simplyenjoy


In the moment (grace)…

There seems to be a lot of emphasis on “living in the moment” and “in the now” in popular culture. We ingest messages of “just do it” and “go with your gut” and “YOLO – you only live once” in social media, reality TV programs and even in our social circles where we’re possibly even encouraged to make impulsive decisions.

But what if we don’t only live once?

What if all of our choices and actions have a huge impact on our life and the lives of those around us? It’s actually absurd to believe that they don’t.

Behavioral science 101: You are already being what you will become.

It’s the butterfly effect. Our choices and actions influence others and vice-versa.

Consider how strong habit is for a moment. Consider how difficult it is to change deeply conditioned negative habits. When we are comfortable with a behavior, even if it is maladaptive for our lives, it takes an incredible amount of effort to begin to change or modify the behavior.

(Courtesy of Google images.)

But change it we can, if we allow space for the change. This requires a shedding of the attachments to the behavior that keeps us performing it.

Our daily choices literally shape and wire our brain to behave.

One of the reasons we may find change so difficult is that we try to do it all in our own strength. We use our own effort, our own force and our own ideas and strategies.

We try instead of surrendering.

“I’m trying to eat healthy!”

“I want to go to the gym, but I don’t have time…”

“I try to get along with him/her, but it’s so hard…”

“I tried doing it that way, but it didn’t work.”

Try. Try. Try.

All human effort inevitably leads us back to the futility of our carnal thinking.

In the book of Romans chapter 7 we see the yo-yo reality of trying to accomplish change and right living entirely in our own strength, as it is written:

15 I don’t understand what I do. I don’t do what I want to do. Instead, I do what I hate to do. 16 I do what I don’t want to do. So I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, I am no longer the one who does these things. It is sin living in me that does them.

18 I know there is nothing good in my sinful nature. I want to do what is good, but I can’t. 19 I don’t do the good things I want to do. I keep on doing the evil things I don’t want to do. 20 I do what I don’t want to do. But I am not really the one who is doing it. It is sin living in me.

21 Here is the law I find working in me. When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 Deep inside me I find joy in God’s law. 23 But I see another law working in the parts of my body. It fights against the law of my mind. It makes me a prisoner of the law of sin. That law controls the parts of my body.

24 What a terrible failure I am! Who will save me from this sin that brings death to my body? 25 I give thanks to God. He will do it through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Instead of facing our challenges head on and allowing God to restore us and to lead us through, we often, in fear, turn away to walk down different roads and rely on our own strength. Perhaps an alternative path can give us some space and perspective for a time, but if the problem or negative habit is never dealt with and released, it will keep rising up. If not now, then later. Avoiding the truth only leads us in delaying the inevitable.

(Courtesy of Google images.)

The “in the moment” philosophy of popular culture is beneficial in reminding us to release the need to control outcomes and elements in the external world in order to feel more internally free. However, it in a way deemphasizes the personal power and responsibility in the individual in choosing their own behaviors and responses to the stimuli. Every day we are choosing our actions and our motivations for those actions.

DSCF5926

Instead of simply reacting to the world around us, we are actually behaving in ways that create culture and create a tone and pattern for the future.

It’s easy to slip into living “in the moment” and the moral relativism that is intrinsically linked with this philosophy. If anything goes, then we’re under no authority and nothing is required of us.

But, we know in reality, that’s not the case. We have many responsibilities and there is always work to be done.

When I think of what it truly means to “live in the moment” I think of Jesus, hanging from the cross, forgiving right then and there what most could never. It’s that in the moment realization that you control nothing and no one that is the most radical freedom available to human beings. And it’s totally accessible in the cross of Jesus Christ. It’s a free gift of salvation with far-reaching redemptive implications for our lives. Instead of trying so hard to change, it’s easier to surrender space in your heart and allow Christ to move in and work.

The love of Christ is the only love that turns the other cheek, that loosens attachments, that allows us to love and serve and give as unto the Lord and not as unto man.

Man will always be flawed. There will always be people darkened by the futility of their own minds and hearts. Yes, and even believers wander and stray.

But the cross is always there. And the resurrection of Christ is a beacon of renewal that reminds us change and transformation are possible through Jesus. It’s always available when we reach out for it and when we surrender to it…

..and we stop trying so hard.

What a paradox.

What a beautiful mystery.



Restoration journey.

growth

I was never the girl who wanted… needed… a diamond ring. I never dreamed about a white knight or my wedding day. It wasn’t my number one girl-hood fantasy to be “swept off my feet.”

I just wanted love. Trust.

Proverbs 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit to Him and He will make your paths straight.

beach1

Chatham Lighthouse Beach, Massachusetts

I will trust God, I said.

I learned that men I cannot always trust.

Prince Charmings could be Prince Harmings in disguise, I saw.

I learned along the way, that yes, it’s true, even friends can break your trust.

And sometimes, no matter how well-intentioned people are, they will always fall-short.

No expectations of people.

Jesus is my standard.

All help is from the Lord.

I wanted a deep knowing that trust could exist and be sustained as I felt it to be perhaps the most blissful emotion of all human emotions. Trust, above love even, provides a rest in our human relationships. It makes us feel like we are always at home in safety and love.

Trust is a knowing that even if you fail… even if you make a mistake, stumble, or err, that the love and support will still be there to hold you. But trust is so easily shattered in human relationships.

Once broken in a relationship, we are scared.

We step back.

We turn away.

We defend, protect and run.

Darkness becomes more comfortable, because it is safer, or so we think.

Often, necessarily. Because turning away from a broken relationship or a broken past can also be vital to healing.

I’ve heard the metaphor that broken trust is akin to a crumpled piece of new, flat office paper. Once crumbled, folded and misshapen, it is impossible to return it to its original form – fresh, flat, new and untouched.

When someone hurts us or breaches our trust, it is the worst kind of pain. It is a pain so deep it seems that no light can ever reach that place. But with God all things are possible.

Seriously, I’m not just blowing fairy dust around.

Restoration is possible.

And it’s amazing!

Maybe the human relationship cannot be restored back to its original form, but the Lord longs to restore our souls back to love. Back to a place of trust. Back to home. God is searching everywhere for those whose hearts are pure.

Phillipians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. 

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 2 Corinthians 1: 3-4

Be encouraged today if your trust has been broken.

Know that with man restoration is often impossible, but with God all things are possible.




Valerie Rumfelt

An on mission writer with winning ways to follow Jesus

After Narcissistic Abuse

There is Light, Life & Love

setback2comeback

Facing adversity along the journey to self discovery

The Daniel Fast

Consecrate yourself unto the Lord through extended prayer and fasting.

Walter Bright

Refining theological understanding. Sharpening ethical rigor. Heightening devotional intensity.

Servants' Journal

A blog about Christian life and Biblical teaching.

The Provision Room

A place where two friends blog their journey of preparing their homes, pantries and gardens.

Poesy plus Polemics

Words of Wonder, Worry and Whimsy

simplyenjoy

a thank you in every step...

The Why About This

Mysteries of Life & Everyday Wisdom

Deeply Rooted in Him

Shelly talking about Him with friends!

Andrew & Sarabeth

He likes movies. She likes baking. They YouTube.

Heavenly Raindrops

God-inspired words and images to bring blessings like rain