Dec 112015

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.  Hebrews 11:1

But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved.  Hebrews 10:39

And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.  Matthew 14:29

Without faith it is impossible to please God.  Hebrews 11:6

I woke up this morning with the musicale Newsies song, “Now is the time to seize the day” on continual repeat.  It was the day before my due date.  An induction is planned for tomorrow.  But I am holding out hope.  Praying in faith.  Asking.  For our baby girl to come today.  Tonight.  And so “Now is the time to seize the day”.

To “seize” something is to:

“take hold of suddenly and forcibly; Take (an opportunity or initiative) eagerly and decisively.”
synonyms: grab, grasp, snatch, take hold of, get one’s hands on;

And the opposite of “to seize” is:  “let go of;  release”

Today I had no plans on the calendar (which was also what was on the agenda for yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that).  Kind of a strange feeling being in this holding pattern.  Waiting for our baby girl.  So I did something I may not have the time or ability to relax into in the months to come-take a shower.  Actually blow dry and straight iron my hair.  And visit my husband for some quality time at his office (with a slight hidden agenda of being there for “Friday Donut/Primo Coffee” day while the girls are in school.)  Oh.  The.  Simple.  Joys.

As I was giving the Administrative Assistant the “latest baby coming updates”, one of my husbands colleagues passed by and looked at me somewhat strangely (of course this was nothing new since being called, “The Death Star” from Star Wars among other shocking comments seemed to be at the top of everyone’s mind as I entered any space with my protruding belly).  But his comment was different.  He said, “You seem strangely calm for possibly having a baby at any time.”  And I was.

In spite of what I knew was around the corner (all unknown labor stuff), I had prayed for His peace.  I was taking hold of this very day-seizing this day-without fear.  In a state of active peace.  Prepared and ready.  I am choosing to clutch these next 24 hours in a peace filled, expectant pattern, joy embracing, confident stepping, faith shielding space.  And I have no doubt my loving Father is right by my side.  Actually on all sides, having gone before me already.

William Carey said, “Expect great things of God, and attempt great things for God.” Peter seized the day.  Stepped out of the boat in faith.  And took action to miraculously walk on water to Jesus.  He many times gets a bad rap for his doubt which came after, but I see him as the ONLY one who actually “seized the day” in faith.  Noah built an ark when there was no rain.  Moses lifted up his staff and parted the Red Sea.

My “seizing the day” today so far has not entailed some grand act of the miraculous as Peter, Noah and Moses displayed.  But that’s just fine.  Maybe your day will also look similar to mine.  My “seizing the day” has gone something like this:  Choosing His peace over thoughts of anxiety about what tomorrow may bring;  Casting my cares/worries upon Him because I know He will take them and cares about them (and me);  Embracing the joy moments of quality time with my husband and family;  Listening to the Spirit’s still small voice which encourages me through the Word and others; Standing in faith, knowing that no matter what, I am loved and never left alone.

So “Carpe Diem” my friends!  (Latin for “seize the day,” an aphorism found in the Roman writer Horace’s Odes, this phrase has been used in English since the early 1800s.  Used to urge someone to make the most of the present time without concern for the future.)   Do not allow worry and fear of the future to rob you of living the vibrant, God ordained, faith filled life He has for you today.  Lean into the Spirit’s nudges which call you to action without knowing how things will end up.

We are only “a mist” the Bible says which is here on earth for a little while.  May you be called a “mist of faith”.  Not holding back.  Not being afraid of the “what if’s”.  Not being complacent with the earthly norms.  But seizing.  every.  opportunity.  to.  grab onto Jesus.  And watch in expectation as He grabs onto you as you walk by “faith and not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:7).

What action can you take to “seize the day” today and respond in faith to the Spirit’s leading?

Is there a decision you are allowing fear of the unknown/lack of sight to lead rather than trusting Jesus/living by faith?  Will you ask God to help you have courage and not be afraid?






© 2012 Standing on Peace

Apr 182013

Momma: “Georgia Mae, what would you like to say to Jesus tonight?

Georgia Mae: “I want to know where He is. I can’t find Him.”

Momma: “Because you can’t see Him, right?”

Georgia Mae: “Yes. I can’t see Him. Where is He?”

Momma: “Well, after Jesus came back to life, He lived with His friends for awhile and then God took His body up into Heaven. But then, Jesus came back to us as the Holy Spirit. We can’t see Him as the Holy Spirit because He is like the wind when it blows in the trees. We know it’s there but we can’t see it.”

Georgia Mae: “Okay, but where IS He? Where does He LIVE?”

Momma: “Now that He is with us as the Holy Spirit, He can live inside you and me.”

Georgia Mae: “Where inside me?”

Momma: “Where do you think He lives?”

Georgia Mae: “I think there is a little tiny baby Jesus living in my womb and when He’s ready, He’ll come out! (Pats her belly and then says with a sing-song voice) Hello, baby Jesus, I love you.”

On their birthday, I tell my children their birth story. We talk about where I was, what was happening, how I felt. They have a good sense of what a womb is: A place that gives life. A place of deep connection. A place of safety and nurturing. A place that when you are ready, you emerge out of with celebration and joy (and real pain – I don’t sugar coat it.)

When I see marriages crumbling around me, when I feel so tired of petty politics, when I feel the heaviness of just getting through the day, I ask Georgia Mae’s question: “But where IS He? I can’t find Him.” Like her, I expect Him to be somewhere outside, doing something “out there.”

But in the Christian worldview, God only lives “in here.” God’s dwelling place is no longer a building or that gold box from Raiders of the Lost Ark; it is you…and me…and when you get all of us together, we “rise to become a holy temple in the Lord…[who] are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” (Ephesians 2:21-22)

Jesus is no longer out there. He is in here. Do we nurture that life? Is it a place of interdependence, of safety, of deep connection for Him and for us? Is it a place that when He is ready to emerge, we let Him come out when and how He wants to and we welcome Him with joy and celebration? (and at least submit to the attendant pain?)

Whether we became a mother by birth or adoption, welcoming a child into the world is a wonderfully unpredictable event. We don’t have any idea when He will show up or who we can become when we welcome Him.

May we pray as Georgia Mae does: “Hello baby Jesus, I love you. Please come out whenever You feel like it.”

How do you experience your inner life with God? How does your inner life with God prepare you for welcoming Him into your mothering and the world around you?

  Heather Fosth is her husband’s best friend, a mother of two dynamic, wildly different children(ages 10 and 6) and a sometime spiritual director. If given the choice, she would always be in her garden.