So, I'm taking a pause in Aria's birth story because there was something that was laid on my heart this morning, has been laid on my heart for a while and I just have to share it.
How do I explain this? Where do I start? I wish I could start in the middle and explain out from there...
I've been looking forward to this time of being at home. Since about week 20 I've been wanting my life to just stop so that I could just be at home and enjoy my kids, have no responsibilities, and just dive into the Word, dive into the Spirit of God. Sounds pretty good huh?
When I had Levi (granted, all I had was a little baby to care for, so I had time) I was able to listen to so many sermons and podcasts, I was able to memorize scripture and just be in the presence of God. I worried that I would struggle with postpartum depression because I was already prone to depression as I grew up. I had struggled with wanting to end my life and I thought, "how am I going to handle this time of being alone and all the hormones ... " But God was faithful. I also had to make some choices on my own to stop any kind of depression heading into my life. I did not watch any TV, I knew that it brought on feelings of inadequacy and discontentment. I also just made the decision to listen to whatever I could that would uplift me while I nursed or cleaned my house or whatever you do in those first months of baby-ness.
Okay, I'm also going to explain that this past year has been a struggle. It was so good when our church was having revival prayer services and I was being swept away in the Spirit and hungry for the Word... and then Satan attacks. He attacks brutally and without mercy. I definitely fell. I went back to some old sin patterns that I thought were conquered, I struggled with depression and more than anything, I struggled with shame. The strange part is that during all of this I was pregnant with Aria. She was definitely conceived during the good part, but the rest of the pregnancy was tainted. I'm sorry I can't give more details, I just don't feel led to in this story. About midway through the pregnancy we found out she was a girl, this was a shock to me, I totally thought I would have another little boy to wrestle on the floor with, but no, she was a girl. We began to think of names... I will also say that in this time God began to do some serious healing in my life. Certain other believers (isn't is good that we are not alone in this walk) began to speak into my life and I just received freedom from the shame.
I'm just going to throw this out there for any believer who has struggled with sin and shame. Scripture is powerful and true. "Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death." Romans 8:1-2 ... actually, just go meditate on that whole chapter.
Okay, so we were looking for a name and God was telling me that there would be new birth in my life along with her new birth. That He was going to show me things about Himself that I had never known before. That's where we came up with Aria. You can read about how we came to name her here.
Coming up on this period of new birth I have just been looking forward to the days of just barely getting by with a little bit of sleep and cuddling and nursing my new baby. Lots of time spend in the arm chair with her in the middle of the night and just lots of time at home in general.
My goal... maybe it's my New Year's resolution, I don't know I have never been big on resolutions, but my goal in these next few months, maybe longer, will be to memorize 1 Peter.
Yup. That's what I want to do. "Wait a minute," you say, "that's a whole book of the Bible, are you sure you can memorize that much? Why 1 Peter? How long will this take you? You must be good at memorizing."
I'm not good at memorizing. I don't think anyone really is, it just depends on how long it's in front of you. It depends on how many times you go over it in your head, meditate on it, take it apart, write it down, say it out loud...
I'm also going to say this, not in a bragging way, but in a way that says, yes, this is possible, it's difficult, but it's possible. two summers back I memorized Colossians, I didn't make it past chapter 3 though, but it was still SO good. I cannot tell you how many times I have been able to recall scripture from Colossians at key times in my sharing at the Crisis Pregnancy Center or when some Jehovah's witnesses knocked on the door.
So my goal is 1 Peter this time. I can never get over this book. Every time I read it I have to go back. I have a few lone verses from it memorized, I know some generalities about it, but I would love to have the complete book written in my heart. It's a lot about suffering and submission. Not very popular topics these days, but I want them. I want to know them.
I'm really going to post more on this. I have to go right now, but I'll be back soon.