I went to the Women of Faith Conference this year for the first time ever. I was originally going because I thought Beth Moore was going to be there. (Love her!) I was so disappointed when I found out she was not going to be there this year that I was looking for a way out of my commitment. I was even willing to forgo my ticket and count it as a loss.
After a last-ditch effort Gideon-like test to God, someone was able to go with me and I went.
Enter Christine Caine.
The conference was my first ever exposure to her. I was so impressed by her belief and TOTAL faith in God. It was genuine and contagious. I prayed this prayer that very day. Dear God, “I want You to be as real to me as you are to Christine Caine.”
Hear me clearly. I am saved and have been for 25 years. (I can not express to you how old that just made me sound). I have been living for Christ and daily walking with Him for 16 years. (Sixteen years? I just wrote 16 years. There was a time when I was 16 years old for goodness sake). Each day I look to grow closer to Christ and seeing, hearing Christine exposed me to a deeper level in Christ I did not know was possible for me.
After praying, and I continued to pray that prayer for several days (call it post conference afterglow) I, of course, got discouraged because it wasn’t happening fast enough. When will I learn that this is all a journey.
Fast forward to the now.
I am in a state of emotional transition. Letting go of former things to press on to the new things Christ has for me even in this time of loss. No one has died but I am mourning the loss of relationships. Relationships that I thought would have grown and flourished by now have become more segmented and separated. Material things I’ve held on to thinking its the smart decision, I am mourning the thought of releasing them.
My favorite holiday is this week. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THANKSGIVING! For the first time ever, I am hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year. I am excited (mostly about the food) and nervous. I am nervous because there are going to be marked differences between this years celebration and previous years.
Someone I know well may be having a little girl. As soon as I heard the news I thought of all the little girl clothes I still have from Jazmine. I thought I was doing right by keeping them for the next baby but the next baby still isn’t here. They aren’t doing me any good but I do have many MANY precious memories that I’ve attached to each and every onesie, cloth diaper, and outfit. I loaned out my maternity clothes already and will be loaning them out again soon but that didn’t seem permanent. This, giving away Jasmine’s clothes is permanent. But, like my husband pointed out and reminded me, when God brings us out, all things will be made new. (Numbers 11:23a Has the LORD’s arm been shortened?”)
Both of those events, Thanksgiving and the baby clothes, reminded me of my prayer to God after hearing Christine Caine. If I want to know Him like she does, I have to grow through the dark and unsure places in life to truly see Him and find each and every jewel He has for me in the darkness because they are there.