Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Spring

All around us spring is awakening in all of its beauty . . . day by day things are changing so much and I am loving every moment of it! From green and growing grass, to the trees that are leafing out, to the flowering trees that are covered in blossoms, to the delicious scent of the blooming lilac bush, to hearing the spring birds singing their cheerful songs, and so much more.


Simply standing outdoors watching the clouds drift in the blue sky, seeing the wind blow through the green grass, watching the hens enjoying the new plant growth and bug life, breathing in the scent of the fresh, flower-scented spring air . . . it is all so very pleasant! How I love this time of year! And this year it seems that I am appreciating it even more so than in years past. (If that can be possible! :)



I remember at the beginning of this year my Dad saying something along the lines of "I hope that 2011 will be a calm, uneventful, relaxing year." :) Instead, though, the past three months have been some of the hardest that we have ever walked through as a family . . . there have been many different trials one after another, many seasons of difficulty (and much more than what has been shared on my blog.)


So yes, it has been a difficult, and very full, past three months, yet God has been so good and so very faithful. It brings tears to my eyes as I type to look back and see His loving hand through it all . . . and perhaps that is why this spring has meant so much. New life, new joys, new hopes, new promises . . . and new growth. Already I can see in my own life how the Lord has used these various situations to work in my own heart, to continue with the refining and pruning process. How thankful I am for that!


And how wonderful it is to rest fully in His promises knowing that He is a loving Father, that He cares, that He will not send us more than we can bear, and that no matter what circumstances we are in, that it will be worked for good. How very good He is to us!!


And while there have been many trials, the Lord has also sent many blessings as well. One of these blessings Leah and I were able to enjoy this past weekend and that was spending some time with two sweet young ladies who were here in Missouri for awhile. We had such a wonderful morning together this past Saturday sharing our
hearts, encouraging one another, talking about different ministry ideas, what the Lord has been teaching us and so much more.


What a blessing it was to spend this time with dear sisters in the Lord!

22 comments:

  1. Sarah,

    Your posts are always so encouraging to me, and I am so grateful for them and you!
    It looks as though you are being blessed with some lovely flowers this Spring. Your photographs are delightful, dear friend!
    Although we all face challenging trials in our lives, the Lord's love for us never ceases. He IS always faithful, and I am so thankful!
    What a wonderful time of fellowship you must've had with the two young ladies who came to visit!

    Many Blessings,
    Jenna

    P.S. Thank you so very much for the sweet comments you have left on my blog. They truly brighten my day!

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  2. I can certainly relate to your father's expressed wish...and to the subsequent surprise when seemingly the opposite occurs. We had no idea we would begin our "quiet, uneventful" year with a house flood that would throw all of our plans into complete upheaval for the next 3 months.

    But as you say, it is so restful to know that God is in sovereign control of all things. Nothing takes Him by surprise, and He never abandons us in the midst of trials. Rather, He allows them to accomplish His sovereign purposes, and He walks alongside us, giving us strength and comfort and so much more! One way He ministers to us in our hour of need is through friends who can uphold and encourage us. So glad you were able to enjoy that blessing from Him!

    I will be praying that some of the unshared trials in your life will accomplish their purpose in your heart and in your ministry to others!

    ~ Betsy

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  3. Spring truly is a wonderful, restorative time of year. It is a time full of hope with all the new life blossoming out around us. I am truly sorry and very concerned that your family continues to face additional trials. I pray very earnestly that God will see you through these difficulties to His glory and bless your family with the best possible resolution to each difficulty.

    What a great blessing that you were able to visit with like-minded sisters in Christ! That is always such a very great blessing and source of encouragement.

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  4. God's faithfulness is new every morning--and every season.

    (Coincidence: my sister-in-law has the same pink plaid shirt as one of your friends)

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  5. How wonderful that we have a God who does look after our needs, who sees what we need before we even think of it. How wonderful too that He will always bear us up in times of trial.
    I'm so sorry that you have been facing such bad times, Sarah, and continue to pray for you.

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  6. I'm glad God is with you. He is amazing and good. Hope you enjoy the good weather. Dorinda

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  7. Hi Sarah,
    Beautiful photos! It is so nice that you got to spend time with some dear friends and share together.
    Yes, He is always with us, even when we may not be thinking it at the moment. He is always there.
    Blessings to you,
    Anne♥

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  8. This post was such a blessing to me, Sarah! Thank you for sharing. I'm sorry that this has been such a difficult year for your family, but am very thankful that God's grace is sufficient...even in the darkest of times His grace will not fail and He will never leave nor forsake us. Though the trials are difficult they are given for our good.

