joy soaked words

finding my way

Month: July, 2017

forever and ever

I was driving Ethan and Emily home from VBC yesterday and Emily was telling me how when you accept Christ into your heart, he becomes your best friend ever. For ever and ever in the words of a 4 year old. That got me thinking as I headed home that evening, how easily we view God as hard and judgmental. We hold him at a distance because we think that he is going to call us into something that is going to be too hard for us. Because we can’t actually see him, it’s hard to trust.

God just wants to be our best friend forever and ever. He gave up his son because of his love for us. He wants to be our best friend, and only wants the best for us. He calls us into things and to places that are going to challenge us because he wants us to grow.

Something that I learned in YWAM, something that wrecked me, was how personal of a God we serve. He has so much love to pour out, his heart just bursts for us. For me, I used to think that God was mad when I messed up. When I didn’t listen to the tugging on my heart. But now, I know that God is full of grace and with gentle nudgings I will learn from  my mistakes and step out and be brave. I will talk to that person on the street who is asking for money, and share my heart with them. I will reach out to the person on the bench, knowing they have been sitting by themselves and tears are running down their cheeks. I know that sometimes I will be rejected, and told that Christianity is a load of crap. But how many times was Jesus rejected? He pushed though, and didn’t take his eyes of The Father.

We have a lot to learn from kids. Nannying gives me this chance, and boy oh boy they say the funniest things.

Emily: Do dogs go to hell Natalie?

Me: No, I don’t think so. I think they go to heaven with us one day.

I get to see what it means to have childlike faith. To have Jesus as our best friend forever and ever. To not care what other people think because you are just so in love with the creator of the universe. The creator of purple wildflowers and wind that makes leaves dance.

It’s the best.

Getting your hands messy and doing his kingdom work.

If you find yourself sad, or discouraged, go spend some time with kids.

Blessings and extra extra extra tight hugs tonight,

Nat

moments

Community, a word that gets thrown around, but goes deeper then that. I came home from YWAM, having lived in community for 5 months and then having none was hard. Like really hard. Palms pressed to my eyes and tears running freely down my cheeks, I ask Jesus why I haven’t found community yet. I work, come home, usually FaceTime Tyler and another friend from YWAM and then I go to bed and start all over again. Don’t get me wrong here, I absolutely love my job and where I am but other then my FaceTime calls in the evening, I don’t have a whole lot to look forward to. I wish that we could all be back in Mexico, and I had a room of 7 other girls who were always ready for a laugh and to cry alongside you. I miss having that support system, it’s harder then I ever thought it would be.

I guess I will update you all on what’s happening, cause I am finally doing adultish things. I have accepted and enrolled at Redeemer University for an Honours Major in Psychology with two minors in Mission and Ministry and Social Justice. I am excited, I think. The excitement comes in waves, but most of all I am looking forward to moving out (sorry mom and dad). I am nannying with the same family that I worked with before I left for YWAM and they are once again a huge blessing to my life.

Jesus keeps telling me that it’s coming. Community is coming. I have to keep being present. Living in the moment. In the wise words of a gal who I have had the blessing to get to know, “Live in the moment dude.” Live in the moment. Live right where you are.  For me, that’s working with kids, calming them down with one hand, on the phone with the bank with the other and trying to get them a snack all at the same time. It’s plausible, I’ve done it. I can be found with kids on either side of me with every single Robert Munsch book spread across our laps, handing out granola bars left right and centre and telling kids to wash their hands every 10 minutes it feels like.

This is living in the moment for me. I’m working to find community with a 4 year old and a 6 year old. I often have tears and snot smeared on my shoulders, and there is endless crumbs in my car. It’s worth it. It’s so worth it. This is me living in the moment.

Jesus keeps showing himself to me in the little things. He reminds me that he is with me while I drink my very needed cup of coffee in the morning, and sits beside me well I drive to work. He is patient, and he is caring, loving. He is right beside you. Always.

This is a blog full of rambles and random things that have been of my mind lately.

