A Time to Search

Today’s post is based on chapter 10 of my latest book, Newness of Life, recently released on Amazon.  Get your copy this week for only $1.99!

There is a time to search, and a time to stop searching.

In my creative pursuits, I often stopped searching too soon.

In high school and college, my creative talents flourished.  My days were immersed in writing, making art, and playing music, and I enjoyed getting swept up in the “flow” of creative energy, that sweet spot where time stands still and creation brings such pleasure.

Upon college graduation, I was shocked by the real world.  To make a living, I answered phones, filed papers, and ran errands for higher-ups.  The creative opportunities were given to experienced people.  If I used my gifts at all, it was to typeset price tags or correct grammar mistakes on company letters.  A far cry from the beautiful drawings and poems I made in my classes.

As a young idealist, I felt disillusioned.  I stopped searching for opportunities to create because I felt confused and unappreciated.  Then my babies were born, and I had little time to create, other than writing in my journals.  I prayed frustrated prayers.  “God, you gave me these gifts.  When will I be able to use them?” I asked again and again.

Have you also given up your dreams, because life got in the way?  Because disillusionment stopped your search?

In 2010 I began blogging.  I wasn’t sure what to write about, but I couldn’t suppress the urge to create any longer.  I saw opportunity waiting on the Internet, and I seized the moment.

In 2013 I attended my first writers’ conference and joined a local writers guild.  Meeting with others who shared similar struggles and frustrations bolstered my confidence.

In 2016 I began blogging five days a week.  I finally finished my memoir after six years, and I entered the world of self-publishing.

What spurred my renewed search for creative opportunities?
Adversity.

In my overwhelm, the enemy snarled, “You’ll never realize your dreams. You’ll be stuck pushing papers the rest of your life. Too many bills to pay, too little time available to make this a priority.”

In my depression, the enemy mocked, “You’re a nobody. No one will want to read what you write.”

In my scarcity mindset, the enemy accused, “Your time is past.  Your opportunities are gone.  Success is reserved for someone else.”

Adversity tore my heart again and again.  I encountered difficult situations when my work became less and less satisfying, and higher-ups heaped negativity on my head.

But when a muscle is pushed to its limit, it regains strength when the tiny torn fibers are repaired.  Adversity strengthened my resolve to renew my search.

I am in a new season of life, a season of asking, seeking, and knocking.  A season of searching for new opportunities.  A season of making connections and learning new techniques.  No longer searching to overcome disillusion, frustration, and negativity.  No longer searching to overcome a lack of confidence.

This season of searching is not about proving my worth; this season of searching is about giving God glory.

In this new season, I’m finding an active, living peace.  Peace comes through joining in the work God is already doing.  I don’t have to manufacture my own opportunities; I simply look for where God is working, and join in. He doesn’t want me to search out of desperation any longer.  He wants me to search for him first.

I am trusting that if I search for God first, everything I need will be granted to me. (Matthew 6:33).

I am trusting him to teach me what’s worth searching for and which searches need stopping.

I am trusting him for newness of life in my season of asking, seeking, and knocking.

Questions for reflection: (please comment below)

What do you need to start searching for?  What is your motivation?

What search do you need to stop, so you can experience God’s peace in a new way?

Study Guides

Here are links to free resources that will help you in the online Bible study or your personal study of Newness of Life:

Newness of Life Worksheets

Online Bible Study Reading Plan

 

Giveaways

Giveaways will be announced on Fridays.  If you comment in my Facebook group this week, you’ll be entered to win a prize on Jan. 27.  All comments will be entered to win the grand prize on Feb. 3.

This week’s winner will receive a copy of Jesus Today and a magnet set of these beauties:

My new book will help you apply Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 so you can understand God’s plan in your current season.

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”  Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV

No matter what season you are in, God is teaching you valuable lessons to grow your faith and trust in Him.  We will discover what God is saying through the different times and activities we traverse.

I look forward to hearing how God is working in your current life season.  I hope you will join in the fun and discussion on the online Bible study.


