“As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.” Song of Solomon 2:3
As a Christian woman who stays close to God, I acknowledge there are times when my own personal struggles make it a marathon to maintain good, healthy faith. There are days when I feel horribly alone, incredibly misunderstood, and easily persuaded into believing that my life is minutely important and amounts to nothing more than a quaff in the vast ocean of life!
Five-years in a foreign country that I affectionately call home now, and as I ponder the dynamics of these years, I shake my head in disbelief and could only describe my success in the Christian life as "God's grace!"
We are a one-car-family - for now! When we lived in Sydney, being a one-car-family went relatively unnoticed. Our home was within walking distance from one of the best public transport systems in the world, and a 30-minute train ride alighted you in the hub of Sydney's central business district. We were surrounded by high quality supermarkets, gold-medal-awarded-restaurants, and all the other retail stores one would frequent during their weekly routine.
Coming to America has been quite the spiritual-workout for me. We are still a one-car-family and for the past 5-years I have been significantly isolated. Apart from driving to our Wednesday evening Bible study and then again to our Sunday services, I stay at home while my husband takes the car to work.
What is IS, and by God’s grace I have learned to be content with my circumstances and to make the most of what I do have (and I am grateful for that)! If we could have arranged for me to have a car, I can guarantee you that we would be a two-car-family by now. I’m no hermit and obstacles have always presented themselves as challenges for me. If there were some way we could make it work – we would have made it work by now!
There are numerous lessons in the wilderness; pride was at the helm of my ship and God has used my aloneness to not just expose my weaknesses but to purify my life from the inside out.
It hasn’t always been easy! As a matter of fact, these five-years have been the most difficult years of my life. They have also been the sweetest years of my life; my relationship with God is sweeter, my marriage is sweeter, and being a mother could not have been sweeter. I have excelled in home-making; cooking, cleaning, and keeping a schedule, are the tireless-trio in my life. I am diligent in my daily Bible reading and praying, attentive as a wife and mother, and meticulous in home-maker and yard-work. I maintain all the outside work from mowing, to landscaping, and scrubbing siding and exterior windows - for both our home and the 88-year old lady’s home next door. In addition to my physical load, I dedicate chunks of time with our son, I read good books every day, research, write, and design.
My husband works long-extended hours both in and around Chicago. Coming home is the highlight of his day (and mine). I maintain everything and it gives me great pleasure to know I am reducing a load for my sweetie and making his life so much easier. I love to be able to have the home looking fabulous inside and out. I light a candle, put the coffee on, and have our dinner cooking for when he arrives home each afternoon. Everything looks wonderful, smells great, and sounds irresistible doesn't it? I have little time to sit at home unkept and feeling sorry for myself. Keeping a schedule is the best psychologist a woman could have. I often say, "I'm too busy to be depressed today!" It's not about me!
Our home is a haven for my husband to bask in and this makes a whole lot of sense to me!
When nothing makes sense in your life, do what makes sense – be a good Christian wife and mother!
When nothing makes sense in your life, make sure you run to God first. Allow Him to stimulate all your senses. He is the Creator of all our needs and He is also the meeter of all our needs.
As Christian women, God needs to be in the center of our lives and in control of our decision making for each area of our lives! I have no doubt that, if God were not a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path, I would have returned to Australia by now.
Our Christianity has to count for something and being isolated is exactly where God wanted me! Whatever trial you are going through – God is Creator…He knows the infinitesimal details of your situation. If you don’t know what to do – He knows exactly what to do!
When nothing makes sense in your life - have faith in the Scriptures.
As Christian women, our faith in the Scriptures pertains to all the senses.
1. It is sight
2. It is hearing
3. It is smelling
4. It is Spiritual touch
5. It is the Spirit’s taste
“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.” Isaiah 45:22
What could be simpler than to look? Not do something, but look to the Saviour. When nothing makes sense – look to the Saviour!
“Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.” Isaiah 55:3
We hear the voice of God, not with the outward ear alone, but with the inward ear. As you read God’s Word, ask Him for wisdom, understanding, and a practical knowledge of what to do and how to go about it. Be a Mrs. Sensible not Mrs. Defensible.
“All thy garments smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia, out of the ivory palaces, whereby they have made thee glad.” Psalm 45:8
How do we make God glad? By our love! Our praise too gives Him joy--not the song of the lips alone, but the melody of a heart's deep gratitude.
After my scheduled Bible time with our son each morning, I begin a ritual of sharing with him all the things I am grateful for that day. As I express my appreciation to God, Caleb begins to share the things that he is personally grateful for. By the time we finish competing with each other (and having a whole lot of enjoyment), we have a lot to be grateful for and our prayer comes with a heart full of gratitude. It’s a great way to exercise your faith and train such a precious virtue so seldom found in Christians today.
We perfume our Lord with the myrrh and aloes, and cassis, of our heart's praise?
“And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment:” Matthew 9:20
This lady's faith and her strong confidence in Jesus had been the means of her restoration. It was the power of Jesus that cured her; but that power would not have been exerted, but in connection with faith.
So is the salvation of a sinner. No one is saved who does not believe; but faith is the instrument and not the power that saves.
“How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” Psalm 119:103
Christ is food for the Christian woman’s soul. The sweetest of all temporal things falls short of the infinite deliciousness of the Eternal Word. It’s wisdom on our part to keep His Word on our palate by meditation and on our tongue by confession. It must be sweet to our taste when we think of it or it will not be sweet to our mouth when we talk of it.
When we hear the Word of God and believe it to be so – that’s the hearing of faith. Then our mind looks on the truth as it is presented to us; we understand it, we perceive its meaning – that’s the seeing of faith. Next we discover its preciousness; we begin to admire it and find out how fragrant it is – that’s the smell of faith. Then we appropriate the mercies that are prepared for us in Christ; that’s the touch of faith. The enjoyments follow – peace, delight, and communion – these are the tastes of faith.
There is no greater table than to be seated as a guest of an inward and spiritual understanding of God’s sweetness and preciousness. He is the food of my soul!
As a Christian woman, when you begin to seek God with all of your heart - then you sit “under his shadow with great delight” and find “his fruit sweet to [our] taste.”
When nothing makes sense - He makes sense! God is our spiritual delicacy; the taste needed to relish it, the life that alone is nourished by it, the extraordinary enjoyment derived from it!
I Love You,