About Me

Van Walton

Fun Facts about Van Walton

My favorite smell: The way the earth smells after it rains.

My favorite sound: The first notes of a grand symphony.

My favorite way to relax: Sitting anywhere outside - on my front porch, on my deck, or by the lake, early in the morning with my first cup of coffee.

My favorite birthday dessert: a Peach cobbler baked by my husband. He’s my fave chef!

I will not eat: Avocado. They turn my stomach into a volcano that never erupts.

Technology I couldn't live without and why: My laptop - it takes me anywhere I want to go.

One thing that makes me smile: My sons' faces!

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My book, From the Pound to the Palace, is available for $10
from Proverbs 31 Ministries.


Pound to Palace


My book, Little Halos, is available for $5.99 from Proverbs
31 Ministries.


Little Halos


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Monday, February 2, 2009

MOVIN' ON AFTER MOVIN' IN MONDAYS


GIVING UP OUR DREAMS

I never bore reading the Bible. There are too many angles from which to view it. On Mondays I enjoy studying the moves that took place in scripture. Right now I am following the women, from Eve to who knows who, who’ve been instructed by God to move.

If you have been on this journey with me you know we began our travels with Eve, floated around the top of the world with Mrs. Noah, left Ur with Sarah, crossed the dessert with the women in Moses’ family- his wife, sister, and mother. We welcomed the foreigners into Jericho with Rahab, moved into Bethlehem with Ruth and Naomi, and most recently followed Esther as she prepared for her move into the King’s palace. Lots of movin’ goin’ on in the Bible, don’t you agree?

Although the story of Esther is found in the first half of the Old Testament, she actually lived during the later days of the Old Testament. After the captives returned to Jerusalem and began its reconstruction very little else is said about the history of the Jews. In reality God became silent and didn’t speak again to his people until Jesus, the promised prince of peace arrived on the scene.

The next woman mentioned in the course of history after Esther is Mary!

Mary moved emotionally, spiritually and physically. I am going to take the next three weeks to consider Mary’s moves and what they teach the contemporary corporate pilgrim – you and me.

This is how I imagine her first move. It was an emotional one.

I’m not sure where Mary was when the angel visited her. Being a garden kind of girl, I like to visualize Mary in her garden or possibly in the orchard walking among the trees gathering almonds, oranges, or olives. Suddenly out of nowhere she hears, “Greetings.” Seeing no one she becomes a bit fearful. I would!

“Don’t be afraid,” the angel comforts her.

Then he proceeds to tell her the news.

I think she sat down.

What on earth went through her mind? How long did she stay in that one position before she accepted the reality of her condition?

I can’t even begin to imagine the emotions that cruised through her mind, heart, and body. Did her hands tremble? Did she try to sake it off? Was there any denial in her thoughts? Did she cry when she realized there would be no wedding? Think about it – every girl dreams of her wedding day. Now Mary would have to give up all her plans for that one day of her life when, her bridegroom would capture her heart, steal her away, and in a glorious and joyful procession and feast take her to the life of happily ever after.

She was being asked to give up her dreams!

Some girls would have experienced anger at this turn of events.

Not Mary.

It seems she was pretty calm about the whole encounter. She responded,

“I am the servant girl of the Lord. Let this happen to me as you say.”

She submitted to God’s moving in her life.

WOW!

I am not submissive. Emotionally I would have fallen apart.

I kinda’ sorta’ relate to Mary’s situation. I said kinda’ sorta’. OK?

My husband, when I am least suspecting it, shows up – maybe early from work. He says,

“How’s it going?”

“OK?” I respond, a bit nervous, sensing change in the air.

“Uh. UMMMMMMM. You know, I told you the company is in the midst of reorganizing…”

I don’t want to hear this. I am afraid. I am confused. I am in denial. Yet the news comes fast:

“My boss called me into his office today and, well, uh, we have been transferred.”

Do you think I said, “I am my lord’s servant. Do with me as you like?”

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I’m happy right now. I am content with my life just as it is.

My husband tries to be an angel. He knows I need his encouragement and support. He says,

“Don’t be afraid. God has ordained this. It will be a great adventure and we will gain so much from this experience together.”

Yeah, right.

You see I am no Mary, no mam, not sweet, kind, or submissive.

Looking back on my moves, I wish I had been more compliant, more thoughtful, more trusting of God.

I wonder what He could have accomplished in my life, had I settled into his plan instead of moving kicking all the way.

Oh well. That was then. Today is a new day.

Even though I didn’t much cooperate, God still taught me so much. He was faithful and gentle.

Today, as I look back on 13 moves, I see how necessary each relocation was.

I’m more emotionally secure and mature. I’ve come to realize that God was not taking anything away from me; He was adding to my life’s story.

And as my dear husband reminds me each time we move,

“Which place along the way would you want to remove from your list of life’s experiences and adventures?”

None!

Mary knew her God. She knew if his plan was to move her out of her emotional comfort zone, His ways were better. She joined Him in the journey and today everyone calls her blessed.

Have you been called to exchange your dreams for God’s? Are you doing Ok with the great gift exchange? Maybe you could share some insight witthe rest of us who are headed toward God's promised
land.

9 comments:

Deanna said...

I love it! I love your post so much! I totally can relate. Your post reminded of the poem I wrote the other the day at my blog, about 'change'.

I love Jeus more than anything! And I want a heart's attitude like Mary's- “I am the servant girl of the Lord. Let this happen to me as you say.”

