The year 2011 is here and bringing many changes. So far this year has been eventful. One major event being that Gabe will be graduating in May and the search for jobs in Lafayette begins. We have chosen to stay in Lafayette for our church Clear River. So far the job hunt has been completely all God and much simpler than we had anticipated. Gabe is currently doing an 8 hr a week internship at a local engineering company with the possibility of a full time job. This particular company likes there employees to be interns first at the entry level. Recently Gabe also heard back about an interview with another larger company in lafayette. He had had an interview in September during the job fair but hadn't heard anything until about two weeks ago. So now he has another interview for a job next week....... All that said God has been pouring out his blessings on us and he is the one opening up the doors.
Before this year began I had had a number of interactions about the quality of the words that I was choosing to use in interacting with others. Through those interactions the Holy Spirit graciously convicted me of the condition of my heart and as a result of my heart, the things that were coming out of my mouth. In light of this I felt like God was asking me to spend this year focusing on uprooting pride and using my words only to encourage and uplift others. So far it truly has been a renewing process and graciously God has been bringing freedom. I have been spending my time going through a devotional study by Nancy Leigh Demoss called " The Power of the Words". Each week I have been choosing a verse to memorize which has been something I have been missing from my daily walk with God. I have been reminded of the power of memorizing God's word and using it to fight in this battle.
Some verses that have been particularly helpful and encouraging in this time are:
"The power of the tongue is life or death, those who love it will eat its fruit." Prov 18:21
"So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do what you don't want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law." Gal 5:16-18
" There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love." 1 John 4:18
This last verse on fear is one that I have chosen because I have been learning more and more about how I respond with pride, judgement, a critical heart, and harsh words towards others because of my fear. I have been learning that because of my fear of people, what they will think of me, and seeking their approval I have been spending more energy being prideful to protect myself rather than being in relationship with people. I have been spending my energy protecting myself instead of being in relationship and encouraging others. It is true my fear of people comes out of my fear of being punished. I am fearful if I don't measure up to the people around me my friends or authorities in my life will punish me. I then internally spend my time putting myself above others. I am so thankful that God has allowed me to see this. For a very long time I have really struggled to know where the deep seeded pride comes from. I would have relief from pride for a time but it always came back. This time it feels different.... I feel lighter.
I am really thankful for how God has been using this season in my life to refine me. I am thankful for my gracious and patient husband. Each day I learn to appreciate him more :). I am thankful for the community that Clear River provides- these people do not give up on me. I am incredibly thankful for how God provides for every need that Gabe and I have. I am so thankful to be able to soak in the peace of God.
That is the beginning of my 2011. I look forward to all the changes to come!