been full of lessons.
Small, even Imperfect Steps can get me Unstuck
If you follow on Instagram, you saw this post about our little blue house. Dan grew up here. My kids’ earliest memories of visiting their Nana are here. This house has stories.
When his mom moved into a retirement village, we bought it as a rental. It was Dan’s thing. If the tenants called, if a repair was needed, Dan usually took care of it. That was just our division of labor.
That labor is now mine and when the tenants moved out last year, I got decision paralysis. Partly because I was on overload and partly because it was outside my experience, I just let it sit unrented. As each month rolled over, I’d heap on a bit more self-reproach.
Can we just admit there are things that paralyze us? A hard conversation, a looming task, a scary undertaking?
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I’ve learned moving forward doesn’t require perfection. Small steps and imperfect steps can move me from paralysis to progress. And those first imperfect steps? They feel HUGE. The next ones get easier and easier.
We have painted, scrubbed, hauled, mowed, repaired and updated and we are *this* close to done. If sweat is the cologne of accomplishment, we’re winning. Praying this lesson takes deep root for the next first, the next hard thing.
God will supply all of our needs out of His riches in Christ Jesus.
I will never stop proclaiming this and I’m pretty sure we won’t stop getting a good test on it.
In late summer, our kids’ car broke down. It had made it through my oldest four children and I’d already put in my order for it to last through my son’s current senior year. Despite our best efforts, the value didn’t justify the repairs.
So, my son and I began sharing my mini-van. We made it work fairly well – though we weren’t able to always get everyone where they needed to go.
I know that if we don’t have it, we must not need it.
But because things usually break in three’s and because grown kids and growing-up kids keep me on my knees anyway, I was asking God how this whole single-mom, chapter-2 thing was going to work out. Sometimes we just need to know it’s going to work out.
God has it all worked out.
On a routine afternoon, having schooled the kids and just sitting down to my keyboard – I got a call. They’d heard we were out a car. They had one. Could they give it to us?
I still tear up over that because every single time – every single time – God is faithful.
… and you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one word of all the good words which the LORD your God spoke concerning you has failed; all have been fulfilled for you, not one of them has failed. Joshua 23:14
I am Jealous For Marriage
We had a family-wide celebration of my mom’s 75th and dad’s 80th birthdays this month. Our celebration included a video with their pictures of growing up, getting married and living 50+ years together.
That is the stuff of life. It’s the deep beautiful that only comes after pressing through dry stretches and exhausting seasons when love is nowhere in sight but you’re just plain committed to commitment.
I miss that. We’d made it through those stretches and seasons and we were headed for our own 50+ years.
When my September facebook feed was full of wedding pictures and couple photos from friends taking the 5-day marriage challenge, I scrolled through missing it so much.
But I realized I’m not jealous OF marriage; I’m jealous FOR marriage.
I want to celebrate you. I want to throw my hat up for you. Those couples pressing through the arid and difficult season, dying to self, committed to covenant when the feelings aren’t cutting it — the fruit that comes after is the deep beautiful stuff of life.
I miss it. I believe it’s the best of the best. And I am rooting you on.
What did September teach you? I’d love you to leave a comment and let us know.