Keep on [Growing] with Hopeful Faithfulness

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This month has been different for me. I finished out my summer job and have entered a strange season of having very little to do… and even less drive to do much even if I did.

But that doesn’t mean the Lord hasn’t been teaching me through this. Through the ups and downs, the new and the usual, I’ve learned many things in these days. Now it is time to share some of those things with you.

Of course, I cannot begin without acknowledging the impact God’s Word has had on my growth this month. Here’s a list of what I read:

  1. Psalms 46, 131-150
  2. 2 Timothy
  3. Numbers 21:4-9
  4. 1 Thessalonians
  5. 2 Thessalonians
  6. Ecclesiastes 1-9

Now to share some of my journal entries that relate to this month’s theme. Oh, how the Lord works in ways we least expect!

***

8/2: “I’ve surrendered a lot of things lately. But yet… I still worry. God, why? Why do I worry? Why do I fret over things I can’t control? Help me, Lord, to seek beyond myself. To believe Your truth more than I already do. Truly, all I can do is be faithful with what You’ve given me. You know what I need and will provide it in Your good timing. But that doesn’t make it any easier. Help me lean into You.

I never want to take for granted the minutes You give me, the people You give me to spend them with, and the tasks You give me to do. You have given me not a spirit of fear but one of power and love and a sound mind. Those are incredible blessings.

Lord, this life is not about me. This life is my chance to help other people experience Your love. Sacrifice comes after surrender. Open my heart to gratefulness, that I might be willing to sacrifice what You’ve put on my heart to release. Clear my conscience so I can appreciate the relationships You’ve give me without shame but with joy and a desire to grow, even as they are messy.”

8/3:Help me choose the higher calling. The better way. Strengthen me where I am weak, Lord God. You’ve heard my prayers and desire for change. Now, Lord, I choose to trust in Your forgiveness. I choose to say ‘I am not ashamed’; a worker of Your truth.”

8/4: “Living my life with joy and thankfulness has been a struggle lately. I’m tired and a bit ready for a change. But for now You have me here, and that is what it is – a chance to grow and prepare. Life is confusing. But You are sovereign and know what is best for me regardless of (or encompassant of) my desires.”

8/7:I must relent and keep going. You are holy, sovereign, above all, a Creator to outshine all others, powerful, protective of Your people, forever enduring, compassionate, victorious, and living, breathing joy. So that’s what I’ll do – keep going and praising You all the way :)”

8/10:Don’t forsake the work of Your hands; strengthen me and lead me, please.”

8/12: “I’ve grown used to congratulating myself on stepping out and living beyond other people’s comfort zones that I haven’t stopped to think of my own. Thank You for the chances You’ve already given me to test the waters of different perspectives – help me continue in that.”

8/13: “I must relax and stop stressing so much. All will happen in Your timing and Your way. This is a season of preparation and growth; preparing my heart and mind for the future. I must embrace it. The rhythms of the time and space I have right now are here for a reason, and none must be discounted.”

8/16: “Lord, I’m at a loss in some ways – relationships are messy, and I know I’ve messed some up or been messed up or will mess up many. It’s inevitable. But one relationship I can’t mess up by my own stupidity is mine with You. Thank You for being steadfast, even as many of my relationships confuzzle me.”

8/18: “Lord, help me sort out my friendships and grow in confidence as I lean into You.”

8/20: “I know I’m inconsistent. But hallelujah! You are faithful, and You will complete the work You’ve started in me.”

8/28:Restore my soul to chase after You above all. Only You know what the future holds… and You hold me. How incredible. Thank You for Your kisses and for gently pursuing me, romancing me, in ways perfect for my own soul.”

8/29:Why pressure myself towards perfection when everyone else is flawed too? That would only deepen the divide. No, what I want is deeper devotion to You. Deeper reliance on Your power to rescue me from the lies that taunt my soul, envious of my beauty. The beauty You instilled in me from the start. How glorious.”

8/30: “No one will ever be able to comprehend the moves of Your hand and the works You execute to fulfill Your plans. But, that is almost a relieving thing; as that means the pressure to understand is gone. All that remains is joy. Help me live with said joy, resting in Your freedom. Hallelujah. Thank You for beauty and hope.”

***

This month has been a month of both stagnance and ripples in the rhythms of my life… a month of growth and change. Originally, my theme was, “Keep on with hopeful faithfulness.” But, as I’ve looked over my journal entries, I realized that one word was missing: Keep on growing with hopeful faithfulness.

There were no real spiritual ‘highs’ this month. There was a lot of simply coming along for the ride, falling in love with Christ even more; little by little. And that is just as beautiful.

Even though I had no really notable accomplishments or milestones this month, the Lord still managed to stretch and grow me in ways beyond my imagination. From experiences and realizations regarding grief and other things to time simply discovering the adventure and love of God planted in the everyday, the growth the Lord has done in my heart is incredible. And all it took was stepping forth, one day at a time, expectant for the Lord to move, hanging on in doubt, and persisting even in doubt of the merits of consistency.

Praise God.

How amazing is it that the God of the universe grows us even as we quake in our boots, or doubt His wisdom, or relegate ourselves to a corner in belief of our incompetence as specks of dust instead of warriors with the spirit of the living God within us? Such grace renders me speechless.

If you’re in a season of waiting, or ‘limbo’ like I call it, don’t use that as an excuse to put on the brakes. Time passes quickly. What we allow within it is a huge determinant of who we are when we reach those milestones of achievement and life that we wait for.

The Lord will grow you if you ask Him to; often in ways you didn’t know you needed to grow in. So don’t give up. Press on.

He will complete the work He has started in you.

***

Thank for reading this whole post, friend. I’m so thankful for all of the people that have supported me over the years! Hopefully you all should see a bit more of me as I step into a new season of life with less to do and more space to think.

This next month, September, I am going to hone in on some advice from a dear friend: “Enjoy your life.” Such a simple phrase, yet so complex in execution, don’t you think?

If you’re looking for some more reading material in the meantime, click here to read more of my monthly theme posts; and also feel free to explore the archives!

With that, I say adiós and Happy Thursday!

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Published by Emma Haglund

I'm here for the strong ones. The perfect ones. The ones who have built walls. I believe in choosing kindness, because everyone is fighting a battle that nobody else knows about. There is hope for us. In Christ, we can all learn how to be gracefully genuine and authentic.

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