It is no secret I have always been very independent. Even as a young child, my mom used to say my favorite saying was “I do it myself!” which, of course, sounds exactly like something I say even today. I guess when God created me in my mother’s womb, for some reason he gave me an extra dose of independence and stubbornness because I do not lack either of those qualities. But there is a flip side because if there is something I do not think I can do, I will not even try or attempt it. I will not even give it a shot. No chance, no effort. As strong as I can be about some things, I can be the complete opposite as well and not even consider something if I do not think I will be able to do it well. Like tennis or croqueting. I say it would be fun, but I know I am terrible at it, so now I do not even give it another shot. It is not a fun quality to possess, and I really dislike that about myself. I have to work very hard to convince myself everything worth doing is worth doing well. I am better the older I get, but it is far too easy for me to slip into that thought process of just giving up before I have even attempted to start. So I guess you could say I dwell in extremes. Either I am too stubborn and independent or I do not even try. There does not seem to be a happy medium with me.
And with those lovely characteristics comes a fix-it personality where I am convinced I can come up with a perfect solution to just about every one of my problems. Unfortunately, along the way, I have gotten too good at relying on myself instead of trusting in my Heavenly Father to manage my life. It is a real struggle. Sometimes walking by faith is really hard. I am sure all of us can say that if we are honest. I often find it difficult to really grasp that God loves me enough to provide for my hopes and dreams. And some of those hopes and dreams are very much God’s and not my own. For example, Ellisbrook. Most of you know of our God given, God breathed, God driven dream of having an acreage where disabled adults can live with us. Where we can raise chickens and goats and have a pond to fish in and grow a huge garden. Where disabled adults can live with a family (us!) and help around the house folding laundry and cooking dinner and washing windows and matching socks. Where we play games as a family, eat dinner as a family, learn about God as a family, go to church as a family, live life as a family. A place to belong and a place to call home. I would never have believed it if anyone told me years ago one day I would dream of this place called Ellisbrook. Even today, it still feels like such a far off, unattainable dream. It seems it will never come to fruition because there are too many roadblocks, and the biggest is money. But every time I try to come up with a plan or a solution to every roadblock, I feel a very strong sense of God saying “wait”. I hear Him say “I will provide the land”. And then I tell him in my inpatient manner (yes, another of my lovely qualities) to hurry up and get moving on this Ellisbrook dream He gave us. I so easily forget the God who parted the Red Sea to save the Israelites is the same God who can provide land and a house for Ellisbrook. I so easily forget the God who prepared Paul for a journey of suffering and saving souls is the same God who is already preparing the hearts of the men who will one day live in our home.
I love the show Fixer Upper. If you have not seen it, it is on HGTV (one of my all-time favorite channels) and is a show about a husband and wife who help couples find houses in need of remodeling. They do their magic, and every time, I am simply in love with the outcome. I love the vision Chip and Joanna can see when they look at old, falling apart, outdated walls. Joanna made a video that is circulating on Facebook which I happened to watch. It strengthened my resolve to keep believing God will use Travis and me someday with Ellisbrook. And it made me love the show even more when I realized their passions are very much God created just as my own passions for Ellisbrook.
Watch and be inspired to continue after your God-given calling…..
I love what she says about believing the lie that who I was wasn’t good enough. She goes on to say she felt God saying “I have a calling for you; you are going to have a platform one day…..I’m going to say for you to go and I’m going to need you to step out and go!” And, “If you trust me with your dreams, I’m going to take _____ further than you could have ever dreamed so just trust me”. What a beautiful testimony of God planting a dream and eventually fulfilling it….in his timing though which is the key! I hope and pray for the day when I can also say that God has taken my dream and done far more with it than I could have possibly hoped or imagined.
Sometimes it is hard for me to grasp that God loves me enough to use me. It is a hard concept for me to really wrap my head around. I see how He used so many amazing people in the Bible. I see it even today how He uses others to make such an impact for His kingdom. History is fully of people used by God. I just have a hard time believing He is just as passionate about me to use me. Yet I know this dream is real. I know Ellisbrook is going to come to fruition. I know one day the joy of caring for disabled adults is going to be my reality. And so these verses in Ephesians have become so very special as I keep praying and trusting God to make Ellisbrook come to life.
Ephesians 3: 14-20 ~ When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.
I know God is capable of accomplishing infinitely more than I can ask or think. He certainly gave me a dream that was never my own creation so, of course, He can do more than I can imagine. In my waiting, in this time of trusting His timing over my timing, in this period of sitting back and believing in His provision, I am learning to find joy in the moments before me. Because I know one day this dream of Ellisbrook will be my reality. I know some day this desire to care for disabled adults will fill my heart with joy and fill my home with laughter. The day is coming when God is going to do something amazing. I am still waiting, but in the wait I am learning to be content with His provision for this moment.
What are you dreaming? What has God placed on your heart to do or go or be? He’s working. In HIS perfect timing He is working.