It is Spring Cleaning in Stoney Creek!

You know it’s spring when………

The grass starts turning green, temperatures rise, birds fly back from the south and flowers start blooming everywhere!!

These are all wonderful signs of spring and the Lord has given me a new appreciation for them, but they have nothing to do with the sign that I’m talking about. Everyone’s “favorite” sign of spring is when mom says “Guess what? It’s time for Spring Cleaning!! ” Groan!!!!!

If this has always been your perspective of Spring Cleaning then you should try it at the Gospel For Asia Canadian office! The whole family, aka “staff“, takes the afternoon off once a year to clean the entire office. You know what they say, ” Many hands makes light work.” This is such a true statement! We all cleaned our own personal spaces first and then it was off to help others clean the common areas in the office. We had a blast!! I even got to stand on the kitchen counter to clean in and on top of the counters!! It’s not every day that you get permission to do that, now is it?? I didn’t think so!

Now, even though the cleaning was a lot of fun, all good things still come to an end. So, instead of ending our day together with cleaning, we had a barbecue outside and more  Gospel For Asia families showed up for a great time of fellowship. The excitement didn’t stop there though, first we got blown inside and rained out by a surprise shower. After rushing inside it was time for some dessert and arm wrestling!! ( I may or may not have participated in those) Okay I did win a few arm wrestling matches, but who’s counting?

Family BBQ 500px

Then, we watched Toy Story 2, enjoyed a few laughs and some hyper children, and went home to a comfortable air conditioned house. Praise the Lord for spring and a wonderful loving family at Gospel For Asia’s School of Discipleship!

I wonder what the sign for summer is, don’t you?

Oswald Chambers meets Jane Austen

I’ve been learning a lot lately about being the bride of Christ.  And a lot about trusting God–fully and implicitely.  Because you shouldn’t marry someone unless you trust them completely in every area, right?  🙂  That was always my assumption anyway.

But that assumption was challenged by a comment from Charlotte Lucas in the movie Pride and Prejudice:  “He does not know her character as we do. . .but there is plenty of time for us to get to know him after they’re married.”  The idea, in a nutshell, was that since Jane Bennett and Charles Bingley  were well acquainted enough to trust each other on a superficial level (and since they were obviously in love), they should go ahead and tie the knot because, after all, they will get to know each other better after they are married.  Of course, the story is set in a time when marriage was a much higher priority on everyone’s agenda, so sometimes people got married for less chivalrous ideas than love and romance, but still. . .it seems a logical plan of action, as long as you take into consideration that any relationship founded mostly on emotions is bound to be tested at some point.   There comes a time when you have to trust each other’s character when the emotions aren’t there.

I’ve been struggling with learning to trust God well enough not to question His ways.  I’m trying to learn to trust God’s character, even when it seems like what He’s allowing me to go through could hardly be an expression of His love.  To trust that He really is working all things for my good, even when I can’t possibly see what that good might be.  I know that a certain level of blind faith is involved, but I also want to have something to base that trust on.  And hearing that quote made me see a parallel:  when I initially began my relationship with God, all I needed to know was that He loved me SO MUCH, and that He could save me when I could not save myself.  Essentially, God knows that I need to trust His love first of all, and then learn to trust His character as I get to know Him better.

As I was journaling and praying, trying to make sense in my mind what exactly I was asking from God, I felt silly asking the God of the universe to prove Himself before I could trust Him; but I feel that trust, by definition, is something to be earned, not just given.  And it seemed as if Jesus read my heart and sent me the answer I was looking for–in an entry from My Utmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers:

“God wants you to understand that it is a life of faith, not a life of emotional enjoyment of His blessings.  Faith by its very nature must be tested and tried.  And the real trial of faith is not that we find it difficult to trust God, but that God’s character must be proven as trustworthy in our own minds.  Faith, as the Bible teaches it, is faith in God coming against everything that contradicts Him–a faith that says, ‘I will remain true to God’s character whatever He may do.’  The highest and the greatest expression of faith in the whole Bible is–‘Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him’ (Job 13:15).

So, simply believing in God is easy.  The difficulty in trusting God lies in when I am waiting for His character to be proven trustworthy, when I can’t see what He’s accomplishing through my hard times.  And that’s when I have to remember that He does love me, so much.  And I can rest and put my trust in His love.

“But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation.  I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me.”  ~Psalm 13:5-6