Today’s reading: Proverbs 3; Luke 5:1-11
Today’s focal verse: Proverbs 3:6
Today’s focus: Following God’s Will
Today, Beth Farely shares her walk with God–how He called her to make some drastic changes, and the challenges she faced to do so. Yesterday’s focal verse reminded us to trust and lean not on our own understanding. Let’s face it; our human understanding is limited and quite often, gets in our way. Don’t let your lack of understanding keep you from following whole heartedly after God.
Beth Ann Farley is a dear friend of mine and one of our Yahoo Bible Study group members. She is married with three grown children. She lives in Kansas City, MO where she serves as librarian. She loves to read, write, decorate and spend as much time as possible outside with her Peek-A-Poo. Beth is a lover of the Lord. “He is my-everything and I can’t start a day without visiting with Him.” Beth came to know the Lord when she was 30 years old and has served Him on committee’s such as Missions Outreach, Local Missions, Diaconate Committee, Youth Committee, and was a church secretary for several years. Beth loves Women’s Bible Studies, has hosted several in each one of her homes that she has lived in and has led a few as well. Beth is now taking time in life to move forward with her writing in whatever way God directs her.
Visit her online at: http://firsthalfday1.wordpress.com/
Following in God’s Footsteps by Beth Farley
Oh Lord, I’m on fire this morning! I woke up early with such desire to get my coffee, climb into my rocking chair and re-read Proverbs 3. I am now stuck on verse 6. May I share my thoughts with you please?
In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight…NIV
Seek his will in all you do and he will direct your path. NLT
2012 brought many challenges and changes to my life. In January I started a major house renovation due to my bathrooms being riddled with black mold. This black mold was causing some health issues, so it had to be done. However, it caused a renovation domino effect with the rest of the house. I ended up replacing all of the carpet throughout the house with non-allergenic carpet and re-painted the bedrooms and kitchen. The house looked beautiful with its new face lift however it didn’t heal the health issues. I continued to get sinus infection after sinus infection.
In April I re-married and had family I hadn’t seen in eight years come to my home. I was excited but also so nervous. They were meeting my husband and his family for the first time. Although this was a special time in my life, it was also stressful and at this time, my legs began swelling. I thought it was stress and the summer heat approaching.In May, my health deteriorated, and by my 50th birthday, it felt like my whole body was shutting down, organ by organ. During this time I was diagnosed with Celiac disease and was put on medication. One of the side effects of the drug prescribed is sore joints. No kidding! I feel like I have arthritis all over my body and the swelling is not getting any better.
I’ve had heart tests, bone density tests, blood work after blood work and I still look like the Good Year Blimp.I was missing so much work and had three visits to the emergency room with massive headaches due to the chronic sinusitis. Each and every time I was attacked by this, my husband was out of town so my best friend would take me. I even threw up in her car; now that’s a good friend. I remember crying in the emergency room; feeling so defeated and knew I had to make some changes in my life.At that point, which was in August, I began to dig back into the Word and read Proverbs 3:5 & 6 and asked God for His direction. I knew that I couldn’t keep on this path.
I had to either quit my job or ask for the opportunity to drop my hours to half time and keep my benefits. Every day I sat at His feet crying, praying and surrendering to His will. Finally in November, I felt God was calling me to work part time and write for Him. I nervously approached my boss pleading my case, and by December I went on the pay roll as a half time librarian. I didn’t lose my benefits however, in working half time, they are no longer free. I have to pay for my benefits, and of course, my salary is cut in half as well. I didn’t step onto this path without His direction. To this day I have no idea how we are going to make it financially, and I don’t know how I am going to get my writing off to a financial start.
