Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Doors


I had big plans to write tonight about my journey for contentment. It has been on my heart every day. It is becoming a part of me, and the harder I pray for it, the more it snuggles up to me and holds my hand. I am on a mission to be content with what I have...and maybe with even less than what I have. God has been connecting the dots for me with bright red Sharpie and I am thankful for that. Let's face it, who doesn't like it when God reveals Himself to us in a way that is impossible to miss? So, I went to bed late last night with some of the word threads already knitting together in my mind. That is the way it is with me - my brain writes in intermittent sentence fragments almost all the time. It can't be helped.

But then I awoke before daylight, clammy, chest-pounding, sick inside from the dreams I had. I rolled closer to Cory and clamped my eyes shut, but the traces of sorrow and charcoal, leaden guilt tinged the edges of me.

I mumbled, "I will carry this around all day long". I knew I would, I've been down this road so many times before.

So I prayed for relief and a fresh perspective. Blindly, I reached for solace. I drank orange juice that tasted like the sun. My lips were sugar-brushed from the comfort-food cinnamon toast that I had planned before the night, before the dreams. Today was going to be a good day.

Nevermind that the view outside my windows was dripping grey. Nevermind that I subconsciously chose a grey shirt and a brown sweater - the very picture of blah. I had decided half a day ago that today was going to be a good day. I was determined. And it was, for nearly two hours.

My husband works for Congressman Souder, in Indiana's 3rd District. You may have heard the name in the news today.

Another scandal, only this time, we are at the periphery. We are watching it unfold in real life, not on Fox News.

In spite of everything I know about God's supreme sovereignty, I cried behind my bedroom door, phone in hand. I was disappointed. I was scared. I was doubting, and I knew it, and I knew I had to stop.

I feebly tried to ignore the number counter in my brain, ticking away the dollars while we spoke. Subtract. Subtract. Subtract. I was thinking of my own job, a recent victim of the political machine. I was thinking of mortgage payments and health insurance.

I opened my Bible right in the middle and through my grief I was instructed to sing and to praise.

The kids and I piled into the pinkish car and I heard Calvin sing, "Let the waters rise if You want them to. I will follow You. I will follow You."

I have been singing that song every moment since.

I am heartsick for every person who is affected by this - there are many. I feel compassion for Congressman Souder and for his family. This is why we do not put our trust in men. They will fail us every time. I will fail you every time. I pray for redemption and I know for sure that it awaits those who seek.

As for us? It looks as though God has upgraded his notifications with yellow highlighter atop red Sharpie. Do you remember me saying that change was coming? That I could feel it in my bones?

It's here.

55 comments:

  1. Love.You.All.
    And Amen to everything you wrote.

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  2. Prayers for you tonight. God has a plan for your family.
    And we know that all things work together for good to them who love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28.

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  3. You amaze me and I'm so so so blessed to have you for a friend. What a wonderful testimony you are to me! Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I love you dearly!

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  4. Wow...So sorry...

    What comfort knowing that God does have a perfect plan, and that no matter, what He is in control. "In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path"...

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  5. You write so well. Remember that song I blogged about that Natalie was singing during our trial?

    God will take care of you. God will take care of you. I know that I know that God will take care of you. (I wish you could hear her sing it!)

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  6. I'm saying exactly what Janie said. I am also praying for you and yours. I'm praying that you will find peace and contentment and absolute trust in God's will.
    Hugs...
    Debra

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  7. Your blog really hit a soft spot with me tonight...the comment that we will fail...that our trust should not be with men (women), but with God. I tend to get all wrapped up in the day to day worries that I forget this. Thank you. And I will pray that God gives you peace and comfort as you are about to embark change.

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  8. I don't even know you in the flesh, but my Mom just called me to tell me your news. It's amazing how God creates friends through blogs that would never normally meet. We will pray for your family & if you need anything - you let us know. God has a better plan for your family!

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  9. I just sent your a note and then thought...."duh...Shannan has probably posted on her blog by now." My mama and I will continue to pray for your each and everything!

    God bless you!

    Julie M.

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  10. God loves you much, and He is EXCITED about you! I love your heart. You inspire me. I will be praying for you, and the whole district, and while I'm at it, the whole country. I'll pray that you are comforted and strengthened daily, and that you would be able to see the good things that come from the valley.

    It's so amazing to see Him lead you gently on this journey, preparing your heart and holding your hand. You show me that we are NOT alone EVER, not in the hard times...and I need someone to show me that sometimes. Thank you for sharing this journey.

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  11. Praying for you & your family. Praying for peace & solace. Contentment. Friends and family closeby to be there for you(no doubt they already are.)Your needs to be met ... praying.

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  12. I pray for you to feel the solid Rock that is beneath your feet right now. You are in the safest place there is to be...right in the middle of His Great Heart.

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  13. I am so so sorry for your sweet family. I echo previous comments that He knows what you are going through and all will be well through Him. Trust in him, have faith in him. HE will never fail you....
    My prayers are with you~
    love
    sarah

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  14. Shannan: It's amazing, isn't it, this intuition that God gives to us? I like that you've been so up front with all of us; and that you are right out there with your testimony...and yes, yes, yes, what you said about men, they will, every time, disappoint.