Thank you for the encouragement today, thank you for being real! It was so neat to see how you were able to weave your husband's response into the form of the angel's encouragement. Beautiful writing :O)

I've added you to the blogs I 'follow', I'd love to stay in tune as you follow along with the women of the Bible.

Right now, I've been focused on the book of Psalms as I study the word "heart", and also been looking over the Lord's prayers in John chapter 17.

Blessings to you, Deanna

LisaShaw said...

Hello Van,

Deanna from Inside Deanna's Diary stopped by one of my blogs this morning and read "Be it unto me according to thy word" and asked me to come over and visit you indicating the Lord had placed something on your heart on this subject.

So I came, visited and read and was very encouraged in what you wrote. I'm glad Deanna suggested my visit. I look forward to returning.

God bless you.

Laura said...

"Then he proceeds to tell her the news.
I think she sat down."

This made me smile, Van. Fell down, maybe? :)

In the past couple years, God has asked me to put my dreams aside so He can tend to my husband.

Now mind you, I've prayed for this for over thirteen years, right?

But I never knew what sacrifice would be required.

It has been hard on me, but so worth the struggle. This journey is still in it's infant stages and God has done amazing work in my marriage through it.

Your post has made me reflect on all the changes we have been through, and I'm not ashamed to tell you there are tears in my eyes.

Thank you, Van, for reminding me how far we've come, and how God has answered my prayers beyond anything I could ever ask or imagine.

Love you,
laura

Gail W. said...

"I've come to realize that God was not taking anything away from me; He was adding to my life's story."

Oh, for the grace to always look at it that way! We are making progress though - at least it is not always just in retrospect that I can appreciate what God is doing. Thanks for sharing this today.

~*~KIMBERLY~*~ said...

Well, mine is quite a long story. I won't go into it here.

However, I will say this: I came from a life of abuse. 35 yrs of it to be exact. I realized God's purpose for me was not to be in a life of abuse. I made a radical move and started my life over. For the past 11 yrs I've been building a new life with my new husband. In fact, 2/13 we'll celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. Now, don't get me wrong, I've not had a bed of roses in this marriage. I decided to do "The Love Dare" (from Fireproof, the movie) on my current husband. God's got His work cut out with us.

Van, thank you for visiting & commenting on my blog. I will put your blog in my google reader and revisit.

Praise God!

John Cowart said...

Hi Van,
Thanks for your comment on my Super Bowl ad.

Concerning moving: I think the outstanding Christmas miracle is the flight into Egypt. An angel told Joseph (not Mary this time)that they had to move to Egypt. He woke her in the middle of the night and that same night, they moved.

As the father of six kids (all grown and gone now, thank God) I remember packing bottles, diapers, portacrib, bouncy chair, teddy bear, blankie, changes of clothes, and a whole boxcar full of stuff--and that was just for a trip to Grandma's house.

Amazing that Joseph and Mary would pack up and leave that same night. That's a real miracle.

Here in Florida, hurricane territory, Ginny and I train in urban rescue. Like all prudent people we keep a Grab&Go bag right by our front door. It contains important papers, energency rations, prescription medicines, change of clothes, and life essentials like my pipe, matches and tobacco. We think we could evacuate with five minutes notice.

I hope we never have to move ever again in our lives, but if the Lord sees fit to call us elsewhere, I hope we could respond without too much fuss.

Sorry to ramble on like this in a first comment, but your post made me think.

Thanks,
John

Julie Coleman said...

When I graduated from college, all I wanted to do was move back home. My plans were clear-cut and simple: find a teaching job within an hour of my parents' Connecticut home and move back into my old room and bed.

Unfortunately for my plans, it was 1979. Teaching jobs were few and far between, especially in the public school arena. While I did everything in my power to land a job, including camping out in superintendents' offices, sending out over 120 resumes, and sending thank you notes to pricipals' secretaries, at the end of the summer, I was still without a position.

Two weeks after the school year began, I got a call from a Christian school in Maryland. I went down, interviewed, and took the position. Back home, as I packed my bags to move down for the year, regretfully preparing to leave the home I had so longed for during my college years, my mom sat on my bed, dejected. "I am so worried that you will meet someone down there in Maryland and live there forever."

"Don't worry," I confidently assured her. "If there is one thing I know for absolutely certain, it is that I will be in Maryland for only one year. After that, I am home for good."

Ten months later I married my husband, Steve, whom I began to date as soon as I arrived in Maryland. I've now been here almost 30 years.

Would I go back to the original plan if I had a choice? Absolutely not. Steve and I have had a wonderful, fulfilling 29 years together thus far. We were given four terrific kids and a great life together. I wouldn't trade it for a thing.

I'm more than glad that God moved me from Connecticut. It was worth it. Even when our plans look good, we can trust God to come up with the best option.

Loved this blog.

John Cowart said...

My previous comment lost sight of your question about dreams.

Let me try again.

I've only been a Christian for 50 years. I've never given up anything for Jesus; it's all been gain.

Anonymous said...

I think that I have to, at times, take my-self into another room and hash thing out. Not only with me, but with God too.

I side with God of course, but the self is always whining about what IT wants.

I have to keep reminding self that this is not about ME. This is God's Epic story and we have been invited to play a part or not.

Once 'self' gets the idea that this play out in no other way..it concedes and dies.

Poor God. Sometimes I want to buy Him a box of cotton for His ears! LOL..

When we come out of the 'room', ususally the heart and attitude are in the right place and we are ready to move on with God.

Blessings,
Janet