Choosing Joy

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Rejoice always.
{1 Thessalonians 5:16}

I love the simplicity of this verse. Rejoice. Always. It really is that simple. But honestly…some days I really don’t feel like rejoicing. I don’t always feel joy. Day to day God blesses me in so many ways and I love what he is doing in my marriage, in my church, in my community. But I ache for more.  And right now the mundane day-to-day gets in the way of that right now and honestly I’m just kind of irritated about it! So I dig my feet in and get all stubborn acting and refuse to accept that God really wants me to find joy where I am at. But y’all..when we close our eyes to where God has us, we miss it. We miss our calling. Because he’s called us where he has us for today. And today we can love others well. We can encourage. We can hope. We can choose joy.

We’ve talked a lot about joy and being obedient where God has us recently. My husband said the other day – “you know how we heard several times before we were married that love isn’t always a feeling, it’s a decision? I think that’s true for joy too.”

Indeed. Joy isn’t always something to be felt. It’s a decision we make because we know where our hope is found.  Continue reading

Our Purpose and Privilege in Marriage

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Marriage is such a sweet reminder of and the closest example we have to how Christ loves his bride – the church. This creates a beautiful purpose in marriage, and it is a unique privilege we have as married couples to honor and love our spouses, and to learn and experience Christ’s love for us.  Ultimately, it isn’t about us or our spouse – it’s about Christ.

I am by no means a pro at this married-life thing!  But God has certainly softened my heart and changed my perspective on marriage in the past 3 1/2 years. As I have grown into my role as “wife” God has very clearly shown me that this isn’t about me or about my husband. It’s about his love for us and his love for his bride, the church.

God has purpose for us as husbands and wives. And it is a privilege to be called to walk alongside our spouse in the messiness and brokenness of life and together see the beauty that comes from pursuing Christ wholeheartedly.

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Finding God in the Busy Times

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It’s been a while, blogging friends! This summer I did a few posts for The Loved Bible Project, but other than that I haven’t been around much.

Life has just been…busy!

How do you find God in the busy times? I don’t even feel like I’m in a busy season anymore. If you stay in a season long enough, it just becomes your life. And that’s where I’m at right now.  Life is busy and shows no signs of slowing down. Time disappears and I’m sucked dry of energy and patience by the end of every day. Anyone else?

It’s exhausting. Overwhelming. Some days, confusing – think, “Where did my day go? Did I even accomplish anything on my to-do list today? How did I end up with 3 different to-do lists in the first place?!”

Yet, God hasn’t moved. As my to-do list gets longer he remains the same. His expectations don’t change. His love doesn’t change. His grace remains the same. And He is still waiting patiently for me to turn to him. Continue reading

The Truth Will Set You Free

I am so excited to be writing the final post for “The Loved Bible Project” July Identity Challenge. It seems so fitting, that God led me to write for these two verses that talk about freedom.  We’ve spent 31 days in God’s word. Praying, writing, thinking, processing, loving, immersing, meditating. God’s promises about what is to come for us are incredible. He promises freedom.

  • Freedom from feeling inadequate
  • Freedom from our past mistakes
  • Freedom from the mistakes of others that affect us
  • Freedom from the lies of satan that tell us we are not enough
  • Freedom from the pressure to be anything that we are not
  • Freedom from expectations
  • Freedom from overwhelming fear.
  • Freedom from sin. 
  • Freedom from shame.

{Excerpt from my first post for The Loved Bible Project, You are Free}

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Jesus said…’If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free…truly, truly I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.’
{John 8:31-36, emphasis mine}

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You are Free

Today I am writing a post for “The Loved Bible Project.” I encourage you to head over to their Facebook page {here} and check out the beautiful ways they are spreading love in Christ. It’s not too late to jump in to their July Identity Challenge either! If you are visiting from The Loved Bible Project page, know that I prayed for you specifically as I was writing this. I boldly asked God to give me words to speak His truth. Know that as sisters in Christ, you are valued and loved here at Our Simply Abundant Life.

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You are loved. You are enough. You are free.

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Giving Up Control

Giving up Control

I almost always feel the overwhelming need to figure out all. the. things. Now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Not next year (when some of these un-named things are actually happening). But NOW. Before I sleep. Before I relax. Before I can focus on the here & now.

And yes, it is in part because that’s just how God made me. Type A. Planner. Organizer. People please-er. List maker.

But God is challenging me to see it’s also because I don’t fully trust him. I don’t want to bother him with things I can obviously (not) figure out quicker/better/more completely than He can. 

In my last post I don’t want to be comfortable I said that God and I were wrestling with some things.

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To the Beach!

Last week we (mom, dad, sister, hubs, me) spent a week at the beach! I don’t post a lot about our personal lives because that’s not what this blog is about. BUT I do want to encourage you…to get away! I am blessed with a family that values time away from real life and time spent with each other. Some of my sweetest memories are from vacations with my family and I don’t take for granted the times we get together and the fact that we all truly enjoy this time spent together. We love each other and love spending time together. It’s even sweeter to spend a week together now that we don’t all live together!

Whether it’s just a trip to a nearby town for a night or a week long vacation to an exotic location, intentional time with family is so important! Keep reading for a few pictures of our week together! Continue reading