Risky Business

Jesus said, “Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!” (Luke 8:48MSG)

This morning, I came across this verse noted in a journal from four years ago and it was exactly what my heart needed to hear.

You see, I used to describe myself as one who doesn’t take risks. When I first moved to Arizona fourteen years ago, I came because it was safe. At that time, I had family who owned a home here so I had a place to land and if it didn’t work out, it would be easy to change course.

Over the course of the years that followed, I did all that I set out to accomplish as far as securing a good career and living comfortably.

In 2005, I made what was somewhat of a risky move by quitting my job to pursue medical school. I say it was only partially risky because I had evaluated my finances and felt secure in that regard with what I was setting out to do.

So with all determination, the risk of not getting into medical school wasn’t even a factor.

And that cost me everything.

This morning, I related to the precious woman in Luke 8 in a whole different light.

In the crowd that day there was a woman who for twelve years had been afflicted with hemorrhages. She had spent every penny she had on doctors but not one had been able to help her. (Luke 8:43-44MSG)

I spent twelve years in Arizona in pursuit of everything I hoped would fulfill me…only to come up short over and over again, and leaving me more desperate with each try…

And eventually I would have to ask others for help, which I needed to learn to do…but not only would I find that they could only do so much, but I would also find that, in some cases, promises would go unmet.

When finances were running low and the opportunity to do some innovative investing presented itself, I quickly asked, “where do I sign?” And just like that, the equity in my home and the proceeds of my 401k were in the hands of another.

When the terms of what I had signed up for were not being upheld, I sought trusted legal counsel to help…and let’s just say, that proved to not be so trusted.

Over the years, I’ve carried lots of shame for the poor decisions I made regarding my finances, namely my 401k.

Like the hemorrhaging woman, after 12 years, I had exhausted all options and was at the end of myself…

So I reached for Him with faith like never before.

But unlike the woman in the Bible, I wasn’t hiding after I did nor did my healing come instantly.

When the woman realized that she couldn’t remain hidden, she knelt trembling before him. In front of all the people, she blurted out her story—why she touched him and how at that same moment she was healed. (Luke 8:47MSG)

I reached for Jesus fully exposed and my healing would come in the experiences and adventures He would lead me on that followed this act of faith…

Jesus said, “Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!” (Luke 8:48MSG)

After the first risk, I can’t say it gets any easier because the stakes keep getting higher.

But healing and wholeness is always worth the risk.

Yesterday, I got a job offer. For a job I would have never imagined myself doing and one I didn’t apply for. (Okay, so some backstory is that I applied for a different one with this company but got a quick response that they were pursuing other candidates, so my resume entered their system that way.)

So I like to think that they chose me. Just like He did.

You didn’t choose me. I chose you. (John 15:16NLT)

And what have they chosen me to do, you ask?

Oh, I’ll be working for a financial investment firm helping folks in the area of investing and their 401k.

I laugh.

I don’t believe in karma or revenge.

I believe in the Redeemer and isn’t redemption sweet?!

He has sent redemption to His people; He has ordained His covenant forever; Holy and awesome is His name. (Psalm 111:9NASB)

Life as I know it

I’ve been back in the States for four months and in Arizona living with my most gracious friends and being part of their family for the last two…but who’s counting?!

bowling

I don’t want life to be measured in that way. Instead of counting days, I want to be fully present breathing in every moment. I want to be focused on my journey today and not what it could or couldn’t be tomorrow…because let’s face it, I’ve mastered that.

Oh that my mind would fully rest…

But instead, it has the gift of going and going. And my wide open heart of feeling and feeling.

Taking me to this very moment and the need to put words to all this going and feeling. To write. To process. But most importantly, to stop and REMEMBER. Remember that nothing is apart from Him. Every moment is extraordinary because He is in it.

He’s called me back to the beautiful desert and I’m marveling at its beauty like never before.

desert beauty

I’ve been reconnecting with old friends and making new ones.

jules and t

I had the most precious reunion with my family.

family

And oodles of quality time with my nephew.

snuggley Conrad

I’ve done some babysitting, dogsitting, and lots of school pick-ups and homework.

kids pick up

This past week, I got back into the interviewing mode, which is definitely not one of my favorite things. Anytime I’m putting myself in a position to be rejected just isn’t ideal for sensitive little me. But it’s all good because my perception of rejection is changing…slowly, but surely!

And my interviewing preparation is also changing. Instead of focusing on my qualifications, I’m prepping by focusing on His.

interview

He’s good. He’s so good. And while my circumstances try to fool me, my heart gets me back on solid ground.

I’m back in the desert, but this is not a desert season. As I write this, I’m careful to define any of it. My mind would like to do that, but my heart knows so much better.

The last few weeks have had their share of whining and moaning, and that’s all bound to still happen in the coming, but at the end of the day, my heart overflows.

My life is beautiful beyond reason and He is more beautiful with each moment.

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
    and all that is within me,
    bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
    and forget not all his benefits,
 who forgives all your iniquity,
    who heals all your diseases,
 who redeems your life from the pit,
    who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
 who satisfies you with good
    so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Psalm 103:1-5