A facelift to an old friend.
My plain old, boring, tan vanity seat still had life left to live, but the saggy seat cover was ready for a change to go with our new “digs.”
I had chosen a beautiful upholstery fabric at Hobby Lobby and got a great deal on it. Staple gun in hand, I set to work.
Measuring and tugging this way and that, I had two sides tacked in place. As I began to work on the opposite ends… staple gun failure!
I had run out of staples.
I dug through every box I could imagine that might hold the supplies. I searched every garage tool box. I circled the house and retraced my steps three times to make sure I didn’t miss anything.
How could I have 3 different brands to staple guns, two boxes of staples and none that will fit or fire?
I had now almost spent more time spinning in circles than on the actual project and was frustrated near tears.
I had been so productive that day and crossed so many things off my list that this had about undone me.
Silly, I know that a staple gun could melt my momentum, but I had to do it once again…
Take a breath and think this one through.
“Call it a day,” Lisa, “You have accomplished much.” “Tomorrow, you will go to the hardware store first thing, get the staples you need and FINISH this.”
But for some reason, doubt hung on. I feared that I would stumble over this little stool for days, maybe weeks, and not get back to it.
Sometimes days tend to spiral out of the order I’ve planned and I let that mindset creep in.
“Nope, not this time. I will be DETERMINED,” I told myself.
When I arose the next morning, I decided to begin my quiet time reading the book of Ruth in my Bible. I had been hearing God speak to my heart for days to read this honestly, and finally, I listened.
Ruth was a recent widow and lived with her widowed mother-in-law, Naomi. She was given the opportunity to move back home to her family. After Naomi tried repeatedly to get Ruth to move on with her young life, it was obvious that she was committed to stay…
“When Naomi saw that Ruth was determined to go with her, she said no more.”
There is was… DETERMINED!
God wasn’t going to let me forget my commitments.
And it’s not just that silly vanity stool.
I have other, much bigger dreams… that I don’t often speak out loud for fear that they may never happen. What if I mention them and some one hears me? What if they find out that I’m a dreamer and then see that I don’t fulfill my dream? Am I a failure… to them? To myself?
Is there something you dream of doing but feel that speaking it aloud will seem crazy to others?
Has God placed a seed of something inside of you that you long to grow but you fear what others may think?
Is it too hard? Too big? Are there too many obstacles?
Sometimes I hear more internal words of doubt than external. I talk myself out if things before they even get a chance to bloom.
Or I simply fear that it’ll be too hard. Or that I’ll begin and never finish.
Wait! So what if I do!
What if I begin something and don’t finish it?
Isn’t that better than never even trying?
Won’t it be like that vanity stool that I began to recover when my staple gun ran out of ammunition?
The seat sits upside down with frayed threads hanging, teetering atop the leggy frame, mocking me, “Your never going to finish!”
But the sheer fact that I nearly tripped over it in the morning drives me back to the hardware store seeking some staples that fit.
I became more determined than before; before the vision appeared, before the seat was disassembled, before the fabric was chosen.
So it will be when we are in the middle of something deep. We will never discover how strong we are unless we have to swim to shore from the deep.
Standing on the sandy shore, letting the waves lick our toes… Nah! That’s not where it’s at.
It might be a beautiful view. But we need to wade out, swim some distance, dive deep to see the beauty of God’s creation hidden for us.
Then, He will give us the strength… when we’re on the middle of it… wading, treading, breathless and tired.
This is what we were made for!
That was Ruth. She found herself in one of life’s messes.
Living with her widowed mother-in-law. Her husband dies. She is far from her own family or comfort.
And yet she tells Naomi, “Don’t force me to leave you. Don’t make me turn back from following you. Wherever you go, I will go, and wherever you stay, I will stay. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. Where ver you die, I will die and I will be buried there with you.” Ruth 1:16-17 (GW)
Ruth is changing the course of her entire future. This is a fork in her road. She is choosing a path. She is choosing a new god.
She chooses God. The one true God.
I have a dream. I am speaking it out loud now, to you. I long to be a writer, an author, devoted to honoring my Lord and King with my work, with my words.
I am DETERMINED!
I will not think short deTERMined.
I will capture the dream that is deterMINEd
I will be able to say that I deTeRmInED
I will hold the DEterminED to what God has planned for me.