    One quote that I have been encouraged by when thinking on trials is: "So surely as the stars are fashioned by His hands, and their orbits fixed by Him, so surely are our trials allotted to us: He has ordained their season and their place, their intensity and the effect they shall have upon us.”
    ~Charles H. Spurgeon

    It seems like this has been a more difficult year for our family as well--either through trials in our family or through trials that others in our church our facing (we've been blessed to have such a close church family, and when one member is facing something difficult it pains everyone...), but it has also been a good time of growing in the Lord, and seeing His grace more clearly.

    Lovely photos! Enjoy the beautiful spring, dear friend!

    Amy

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  9. Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Jenna! It was a blessing to me! And thank you also for the encouraging words . . . how wonderful it is to know that the Lord is indeed faithful no matter what trials or circumstances we may be going through. What a loving Father we have!

    Yes, we have had some lovely flowers this spring, and everything is blooming so prettily right now. It is amazing just how quickly things change from the ‘deadness’ and brownness of winter to being so alive in the springtime.

    We did have a wonderful time of fellowship with the two young ladies . . . what a special time it was!

    You’re welcome in regards to the comment left on your blog. :) And thank you again for your comment, Jenna, and may you have a blessed evening!

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  10. You all have had quite the unexpected and eventful beginning to 2011 as well, Betsy! I am so glad that you are nearing the end of this experience and will be able to get back to ‘normal life’ again.

    Thank you so much for your words of encouragement and for your prayers! They mean so much. Knowing that the Lord is holding us in His hands, that He will never leave nor forsake us, that He will continue to guide and direct . . . how thankful I am for all of this and also for the comfort and strength that He provides.

    Thank you again, Betsy!

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  11. Your great care and concern mean so much, Miss Linda! Thank you so much for your comment! While we have had quite a lot to walk through lately, the Lord has been seeing us through. He is so good and His faithfulness is so great! Thank you so much for your prayers . . . that is our prayer as well that the Lord will use these difficulties for His glory. And help us to grow more in our relationship with Him through them.

    Yes, it was a great blessing to be able to visit with these young ladies! As you shared, it was so encouraging. :)

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  12. Thank you for that beautiful reminder, Amy! How thankful I am for His great faithfulness.

    And that’s interesting that your sister has the same shirt as one of our friends! :)

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  13. I would agree wholeheartedly, Elizabeth! How thankful I am for the Lord and for His great love, care and provision for us. And thank you so much for your prayers and for your kind comment . . . it means so much to me!

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  14. Thank you for your comment, Dorinda! And yes, the Lord is indeed amazing and He is good . . . and I have been reminded of that in so many ways as we go through these circumstances.

    Yes, we are being able to enjoy the beautiful weather and are loving it. :) I hope that you have been able to as well!

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  15. Thank you, Anne! :) Yes, it was so nice to be able to spend this time with these dear friends, and it was an encouragement as well.

    Thank you also so much for the encouraging reminder about the Lord always being there with us . . . what a comfort that is!

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  16. Thank you so much for your sweet and caring comment, Amy! I very much appreciated what you shared. And I am sorry that it has been a trying year for your family as well so far. Yet as you shared, no matter what circumstances we walk through, God’s grace will not fail as it is always sufficient, and He will never leave nor forsake us. I have reminded myself of those promises over these past months and what a comfort they are. The Lord will see us through whatever He sees fit to allow us to walk through!

    I can well relate to hurting when others in your church family hurt . . . as it is the same with ours. Isn’t it a blessing to have such a close bond with one another? How wonderful it is to have that kind of unity and fellowship.

    And also as you shared, when we walk through these difficult circumstances, there can be such growth in our walks with the Lord and within our relationships with brothers and sisters in the Lord. What a blessing that is!

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  17. These are lovely photos, Sarah, and some very encouraging thoughts. It is so true that even in the midst of difficulties, the Lord is working for our good! He uses trials to bring us closer to Him.

    Like-minded friends are such a blessing! It certainly looks as though you and Leah had a lovely time with your friends last week.

    Blessings in Christ,
    Anna

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  18. Thank you, Anna! I am glad that you enjoyed seeing them and that the post was a blessing to you. :) And thank you for sharing those thoughts . . . how true they are!

    Yes indeed like-minded friends are such a blessing, and we did have a wonderful time with our friends!

    Thank you again, Anna, and may you have a blessed day!

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  19. What a blessing that you have been able to enjoy spending time with dear friends!

    I pray that the Lord continues to bless you through the rest of this year, and that you grow ever closer to Him through it all.

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  20. It was indeed a blessing, Joy!

    And thank you so much for your prayers . . . already the Lord has been using these times to grow us closer to Him, and we pray that that will continue. Thank you again!!

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  21. Oh what wonderful pictures! I too have been enjoying springtime so much this year. And we have also been through a lot as well. :o) I will be praying for you my dear. :o)

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  22. Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Nabila, and for your prayers. They mean so much! I will be praying for you as well as you go through whatever circumstances are filling your life right now.

    Thank you again!!

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Thanks so much for your comment! Each one is read and enjoyed. :)