I apologize for missing yesterday. By the time I had a chance to blog in the evening, I was exhausted and went to bed. Anyway, I wanted to share with you why I decided to choose my spiritual life as the first area to focus on and then give you a little glimpse into what I am doing.
I chose to work on my spiritual life first because I felt it needed to become a priority again. I have slacked off so much with my relationship with God, that it is pretty nonexistent. I mean, my prayer life exists when I need something or am worried about something, but that is not the relationship I want. What kind of relationship can survive if one half of it only takes and takes? No marriage or friendship could survive that way. I was lying to myself if I thought that was enough. I feel that my personal relationship is not the only thing that needs to work for a relationship to blossom and survive. I know that I need to surround myself with the type of people who I want to be like. You become the type of person who you are around. Because of this fact, I think it is important for me to find a church family and hopefully a small group where I can flourish and grow in my relationship. I am a relatively introverted person and the idea of stepping out of my comfort zone to find a church really scares me. I don’t like being the new person, but I realize I will never become comfortable in a church until I take that step. In the new town that we moved to, there are not many choices of churches. I am thinking about driving the extra time to find a church in the town we just moved from (about 10-15 minutes). I have a good friend/co-worker who has been going to a certain church in that town and I really want to try it out. I know her sister and the rest of her family go there, so I wouldn’t be completely alone… I just have to take that plunge.
Anyway, I have started re-reading a book that is truly amazing. If you are a woman, you need to pick up the book Captivating by John and Stasi Eldredge. I read it once during my sophomore year of college and it truly helped me understand what it is to be a woman of God. I have a journal that goes along with it, but I am going to just re-read it first and let it sink in, and then I will go back and complete the journal with it. The first chapter is called “The Heart of a Woman.” Parts of this chapter had me in tears. It was able to put into words things that I knew I felt, but did not completely understand. It felt like there was someone out there who understood me and my desires. Truly an amazing book. Here are a few parts that really left an impression on me:
“Sometimes the idea of living as a hermit appeals to all of us. No demands, no needs, no pain, no disappointments. But that is because we have been hurt, are worn out.”
I have always thought the idea of living as a hermit was a wonderful one. I thought it was because I was introverted and didn’t feel I needed people to feel fulfilled. This really spoke to me because I never thought that the desire to be a hermit could stem from having been hurt in the past. Now, don’t get me wrong… I came from a very loving family and a wonderful childhood. No major drama here. But, when we get to the core of everyone, we have all been hurt someway or somehow. I don’t think I can put my finger on a particular person or event that has hurt me in a way that would make me want to run away, but I think a constant feeling of being let down or feeling like you aren’t enough is plenty to make you feel worn out and ready to run.
Another part that really stuck with me was: “And it’s not just the desire for an outward beauty, but more– a desire to be captivating in the depths of who you are.”
Every woman wants to be considered beautiful. They want to hear it from those who love them: spouses, family, friends, etc. But this line in the book doesn’t just talk about looking beautiful, it speaks to being beautiful within the depths of your heart. It goes on to give examples of women who are considered beautiful: Cinderella, Maria from The Sound of Music, Ruth from the Bible. These women were beautiful (though possibly not the most beautiful) but there was something deeper within them that caught the eye. They were courageous, kind, loving, etc. Every woman wants to feel that and it’s not just enough to feel it within your heart. I don’t know about you, but I definitely need someone to see and help me see the beauty within myself.
If you are curious, there is a companion book for men by these authors: Wild at Heart. I have not read it yet, but I am very tempted to get it and hopefully read through it with my husband. I think it could be helpful for a woman to see into the soul and deep feelings of a man, as I feel Captivating would be helpful for a man to understand a woman.
I think that is enough deep talk for the night. I will hope to be back tomorrow night with another installment. My husband and I are going for a day time visit to see some of his family and the newest addition: our niece! I am looking forward to having some baby time 🙂