Because the car I drive has alloy wheels, I learned how to put air in tires when I got it. Sad, but true. Before that my husband always took the car when the light came on because I didn't feel a need to learn until I was forced to. Last week with the unbelievably frigid temperatures which affect tire pressure anyway, I found myself needing to get them resealed immediately because they were going way down. The worst day, one of them reached 15. Needless to say, I drove to my husband's job, switched cars, took the kids to school, drove back, took my car to the tire place, walked by down the hill to his car, and kept it until my car was done.
All of this sounds okay except that when I got in my husband's car while trying to take the kids to school, it was practically on E, I had errands to run, wanted to be someplace by 9:15, it was already going on 8:00, and now I needed to add a trip to the gas station in blistering winds with a real feel of about 0℉. Happy I was not. Needless to say with one kid beside me and the other kid behind me, it was a quiet drive to school. My mood was obvious and no one said a word. Until we got to the sidewalk to drop-off.
Upon exiting the car, both kids said I love you, and the oldest one reminded me that it was going to be okay. My heart crashed. Wisdom from a 14 year-old that is typically screaming at a tv over a video game death or loss of supplies. Won't lie....it was pretty humbling.
Once both kids began walking into school I immediately began praying. Probably should have done that once I read the gas gauge, but I didn't because I was too stuck in my own head. I continued on my way and was thinking of how I might need to rearrange a few things for my morning. But once I ran my two errands and got home before needing to head back out again, I stopped. I opened the book I planned to read, and gained just a bit of perspective. Why? Because I knew I needed to take the time to breathe.
When I picked my word for the year, I had no idea that within a day that it would be made evident that it was clearly assigned (so much for me thinking I had any part in it) and within three days I had been presented with an unexpected opportunity to apply the reason why I picked it. I knew I needed to slow down, I knew I needed to gain God's perspective more often, and I knew that if I didn't do this, I would continue to run around with my hair on fire all the time. And while I am not well versed in fire safety beyond stop, drop, and roll, I do know that running around, fueling fire with oxygen, will only make it grow more wild and uncontrollable.
The day that all of this happened, I read my planned reading from Nourish by Katie Farrell. These were my takeaways either from what she directly wrote or what God showed me through her story.
* Scarcity mentality leads to fear, leads to anxiety, leads to a false sense of control, leads to death
* Only God can exchange your fears and need of control for freedom, balance, and joy
Not a coincidence at all.
If I am learning anything at all, it's that breathing is more essential to our living than any of us realize, and I don't mean what our lungs do to oxygenate our blood, brain, and heart.
Proverbs 4:20-22 reads:
My son, pay attention to my words;
listen closely to my sayings.
Don't lose sight of them;
keep them within your heart.
For they are life to those who find them,
and health to one's whole body.
God's living, breathing, active word, whether in His book or the book of another written to tell of His faithfulness, can breathe life into our dry bones faster than a piece of pick me up chocolate or temper tantrum to manipulate our circumstances ever will. Am I proud of the way I acted? No. Am I happy all of it happened? Without a doubt. I learned some pretty valuable lessons that morning. Ones I am truly praying settle deep into my heart.
I don't know what everyone's scarcity mentality looks like. But I do know that whatever we think we don't have enough of, God has in abundant supply. Our responsibility is to seek Him and ask Him for it. He gives generously because He loves us and knows that it's in moments like these that our faith is built. Why? Because if He meets our need once, we start to believe and trust He will meet it again.
If you haven't picked a word yet for this year, it's not too late. The year is only 7 days old because today isn't over. And who knows, perhaps the one word you've been mulling around was placed there by the hand of God Himself just like He did for me. And wouldn't it be exciting to come to December 31st together and recount all that God did to show us about ourselves and Him through one tiny little word.