“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is~his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2NIV


Christmas has come and gone. The lights are still twinkling. I’m not quite ready to put away the manger set. I still go by and gaze longingly at the scene, remembering Mary’s heart. A heart that treasured up and pondered all that had happened. Wishing, praying for a heart like hers.

It’s the space, the quiet space, in between the celebrating and the time of new beginnings where I began to ponder and reflect on all that I have experienced this past year.

I’ve never been good at New Year’s Resolutions, but last year I jumped on the trend of picking a word for the year.

My word for 2014~teachable. I prayed for a teachable heart.

This past year, I have been blessed to spend time reading, studying, learning God’s Word. When I picked teachable, that’s what I had in mind. To learn. To be a student. To become more educated. More learned.

To learn more Scripture. Experience a closer intimacy with Him.

My picture of teachable was a little different from God’s.

I didn’t realize He was going to call me to be teachable in the places where I struggle most. To trust in the places where I don’t know the answers, or the outcome. To walk with faith in the silence. The silence of not knowing. To love even when I have been deeply hurt. To unfurl, unclench my hands and my heart of control.

Not easy places to go. Certainly not what I had in mind. I intended to end 2014 with 24 memory verses tucked into my heart, countless meaningful quotes from all the books I have read, to be more “scholarly”. Not realizing I needed a lesson in humility. A better acceptance of my limitations. A few less “spiritual temper tantrums”.

Needless to say I’m a bit “eggy” (a made up word from one of my favorite pre-school moments) about picking a word for 2015.

I’ve prayed over the word. Nothing yet.

I ponder the word~peace.

My favorite book of 2014 was Kara Tippitt’s book The Hardest Peace. She published what was most likely her last blog yesterday on her website Mundane Faithfulness. Kara’s story is full of Grace and Peace as she slowly releases her life bit by bit to a cancer that is ravishing her body.

“I listened to my husband make the impossible phone call this morning. He called Hospice. He told them that his young wife was dying, but they already knew. My kind-faced oncologist had called and told them. They were gentle and gave us a time they would be here to meet with us. The call you never expect when you are still getting your footing on living and loving and confidence in faith and who you are. But our hands have been pulled wide of our story, and peace enters. Jason walks into the room and said~I did one thing I needed to do today. Needed to but never wanted to~he called Hospice because I am dying.” From the post By Degrees~Living and Dying at Mundane Faithfulness

I’m not sure I can live a peace like that. I already struggle in the hard edges of my life. I like plans, and notes, and lists. And I like to know the answer. And I don’t like uncertainties.

But this I know, uncertainties, unanswered questions, send me running to Him. Into His arms, onto His lap. Snuggled up to His heart that beats for mine.

“He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17 NIV

And I look up and know He is there.

I still don’t have a word for 2015. The clock is ticking. I’m thinking want. Want because I want to want God more than I want the very air that I breath. Want Him as my Everything. More than the answers. More than the lists. More than the blessings, the answered prayers, and the control I hold so tightly in my hands.

Want less of me and more of Him.

Graced by God

Tammy Mashburn