SO true! To be honest, the verse, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" has kind of felt like a cliche when I have said it in the past. Maybe because I have grown up in the Church culture and have heard lessons about it hundreds of times. I'm not sure what the reason is but I have not really embraced it and tried to truly apply it to my everyday life until recently. Adjusting to the new normal of this deployment in holding down the fort, communicating long distance with my husband, and mothering our new baby...I realize that I absolutely can not do this (fill in the blank) on my own. Or at least I will not last very long trying to do it all in my own power. But the exciting revelation for me has been that when I'm feeling discouraged or overwhelmed...I can step back for a moment rest in the truth that no matter how daunting the situation seems...I can do it and succeed because He is going to give me the strength.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Visiting Stephen at Camp McCrady...
I had the opportunity to drive about 7 hours down to Camp McCrady (which is located on Fort Jackson in South Carolina) to spend one night and one day day with Stephen. It was SO worth the trip! I would fly around the world to spend just a few moments with him. I read once that when being asked about how she copes with her husband traveling so much, Ruth Graham (Billy Graham's wife), responded by simply saying, "I'd rather have a little of Bill than a lot of any other man." I can definitely resonate with that! I'd rather have a little of Stephen knowing that he is exactly where God would have him to be right now...even though it is not in my arms.
Our little "T-pot" (above) was so excited to see her daddy! We picked him up Saturday evening and had a fabulous time together. Couldn't have asked for a better visit! The hardest part, of course, was saying good bye...again. I'm learning that I may never get the hang of trying to swallow that familiar lump in my throat as tears run down my face and we kiss one last time. *Deep breath* Watching my best friend walk away knowing he will not return for months is the most difficult thing in the world. I suppose a great blessing from separation is time to reflect on just how much I love Stephen and why. While driving back to the hotel through the dark, country roads, I realized that I had a little baby asleep behind me and I needed God to be my strength, catch my tears, dry my eyes, and get me home safely. He is continuing to be my strength as often as I put down the reigns and allow Him to be. I downloaded a book by Sara Horn to my iphone called, God Strong. I totally recommend it! Sara gave an awesome illustration about this idea of being "God Strong"...she said:
"When we no longer rely on strength from within but instead rely on strength from above, it is no longer up to us to be the strong ones. Because it is no longer about us. When we place our strength with God's strength, we discover a major difference. The burdens and problems and the heartaches we carry around with our own strength don't disappear, but they do feel a little lighter. We don't have to push and pull and lug and grunt our way through. Instead, we can walk with God and rely on his muscle to do the heavy lifting. It's like carrying a heavy box up a flight of stairs. To do it by yourself is not just hard but exhausting. If you lift it with someone else who has the muscle power to carry most of the weight, it's better. It's easier. It's doable. We see a major difference, not just in actually moving the box but in our perspective. Isaiah tells us that God "gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak" (Isaiah 40:29 NIV). He reminds us that when we put our hope in God, our strength is renewed. We can ride on the backs of eagles. We can run and not get tired. We can walk and not grow faint. We can become God strong. None of this can happen, though, when we try to do it ourselves."
Ok, back to my visit! :) Stephen and I are very fond of sushi and could probably eat it everyday so we had to hit up The Red Bowl. I don't know if it was just because we were so excited about being together but the sushi we had was probably the best we've had in a long time! Stephen got me a stand for my camera so of course I had to try right away (above). :) I love you, babe!