When God Endorses Change

karen-morerodI took myself to the attic and left her there.

Maybe it was because I was tired. Or – maybe, just maybe – God told me to leave her there. I’d like to think it was about obedience. But here’s how it all went down.

I had performed dramas for churches and women’s gatherings for over ten years. Exhilaration soared when I performed. Audiences varied in size. Sometimes over 100. Other times, small, quaint women’s events.

The number of people didn’t matter. After each performance, as I walked off the stage, I thought, That’s what I was made for.  

I could slip into Esther’s royal clothes or Rahab’s PG-rated costume and assume their life stories. I wrote the scripts to help their faith message come alive in the 21st century. I felt like I knew them.

Sometimes I thought I was them – at times wondering what name I should put on my grave marker: Here lies Karen/Esther/Rahab. 

Then life got messy. My dad unexpectantly passed away. Eight months later, my beloved 96 year-old aunt that I helped care for died. Within the week, Mom’s death blindsided us.

I went from being Karen/Esther/Rahab to not knowing who I was, where I fit in, or how I could take the next step.

I was tired. Sad. Grief-stricken.

In the middle of this introspection, I had forgotten I scheduled a performance for what would be five months after we buried my mom. No problem, I thought. Surely I would be recovered by then.

Not.

Anxiety built as the performance approached. Could I speak in front of people? Would I remember my lines? Could I be a believable character with everything I had just gone through?

I had made the commitment, so I started praying. I prayed through the fear. I prayed about my attitude of simply not wanting to do it.

In my car one day, it seemed as if God whispered, “It’s okay to quit. You don’t have to keep doing this.”

Maybe it was God’s sense of humor adding, “It’s time to let younger women tote around scenery, cake on layers of make-up and dress up like somebody else.

My heart shouted, “REALLY? I don’t have to keep doing this?

It seemed strange to want to release something I was made for. But, after more praying, I knew this season was over.

The last performance was well received by a warm, friendly group of women. I fought a few tears as I left the stage, but I knew this was right. And it felt good.

A few days later, I gathered all my props, costumes, and scripts. I boxed them up and took myself to the attic and left her there. Another season finale.

Changing seasons can be hard, although sometimes they are met with excitement. Either way, I know God endorses change.

He will help me – and you – through those changes. He will love on us, calm our fears, and even show us what’s on the next season’s schedule.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1

©2016 Karen Morerod 

Karen Morerod lives and writes to encourage others, to point them to the One who knows and loves them more than they can imagine. You can find her on her front porch, with her family, or sneaking chocolate at www.karenmorerod.com and on Facebook.

 

 

 

 

How to Interpret the Proverbs 31 Woman

All women need hope

She is held up as the perfect standard for women everywhere – this incredible female who keeps her family together, works outside the home, keeps her husband happy and is respected by the entire community.

Many of us stressed-out ladies tend to avoid studying Proverbs 31. We know we can’t measure up to this biblical powerhouse and we don’t want to.

But maybe we’ve believed a lie.

Maybe King Lemuel, the writer of this proverb, didn’t intend for us to think we have to be this kind of woman every day for the rest of our lives.

And if good old Lem wrote this proverb as a quote from his mother – which is the indication in scripture – then maybe she’s making an important point.

She’s actually telling Lemuel to be careful about the relationships he builds with women and to look for a woman of noble character.

Then she lists some of the qualities of that woman – not telling us we all have to be this type of woman all the time. In fact, during different seasons of life, our focus may be on the family and the husband – but in another season – we’ll focus on the workplace or a type of ministry.

Surely Lemuel’s mother understood how we women need to set boundaries around our hearts and our lives so that no one takes us for granted and we don’t find ourselves stressed out emotionally, physically or spiritually.

What if Lemuel’s mother told him the following:

“Listen, son – pay attention to the women you’re dating. A woman of noble character is worth more than any amount of money.

“Look for a woman who knows what she’s good at and uses her talents and gifts well.

“Find a woman who either likes to cook or knows how to buy healthy pre-packaged stuff.

“A woman who can budget money well is valuable. She’ll help with the household monies and she might even buy herself some land.

“Hopefully, she’ll be a woman in good health, but if not – then be sure you help her out and you treat her with compassion.

“Support her gifts. If she likes to sew, buy her the best sewing machine. If she likes to knit or crochet, make sure she has the best yarns. If she likes clothes, give her a gift card to Saffee’s.

“A noble woman will research ways to be a better parent and wife, but she’ll also take care of herself. She’ll make sure she has friendships outside the home. Coffee with girlfriends is important.

“Listen when she talks, because women of character speak with wisdom.

“If she wants to work outside the home and even if she is gifted to be a leader – then let her do that. God has created her to use her gifts, so support her in them.

“Treat her with honor, cherish her all your life and be faithful to her. She’s obviously a fabulous woman.”

Maybe Lemuel’s mother was trying to make the point that women can do a variety of things, but WHO they are is most important.

So let’s not draw a box around ourselves and think we have to be superwomen or that we need to follow this Proverbs 31 woman to the land of stress.

Use the gifts you have and the time you have for whatever season you’re in right now.

For a humorous take on the Proverbs 32 man, check out this Facebook post by James Watkins:

https://www.facebook.com/ipastor52?fref=nf&pnref=story.

©2016 GateWay of Hope – Hope, Healing and Wholeness for Women