Well friends, I have missed you. 2020 is continuing to bring unexpected challenges and hardships, but here we are living despite it all. Last month, I was happy to keep my tending list short and sweet and chose grace for blank progress bars and the scattered unchecked boxes.
I didn’t want to set any goals for this month.
I felt like there was no point because health-wise things are just too hard. So I used my prep pages as prayer spaces, because I know that I can do hard things – even the hardest of things – for Him, I just didn’t know how to give this heartbreaking season to Him.⠀
The only thing that I was certain of was that I want to intentionally welcome Him into this brokenness and purposefully seek encouragement.⠀
My body is wasting away. That is real. He has the ability to renew my heart, mind, and body each and every day. That is real. So how do we be encouraged in the midst of these realities?⠀
Well a good place to start is in the word renew itself. The word “renew” is a VERB. Verbs requires action. If I am going to ask for His renewal I need to look for the opportunities for renewal that He gives me. The four ways I am going to do that is:⠀
🌱 choose grace: let go of guilt over things that I can’t control ⠀
🌱 accept + embrace support: ask for help when I need it and appreciate my amazing support system⠀
🌱 pursue the joy of the Lord: delight in His non-circumstantial joy in even the tiniest of ways⠀
And most importantly⠀
🌿 welcome Him into all of it 🌿⠀
My encouraging words are from the song, I will fear no more by The Afters, “even though I’m in the storm, the storm is not in me.” Now this lyric brings peace to my heart yet I am also at war with that truth, and I can’t help but laugh at the irony of this lyric (especially when it is bringing me peace) because the storm literally is in me. Ultimately this lyric reminds me that I’m in a storm- my body IS a storm- but that storm cannot overtake me because the Lord will not let it.
- Celebrate Jared! It is his birthday and I want to love and celebrate him well!
- Seek Encouragement: I want to actively keep my eyes open to see the grace, support, hope, and joy He is blessing me with in this season of brokenness. I am using a wild card page I made to record how I experienced one of those areas of encouragement each day
- Track Seedlings: to help me plan my 2021 garden plan, last month I planned new seeds I have never grown before that I would like to include in my 2021 garden. Now I am just tending to them as I track how they grow, how long they take to bloom, how long they stay in bloom, their average height, and blooms per stock etc. to be best prepared for the 2021 season.
Now I normally do not add anything to my tending list after making it, but have been asked to be an encourager for the Write the Word challenge taking place at the end of August! I hope you will join me! Make sure to grab a write the word journal from the shop before the 17th I’m going through Cultivate Confidence currently.
- Love Jared Well: spend intentional time together without our phones
- Soak up the Sunshine: If I can be out of bed (even if it’s for just a half an hour) I want to spend at least 3 days in the sunshine each week delighting in the garden!
- Church: Our church broadcast’s both their services online through live streaming (and all of the services are also kept on youtube so you can watch them at anytime), to check out Grace Chapel’s online ministry click here We are so grateful for this ministry as I am not always well enough to physically go to church. We prefer the 11:00 contemporary worship service
- All the Things: med cart inventory, organizing pills, joint corrections, port access, self care, etc.
- Welcome Him: I want to welcome Him into this brokenness every single day whether I have the energy to be in the Word or simply say a short prayer I want to delight in Him. I am using my calendar to track how I do this each day (Write the Word, prayer, Bible reading, praying with Jared, going through my prayer list, or having quiet time in the Word with Jared)
- Water flowers: I want to finish this garden season strong!
It’s going to be a very imperfect journey as I find my way in this season. I am going to be as intentional as possible to do the best I can with the cards He has given me. ⠀
So if you find yourself where I am – feeling like setting goals is pointless – let that be a reminder to shift your focus. Shift your focus onto Him where true goodness, grace, encouragement, peace, and joy is found.
Don’t have a set of powersheets yet?!
Cassie Nolin is a married spoonie who lives the chronic illness life with EDS + Co. (Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and it’s comorbid conditions.) She challenges others to choose grace over guilt in goal setting, and is in ministry part time serving the online community through The Spoonie Study. She loves planting, hand lettering, and sharing the hope she has found in Jesus. Her blog, Living the Chronic Illness Life, is in the top 100 chronic illness blogs and her podcast, Chronically Cultivating, is produced by Speaking to the Heart Network. Cassie encourages women to live authentic and intentional lives through their diagnosis’ not in spite of them. You can learn more about her at www.livingthechronicillnesslife.com
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