Blessings and hugs,

Nat

jump

I stood at the edge of the pool and watched the girl I nanny take off her life jacket and her mom standing a few feet away began to encourage her to swim to her. Her mom held out her arms and the little girl backed away because she was afraid that she would sink. She didn’t think that her mom was going to keep holding out her hands for her to hang on. Until she let go of the edge, she jumped into the unknown. Her mom was there and took hold of her lifted her out of the water, safe into her arms.

This is how it with God sometimes.

God: Jump my love, I am not going to let you fall.

Nat: God, I’m scared. I don’t know what’s next and I would rather stay here where I am comfortable. I just don’t know.

God: Let go and I will catch you.

Nat: God, I don’t know if I can.

God: Trust me.

When you decide to jump, it’s scary. The unknown. But it is also the best decision you will ever make in your life, when you decide to give it up. You are hanging on to the wall, but God is asking you to swim. Trust is a funny thing. When you give something up because you know that God has something even better for you. My dad showed me this picture once, I will explain it the best way I can. There was a little boy with expectation on his face, his dad leaning down, excitement on his face. He was holding a puppy behind his back. My dad said it really well, this is the way that God works. When we trust, he gives “Puppies” in a way.

Waiting sucks. I get you. There is the kind of waiting where you are at a red light or waiting for your order at a fast food restaurant. The easy kind of waiting. And then there is the kind of waiting where you are waiting for the “One” to come into your life, or you are waiting for the perfect job to pop up. We can very easily settle because we don’t want to wait. When you wait on his timing then everything lines up, he has the best in store for us.

So. I have two questions for you. What is he asking you to jump into, and you are holding on to the edge, and what are you waiting for?

Blessings + hugs,

Nat

joy and chocolate chip cookies

I have a love hate relationships with definitions. I love the fact that things can be described in a sentence, but then I don’t think they can. Take the word JOY for instance. It is defined as a feeling of great pleasure and happiness. Isn’t joy so much more then that? Doesn’t it bubble out of your heart when you taste a chocolate chip cookie straight out of the oven? My Mama brought me some today, bless her heart. When you see people find love. How about when you smell the air after it just rained. When you realize that it’s Friday, and even better when it’s a long weekend. When you laugh from the depths within until you cry tears of happiness. When people get real. When God surprises you with something that you never expected to happen. When you see old people still in love. When you dance and let loose, and don’t have a care in the world. I find joy in the small things, things that people often pass up.

We went to the fireworks tonight to celebrate Canada day, Happy birthday Canada by the way, you are getting old! We were sitting there watching the show and I was thinking how I didn’t want my life to be like a firework. Where there is one defining moment, before it all sizzles out. I want to leave a lasting impact on the people around me. May that be my family or my friends, cashiers or random people walking down the street. I want to shine with his love that people begin to question what I have and they don’t. I want to be his hands and feet to the needy, and also the rich. Because every single person needs to hear the gospel, regardless of how much money they have in their bank account. Money will never get them into the kingdom one day.

I am also realizing how fast life can pass us by and we let it. We can’t grab it by the hand and ask it to slow down, we have to catch up. There are so many missed opportunities in a day that I could have told somebody about Jesus and I didn’t because I had other errands to run. Places to be and people to see. I am learning how to take the time to listen  to everybody who I come into contact with. Sometimes you need to step out and be brave. Put yourself out there and be undignified for Christ. Because he is worth it and everybody needs to hear and know that he loves them enough to die for them.

I am in a season of waiting, once again. I can very easily let this season pass without reaching out to others and loving like Christ. I don’t want to. I want to make every moment count, as much as I would love to be in KC right now, I am in Ontario. This is where God has me, and it’s where he is going to use me. I can hardly wait to see what else he has in store for me once again. He is good, no matter what. All of the time.

This blog post is once again a mumble jumble of a whole buncha different thoughts that are running though my head and I need to get them out. Sometimes I keep them to myself and just journal about it, but often I like to also share what I am learning with all you.

This is from the brain of Nat who should have gone to bed 3 hours ago.

Blessings + hugs,

Nat