Expectations

I’ve really been thinking about this topic of late and how it can affect your life in a positive or negative way. Some expectations are reasonable such as, if I were to order a coffee in a cafe I expect to get my money’s worth with good service provided, you rent a house you pay the rent, if a uniform is required then knock your self out and wear it,  however, I would not expect a two-year old child to behave like a five-year old.

I have come to yet another point of self-reflection just recently and expectation seems to be the buzz word for me right now. A couple of weeks ago I failed yet another assignment and then said to myself “I can’t keep this up”.

I have greatly enjoyed my studies (Bachelor of Education Early Childhood) and it has changed my life in many positive ways but on the other side of the coin it has also caused much stress and I’m a bit over it. When I failed my fifth assignment I had to re-evaluate what I was doing and where am I going??

I decided that it was time to put the studies on hold for now as I clearly am not coping with such pressure right now. When I made the decision I felt elated and relieved and even my son told me how happy he felt.

I have asked myself many questions since putting the studies on hold and my ears have been attentive to Gods words when he whispered “Will you let me be your Father?” Such an extraordinary question which really reflects the Grace and the kindness of God. It’s time for me to really take heed of Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God”

This tells me that I don’t have to prove myself to anyone. That Grace is enough. I am doing the best I can with what I have right now and even though challenges are great some are for a different day.  At the moment I need to take life that little bit slower or do things that give me a more immediate happy feeling. Life has been too intense for the past 8 yrs and its time to listen….I’m listening.

My reasons for commencing studies was to better my changes of employment, which is a great thing to do. I have also wanted to be a teacher and early childhood has always appealed to me. I am passionate about play and making sure that children are never robbed of their childhood by pushy marketers who want to deceive parents into thinking that they are doing a crap job at raising their youngins!!

The ideal of doing what I was doing was a good thing, however when it affects your mental health and family time suffers then its time to adjust the vision. After making my decision I certainly felt quite philosophical and wrote the following statements on Facebook.

Being able to adjust is an important part of fulfilling the dream

What if the time-wasting activities are things you are meant to be doing???…..just a thought!

What are the expectations in life that I have been trying to adhere to? I want to be a responsible citizen and do the right things by the community but what if the expectations of society are not realistic? It seems that just being a mum is not good enough or being an artist is just a hobby.  So many expectations out there…..scary!!

But not scary. It’s not scary if I reflect on what God has told me, that he is my Heavenly Father. It’s not scary when I live through Grace. It’s not scary. It’s not scary if I just believe what the word of God says about me. It’s not scary at all.

When I was a young child I wanted to be one of the disciples that walked with Jesus. In fact I longed for it. God heard my prayer and when I was 17,  I met Jesus and understood the reality of Christ. From that time all I ever wanted was to be that disciple from my childhood.

I was never an ambitious person and I was never one to strive at things that seemed important by society’s  standards. When I read in the Bible about searching for wisdom and knowledge as silver and gold I took it seriously. That is what I wanted for my life and now at 41 nothing has changed.

I don’t live by the worldly expectations that change with the tides and I never have. I have always been told that I am different, unusual and unique and as I have grown older I understand what people are saying. Over the years I have experienced many frustrations, especially when I try to go the normal path that people take. However, when I do my own quirky thing it seems to go really well and I find unexpected success.

Today I declare that I shall walk in the freedom that was given to me at the cross and I will no longer try to live up to false expectations that will rob my joy. I will follow and do the things that I was created for and sit quietly for the voice of God to gently lead me. Everything else that has robbing power can just dissolve and disappear out of my life……I’m moving forward.

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Go Play

About two years ago I was sitting in our new church building

and I believe this is what God told me;

That the church was like a tree-house and the land was his. That he was my Heavenly Father and I was to go and play.

At the time I thought “aww that’s nice” but I did not recognize the significance of this until just recently. For the past year I have been dealing with depression due to many stresses of life  that have had me feeling like there was no hope and nothing will ever change in our lives. Praise God that for the past six months I’ve been coming out of it with an abundance of joy!!

So what happened???? I went to the Doctor and got some happy pills 🙂

Not just that alone, as I still had my faith in spite of feeling lost, one of the scriptures that kept me going was this Habakkuk 3:17  I posted it on our fridge to remind me that everything will be okay.

The other thing that has helped, has been my garden adventures. I have never felt so creative in all of my life and I am having the best fun ever. God showed me that the first dwelling place that he made for humans was a garden. It came as such a revelation as I continued to enjoy the space at the community garden. Being out in nature in the sunshine with other people is so good for emotional well-being that I totally recommend anyone who is suffering depression to just go and be a part of a community garden, even if you just sit for a while.

So I sat for a while and then I started to get creative, here are some of my adventures

What have I been up to??

I have been playing.

This then brings me back to my vision that I had nearly two years ago when God told me to go  play!!!!

I have and through this experience I am learning what being childlike is all about. I am learning that as adults we can still play and the things that get us down in this world should not be taking so much of our valuable time. I am learning that God really does desire to be our Heavenly Father. I am learning to receive and not be so stoic in life. I am learning to just be me.

Planted by the River!!

I’ve had such a good day today and I consider it quite the treat. For the past couple of days I’ve been bawling my eyes about being an artist. Why???? I can’t tell you because I don’t even know why!!

But funny and interesting things happen, such as last night at the end of my home group (which is bible study group) one of the gentleman who attends asked me if I was okay as he noticed how distressed I was on Sunday. That’s when I proceeded to tell him about my sudden emotional dilemma of being an artist which is so weird cause usually I couldn’t care less about such matter’s that were reducing me to tears………uh um……….. waffling Tamar!!!!

Anyway, I went home and sat on my son’s bed so I could touch his foot (sometimes I need to do that as he can have trouble calming down to go to sleep) and as I was sitting there I got a vision of myself as a tree and all these branches were branching out. Some were musical, some had paintings, some told the story of the journey it is to raise a child with VCFS and many more aspects to my life.

I then (after the little fella had quietened)  grabbed my bible and looked up Psalm 1 with particular interest in verses 2 and 3. I then began to sing a song and was uplifted and full of joy.

This morning I went for a walk armed with my vintage methods of capturing images….sketch book and pencils!! I drew a few pictures and then decided to try and draw the vision!! this is the result below!!! I think it will become a painting and kind of reminds me of the fabulous artist Marc Chagall

Sometimes we just have to cry even if we don’t really know what it’s all about. I will take it as a healing experience and will carry on with joy and rejoice in the  breakthrough!!!!