As it turns out, I am not crazy. I am, however a list maker. A goal-oriented person. A “find any excuse to start a new project to inspire me” kind of gal.
As I looked at this talented woman‘s project 366 (a photo a day for the whole year) I was inspired. I’d like to get back into photography, something that’s been on the back burner this year. I’d like to be challenged and see growth in that area.
And it struck me that if I start the project now, it would be a project 180 (starting tomorrow, July 5, 2012) instead of a project 366.
Nerd Alert! That number 180 triggers mathematical thoughts. A U-Turn. A complete change of direction. My mind wanders from math to spirituality.
180 days = six months. Six months from now we will probably not have our beloved baby Midge any more. I am going to need strength, endurance, hope, and focus to survive these six months. I want to do these six months well. I don’t want to fall apart as if I have no foundation. I want to shine. Even if God chooses to do a miracle and lets us keep her, I want these six months to be a testimony to His strength in impossible times. I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Phil 3:14
For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. Col 3:3 I expect to be persecuted for following God during these six months. I expect heartbreaking calls to burst into my happy mornings with the kids. I expect that as I follow Jesus into these hard places, I will be persecuted and beaten down just as He was. I expect to break down often and take His hand as He pulls me back up into the fight. I expect to cry. For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him. Phil. 1:29
And I will remember that these days are here because He wants them to be. He has a plan for Midge’s life and ours. He knows the way it will end months and years from now. And He is good.
180 days to practice turning from
worry to trust
self-pity to gratitude
distraction to focus
180 days to survive losing Midge, if that’s what God has for her and for us. 180 days to thrive spiritually in the shadows of life.
And 180 days to challenge myself artistically with my photography. I don’t have any expectations of taking photos every single day. On days that I miss, I will work on a creative expression of the verse that God has given me for encouragement that morning. On days that I do take photos, I want to try a different approach. I’m going to try the Manual mode of my camera (yikes!) and crop the photos to square (another stretch for me!) and present the ones here that I can (the non foster kiddo shots!)
I have seen God working more in the past two years than ever before. Following Him has taken me into battlefields I’d rather avoid. But it has also brought me closer to Him as I hang on for fear of being lost in the mess of this world. I have seen God work in my heart these past two years. I want to see God work in my heart during these next 180 days, most likely the hardest of them all.
He is good.
180 :: trust-gratitude-focus
Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Phil 4:6-7 (the message bible)
Devote yourself to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. Col 4:2
Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God. Phil 1:11 (the message bible)