Learning to Dance

As I begin this next adventure, learning to dance with my new friend Joy, I recognize this as a divine appointment You have scheduled, answering my prayer for help to follow You more closely; to teach me to be a better follower.

Learning to ballroom dance with a partner involves many different aspects.  The dance consists of many parts then doing them together without having to think.  Haha, not an easy task!
First, I learn the steps.  The East Coast swing, consists of quick steps, starting with the right foot; triple step, then left foot, tripple step, and a rock back on the right foot.  Practicing the steps over, and over, and over again until it becomes second nature to my body; until I no longer need to think about the steps.
I liken this to learning the word of God.  Steps, or the word of God, need to become second nature to my thought process, popping into my mind supporting wherever God is a leading.

Next is learning to follow.  This is something I struggle with, and why I prayed for God’s help.  In my mind, I rush ahead, responding to whatever is happening around me.  I am driven by stimuli, the things I see, hear, and experience. Rushing ahead, anticipating what will happen next, trying to avoid surprises.  I don’t like not knowing.  I don’t like not being in control.  To follow, I must submit my will to another, a lesson of submission and obedience. I must be open and vulnerable.  I know I will only experience the joy of dance when I let go of control, submit and follow.

There are many different dances, each appropriate for different types of music. There is the waltz, the two step, the swing, in all its various forms, salsa, rumba, tango, and within each dance are many variations in different parts of the country and the world.

This is like the places and people God calls us to serve.  There are right actions, movements, and interactions, specific to each new person, culture, and situation.  Learning to dance and follow God’s leading is a beautiful engaging experience, a beautiful dance.  Through this journey, I listen, feel his leading, follow without hesitation.

As I learn to dance, all I can manage is learning and repeating the basic steps over and over.  Practice, practice, practice, taking every opportunity to dance with a partner.  I remain open and vulnerable, willing to look foolish, make mistakes.  I have found dancers to be kind, helpful, always willing to share what they know.  They offer tips, suggestions, and gentle instruction.

“Take smaller steps”, “keep squared up with your leader”, “as a beginner, don’t miss any steps, just keep repeating the basics”.

Each dance lesson adds new moves, fancier tecniques, challenging me to apply what I know and push the limits.  By the end of each hour, my brain-body connection is shot.  I am no longer able to dance the simplest moves.

I am so grateful God has me on this journey and love how He continues to answer my prayers in the most amazing ways.  I will continue to share what I learn about following, and hope I can soon report I have experienced the joy of submitting and am gracefully gliding across the dance floor, gracefully following my Lord to our next divine appointment. ~♡

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You Matter to Me…

On this God led, healing journey, my heart has opened, I’ve fallen in love, and my heart’s been broken… beautifully broken, revealing all of what God wants to heal.

This journey started well over a year ago when I started talking to Papa God about the condition of my heart and inviting Him in…  Through this, He has walked with me side by side, showing me the fractured condition of my heart, and revealing the behaviors which lead me down roads which are not a part of His perfect plan for my life.

In this process, God challenged me to let go of control and fall in love.  Through this, He teaches me how falling in love is an essential part of having an intimate relationship with Him, holding nothing back, allowing myself to fully give and receive His love.

My Papa God knows me like no other, and He knows how I learn.  Through this, He brought a wonderful Christian man into my life and we began corresponding as of January first after a chance, online encounter New Year’s eve.  I believe it was through this long-distance connection God provided a safe way for me to ‘fall in love’, letting go of the need to control and figure everything out, stay in the safety of my head.  With this man I found a kindred spirit, someone who was interested in the things I said, enjoyed my quirky creative spirit, challenged me, and helped grow my understanding and love for God.  God used our connection to reveal the special gifts He has given me, using them to minister, while at the same time blessing me with my friend’s special gifts of encouragement, kindness, and sacrificial love.

We shared little bits of our lives with each other through email, texts, and phone calls. We prayed for each other as we faced challenges, both large and small.  When my friend faced a difficult, life changing decision, I prayed for him.  The challenges he faced and the decisions he made to manage the circumstances in his life, made it impossible for us to continue our correspondence and growing friendship.  This broke my heart and affected me at a much deeper level than I expected and have struggled to understand.  God has been with me through it all, letting me know how much He loves me.  He reminds me daily He is with me, true to His promise He will never leave me nor forsake me.

Papa God sends me songs to help me understand all He is teaching me, or wants me to know, and in an effort to help me through this loss, this unfamiliar pain I am feeling, He sent me the song You Matter to Me.  Through this song, I feel Him telling me the loss I feel so deeply is because, with my friend, I felt a connection, a deep and meaningful connection.  I felt I mattered, and the things I said, mattered to someone.  There was someone in my life I deeply cared for, and his life mattered to me. I felt seen, loved and cherished for who I am, all of me, flaws and all.  I know I loved and cherished him, all of him, all of his perfect imperfections.  He was my friend and I let myself fall in love.  I did so knowing there was ‘very little hope’ of us ending up together, but I let that go to trust in God and His perfect will and plan.  I let go of needing to control and predict outcomes in an effort to protect my heart.  In this, God asked me to open my heart completely because to truly understand His love I need to risk getting my heart broken.  This is how God loves, this is how God loves me and how He will love others through me; with my whole heart, fully open, completely vulnerable. ~ ♥

Rest in Peace Sweet Jean ~ ♡

I feel so blessed to have known sweet Jean for the past 17 years.  We would visit every other Saturday, sometimes enjoying a meal out or a ride in the car to get ice cream.  Little kindnesses would make her smile, which always warmed my heart.  She was a simple, loving soul, who I know is now in the loving arms of Jesus.

She turned 84 years old August 31st, the picture I am including is from Saturday, September 1st, the day we celebrated her birthday, just one day before she passed.   I am so blessed I was able to celebrate this last birthday with her.   I brought her pink balloons and a simple vanilla cake with white frosting, her favorites.

I had a friend point out the bright light right next to her, which makes me smile as I contemplate its source.
Rest in peace sweet Jean bean and be sure to give Trudy a big hug for me. ~♡

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