Please vote 17 on this link: Click HERE! so I can make my publishing dream come true. God set me free from my fear of abandonment, and I want the world to know!

Please spread the word about Newness of Life on social media, using the buttons below to share this post!

This post will be linked up at #tellhisstory, #testimonytuesday, #raralinkup, and #tuestalk. Visit my linkups page to find links to these wonderful blogs.


 

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  • Bev @ Walking Well With God

    Sarah,
    You remind me of a younger version of me. I was always the creative one…even when I was very young I wrote poems about my dogs and nature. I have always wanted to be a writer and like you said, until adversity took me down in 2012, I didn’t realize my dream of picking up my pen…uh my laptop…and writing again and thus started my blog. At first I pursued it with “desperation” as you call it. Then amazingly the less I tried and the more I let God flow, my readership began to grow. Through my blog I developed the relationship that led me to start Redeemer Christian Foundation, Inc. that transforms lives in the Middle East through Christian Education. I say all this to encourage you that God’s ways are higher than our ways. So as hopefully not to discourage you…all this didn’t come about until I was 50. That’s a lot of years of living in between. Keep seeking God for His pace and rhythm for your life. You obviously have a creative and writing gift. God WILL use that but maybe not in the way you imagine. I’ll be praying for you sister creative girl. Loved your post 🙂
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Sarah

      Wow Bev, this certainly does not discourage me, it encourages me very deeply! I know that the level I wish to achieve won’t happen overnight, but I also know God is working right now in what I’m pursuing. I can’t wait to see what he’s done through me in 10 years when I reach the milestone of 50. Blessings to you, and thank you very much for sharing your story with me.

  • Ruth

    I’m seeking to dwell in the shelter of the Most High and wait for His timing for writing, publishing, and even the possibility of speaking. I started my blog about a year and a half ago and am writing my 100th post. I’ve signed up for the Writers Bootcamp online and am hoping the Lord will use something I learn to lead me.
    Seeking to glorify God alone is the best goal you can have. Maybe that’s why He has us wait so long, because it is so easy early on to stray from that path, and it takes time to learn and practice the fact that every good and perfect gift that we have is from Him and for His glory.

    • Sarah

      Congrats on your 100th post, Ruth! I hope you gain much from the online training too. I’m enrolled in several paid online training programs, so I’m bowing out of that one. But I pray it will bless many others.

  • I love your insight that our searching should not be an attempt to prove ourselves or about overcoming a lack of confidence but that we should seek God first and then the other things will fall into place and we will know we are searching for the right things.

    • Sarah

      Thank you Lesley. I truly want to seek God first in all I do, here on the blog and in the rest of my life.

  • Lois Flowers

    Look for what God is already doing and join Him there. I agree, Sarah … that’s where the peace lies. Not in striving and manufacturing and platform building just for the sake of growing an audience. What you say about adversity strengthening your resolve to start searching again really hits home today … many blessings to you as you seek, knock and trust God to open the doors.

    • Sarah

      Many thanks to you Lois, and I pray the same blessings for you!

  • I’m sensing a theme in the posts I’m reading today, Sarah… adversity = God’s glory revealed. And I say amen to that! Partnering with Him, seeking Him out, giving Him room to work. Love your post today, so glad we’re neighbours at #TellHisStory 🙂

    • Sarah

      Hi Christine, glad you visited. Tell His Story is a great linkup, and it’s great to meet you there!

  • Trusting God in hard times is always a word we need to hear. I’m so proud of you for finishing your book. Blogging 5 days a week is no joke, Sister! May God place your book in the hands of many!

    • Sarah

      Thanks Ginger! I hope I can look back in January 2018 and see much fruit from 2017, for God’s glory!

  • Karrilee Aggett

    Ahhh Ecclesiastes! So full of wisdom and goodness… in all of our searching… may we find perfect peace!

    • Sarah

      Thanks for your visit today!

  • Kelly Hausknecht Chripczuk

    Congratulations on allowing adversity to carry you forward.

    • Sarah

      Thanks for your visit, Kelly!

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