Monday, November 3, 2008

And now, a word from the author - Part Three

Arizona Christian Worldview Institute's new division, ACW Publications, has released its first book, Just Enough Grace: Reflections on Ordinary Miracles by Heather Nations [learn more about it and read an excerpt here]. Here's Part Three of an interview I did with Heather via email. [Read Part One here and Part Two here].

Just Enough Grace is divided into three sections - sort of three phases of your life. The third section is "Just Enough Grace for Change." What's one of your favorite entries from this section?

I love the graduation letter that I wrote to my daughter (p. 202). In the past two years, I've seen her handle disappointments that would knock some adults flat. Despite her active hormones, she's handled things (for the most part) with tremendous grace and maturity. I think every "tween" should occasionally hear that life isn't always perfect or easy, but that God is always good. I also love knowing that, no matter what, there is a written record of how much I loved her.
What are a couple of things that God taught you during this phase of your life?

Doing things "right" or "by the book" doesn't protect you from hardship. It still amazes me that three short years ago we were debt-free (with the exception of our mortgage) and financially comfortable. We're not currently in that blessed position financially...not because we began living by different principles, but because our circumstances brought it about. Just because something is unlikely--I was a ridiculously healthy person before cancer, my husband had never experienced a period of unemployment in the entire scope of our marriage)--doesn't mean that we're immune. Hardship ISN'T punishment, although it is often discipline. There is NO such thing as normal. We're not called to "normal" any more than we're called to "excitement.” We ARE called to obedience and to contentment.
What advice would you offer to people - especially to women - who are struggling with changes in their lives?

Psalm 27:8 —”My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face!’ Your face, LORD, I will seek.” Over and over in Scripture, we are commanded to seek the Lord. Godly perspective on all of life's circumstances comes from shaping my worldview into His. Sometimes we have to look long and hard to find God's hand in our situation, but it is always there. I recently ran across this quote in the Community Bible Study materials on the book of Acts:
Miracles of healing, miracles of guidance, and miracles of deliverance take place every day; because they are part of the events of the day, we often don't notice or appreciate them. We should thank God for His gracious acts on our behalf every day of our lives. Unbelievers talk about luck, good fortune, or coincidence; instead we can recognize the hand of God.
Look for the "everyday miracles"...they're usually not too deeply hidden.
(There’s a reason we chose the subtitle “Reflections on Ordinary Miracles”! – KES ;~)

Why do you think change is so difficult for most of us? Why do we like to be so comfortable?

Sin nature. I think it's difficult for me because I'm still living in a body of flesh in a fallen world. My flesh LOVES to be cozy, well-fed, and most of all comfortable. Most of the time when I really want to be comfortable, it's because I'm not willing to put aside the "old" Heather and put on the new.
Paraphrasing Ugandan pastor Bobgad Kalyowa,

The best comfort zone I have is when I’m serving God in the place He assigns me.
Any comments?

Amen and amen. Thanks, Keith, and the whole crew at ACWI for the opportunity to share!

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