I’ve so enjoyed my first week off! I’m calling it the honeymoon phase because we haven’t yet felt the financial hit. So far, just fun.
What did I do all week? Read, began Season 1 of Downton Abbey, long walks, yoga, some cooking and cleaning, and lots of painting. I started on Tuesday by saying that I *might* want to re-paint the apartment. DH has been begging to repaint for years, but I always say no because it’s so much work and costs money. As soon as the words came out of my mouth, he was hauling paint cans, rollers and brushes up from the basement “just in case.” My fate was sealed. So far, all I’ve accomplished is painting the hallway and half of the dining room. Hoping to finish the dining room today. I am actually really enjoying the physicality of it after 4 years of sitting behind a computer. My shoulders are sore, and it’s nice to actually accomplish a project. Plus, it feels cleaner without actually cleaning!
We finished the 7 fast. As I think I said before, we did not finish strong. But, God was very faithful in answering our prayers in their weakness. All of the families we did the fast with had some crazy life transitions happen at the end (some good, some bad, some both), and I don’t think that it’s a coincidence at all. I really believe God has been preparing this group for something amazing, and we are already seeing some of that fruit. I think I can speak for everyone when I say that our faith has been tested and challenged and come out stronger on the other side.
At the beginning, I wondered whether there would be any lasting impact of some of the reductions we made. I can say that there certainly have been. We are spending less, giving more (time, talent and treasure), using what we have, and most importantly, praying and seeking God more regularly. Space has been created. There’s no way I would have had the courage to quit my job without the fast. It’s really been the culmination of the fast for me. I had been praying all year that God would break the idols that ruled my heart – security, comfort, approval, money, and that He would show me where He wanted me to go with my life. He has done a mighty work. Don’t get me wrong – the idols are still there, but He has shaken them and shown me how weak they are compared to Him.
Right now, I feel like He’s shown me where He doesn’t want me to go. I can’t say that I have clarity on the path ahead, but I’m not sure God ever really provides that. He wants me to get out of the boat even though it looks like I might drown if I do.