Ever have those times where you feel like life is just carrying you along aimlessly? I started out this year emphasizing intentionality, but it has been surprisingly difficult now that I’m not working! Routine is hard to develop for me since I’m not a planner, so the hours seem to pass me by so quickly. I find myself thinking, “Where has the day gone?” My newly retired parents reassured me that this is their experience as well. I am very much their child! But there is some progress in my goals and health to celebrate, and I feel that God is teaching me A LOT right now. So I thought I’d share some with you.
Progress on Vision Emphases
I have my “Intentionality in 2017” vision template in front of me as I write this. I’m not where I had hoped to be, but I’m navigating something new (self-employment). This is why I didn’t set deadlines, or set out to change everything in my life all at once. People don’t grow that way. Growth is slow, step-by-step, accomplished in the mundane of everyday life. It is life-long. And sometimes God has other plans and a very different timeline.
My “Beauty Emphasis” hasn’t always been at the forefront of my mind. Seeing beauty is hard for me in winter, but I have surrounded myself with plants and color inside, and that has helped. I can attribute my lack of contribution to the beauty in the world directly to my lack of self-scheduling. This is something I have to make room for, and I haven’t successfully done so.
My “Humility Emphasis” is a daily battle. I have wrestled my whole life with holding back my “voice” for fear of being rejected. This is false humility, the idea that I think low of myself. The true humility I’m after is doing what God leads me to do in a way that pleases him, not in order to please others. I wrote a whole blog post about this, see it here. I think this is key to finding the voice that God has given me, the voice that the Spirit is already speaking in my life.
My “Jesus Emphasis” is an area I feel I have already grown a lot. I have been reading through all the gospels, one after another, and will probably continue to do so in a cycle throughout the year. I’ve seen themes popping up about what Christ’s incarnation means for suffering, for faithfulness in broken bodies, and for appreciation of creation. This informed my last post about the mind/body connection in health. I feel the Spirit leading me to a greater vision for my contribution to the chronic illness community and churches wishing to minister to them.
My “Relational Emphasis” is an area of slow growth. What’s sad is I can see patterns in my way of relating to others that, if I don’t learn to overcome, will surely negatively affect my future children and ministry. But I’m starting with trying to learn to be vulnerable about myself and reach out for help and guidance from wise people.
Progress on Goals
My “Personal Goals” are also coming along slowly, mostly again due to a lack of schedule and routine. But I am cooking more and eating better, so that’s a win!
It’s the progress on my “Health Goals” that I’m most excited to share! I have cut out most dairy (along with my already gluten free diet), grains, soy, and sugar! Being at home, it hasn’t been too difficult. Plus it helps to have an extremely supportive husband! I have improved my overall body care, adding oil pulling to the mix to try to naturally heal my dental cavitations. My chronic jaw pain is mostly gone, so I think it’s working!
I’ve started supplementing Magnesium,Selenium, Vitamin C, Vitamin B-12, Iron, and Betain with Pepsin (to add to Vitamin D3, Digestive Enzymes, and Probiotics). I no longer get tired after eating, I sleep better, and have more energy. I’ve experienced less bloating, a better mood, improvements in my hair, and more! Also, my blood sugar seems almost normal! It’s very exciting. Tuesday I will have another appointment with my doctor for blood tests to see if all of this has had an effect on my antibodies. I’ll also ask about trying Low Dose Naltrexone, especially if my antibodies aren’t going down. Progress!
My “Professional and Ministry Goals” have felt somewhat on hold because of my health focus the last couple of months. However, luckily I planned for this and set my goals for many of these steps in summer and fall. Especially with ministry, I have a lot of planning still to do. But it’s my hope to start making progress on this in the coming week.
I’m excited for what God is doing in my life, which surprises me because I feel like I’m doing so little. It’s wonderful to begin to see hope for health improvements, and in turn for starting a family. But I will squander this time if I don’t use it to seek the Lord. That’s so clear to me right now. So I think I’ll be spending a lot of my efforts on spiritual growth going forward. I’m eager to learn to see and follow God in my simple life.
I hope you’re growing this year, even in ways you didn’t expect! I’d love to hear from you.