This is a re-post from a year ago. My brain seems to slow down in the dead of winter and that was the case today. I have been reading the devotional The Quiet Place and I can't get away from these words in yesterday's entry... mountain moving faith radical obedience patient long-suffering second mile denial Enjoy this post as I chew on these phrases. Growing up on a dusty country road with cows, chickens and roosters as playmates I was bound to be introverted. The tomcats my sisters and I terrorized might not agree, but who's asking them? I went to school with 23 in my graduating class and usually sat in the back of the classroom praying the teachers would not call on me. I was never one to offer an answer either. I didn't play summer sports or have tons of friends so I spent many summer days watching the sun set on our screened in porch. Introverted? Yes. Off to college, I again prayed I wouldn't have to take a public speaking course...but I did because it was required. I still sat in the back of the class room and didn't offer any answers. Four more years of a reluctant student. Not that I didn't want to speak up, I just didn't think I had anything to offer. Little did I know when I married a pastor the introvert might be required to become the life of the party. Only kidding about that but was about to get my eyes opened when we visited another church one Sunday evening. We were greeted by the pastor and his wife. She was friendly, outgoing and made you feel like you had known her all your life. When we got home I was graciously told by my loving husband I needed to be more like her. What? Are you kidding? What do you mean I have to talk? He was right. I knew I didn't need to be the life of the party but I did need to move out of my comfort zone and embrace everyone around me. I began by hosting a ladies Bible study in our home. Most of the women knew their Bibles very well and were old enough to be my mother. But they were my teachers as to how I could follow the Lord and be kind, gracious and yes, outgoing. Those days are a distant memory as God has filled me with His Holy Spirit so I can bear the fruit of the Spirit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness. God has also moved me out of my comfort zone by giving me the ability and opportunities to speak in front of people. I've come a long way since the back row of the classroom.