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FEATURE STORY

There are countless numbers of us that won’t invite others to our homes because we don’t feel we have one that is pretty enough, clean enough, up to date enough, or any number of reasons.  There are also countless numbers of us that wake up each day and look in the mirror, in our closets, and determine that we are too fat, too old, too something…and we exit our homes feeling “less than” before we even begin our day.  And finally, there are countless numbers of us that flounder in our faith and walk with God because of what others say, what we have read, what we hear in our heads.  We worry that God himself is also displeased with who we are.

I’m working on embracing my space in all of the above areas because there’s so much freedom in doing so, freedom we’re missing out on, and freedom He wants us to have…I believe.

Our home isn’t large (if I compare to most of my friends), it’s not new, and the ground beneath it shifts so cracks appear and then close up on our walls…depending on the rainfall and time of year.  But I’m finally reaching out to have friends over once again, even with a recent purchase of a large picnic table to hold more family and friends.  My space is cozy, warm, and I hope inviting.  It’s an extension of who I am in the way I decorate.  And those cracks are there…even though we tried to get help with painters to cover them up…they are there to stay it seems.  But this space is where we live, and if I embrace it to the fullest it becomes alive with a welcoming spirit for all.  And if the visitors focus on the cracks, then so be it.  It will give us all something to talk about.

FRESH THYME - nov 2023 - embrace.jpg

My body isn’t young any more, but it’s not ancient either.  I look in the mirror and see all sorts of flaws, some that have been with me my entire life.  I don’t love my teeth, my hair is thinning, and I’d rather photograph myself frontwards than to the side…because the flat stomach is no longer flat.  Yes, I try to eat healthy and exercise, but I’m not going to pursue perfection through potions, lotions, lifts and tucks.  I don’t want to spend my time that way, but rather embrace who I am now…at this age in the race of life.  I remember having the thought as my parents aged and as I looked on them with pain as their bodies started to fail and seeing them as runners.  Long distance runners are going to have shin splints, wobbly legs and so much more…as they approach the finish line.  Hopefully, I’ve got a long ways to go, but I’ve been running a long time and I want to embrace those things that show the wear and tear of a strong woman that endures.  Yes, I want to be the best version of me, but part of that best is embracing the decade in which I now reside…

And finally, that God space with me and Him.  Wow, this is a hard one for me.  It seems whatever sinks in as a kid is hard to shake or move as an adult, no matter your age.  Just last night I read a devo in a tiny book that was one page long and something that was written about God sent me reeling and completely off my rocker for a bit.  It presented a view of God that hurt my heart and my psyche and all sorts of things.  I let it ruin my peace.  And that’s not okay.  Yes, we are to continue to learn and to grow and to prosper in our walk with Christ, always leaning in and listening and obeying.  But we can’t let everyone else’s theology or knowledge be our standard or how we process our salvation.  I need simple.  I need the simplicity of God loves me, sent his Son to die for me and now lives so that I can live, loving him with all my heart and others as myself.  I can’t handle a lot of “tack-ons” in my faith.  And I believe this space is where God wants me to be for now, and to be at peace.

So what’s invading your space, as you live in your home, catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror, or sit down to have quiet time with God?   I sometimes feel like my day can become like the old video game Space Invaders where you have to shoot down all the aliens.  And I’m pretty sure that’s not the life He intended to give us when he set us free to worship him.  Embrace your space.  I’m trying my best to do that, and it feels pretty good…and right…too.  And if my space needs a refresh, I can trust that He will show me just how and when and I won’t feel anxious or “less than” when He does…but happy and excited at what He has in store.

And this photo of this cute home?  It’s not mine.  But isn’t it cute?  Take a photo of your house, give thanks, and embrace your own cuteness in whatever way YOU like. 

ANY THOUGHTS TO ADD?  DON'T FORGET TO CHECK OUT OTHERS STORIES FROM THE COVER. 

Embrace Your Space
by Marcy Lytle
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