    If your hope is in God, you will have refuge.

    I know you and your family need to be mentioned to God in my whispered prayers, and you shall be.
    (((HUGS)))
    Joni

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  15. This is when you look to God and say "God, you've got this." Our God is good and he does have a plan for all of us. I'm sorry that you guys are going through this right now. I have faith that a new opportunity is right around the corner. (((Hugs)))

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  16. Praying for peace that surpasses all understanding and for Gods hedge of protection around you and your family.

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  17. oh so beautifully written...change is coming and is here...just as you said...I love your strength you have even if you don't feel you have it...you really do!!! xoxox

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  18. Sometimes the hardest test for ourselves is to have faith. You are loved. Very much.

    We would never be given more to deal with than the lord knows we are capable of handling.

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  19. Shannan,
    I was so sorry to hear about another trial coming your way. Your public testimony during difficult times has blessed many, and I'm sure this will be no exception. I can testify to the goodness of our God. Through an entire year of no income, He miraculously stretched our savings of 3-6 mo. of expenses to cover all our needs. We left that period of fear and turmoil with our faith increased and His purpose for our lives revealed. I will pray for His comfort, provision and revelation for you. Love, Your Sister in Christ, Jenny

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  20. Shannan,

    Isn't it great to know that through our shock and surprise that we can be content to know that God knew all along the plan He has for your life and is compassionately and lovingly watching over you and your family.

    Our family was so blessed the day you became a part of it. That you for the support you give to Cory and for the wonderful wife, mother and dauther-in-law that you are!

    I love you guys so much and are praying for contentment and trust!

    Love you!
    Sherry

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  21. You are in my prayers. Things may look tough now, but you know God has bigger and better things in store. Keep your head above water, keep treading, for in His time, you will have much calmer seas!

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  22. Your words that you have so honestly spoken here are an encouragement to me. There are some "changes" in my life right now, and you have reminded me to embrace them and trust God. None of it is a surprise to Him and it is an opportunity for me to see Him work and love Him more.

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  23. Shannan - Praying for you and your family. God knows exactly what He's doing, even in the dreariest of circumstances. He's got plans for you. He does. Cling to that - cling to the Author and Perfecter of your faith. God is good always. He only wants the best for His children. I always remember a statement that I heard Beth Moore make once. "If God says 'no', then there's something big at stake in the heavenlies." God has a purpose for all of this. He WILL NOT leave you nor forsake you.

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  24. So powerful Shannan! There is such beauty in the words you choose and how you write even though there is sadness in their content. Your faith is so strong and that really is the most important thing you can have when there is crisis or confusion in your life. Many blessings to you and your beautiful family as you are affected by these new changes in your life...

    Hugs ~

    T

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  25. Praying for you - right now. God knows the plans that he has for you, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11)

    ~Kara

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  26. Shannan~
    Isn't it hard for us to lift everything up to Him and let Him take care of all our worries? I know I struggle with it everyday and I pray about it everyday because you are so right.... we cannot put our trust in men because they will fail us everytime. Whenever I need a little reminder of how great our God is (I suffer from panic attacks) my 4 year old daughter will sing to me "My God is so big, so strong and so mighty there's nothing my God cannot do FOR YOU" just rememeber that. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, it may not be known right now but it will reveal itself. Even though I don't know you "in real life" we area sister through Christ. I will continue to pray for you and your family through this time of change.
    Jeannette

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  27. Love you guys. And I love that God chose to give you those words through Calvin. There is a beautiful, gentle grace in that. Praying for you all.

    ~lindsay

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  28. We've also had an unexpected money crisis come upon us at the most inopportune time (as we were closing on a house- a pretty expensive one that was already going to be a bit of a stretch). My advice that has always helped us through in the past- pay your tithing!! No matter how bad things get- pay a full tithe and the Lord will bless you and help you through. In our church, we pay 10%.
    Take care and try not to stress too much :)

    Elisabeth

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  29. My heart is heavy with emotion for all of you. Your faith and courage in the face of this is an incredible testimony to my heart. Never doubt that God is working in and through you during this tough time. We are praying for both you and Cory, and for all who are deeply affected by this. You are right, this is why we do not put our faith in our fellow man – we are all vulnerable to wrongdoing and in need of a Savior. We pray God will work in and through you for your good and His glory. Just know when it gets dark, you have many people who love you and are supporting you in prayer. *Hugs*

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  30. As I've often been told...God never gives us more than we can handle...and while thats often hard to comprehend...in the end..when the storm has passed..you realize that you made it through and usually learn or benefit from the tough times..even if its not immediately evident..

    Hard times makes you stronger..tests your will and faith and makes or breaks a relationship. Don't let it get the better of you...be good to each other..be each others comfort. Pray, breathe, try and find joy in each day - as hard as it may be to find sometimes..there is ALWAYS something to be thankful for...Stay strong...

