During the past three years, God's been creative in how He speaks to me. On countless occasions, He's used red cardinals, butterflies, and rainbows. Other times, He's used books, music, and strangers to minister to me.
Each time, I walk away filled with awe. He never ceases to blow me away! I love how the Lord knows exactly what I need at the precise moment. He cares so deeply for me that He will stop at nothing to reveal Himself.
He pursues me. He softly speaks to me. He finds positive ways to life me up. And today is another perfect example of it.
In effort to prepare for this weekend's speaking event, I've been extra busy. After starting my morning with coffee, I got down to business refining my speech. My topic is quite timely. It's titled, Hope for the Weary Soul.
Following my revisions, I started a "to do list." In order to pack necessary items to travel to another city, I wrote a long list. Did I mention that I'm high maintenance? Hey, what's wrong with bringing plenty of beauty stash, essential oils, and supplements with me? It's my lifestyle and part of who I am.
With my severe gluten intolerance, I must pack food to eat. For the entire weekend. Just in case I can't find a safe place to dine out. It never fails; if I don't bring gluten-free food, I won't find a restaurant to accommodate my food restrictions. Therefore, my preparations to travel anywhere out of town become quite extensive.
Somehow, one list morphed into three different "to do lists." Seriously, who does that? Me! :) On a bright note, I'm organized. This brings me peace of mind during a month that has become a whirlwind of activity.
This afternoon, I decided to practice what I preach. My speech is about women giving themselves permission to care for themselves. Without guilt. Without shame. Without feeling it's selfish or vain.
There is nothing selfish or vain about nurturing ourselves, especially females who spend most of their lives tending to everyone else's needs. Yet, the average woman in our society is running herself ragged. She gives and she gives and she gives. She's a busy lady!
Her boss needs her help. Her children need her help. Her spouse needs her help. Her church needs her help. The demands don't stop. As long as she agrees to meet their wants and needs, she's slowly dying to her own self. She is utterly exhausted. She's spiritually depleted.
She needs hope for her weary soul...
This brings me back full circle to why I forced myself to take a time out. I knew that it's crucial for me to promote self-care. Not just because I write and speak about it.
All of us need quiet time to recharge our batteries. We each need a little breathing room to enjoy life. To rest. To reflect. To refuel.
Most importantly, we need to slow down. To intentionally carve out quiet time alone with God. To pray. To read His Word. To listen for His whispers calling us to draw closer to Him.
So I grabbed my sunglasses, water bottle, and Fritos before heading outdoors. As I sat on my porch in my cozy chair, the warm sun felt soothing on my skin. Instinctively, I took a relaxing breath and slowly exhaled. Ahhh, there's nothing better than nature!
Instantly, I found myself deep in prayer. I had so much on my mind. Every imaginable thought was buzzing! And my "to do" list was ringing in my ear. "Don't forget this. Don't forget that."
Good grief, I couldn't stop my racing thoughts! Instead of worrying about it, I prayed about it. Somewhere in the middle of asking God for His strength, provision, and wisdom, all felt well in my soul.
Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed a ladybug. She was climbing up my wooden fence. There was something determined and intentional about her movements. It was as if she knew exactly where she was going and nothing could distract her.
Silently, I watched the ladybug climb higher and higher on my fence. Once she arrived on the top, she sprung out her wings and soared.
God's creatures, including ladybugs, are beautiful. While I continued to soak in the sunshine, I sensed the Lord was stirring. That He was speaking to me through this ladybug.
After spending wonderful time outside, I ventured to my desk. Out of curiosity, I wanted to research ladybugs to learn about their symbolism. The more I read, the more powerful the message seemed like it was meant for me.
According to multiple resources on the Internet, "Seeing a ladybug is associated with good luck. Like butterflies, ladybugs undergo a complete transformation. In the early phase, they are in a transition. There's a shift happening. Abundant growth."
In addition, the ladybug symbolizes the Virgin Mary. Thus, they are considered sacred and people shouldn't harm them.
When a ladybug has flown into our lives, it reminds us to not rush our own process to achieve our dreams. Instead, it's a sign to slow down. To rest. To have childlike wonder. To be filled with joy. In addition, it's telling us to let things flow at a natural pace.
The ladybug is symbolic for the following words:
- Release Worries
- Wishes Fulfilled
“For God speaks time and again, but a person may not notice it.” Job 33:14 (CSB)