I am participating in a blog link up on the last Friday of each month where bloggers share four things from the month that fit into each of the following categories:
- Something Loved
- Something Said
- Something Learned
- Something Read
This has been a fun experience thus far! I am excited to continue to ponder these four things each month and see what I find! I’d love it if you’d join me and link up over at HeatherGerwing.com. You can also check out my Somethings from January, February, and March.
April’s Four Somethings:
Growing up, my family often worked on puzzles during the holidays. I have continued to enjoy them as an adult and complete one or two each year. I have noticed that my son also enjoys working on puzzles. We have a number of small puzzles that are 12 to 48 pieces and he is able to complete them without assistance. Our library loans out puzzles so we picked one out together and brought it home to work on. We have since checked out several more and have turned the dining room into our puzzle room. I love that my son and I now have a mutual passion to enjoy and develop together.
I’ve really seen and experienced that change is not something that happens in a straight line, you know from point A to point B. Especially if you’re a perfectionist like me you think, “Oh, I’m going to make this change. I’m going to go through the five steps and then I’ll be at point B and nice and happy.” The reality is, that is not real life and the way that change more often looks is if you picture a slinky or a spiral. This is a theory of change that is out there in psychology. It’s like we’re going along that slinky and revisiting the same issues again and again and that’s normal. But, if you think of a slinky, it stretches out and you’re always revisiting those issues from a little bit different place, a little bit different perspective, and you’ve added life experience, you’ve had added perspective. So I would encourage anybody who’s revisiting a struggle you’ve had in the past not to say “Oh, I’m back at square one” because everybody revisits struggles. That’s normal. It’s just about understanding that we’re works in progress and when we revisit a struggle we can ask ourselves, “What have I learned about dealing with this struggle and how can I more effectively face it this time than I have in the past?”
This was a quote from Dr. Angela Schaffer who was a guest on one of my new favorite podcasts Woven with Rebecca Peet and Rebecca Cochran (Episode 3: The Doctor Is In). I really appreciated the analogy of a slinky. I do feel frustrated when I feel like I am revisiting the same struggle multiple times. However, I can see the truth that perspective and experience can make a difference in how we handle it each time we face it if we are willing to learn from previous encounters.
I have learned that God is asking me to trust him in this season of life. I have a tendency to want to be in control and to have everything planned out and prepared. However, I also want to live out the purposes God has for me and those often require flexibility and a willingness to surrender my plans for something better. Not knowing what is coming or having an agenda makes me feel insecure. I am trying to be open to whatever God wants to do and trust in his plans and purposes, even when that means not having an answer to what’s next for me.
I read a great book for parents wanting to help themselves and their children grow in generosity toward others. Raising World Changers in a Changing World by Kristen Welch reminds us of how privileged and resourced we are living in America and how different people in many other parts of the world live. It asks the question, What if we have been so blessed in order that we might be a blessing to others? I really want my kids to be loving and compassionate people and being generous to others is both a way to grow in compassion and also the result of that growth. The book has questions to discuss as a family to encourage us to think about what we have and how we can use it to show God’s love to others.