Putting those things behind me I press toward the mark of the high calling of Christ Jesus my Lord, that is my own spin on that verse but it is very important to me today. I have spent some time in the last couple of days just looking at the blessings of my life from salvation until now and I can’t help but be encouraged. I have a huge tendency when I am emotional or stressed to focus on the negativity of my past, to allow others to plant seeds of impending failure in my heart, and to become filled with doubt of a joyful future. It really doesn’t take long for God to remind me of His faithfulness because He has brought me further than I could have ever imagined. I get this picture of Jesus holding me in His hand kind of shaking His head maybe rolling His eyes with a look that says “just waiting for you to stopping begging me to pick you up and look around!” It makes me laugh because he never lets go I am always right there next to Him safe and loved. I know it is popular for Christians to say “I am so blessed” but I truly am! As I write these little blurbs of my life I am enjoying the truth I find in scripture but even more importantly each time I ask Him to change me His word becomes deeper in meaning. I have spent most of my life trying to force myself to look like a picture in someone else’s mind only to find that each time I thought I knew what it looked like the picture had changed. I have my own picture now and it is very different from the past, it not filled with appearance and living up to expectations but has faces full of real joy and the only expectation is to share the overflow of grace and mercy I have received. I will live a wholehearted life for as long as I am here one step at a time looking for every opportunity to be filled with joy. I am still bombarded with doses of guilt and shame but they are not mine and I don’t have to carry them or even allow them in my life. Today I am walking in the warm sunshine with a gentle breeze, finding rest for my soul. These are the days I cherish the ones I am learning to look for and my goal is to string them together as close and often as I can. I am loved and I am His!