Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Testimony Tuesday: Lauren

Today's testimony is from my friend Lauren! I love her.  She has taught me so much about waiting on the Lord's will and patience and marriage.  And on a note about marriage, I will never forget her wedding day.  It was one of the coldest days of my life.  But I am grateful for Lauren and Adrian's desire to have a Christ-centered marriage and teaching me much about that.  Here's Lauren's story:

The question of faithfulness is one that I think about a lot. Years ago, someone challenged me to consider what it means to be faithful. Does it mean being self-disciplined to do the things I know I ought? Does it mean simply being diligent?

Growing up, I equated faithfulness with rules. The better I was at following the rules, the more I would be regarded as faithful. As a teenager, this looked like being the first to shun cussing, illegal drinking or the hint of sexual promiscuity. If I was outspoken against the visible sins, obviously I was faithful, right?

Over the last ten years or so, I have begun to develop a different picture of faithfulness – one not dependent on me shunning certain activities, but instead, dependent on the provision of a faithful God.

Recently, my husband Adrian and I celebrated our four-year anniversary by taking a weekend to get away and reconnect and discuss life. With a two-month old at home, it was harder to do that than ever before, but as we retreated to the mountains and talked, we began to clearly see the pattern of God’s faithfulness in our lives.

From the time we were broken up and yet, I felt God calling me to be his wife – an impossible situation. When we felt God’s call to leave a stable job in North Carolina to move to Colorado with no jobs and no home to be part of a church plant – an impossible situation. When we arrived in Denver after driving cross-country, broke and homeless – an impossible situation. When I panicked 24/7 for two weeks straight because I didn’t have a job and had applied to more than 100 – an impossible situation. When the house we felt called to just wasn’t within our budget or the realm of our finances – an impossible situation. When our fledgling family stopped thriving and was barely surviving because of our employment circumstances – an impossible situation.

I have learned that it is in those “impossible situations” where God’s faithfulness has been most evident in my life. He was faithful to rebuild the relationship he called me to. He was faithful to provide a calling and a community. He has been faithful to provide jobs, an apartment, a historic house where our children can grow up. He has provided friends and family to encourage us, support us, pray for us and provide for us. He has been faithful. It hasn’t always looked like I expected, and it certainly hasn’t been on the timeline I’ve desired, but does that negate his faithfulness? In the times of greatest doubt and certainty, God’s faithfulness has shined the brightest. I’ve come to believe that he desires for us to take big risks in accordance with his will, and he delights in blowing us away with his faithfulness.

We’re about to take a leap of faith and step into a brand new chapter of our life. It’s one that terrifies me because once again, it means taking a big risk according to what God is calling us to do. This time, the stakes seem higher. With the addition of a tiny, needy, helpless baby girl – the uncertainty is so much scarier. We believe that for us, being faithful right now means taking this risk and trusting the Lord to provide. Isn’t that what it actually means to be faithful? To be so full of faith that you do what God has called you to, even if it seems crazy? To recognize God’s goodness and mercy and provision in the past and make decisions for the future, believing that he is still the same God? In the end, isn’t our faithfulness just a natural response to God’s faithfulness to us? When it boils down to it, faithfulness for me doesn’t mean shunning certain activities or being self-disciplined. It means recognizing God’s goodness, mercy and tender provision, and acting accordingly, full of faith, believing that he will equip us to do that which he has called us to.

Lauren is living in Denver, Colorado with her husband, Adrian, and baby girl Selah Grace.  She also has a dog baby named Ben.  He's a mess; We've been friends for a while.  I am grateful to Lauren for introducing me to Elisabeth Elliot and "Passion and Purity"  My favorite.  And I think we can all say how thankful we are for the Black and White New Year's Eve party of 2008.

The scenario to your right was: Broke a heel on the red carpet.  This is how we do.  Fab Five.

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