A New Look Always Does a Woman Good

The blog has a new look today.  Recently, I spoke at our mother daughter banquet, a message titled, “Beyond the Picket Fence: Identity in Christ,” a twist on a post I wrote a couple of months ago called “Stolen Identity.”  The heart of the message was how we, as women, put our identity in expectations, roles, and ideals we have of what womanhood looks like, and how our identity  becomes shattered when life shakes the “picket fence” image we have of Christian womanhood.  Those of you following this blog from the beginning have followed part of my journey in wrestling with these issues myself.  Through writing, connecting with other women, but most of all seeking the Lord in this quest, He has brought clarity to some of the things I have been wrestling with and seeking Him for in the last two years.
                      Clarity of who I am in Him.  A friend of mine recently told me I worry too much about what people think of me.  Wow.  This brought clarity and peace to my heart, causing me to find the balance between pleasing the Lord and allowing other things to fall where appropriate boundaries should.  What a revelation.
                      Transformation of my mind, from memorizing and studying Philippians.  One small verse, “I thank God for you every time I remember you,” has been transforming my thought life as I have turned from dwelling on things to thanking God for all people and situations that come across my mind.
                      Reality checks.  I am in a graduate program for clinical counseling which focuses on “going as far with clients as you would with yourself.”  In other words, there is an unbalanced, rather unhealthy focus on analyzing and repeatedly looking at yourself, instead of God. Self-reflection is good, but the philosophy I have been immersed in goes far beyond self-reflection.  I’ve had to be intentional in seeking the Lord and His identity through the process.  In conjunction with finishing up classes soon and starting internship, I feel like I’ve had a breath of fresh air.  
                      Tangibly seeing the work of the Holy Spirit in our family.  If you are a regular follower, you know my daughter Kaylee graduated this weekend.  Where God has brought her, me, and our present relationship is a miracle, nothing short.  As I gain distance from the years of turmoil and pain our family has seen, it’s a testimony I can’t keep to myself.  I praise Him each day, and the realization of what He has done has brought the next stage of the journey, which is encouraging other women facing difficult things in their lives, and lives of their families.  This is where I found myself.  If you would like to read more on this story, and visit my other blog, His Story, at http://www.brendayoder.blogspot.com,  “Life Beyond the Picket Fence”. 

         Feedback from women hearing and reading the Picket Fence journey brings clarity for this site – a ministry to women whose life isn’t quite what was imagined.  I hope you will continue to join with me in walking this journey of life the Lord has for us, Beyond the Picket Fence.  The content of the blog will be the same. Perhaps the title change is more for me, bringing focus for this writing ministry.  My goal from the beginning has been to create a space where women can come who find their picket fence is not quite what they imagined……because it’s where I live…….

                                       Beyond the Picket Fence.



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