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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Just the slightest shift, part one

by Naomi Widmer, guest writer

We are happy to introduce Naomi Widmer as our guest writer for the next two weeks.  Naomi, along with her husband, Mark, have served faithfully in ministry for over 35 years.  Naomi is a gifted musician and teacher.  She has also served as a missionary in the Dominican Republic with her husband and currently they are serving in a Christian school in Romeoville, IL.  Welcome Naomi to the Relevant Women blog!

Recently, I was asked the question, "Naomi, what is one thing you might be able to shift in your life this week to lighten the heaviness you currently have in your life?   And, when you figure it out, send me an email!" When I got off the phone, I sat there feeling perplexed.  I had no idea what could shift, short of quitting everything I was involved in, and hitting the road to find an illusive cabin in the woods!

As I sat there, I soon realized I had to get rid of all my pat answers or "christianese" statements.  The truth is, I literally had to sit this one out by being still, leaning into God, and listening for His still small voice.  This was the beginning of becoming aware of how God would perform these subtle shifts in my life. Honestly, to sit still and wait on God's gentle moving in my life is the opposite of my personality.  If I see a problem, "I" want to fix it - solve it in three easy steps and be done with it!  But from where I was sitting that day, it was evident my three-easy-step plan wasn’t going to work this time.

The past eight years have kept me in bondage to a doctor's misdiagnosis and the horrific side effects of being wrongly medicated. This medication wreaked havoc in my private life and racked up unnecessary medical bills. Coming to the realization of this truth and going through a hellish withdrawal from a scary drug, left me in a confused, frustrated state of mind. I thought I was doing a pretty good job at putting on my strong Christian face, giving all the right scriptural answers and making sure my family was assured of my well-being.

I had taught and counseled other ladies regarding their trust in a Sovereign God that would never waste any of their experiences - allowing their darkest moments to lead to their greatest growth! But there I sat, knowing that deep down inside to the core of my being that a tsunami of sorts had taken place over the past few years. Until that moment, I had never stopped long enough to thoroughly get the most effective help needed with the aftermath of this horrific event. I was always too concerned with how others perceived me, being overly upbeat with my family to help them with their clean-up efforts, but never really stopping to clean up what was buried beneath the rubble deep down inside of me.


Funny thing, I had thought of the tsunami word picture years ago to describe my experiences long before my lifelong friend and new life coach, Pam Roth, called and asked me about looking for "shifts" in my life. I don't think it was by chance, when she without knowing that I had that word picture in my head, asked me in our first session together, "Naomi, what do you do in the aftermath of a tsunami?" What a comfort it was when she went on to say, "I'm here to help you with the clean-up efforts!"


The word shift means to move from one place to another over a small distance; a slight change in position. As I analyzed the word shift, God began shedding light on what that would look like since He knows I'm a visual learner.  He would soon show me that these slight shifts would come in the form of "gentle kisses on the cheek from Him!" That word picture alone brought tears to my eyes as I had never felt worthy of such a gift. I had life experiences that had created feelings of self-loathing, so how could God lean in to me and give me a sweet kiss on the cheek?

The rest of the story will be published next week.  


For more about Relevant Women - RelevantMinistry.org/RelevantWomen

5 comments:

  1. Thank you, Naomi for sharing your testimony. Your transparency is very refreshing in a world shrouded in masks and scripted language.
    This is a very insightful and moving piece. I look forward to reading the conclusion next week!

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  2. Naomi...I totally agree with Cyndi. What an inspiring message for all of us. It's those "small shifts" that eventually lead us to a "major shift" in our choices and perspective. Thanks again for being so vulnerable and sharing your story. Looking forward to part two.

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  3. Naomi, thank you for this! I agree with Cyndi as well! I am very guilty of putting on that mask, so people think everything is great! Looking forward to hearing more about shifts!

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  4. Naomi....dear friend - you are SUCH an example to "girlhood" about being transparent - and I love it! You can relate with people, people can relate with you. Thanks for exposing to the world that some of the beauty in your life that we see, was once ashes that your Father transformed! Love you!

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  5. Thank you dear friends for your sweet comments of encouragement! I would never have chosen this journey, but God, in his sovereignty has seen fit to use it for my good and for his glory!

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