Last week, I wrote about my verse for this new year. Joshua 24:15 – which I claimed after trying to settle on a word for the year. Choose. Aren’t “words for the year” supposed to be a noun? Choice. But the simple word, choice, didn’t seem to really convey what God was impressing on my heart. The idea that so much of life – most of life – is truly a choice. And so, I went with a verse.
Yes, there are situations, circumstances and some things that I have no control over…but even in those times, there are choices I can make. Very often, my testimony, my influence on others… my walk with the Lord and my spiritual growth are a direct result of those choices. I want to make the best choices – and so I will “choose this day whom I will serve.”
Once I month, I plan to highlight some of the choices that are mine and how I am making them. So many choices but I will look, at least, at twelve. Choices I am specifically focusing on – and that might need some fine-tuning – or fixing – in my life. I hope they will be an encouragement.
The idea of making a choice is not the only pertinent part of this verse for me in 2018. “Choose you this day…” This day. Right now. It is in this phase of life that I need to make the best choices. For me, that looks like an empty-nest, semi-retired, middle-age phase of life. My nest is not completely empty but my children are grown adults and self-sufficient. My mom-life phase is complete. I stopped earning a paycheck last year but am certainly not ready to stop working. However, I am definitely not as young as I used to be:) However I would describe these days, I want to use them wisely and use them well. That requires the best choices.
I am also a grieving mother. I never imagined it would be down paths of deepest grief I would travel before I would get to this phase of life.Yes, God has done much healing in my heart but the death of a child forever marks your life. I believe He has taken the ashes of my life – what I once saw as hopeless and completely not worth the living – and helped me see something beautiful. A life with purpose and promise and full of beautiful moments. Hence, the name of this blog. I do not want to use my grief as an excuse for poor choices nor do I want all God has taught me and carried me through to be in vain. I want others to be encouraged and, if necessary, to find the courage to trade their ashes for the beauty He offers.
All of us are in different phases. Not all of us – but I believe most of us – have our own share of ashes. Broken hearts. Failed plans. Ruined dreams. You, too, might be grieving or your unexpected path might be totally different. A broken trust or unwanted divorce. A wayward child or other heart-wrenching relationship. A financial crisis. A medical diagnosis that forever changes your life. It might be all completely new or you may be settled into your new normal…but, all along the way, there are choices to make. My prayer is this blog can help all women make those choices which draw them closer to the One who is faithful and whose promises never fail.