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Monday, January 21, 2013

As I've mentioned, I've been living here a lot lately:

5 Things You Need to Know Before You Begin Your 2nd Term of Life

Today, my in-box once again spills over with an abundance of grace for my journey... it whispered softly between each beat of my vulnerable heart... and found wings in the power and softness of each exhaled breath as I read...

"It felt like the second term to her.

Her 39 and him about 40, and the first half over, now the beginning of the second.

Or of the end — depending how you looked at it.

You don’t get to make up most of your story.

That’s what she thought at the stove over eggs, over all the cracked and broken things.

You don’t get to make him love you like you want to be loved.

You don’t get to make him listen, or laugh, or get it, or hold you.

You don’t get to make the kids avoid bent fenders, busted hearts, and mangled dreams.

You don’t get to force your life like a pot to bulbs, and you might never get to be a missionary in the mountains of Tibet, or bring a baby home from Ethiopia, or fling open the door on the life you thought you’d always have.

She picked out a broken shell from the scrambled eggs.

And everything quietly brimmed and blurred a bit over a frying pan. She hoped it looked like it was all because of onions.

Why does pain always come back again and why do parents grow old and sick and kids grow up but not any wiser? Why does a woman marry a man expecting he’ll change — and why does a man marry a woman expecting she’ll never change?

Why does no one tell you that once you start labour over a child, you’ll never stop, and you always must remember to keep breathing?

Why did she read and think and have questions at all and why was this being a woman hard and could she even say that out loud?

She scrambled the eggs.

She brushed away whatever was spilling and she scrambled the eggs.

And she took a deep breath and she smiled brave because this is how you answer His call.

You don’t get to make up most of your story. You get to make peace with it.

You don’t get to demand your life, like a given. You get to accept your life, like a gift.

Beginnings and middles, they are only yours to embrace, to unwrap like a gift.

But you get the endings. You always get the endings.

You get the endings and you get to make them a gift back to the Giver.

She told herself that, tucking falling strands behind her ear: Here wasn’t a glory to wrestle, but a grace to receive. Isn’t everything that is good always hard?

What if — She let herself be loved in whatever way her Lord deemed best.

You’ve only accepted Christ as your Lord without reservation — as much as you have accepted your life as a gift without regret.

The ending of everything is always yours.

So she made the bed and and she made his favourite omelette and service isn’t about being a doormat but about being a door for joy to walk through.

And there at the beginning of the second half — or whatever right then was right there in the kitchen — she stood in the light and opened her hand like a reception — and made her life an inauguration of grace."

In a wee bit more than two weeks I turn 52.

This is remarkable to me.... there was a time in my life I didn't believe I'd see 25.... and I prayed every day to make it through my forties (emotionally, mentally, physically my hardest decade EVER... and looking back on the rest of my life, THAT says something, LOL).

These last few months my journey has shifted in the most subtle of ways...

I said in an earlier blog entry that, "I no longer feel helpless in the face of my weight, and though it's still not 'easy' (physically or spiritually) to eliminate this fat, I find myself doing it with ease and peace and joy... no matter whatever else my day brings."

...And not only has my journey shifted, so has my life, my heart, my mindset.

Today I think I understand why that may be. I am at peace with certain truths so eloquently expressed by Ann. I believe the real difference is that I have finally learned to allow myself to be loved... by God first (learning to believe in His love for me in every encounter/circumstance of my life no matter how painful or distressing... or beautiful: I am WORTHY), as well as loving myself unconditionally and without censure... and I AM beautiful, and then finally allowing myself to be loved by others no matter how awkward or imperfect... because they, too, are wonderfully made, and because however it comes to me, it will be love tailored specifically and exquisitely with my very individual and specific needs/desires/uniqueness in mind.

If I can allow myself to be loved and rest in its midst, the details don't matter, nor do they define me (including the shape of my body). It matters very little... that I don’t get to make up most of my story... that I don’t get to force my life like a pot of bulbs (forced bulbs never grow straight or strong)... or fling open the door on the life I thought I’d always have. Love really is the key that unlocks the rest (including the elimination of fat).

I am so grateful that I don’t get to demand my life, like a given, and that I get to accept my life, like a gift... because in nearly 52 years I have yet to conceive of and demand anything as satisfying or glorious as all I am offered (when I manage to recognise it... and be GRATEFUL).

I am called to serve, and service isn’t about being a doormat, but about being a door for joy to walk through.

(I LOVE that image of myself and my effort in this world: I... *ME* ...I am a door through which JOY walks!)

No, I don’t get to make up most of my story, but I get to make peace with it... I get to be grateful. Beginnings and middles, they are only mine to embrace, to unwrap like a gift.

Here isn’t a glory to wrestle, but a grace to receive.

(This bears repeating: Here isn’t a glory to wrestle, but a grace to receive.)
(Oh the time I've squandered to wrestling!)

I receive the endings and I get to make them a gift back to the Giver.

...And here at the beginning of the second half I stand in the light and open my hand like a reception — and make my life an inauguration of grace... because I allow myself to be loved in whatever way my Lord deems best.

My dearest SPARKling friends, I pray this offers you food for your journey! ...And please, go read Ann's words over at the original... it is such a breath-takingly beautiful place to rest awhile.

{{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

"God asks us not to only read or write words, but become them.... The words we believe, they breathe. We are living it. The words on a page about thanks in all things again take on sinew and muscle and blood and skin and again we become words."

...Because YOUR EFFORT is a door for joy to walk through... and YOUR SUCCESS is a reflection of love!



'BEFORE' Pictures (May 31, 2009 - September, 2011) & Continuing PROGRESS (February 2012)! Next pictures DECEMBER 1, 2012!

(I'm now keeping these right under my nose... in addition to being part of every blog I post, they are printed off and taped to my bedroom mirror... and I update whenever I feel the need - likely early February, 2013... to either see for myself what feel like significant changes, or to encourage myself to keep the faith when I feel no change at all despite my efforts)

Measurements, Musings & Motivation to MOVE!

(UPDATED/rewritten: JUNE, 2012)

I've Reached My Goal Weight!!!!!!!

NOTE: My weight tracker is NOT a truthful representation of my weight. Instead, I am using it as a tool to help me visualize my goal as though it's already been achieved!
(Tom Venuto)

UNTIL. (My 'Just Do It' blog)

DONE Girl Love...

(the footsteps into which I place my own feet)

Leaving NORMAL... In Pursuit of Happiness

Why I'm STILL here... my SparkJourney Saga


Words CAN Be Enough... page 3

Paleo... Do you really know what you're talking about?

Breakfast is Served! (RECIPES)

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