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Posts Tagged ‘serving God’

 

Life has been at a slower pace since my car broke down in October. I have had time to reflect on what I want to do and more importantly, what God wants me to do. There are times in our lives when we are so sure that God is leading us one way, only to find out we have misread the directions. We have good intentions to obey, but we simply get our wires crossed and head in the wrong direction. We are human. We make well-intentioned mistakes and the Holy Spirit has to re-direct us.

I felt a call to full-time ministry when I was 20. I wanted to be a nun. I was not Catholic. I never became Catholic. I moved to Indiana when I was 22 and I met my now ex-husband a few days after I arrived. I took a path and it led me to divorce and to becoming a single mom of 5 awesome kids. Do I regret that path? Not at all. I have struggled, but the Holy Spirit has discipled me in that time. I have grown closer to my Lord and Savior in that time. It was during that time that God pulled me back to my original calling.

I was divorced in 2000. It was in 2006 when God started to pull me back to Him. The Holy Spirit really transformed my heart in that time. In 2010 I read an article in a Christian magazine about Shane Claiborne and New Monasticism. I was so excited! I read and re-read the article. I started to look up intentional communities. I felt a flicker of that call that had been dormant for almost 20 years. I found so many Christian communities that were based on the church of Acts. I researched in those first couple of years and found Koinonia Farm. I reviewed their website over and over and sent my first email to them in September of 2014. Nothing happened, but I continued to feel called to living in Christian community as the first Christians did and I emailed the executive director of Koinonia Farm in September of 2016. We exchanged a handful of emails at that time and started the conversation about my joining the community. There were logistics that were challenging and things I may not have been ready to let go at that time. Fast forward to The Spring of 2018. Kiowa was supposed to get stationed in Northern California in April of 2018, but was stationed instead in Southern Georgia (1 hour and 45 minutes from Koinonia Farm!) She invited me to move from Indiana to live with her and so I moved in this past May. In the back of my mind I think I was aware that Koinonia was within driving distance now, but I wasn’t fully conscience of it. Maybe I wasn’t ready yet. When my car broke down and I felt completely helpless, I started praying for God to tell me what to do. I started seeing posts from Koinonia Farm on my Facebook feed. I started getting emails from their online store. Not unusual since they were going into their busiest time of the year, the Holiday season. But, I really became aware of how close they were now and I was strangely aware that there was no reason why I couldn’t make this happen now. I own very little. My personal expenses are few. My kids are grown and have lives of their own. I nervously emailed the executive director, who remembered me and was willing to continue our conversation. I am now registered to do an internship at Koinonia Farm from February to May as the next step in our conversation to joining the community. I have been called to community for 29 years. I took a detour, but God is fulfilling that call as I approach 50 years old. I may not have been ready before to give up everything and put Jesus first, but I am ready now. I have written that I can’t do any more secular jobs. My heart is in community, serving God and serving others. I am a modern day Anna;

Luke 2:36-38

36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

I am amazed at how God strings events and circumstances together so bring about His will and our purpose. It may take years for that purpose to be realized, but God is working behind the scenes to accomplish what He set out to do. Never give up hope! Keep growing in God and keep preparing yourself for the fulfillment of that God-given purpose. It will happen. It may take 29 years, but it will happen in just the right time.

 

 

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saint elizabeth of hungary

Saint Elizabeth of Hungary (1207-1231) was born into royalty. She was engaged at the age of 4 to the eldest son of Landgrave Hermann I of Thuringia. She was moved into the castle at Thuringia at a very young age to be raised with her betrothed. Elizabeth grew into a young woman of strong religious beliefs and often suffered the hostility of those who felt judged of their own sinful natures.

In 1216, Elizabeth’s betrothed died and she was immediately betrothed to the Landgraves other son, Ludwig. In 1221, Elizabeth and Ludwig were married. He was 21 and she was only 14. Ludwig was always a loving husband and protected Elizabeth, giving her the religious freedom she needed to worship and perform acts of charity.

At the age of 19, Elizabeth built a hospital below the castle. She was always about the business of caring for the poor and lost.

In 1227, Elizabeth received the news that Ludwig had died from disease while away on a crusade. She had just given birth to their third child. Elizabeth turned fully to God and made a vow of chastity. In 1228, she took the vows of a nun of the Third Order of Saint Francis.

Elizabeth was under the supervision of a spiritual director who was harsh and often disciplined her in harsh ways. He beat her and ordered her children sent away.

I can only imagine her heartache at having her children sent away from her. She made arrangements for her children, renounced the world and lived the rest of her short life caring for the sick and poor in the hospital that she had built. She was only 24 when she died.

Although, Saint Elizabeth did not raise her children after the death of Ludwig, she was a single mom and loved her children dearly. Would she have given up her children on her own? I would say no. We have to remember that she was a young woman, alone in a tough world. Not unlike what many of us, as single moms, live through now.

Her children grew up to be leaders in their own right. I am sure that had to do with her own character. If you have suffered in your role as a single mom, know that you are not alone. There are single moms throughout history who’s lives have been recorded to encourage you on your single mom journey. There are also, many, many single moms walking the same path that you are on. You are not alone!

If you need someone to talk to, contact me. You are not alone, single mom!

My information for this portrait has come primarily from http://www.stelizabeth.webhero.com/index.html. There are many different websites that give information about this wonderful woman. Some websites differ in some of their information. I encourage you to do your own research.

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