Negative growth


I have been hearing "No" quite regularly for quite awhile.

Not from my contentious children.

From my Heavenly Father.

It came sure, but with relief, but still with pain last month.

It came in early May, when we realized that if we wanted to change the way we handled our finances and get out of debt, we could not get the house and apple farm we fell in love with.

Its resounding again as our house sits, with no perspective buyers browsing through our house, and the next school year looms up. We were so ready to leave our city school district and happily put our kids into a smaller country school.

Summer vacation starts in 4 weeks.

Summer vacation lasts only ten.

A closing on a house takes six to eight.

We don't want to pull our kids out of school once it starts.

Our local school district is in a messy flutter with proposals of cuts, re-locating of students, shutting down of schools, slashing of jobs and programs.  Rumors changing daily.

And I do not know what to do about it.

Uncertainty- it's flying thicker than the Spring pollen in the air.

I am choking on it.

I'm choking on it, it seems, in just about every aspect of my life. I feel it in the big stuff and the not so big stuff. But, any fool knows it is usually the "not so big stuff" that gathers into a big scary problem.

Really, I am not a worrier.

Rare for a mother of young child I know.

Everything balances out however, including vices.

I am a controller.

An un-certain future, equates in my mind, as a vanishing path, well laid for my family's well being. A cast aside game plan I planned on to roll my sleeves up and charge into.

The bi-product is heavy.

Constant tension.  An un-named and hazy weight so heavy on my shoulders and upon mind some days I cannot even concentrate.  To accompany my inward whirling- the faithful companion of a critical spirit and a sharp tongue.

Earlier this week I knew I had a choice to make.

The psychological, physical, spiritual discomfort WILL build and build to something ugly.  I don't want to be forced to pick up the broken pieces of ugly till I finally get a grip and do what I have to do.



For starters, I cut way back (though not cold turkey, cuz who is that disciplined? or wants to be?) on caffeine, sugar and alcohol consumption.  What we slosh down our gullet, effects how crazy we act, especially during times of stress.  Of that I am certain.

Also, every morning I have been reading and reading.  Praying and praying.

Not some warm fuzzy uplifting anecdotes, and not to some unknown cosmic universal force.

I read straight from the source, the bottle of God's Word.  Hold the diluting ice please.  No sugar-laden syrup-y additives, and don't even think about adding one of those stupid pink umbrellas in it.

I called upon Jesus.

I asked helped from someone who knows about suffering.  About brokenness.  About just how ugly the ugly stuff is.

The only One strong enough and pure enough to alleviate the heaviness and wash away the ugly.

This verse stood at full attention as I opened up and sought out on Sunday morning.

Psalm 106: 15

And He gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.

And the re-joiner was found on Monday morning.  In a completely different book, based on a chapter my Pastor quoted speaking about something completely different:

Jeremiah 31:12b, 14b & 25

and they shall flow together in the goodness of the Lord, for wheat, and for wine, and for oil…and their soul shall be a watered garden.

My people shall be satisfied with my goodness.

For I have satiated the weary soul and I have replenished every sorrowful soul.


All week I could not get this out of my mind. 

And sure, lots and lots of other thoughts fought and wrestled for prominence as I found myself dazing out while wiping counters, cutting up food, and folding laundry.

I had to ask my family for forgiveness more than once.

Chances are high I will have to ask again; maybe even by tonight.

I had to humbly take advice I often had given.

But I keep seeking The Word, I kept telling Christ "I can't handle it".

I said the Words I read, out loud.  I said, out loud, that Jesus could handle it.  Wants to handle it.

So now it's Wednesday. I like Wednesdays. 

My laundry is caught up.  My house is no longer disgusting from a weekend of no cleaning. Mr. MS usually cooks on Wednesdays.

The image of "the lean soul" the "satiated soul" the image of "the wheat, the wine, the oil" culminating to that "watered garden" were so striking in my mind's eye.  I have always seen everything in images.  It is why I suppose I love photography and good descriptive writing so much. To me it solidifies those abstract ideas of truth, no matter what the subject, you are trying to get a hold of and say "Yes, that's it!  That is what I am setting my sights on".

This is what I wrote down in my journal after writing down those above verses yesterday, and then I promise I will be quiet.

"It seems God deprives our Earthly wants to feed and fatten up our spiritual man.  If only I could be satisfied with His spiritual Manna, while being thankful and mindful of the earthly Manna of my needs He faithfully provides every day. And believe He will continue to do so today and forever more"  

It smarts-this negative growth.  This not getting what you wanted, but then getting what you needed.    

Here's to divine metaphors to keep "the crazies" away.




3 thoughts on “Negative growth

  1. It takes incredible strength of character to be humble enough to recognize a need for change and the opportunity for that change when it is offered. It sounds like you are moving in that direction. That, is half the battle.
    Keep going. You’ll make it through to the other side of the refiner’s fire more brilliant than before.


  2. You are just living out your faith, Leah, suffering growing pains you might say.
    1 Peter 1:8-9, “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”
    We can never forget that THE GOAL OF OUR FAITH is to spend eternity with Jesus!


  3. You post such beautiful thoughts! Why have I been too busy to stop by lately? AND you told me what I needed to hear. I hope you find comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Especially in these bizarre economic times. Keep photographing and writing, it’s so good for your soul – and mine too!


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