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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Exceedingly, Abundantly

As the summer came to a close and I was pulling up my tomato plants and harvesting more broccoli, which amazes me since I live in New York,I reflected on what an abundant summer it had been. It started off with a bang as I went to visit my daughter and close friend first in California and then Oregon. the beauty of the Oregon and Northern California cost was stunning and the coastal redwoods were magnificent. I also got to spend time with a good friend who I don't' see that often and we shared some great times together while enjoying the beauty of God's creation.Of course spending time with my traveling daughter (I wonder who she take after?)is always a pleasure.She was working on an organic farm and I learned a lot and enjoyed the animals and watching her milk the cow.

Afterwards, I had my son's fiance arrive from Ecuador and she spent six weeks with us before they were married.She moved into my daughter's room and it was like having another daughter.I had a lot of fun showing her around beautiful upstate New York and she fell in love with it.We went bicycling, walking, swimming, shopping and visiting my friends.We had a great time together!

Then my husband and I had a wonderful time together in Vermont.It was like a second honey moon. He was happy and in a good mood and we explored a different part of Vermont that we normally don't visit. We finally got to go to Robert Todd Lincoln's Estate Hildene in Dorset. We also went to Brandon Vermont where we use to live and stayed at the Brandon Inn, which was truly lovely.Then we went to Lake Dunmore where I experienced my challenging kayaking adventure, but it was still great, with the wind and the waves fighting against me. I had to release myself into the Lord's hands and He took care of me. (You can read about it below).

At last the wedding march began, which turned out to be such a blessing to everyone who attended. The weather was beautiful for an outdoor ceremony and as one of my relatives said "you could feel the presence of God through out the day, even at the reception." I also felt his presence as my daughter and I hiked up to one of the most beautiful views in the Hudson Vally along
the Shawagunk Mountains.

After the wedding come a wonderful trip to the Jersey shore with another very good day.I discovered a part of the shore I had never seen before--Sea Girt and Spring Lake. It was gorgeous and we had a great time vacationing together which we hadn't done since we went to the Florida Keys during winter break in college! I'm not going to tell you how many years ago that was. We went swimming, biking, walking along the beach at night to the moonlight and of course out to eat at one of those wonderful restaurants along the water.

I just felt so abundantly blessed this summer and it reminded me of a verse from Ephesians "Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us." It was He who blessed us so much this summer, and so I have to remind myself of that as now I'm back to work and have to deal with the everyday things and my husband's bouts with depression and anxiety.I tend not to think of that as a blessing, but God has shown me the blessing in it and a deeper understanding of the verse.

It has a greater meaning then just being blessed with wonderful things, like this summer. Paul is actually talking about the work that God has the power to accomplish in us. It is a work that far exceeds our expectations.Just like the summer far exceeded what I had thought it would be, I'm waiting expectantly for what God is going to do in me, my husband and our marriage. On top of that,God uses these times when my husband isn't in the best of moods or depressed to draw me closer to Himself. Now that is ultimately the greatest blessing...to know God more deeply so that He fills you up when you feel drained, depressed, worried or any other emotion. He continues to bless us "exceedingly, abundantly" even when we don't' feel blessed.And for that, I thank Him exceedingly!