Defiant Faith and Fairy Houses

An Unexpected Application.

I’ve been under the weather for quite some time, and have been hiding out in my room attempting to keep the germs to myself. Today I thankfully had an appetite and energy to go grab a little lunch. I grabbed a ball cap to conceal 4 days of bed head as I glanced in the mirror with a shrug . I was fearful to look around the house… you mamas out there probably know why, you never know what cleaning or laundry is awaiting you after you’ve been ill. I have selfishly said many times…

“Why is it if I don’t do it, it never gets done?!” I have to embarrassingly admit, I expected to be disappointed and defeated on my first day up and at ’em. My attitude was anything but joyful.  I was annoyed before I even found something to be annoyed with. I decided to forgo the main part of the house for now and go straight outside.  As I stepped out, quickly locked the door with my head down in hopes no neighbors were close to see my disheveled appearance, as well as hoping to remain antisocial, I kept my gaze directly towards the ground avoiding any potential eye contact.

 One step, two quick steps and “hold on! What’s that?” Something appeared in the middle of the dirt and mulch.

I found this little fairy house constructed in the corner of the front flower bed. The yard and flower beds look so dreary in the winter, missing all the green and blooms. They collect all the dead leaves and broken branches as well this time of year. But this little sanctuary in the dirt was the most delightful my flower bed has ever been. Not only was it intricately constructed, but the message penned in chalk brought so much warmth to my heart. “ALL fairies welcome” 🧚‍♀️

The items used were not purchased at a hobby store. They lacked sparkle and color. But it was pure magic. It was the heart of the little home maker that made me stop in my tracks and marvel. I discovered that my daughter made this on a day she was really struggling with her own anxieties. In efforts to chase her joy back down while the enemy was coming to steal it from her, she looked down and found everything she needed to start making something beautiful out of the rocks. 

I found my tension lessen and my pace slow down as I took it all in. A smile pinched my cheeks so tightly, I noticed I was squinting! I lost sight of the bad day I assumed awaited me today, and all the dread that accompanied my negative self talk. My thoughts were replaced with curiosity and joy. It was tiny, so very easy to miss. But once I got ahold of what it really was, I saw the enormity of it’s lesson.. My tired body felt completely energized and light. 

A couple weeks ago, our Pastor preached on “Defiant Faith.” Paul reminded us that there is no way the enemy can win the battle for a believer’s soul, so we goes for the one thing he can steal:  our joy. He passionately reminded us how the greatest weapon we have  in a series of discouraging events and difficulties, just as James 1 details, is the joy produced by defiant faith.  This kind of faith sees the sticks (the hard people who have rough edges), the dirt (the shame and guilt Satan wants you to hold on to), the rocks (the heavy burdens of financial weight, a circumstance that is too big and heavy to bear), the spiky seed pods (those bombs that come out of no where, those sharp debilitating moments that cripple you the minute you get your feet on the ground), this kind of faith looks at these things in the eye and says “You don’t get to take me down today.” This kind of faith doesn’t run from the trial because you know who is in control. You know who ultimately wins. It’s not the circumstances that create joy… keep reading, this is when it all clicked.

I don’t find being given a handful of rocks and prickly mulch something I would necessarily want or ask for, the same way I would not ask for sickness or relational struggles. No way! I’ll pass, right?! 

What if what I think I need to make a situation better,  I actually have in front of me? Would the atmosphere where I am at change if I chase the joy in this situation? Not waiting for or wishing for better circumstances, but looking at what is right here in front of me and see it for what could come of it?

The joy isn’t a result of the hard things you’ve been given, the joy is in knowing what will be made out of it!

Abbe Doll

I sat and looked at that precious house knowing that it was only that beautiful because of the hard things it was made out of! The joy isn’t a result of the hard things you’ve been given, the joy is in knowing what will be made out of it! I recalled jotting down a phrase our pastor also said, “I refuse to be impressed by the devil and his works.”

“ I refuse to be impressed by the devil and his works.”

Pastor Paul andrews

I wasn’t expecting today to be so impressed with mulch, sticks, rocks and those dreadful spiked pods, but the way God used the vessel of my little fairy house maker to bring JOY into this lackluster part of the yard, resulted in me not only being impressed, but filled with JOY.

He used her difficult situation, when her spirit was urging her hands to create, all while knowing days later what she chose to create during her hard moment would pull me out of my own hard moment as well. When we intentionally look at our situation with awe and wonder of what God could make out of it, He not only creates something unexpectedly wonderful, but will bring unexpected joy to all who you welcome in, fairies and all. 🙂 

My daughter didn’t make this days ago with the intention to hopefully impress me today. She made it out of chasing joy in the midst of her anxiety. The result: a defeated enemy of anxiety, a new atmosphere of beauty, and her joy strengthening and renewing mine (and perhaps anyone else who sees it.)  No matter what hard things you are working with right now in your life, YOU are the vehicle that God can create beauty with. He doesn’t need a new set of materials or circumstances, just a defiant faith and a refusal to be consumed with the joy stealing negativity surrounding you. Heck if he could change my whole day with those tiny sticks and scraps, imagine what he could do with your day. I asked myself these questions:

What would happen to those around me if I remember that my joy is my strength? Paul also reminded us that there is a seduction to victimization and bad news. That saying “misery loves company” has much truth to it. 

I want to pass along this encouragement from that message that came to life through that tiny little house that I could have missed today. 

“If you are sick, surround yourself with stories of healing. If you’re defeated, listen to the testimonies of victory. The stories stir your faith and change your perspective on the elements around you. “

Chase the beauty. Use what this difficult season has offered you and be amazed at how  Joy comes back. I don’t know what that looks like for any of you reading this today, but I bet you do. And if you can’t quite find it today, you’re welcome to marvel at the fairy house too, all are welcome.

Published by abbemichelle

Writer and artist, believer of all things being made new. Wife and Mother, founder of 21:5 Ministries, and Doll Design Co.

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