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When Life Overflows

Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision, and change.

Richard Branson

I wanted to call this post Her Arms are Strong for the Task, based on one of the notorious Proverbs 31 woman’s character traits. Yes, I very much wanted it to be so. Strong arms would be just the thing for this time and place in my life, but in reality, my arms feel very incapable of the task before me.

You see, last week, a social worker called out of the blue and told us they needed us to take Baby J’s little sister into our home. I can’t even tell you the disappointment I felt, not because we were going to have our little June bug with us, but for the loss my granddaughter was experiencing. I do not know the reasons Child Protective Services came to their decision to remove our sweet baby from her mama, but I trust it was to keep June safe.

So here we are again.

We are tired, overwhelmed, and grieving. We were hoping for the best for our granddaughter and her baby. But as I type those words, it occurs to me that this is the best for the situation. It may have not been my best ‘makes-sense-to-me’ plan, or my granddaughter’s, but it is God’s. I don’t know how all things are going to work together in this situation, but I do know God has the best path in mind for everyone involved.

If you want to know the truth, I had a bit of a crisis of faith. I wanted to quit praying because whatever I have in mind for the solution never seemed to be what God has in mind.  His plans for dealing with any situation rarely appeared to be the ones I could devise or imagine, but I have found they have been the most effective towards attaining the best outcome. They are always the kind of plans that will change the world in the long run instead of a quick momentary fix.

God’s method of that world change almost always includes acts of love and compassion through the hearts and hands of individuals. It’s been faithful over and over. No matter how difficult and disastrous the situations appear to be, God calls on us to love with all we have. He uses the power of connection to bring hope and build community. We each have it in us to make things better in the world. We need to trust God’s plan. And in this most recent event, my part of making things better is to love a tiny baby girl while her mother gets her life into a stable and healthy place.

So yes, our life is overflowing, but it has been for some time. We live in a place of abundance when we consider all God has to offer us when we find ourselves in uncertain situations. There are a couple of verses found in Second Corinthians 12 that say,

But he (Jesus) said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

You see, it’s not my arms that need to be strong for the task. When I’m feeling weak, that’s when Jesus can shine. And it’s his power that I want to flow out into the world for others to see.

“Prayer is not asking. Prayer is putting oneself in the hands of God, at his disposition, and listening to his voice in the depths of our hearts.”

Mother Teresa

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