name change

Don’t be alarmed if you logged onto my blog and see a different title. I’ve changed it again but it’s still me.

I’ve changed the name of my blog several times since I started it. It began as “Squeth”, which is a nickname I acquired years ago. Then I changed it to “Just Call Me Guava” when I moved to Thailand and was constantly called “farang” (Thai name for Guava, but it’s also what they call white foreigners). I decided that in order to further adapt to the Thai culture, I didn’t want to make that distinction between myself and the Thai. Sure I’m Canadian and so I am a foreigner but the way in which I saw myself and my life could no longer be through my Canadian and foreign eyes. I needed to let go of the rights that I had when I was in Canada and accept that I am a foreigner in another country and so I was the one who needed to change. I needed to let go in order to begin to hold onto my life here.

From there, I titled my blog “Consider It Pure Joy”, which then became “Consider It a Sheer Gift.” These two titles come from the same passage in the Bible (James 1:2-4) but from different translations. Essentially those verses say “Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way” (James 1:2-4, The Message (which is a version of the Bible)). Although I am still very much in this frame of mind – facing challenges in all areas of my life on a daily basis and wanting to look at these things as great opportunities to grow in the Lord and so be joyful and thankful for these times – I also want to continue to adjust and adapt to what the Lord has called me to.

He has called me here. I know this and I’m thankful that He not only did call me but that He did make it clear to me. If I wasn’t sure of this, it would be too easy to pack up and return to Canada. But, as it stands, because He has called me here, as His child I need to humbly take His hand each day and follow Him instead of going my own path. He has chosen me to leave the familiar, be amongst the unknown and to be available to serve Him in whatever ways He leads
me. But the transition hasn’t been easy and I am again at a point where I realize I need to consciously make this home. I need to let go of what I want my future to look like. And also to look at my present and future with great expectations of what the Lord will do.

As I look back over the last 10 years, since I became a believer, I can recall equally difficult times. But I can also easily recall times of great joy. Times where I had moved to a different place, the Lord had given me great friends and I had outlets where I could use the giftings He’s given me. I trust Him for those same things and much more for my future and I cling to Him in the present and find shelter in the shadow of His wings. I don’t call out and ask these things to God like people make wishes on dandelion seeds. I call out to Him in faith, knowing that He called me, that He’s my Father in heaven, that He is faithful, loving, merciful and that He knows my needs, wants and desires better than I even do. I call out to Him knowing that He hears all my prayers, sees my tears and never leaves me.

So rejoice with me as I continue on this journey, though the struggles, tears, fears and joys. Wherever you are in the world, you’re facing challenges as well, I’m sure. Let us continue to press on and run the race marked out for us (Hebrews 12:1-2) – whatever and wherever that is. The Lord called Amos, a herdsman and a dressor of sycamore trees (Amos 7:14-15) to go and prophesy to His people Israel. He’s not about to say that you or I are not worthy to serve Him, just as we are. Jesus called Saul a “chosen instrument” to bring His name before Gentiles (Acts 9:15) even though Saul had just been “breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord” (Acts 9:1). The Lord sees potential while we struggle to see ourselves and others through our human perspective.

Dandelion seeds, like many other seeds, blow in the wind and find a place near or far to land, settle, sprout and thrive. They, in each of their states, are a part of the Lord’s beautiful creation. May the ground where God has taken each of us be fertile and may He use each of us (in a good way!) in the lives of others around us. And may He help us to endure the journey and trust in Him through all seasons.

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