Since working part time, my medical tests have all come back good. I do not have the sinus headaches, the bad allergies and although my swelling is still bad, we are working on it. It is much more manageable not being on my feet all day, every day. I have no doubt in my mind I am on His path and that He is the Director of my steps. All of this has led to my blog www.firsthalfday1.wordpress.com. Follow along if you would like. I am keeping track of my faith, my failures, and triumphs. Yesterday I actually figured out how to post a picture to my blog. Hey there’s progress going on here. Are you clapping for me?
Let me close with this: Matthew 6:33 NLT: Back up to the end of verse 32: Your heavenly Father already knows all of our needs, and he will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern. It’s not about the money. It’s not about the recognition. It’s about doing what he is calling me to do. Yes, I would love to earn some money with my writing. Who wouldn’t, but if I remain in Him, He will reveal himself faithful and unchanging. He will have me follow in his footsteps.Only one question to be asked here…whose footsteps are you following?
Today, if it’s not too cold, I encourage you to take a prayer walk, or, more accurately, to take a leisurely stroll with your Savior. If it is too cold or if you are unable to go for a walk, find a quiet place where you can quiet your heart and really connect with God. Ask Him if you are following whole-heartedly after Him and whatever He is calling you to do. Ask Him if there is anything getting in His way, then ask Him to remove those things from your heart/mind/schedule. Ask Him to make His way clear and to give you the desire, perseverance, strength, and courage to follow whole-heartedly after Him.
What a touching witness, Beth, and welcome to the ups and downs of the writing life! The good thing is that when writing is so vital to who you are and who you are to be, one up cancels out a multitude of downs! You’re doing it the right way, too, by “following in his footsteps.” I know that isn’t always easy when you’re in the middle of trials and tribulations–health or otherwise–but that seems to be what we need to test AND strengthen our faith! May the Lord continue to strengthen your faith–and your body–so that you may do what He wants you to do.
Thank you Sylvia for your encouraging words. It lifted me up:)
Will check out your blog, Beth. So sorry you’ve had so many health struggles. Obeying God is always worth it, though. Love those verses you chose for this post! God bless you as you follow His leading!
Thank you Heather. I really appreciate it. Wow Christina, would you share a littlem ore about GF on my blog? I would love to hear from you and what you went through. It’s so new to me and again, don’t know if it’s Celiac, MS or Lupus or any other AI disease. Thank you.
I would be honored to, Beth.
Beth, being obedient to his calling and trusting in his timing has been the byline for my life for the last several months. Those are the most important factors in my first sale, and I know any from here on out.
By the way, there is no way I can have gluten, it’s a poison to my body. I’ve been gluten free since 2008.
Your journey has been a baffling and painful one. You have given me inspiration by reading about your faith and Proverbs. May this year bring peace to your home.
Thank you Cleo; btw, I love that name. All I am is from Him. If I have inspired you, I give God the glory. I am just trying to follow in His steps. Blessings for a good week.
I love to hear you’re stepping out in faith because you’re so right, God will provide when we follow after Him.
May God bless you in the adventure He has you on! =)
Thanks Tanya. I really appreciate it. I have to cling to it daily.
Welcome to the writing world, girl! 🙂
In 2004, at the age of 46, I began writing. And like you, I decided to go where God led me.
Soon after, all you-know-what broke loose against me. (Actually, it started before 2004, but the hurdles just kept getting bigger.)
Anyway, I’ve come to find that those who have the biggest purpose must often fight the biggest battles.
Remember, greater is He that’s within you, than he that is in the world. That you can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens you.
I pray that God guide someone to get to the bottom of this for you. Above all, I pray that God heal you, in Jesus’ name.
Your blog is such an encouragement. Everything is affected when you are struggling with health concerns. Keep writing with that fire in your belly (and do that follow up indoor air testing!)
Thanks. I am not sure what indoor air testing thing your are talking about though. I have totally gutted two bathrooms and taken out all of the black mold. 🙂
Nice blog post. Boy, have you been through it. Your attitude is uplifting and inspirational for what you are dealing with. Continue your faithful call to your writing ministry and God will bless it as you sharpen your skills.