Lord God, you are my strength. Hold my hand in my weakness and teach my heart to fly. With you, there’s nothing to fear, nothing to worry about. Hold me tight in your embrace, so that I can be stronger than the challenges in my life. Amen. (from Alive Now Facebook page)

This week, our family of four had a rare night when all of us were sitting around the dinner table. With a high school freshman and college freshman it isn’t often that we have the opportunity to sit at the table together. This night, our conversation turned to what we could add next to the yard. My son and husband are building a greenhouse for our garden (my son is really into becoming more self-sufficient), so goats and chickens seemed the next logical addition! As you might imagine, conversation went round and round about the benefits of each, along with the downside of each. There are some really cool chicken coops one can build, and the pygmy goats are pretty cute! As I sat watching this happen I thought, “well, I haven’t done such a bad job at parenting after all!” We all know that parenting is a hard job, rewarding and I love it, but some days are not so great.

The prayer that began this struck my heart on a day I was really feeling weak and certainly not at my best as a parent. As changes have occurred in life and ministry, I sometimes find myself in this spot, a little insecure and unsure of the next steps. On these days, I’m afraid my children have picked up on my sense of weakness in the midst of the new. Hopefully, I have given them the skills and knowledge to do what their heart calls them to, to know that God is walking with them, that they always have someone to talk with, that they are loved each and every moment. I have had a few great moments of teaching during this time about what it is to begin anew, to know God’s new call on my life, to be okay with starting over with confidence. It is encouraging to this mom’s heart that my children want to know what I’m doing and what is next. I am so grateful for what is next. Blessings abound in new ideas and possibilities that are emerging and with it comes strength! I rejoice in the strength on this day!

And about the chickens and pygmy goats? While it would be a new adventure, it’s probably not a reality for this household.

Rev. Nani Arning
Rev. Nani Arning

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