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  31. I'm sorry. I will pray that God guides you in another direction. Life is so unpredictable.
    My husband used to work for Enron. Not the big guys in Texas but here in Ohio. We lost so much. Our income is half of what it used to be. It has been years now and we still struggle. We are getting closer to retirement but he can retire because he lost his retirement.
    You are young and you will survive. What a beautiful family you have. Wishing you the best.

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  32. Hi sweet girl. I was lying in bed this morning watching the weather channel when I heard the news. On the weather channel!? My first thought was Please don't let that be Cory's guy so I grabbed my laptop to check in. I'm so, so sorry. I don't know what's next for you guys but I'm here if you need me. Also, you have given me the gift of a fresh perspective today which was sorely needed. Love you. Jen

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  33. Shannan,
    Just keep breathing, and plan more cinnamon toast mornings.

    Love.
    XOXO

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  34. Shannan, thank you for your open heart and honesty, in times of harship, you find who you need to lean on, and I pray you have that in your life, which I think you do, and you are so strong so hang in there! Change is a good thing if you allow it to work in positive ways in your life....blessings sweet girl, we all love you!

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  35. Praying for you and for this situation...this came to mind and wanted to share:

    "I will lift up mine eyes to the hills, from whence comes my help. My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." Ps. 121: 1-2

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  36. Shannan I know you believe in the Power of prayer like I do. I have been on a similar but different journey as you. Remembering that GOD WANTS TO BLESS US. Sometimes we wait for the next wrong thing, expecting our Father to watch us stumble along. And then we remember. HE wants us whole. HE wants us BLESSED. HE wants us JOYFULL. God Bless you through this time. BTW, I assume you've heard need to breathes 'something beautiful' ?

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  37. Thank you for sharing your perspective and strength with us in the midst of this awful situation. The Lord has blessed you both with so much talent in many areas. He's got BIG, beautiful plans for you and your family. Sending you much love and lifting up many prayers.

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  38. I work with Congressman Souder's daughter. I will keep your family and his in my prayers. Be strong.

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  39. I thought of you and your family the instant I got the news. While the people around me made jokes about a God fearing man having an affair, I was in a state of panic thinking about what a loss this would be for your family. Know this: know that people are praying. Everywhere there are whispered calls to God for you, your husband, and the littles. Know that God is faithful and He will answer all of us. Sometimes things must crumble for greatness to be built in its place.

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  40. All things work together for good... God has not abanded us and he never will. He is an awesome papa who loves you and your precious family. The word says if he didn't spare his own son how much more will he give to us? Fear not!! We are praying for all envolved and will continue to do so. You have a wonderful husband who is very smart and talented. He will find exactly what he needs to support his little family. Tell Cory we love him and always have!! And the two of you get ready for some awesome answers to prayer.

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  41. I found a letter from my heavenly Father last night, that I posted on my blog this morning. Maybe it would help you too, come on by.
    www.avintagemom.blogspot.com
    Prudence

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  42. praying for you sweet girl....praying for peace....
    i teared up just thinking about your baby singing to you....priceless
    praying...

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  43. Sweet Lady, I'm praying for you and yours.
    For peace and understanding.
    Till that comes, I find singing also helps me. I heard this song this last weekend while I was driving -

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MniOtRnCO9I

    "Worry never empties tomorrow of it's sorrow, but it does empty it of it's strength. Don't let anyone rob you of your confidence in God. Know his word. Hold onto his hand. He will make your impossible mission possible and your life so much more than bearable."
    - Barbara Johnson

    ((hug)) The lady

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  44. Dear Shannan,
    I'm so sorry. God is so gracious when He prepares us for change. Yet somehow, that doesn't always make it easier when the change comes, especially when it is wrapped in such a painful package. I will be praying for you and your family. Thank you for your honest and poignant words.

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  46. As I realized the news I was heartbroken. So sad but then I realized that you have the faith that I can only pray to find and you will follow through, you will overcome. You are my rock through so many times, even when you don't even know it, you are my strength. You will overcome, you will follow through. I love you cous. HUGS and KISSES. Please let me know if you need anything, I mean it, anything. I have prayed and prayed and prayed since I heard the news (or shall we say once I keyed in and talked to my hubby who knew it from the get go never putting two and two together).

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  47. Shannan, what a wonderful community you have built with your blog. So many people lifting your family up in prayer and encouraging you through such an uncertain season of life is truly a special thing. Oh my. You and your family are heavy on my heart. I'm here for you Farmgirl.
    Love ya
    Benny

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  48. You certainly have a host of people pulling for you and your family. Prayer is a Wonderful and Powerful thing and to have so many caring people praying for/with you is truly a blessing!

    Your mamma is a wise lady and offers great advise and comfort. Will be praying for you, your family and other involved.

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  49. Praying my friend. I love you.

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  50. p.s. OH MY GOSH!! You guys are on P.W.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  51. Only in him will you find Peace in your going through...My prayers are with you.

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  53. wow. so burdened for you as i read this. praying the lord continues to restore your family!
    loving catching up on these old important posts. xo
    (do you live in ft. wayne?)

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